About Donald Himes
The scholarship’s namesake, Donald Himes was a devoted gifted musician-- pianist, composer, dancer, choreographer, teacher and somatic practioner --from Galt (now Cambridge), Ontario. In 1952, he moved to Toronto, where he taught piano and began to study Dalcroze Eurhythmics at the Royal Conservatory of Music with Madeleine Boss Lasserre, who had begun her own studies with Jaques-Dalcroze in Geneva in 1919. His first awareness of the work of Jaques-Dalcroze sprang from his own dissatisfaction with much of the way music was taught. He realized that developing an adequate technique and following notational instructions did not necessarily create expressive musical performance. He found everything in the study of Dalcroze that he felt had been missing from his own musical education and after two years of study, Madame Lasserre encouraged him to go to Geneva. He was awarded the Canada Council’s first-ever music award to attend L’Institut Jaques-Dalcroze. His time there shaped his understanding of what music was and could be. Prior to his passing in 2011, he received the Diplôme Supérieur Honoris Causa, the highest honour of the l'Institut Jaques-Dalcroze.
When Donald returned from Geneva, he taught Dalcroze Eurhythmics at the Royal Conservatory of Music, the National Ballet School, the Toronto Dance Theatre (TDT), the Opera School at the University of Toronto, Queen’s University, York University, Institute of Child Study at the University of Toronto, Kingston Summer School of the Arts and New York State University.
As an original member, he also performed at the TDT and was the choreographer of Babar, the Little Elephant, a telling of Jean de Brunhoff’s story in dance to the music of Francis Poulenc. He further choreographed for Young People’s Theatre, Prologue to the Performing Arts and the Stratford Shakespearean Festival’s 25th anniversary season. He also made his silent opera debut as the Dancing Master in the Canadian Opera Company’s production of The Daughter of the Regiment. He also has been Father Christmas in the Canadian Children’s Dance Theatre’s Simon Sorry and the Battle for the Toys and a notable sloth annually in the Court of Miracles. From 1964-65 he starred in the CBC children’s show, Butternut Square, working with Ernie Coombs and Fred Rogers before he and Mr. Coombs moved on to Mr. Dressup which premiered in 1967. He composed the theme song to this beloved show and played on air, saying in an interview at the time of Coomb’s death in 2001, that the piano accompaniment stayed fresh because of Coomb’s continual enthusiasm for the show. He found a way of arranging Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star in 300 different ways. Mr. Himes always felt that children responded fantastically to Eurhythmics as movement is so natural to children. He taught athletes, actors and opera singers.
He also contributed numerous articles to our Dalcroze Canada newsletter, Being Music. His contributions to music and his promotion of Dalcroze methodology have been profound and everlasting. He once reflected — “And so Dalcroze — already 86 years in Toronto — continues; hopefully forever!”
While we miss his presence, his wonderful legacy and gift of music will live on in this scholarship.
Eligibility, Rules and Procedures
Applications will be assessed based on both merit and need. A limited number of funds will be awarded each year based on the following criteria:
- Applicants must be current Dalcroze Canada members
- Previous Dalcroze experience and/or other musical training
- Information about the upcoming Dalcroze Canada professional training course you plan to attend (in-person or online).. Note: only courses designated toward the Dalcroze teacher certification qualify
- Awards are applied directly toward the registration fees. Scholarship recipients do not receive the funding directly. Awards may not be deferred to a later granting cycle
- Personal statement of intent and interest in pursuing Dalcroze certification. Preference will be given to applicants who reside and intend to promote Dalcroze teaching in Canada
- Financial need, including other sources of funding
- References (at least one reference should be from a qualified Dalcroze teacher)
- Scholarship recipients will be asked to submit a follow-up report on the training the scholarship helped to fund
In order to serve a number of applicants, Dalcroze Canada does not grant full scholarships. Scholarships cover a portion of an applicant’s tuition – this is generally between 25-40% depending on the quality of the application.
The Dalcroze Canada Board of Directors appoints a Scholarship Awards Committee, which is composed of Dalcroze Canada members and the Director of Studies. The Dalcroze Canada Board of Directors determines the total amount of funds used for scholarships in any given granting cycle. The Scholarship Awards Committee determines the size of each scholarship, taking into account the total amount available in the current granting cycle.