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Leavitt honors Ballet West, 2 artists

Ballet West, its artistic director Jonas Kage and visual artist Bonnie Posselli were honored by Gov. Mike Leavitt and First Lady Jacalyn Leavitt with the Utah Governor's Artist Award, Oct. 1.

During a gala at the Governor's Mansion the artists were presented medals during a ceremony that came on the heels of a special dance demonstration by various Ballet West dancers.Posselli's work was on display throughout the mansion during the evening's opening reception.

"We are pleased to welcome these outstanding and talented Utah artists to this historic home," the governor said in a press release. "And we look to these artists to lead us into the 21st century."

Kage, a native of Stockholm, Sweden, accepted the artistic director position at Ballet West earlier this year. He is a former artistic director for the Malmo Opera Ballet and has received the Carina Ari Medal for his contributionto Swedish dance.

Posselli was born in Utah and began painting with her mother with a group of outdoor painters. She earned a degree in illustration at Salt Lake Community College and has studied with Alvin Gittins at the University of Utah.

The Governor's Mansion award is part of the Governor's Mansion Artist series that spotlight nationally and internationally acclaimed performing and visual artists from Utah.