For nearly six decades, Melba Stewart Huber has been operating Melba’s Inc. Based in McAllen, Texas, Melba’s Inc. houses seven dance studios and a retail dancewear store. She established the company in 1958 and has since been offering numerous types of dance classes, including ballet, jazz, tap and hip hop. Additionally, in 1970, Ms. Huber founded the McAllen Dance Theatre Company, which performs every February and at many local year-round events. Since founding Melba’s Inc., Ms. Huber has assisted students in achieving their dreams — some of her former students have even landed roles in Broadway shows. Ms. Huber has been featured in New York Magazine Dance Pages/Dance and the Arts, as well as in Dance Magazine.
A true conservator of American dance, Ms. Huber has served as a panelist for New York and St. Louis tap festivals, including the New York Tradition in Tap. In 2011, she coordinated a three-day workshop for Oklahoma City University’s Dance Department, and served as president of the Texas Association of Teachers Dancing from 1973 to 1974. Ms. Huber has also maintained affiliation with the South Texas Association of Dance Teachers, Inc. After earning an Associate of Arts from Lamar College in 1946, Ms. Huber completed coursework at the University of Texas at Austin. In 1999, she received a Master of History from Oklahoma City University.
A renowned leader in the dance industry, Ms. Huber was the first person outside of New York to receive the prestigious Flo-Bert Award at Lincoln Center in 1996. Additionally, she was the recipient of the Plaudit Award from the National Dance Association in 1970, and dubbed Member of the Year through the South Texas Association of Dance Teachers, Inc. in 1989. In 1994, Ms. Huber received Oklahoma City University’s Teaching Award, and in 1997, she received an honor from the Texas Association of Teachers Dancing.
Notably, Ms. Huber has been bestowed with numerous other accolades, including the Savion Glover Award at the St. Louis Tap Festival, Preservation of Our Heritage in American Dance Award from Oklahoma City University, Women of Distinction Award at the Detroit Tap Festival, and the Tradition in Tap Historian, Educator and Writer Award. In 2007, she received the 50 Years in Business Celebration Award, as well as the Texas Tap Legend Award from Dance Council Honors. Ms. Huber was also presented the Texas Flag by the Texas Senate. An essential part of her community, she received the Top Five Business Award from the McAllen Chamber of Commerce.
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