the companies & schools

companies & schools news archive

Useful Links
The Royal Opera House
Royal Ballet company members
ROH what's on
RB schedules: 2010/11, 2011/12, 2012/13, 2013/14
Royal Opera House Collections (ROH archive & performance database)
ROH News, Facebook, Twitter
ROH videos on YouTube, photos on flickr, photos on Pinterest, photos on Instagram
ROH Student Standby tickets on Facebook
The Royal Ballet School, RBS News, RBS Facebook

Birmingham Royal Ballet
BRB company members
BRB what's on
BRB downloadable castsheets
BRB News, Facebook, Twitter, videos, and On Tour blog, photos on Pinterest,
BRB At Home website - news from the B5 HQ
BRB's Pointe Blank website of dance-related graphics and images
Rob Lindsay (BRB New Media Officer) on Twitter
Elmhurst School for Dance, Elmhurst News, Elmhurst on Twitter, Elmhurst on YouTube

Many video clips of Royal Ballet dancers from both companies can be found by searching on YouTube

The Frederick Ashton Foundation website
The Kenneth MacMillan website

Dancers' own websites

 Carlos Acosta
 Gary Avis
 Federico Bonelli
 Lauren Cuthbertson

Itziar Mendizabal
Fernando Montano
Marianela Nuñez
Thiago Soares

RB & BRB dancers on Twitter (* denotes BRB)

 Gary Avis
 James Barton*
 Tara Bhavnani
 Jamie Bond*
 Federico Bonelli
 William Bracewell*
 Ruth Brill*
 Jonny Caguioa*
 Alexander Campbell
 Chi Cao*
 Tzu-Chao Chou*
 Leanne Cope
 Olivia Cowley
 Lauren Cuthbertson
 Laura Day*
 Claudia Dean
 Matthias Dingman*
 David Donnelly
 Karla Doorbar*
Tristan Dyer
Nicol Edmonds
Kevin Emerton

Hayley Forskitt
Bennet Gartside
Laura-Jane Gibson*
Celine Gittens*
Melissa Hamilton
Nathalie Harrison
James Hay
Francesca Hayward
Tierney Heap
Meaghan Grace Hinkis
Momoko Hirata*
Kit Holder*
Paul Kay
Nehemiah Kish
Brandon Lawrence*
Maureya Lebowitz*
Max Maslen*
Steven Mcrae
Pietra Mello-Pittman
Miki Mizutani*
Lachlan Monaghan*
Anna Monleon

Erico Montes
Steven Monteith*
Fernando Montaño
Vadim Muntagirov
Sian Murphy
Yasmine Naghdi
Marianela Nuñez
Ludovic Ondiviela
Anna Rose O'Sullivan
Natasha Oughtred*
Laura Purkiss*
Samantha Raine
Genesia Rosato
Alys Shee*
Tyrone Singleton*
Thiago Soares
Dawid Trzensimiech
Lewis Turner*
Eric Underwood
Andrei Uspenski
Thomas Whitehead
James Wilkie
Valentino Zucchetti

Company changes for the 2013/2014 season

The Royal Ballet
   Natalia Osipova joins as Principal Dancer
   Annette Buvoli, Gina Storm-Jensen, Matthew Ball, David Donnell and Reece Clarke join as Artists
   Anna Rose O’Sullivan, Luca Acri and Marcelino Sambé joined as Artists during the 2012/13 season
   Masaya Yamamoto joins as a Prix de Lausanne dancer.

Natalia Osipova with Carlos Acosta in Swan Lake. Photo ©ROH/Alice Pennefather 2012

   Leanne Benjamin, Alina Cojocaru, Mara Galeazzi and Johan Kobborg, Principal Dancers
   Brian Maloney, Soloist
   Jonathan Watkins, First Artist
   Grant Coyle, Principal Dance Notator and Répétiteur.

   Melissa Hamilton, from Soloist to First Soloist
   Olivia Cowley, Elizabeth Harrod, Fumi Kaneko from First Artist to Soloist
   Hayley Forskitt, Francesca Hayward, Tristan Dyer from Artist to First Artist.

Birmingham Royal Ballet
   Miles Gilliver, Nikita Ruhl, Mariko Sasaki, Yaoquian Shang join as Artist
   Yasuo Atsuji rejoins as Artist.

   Ambra Vallo, Principal Dancer
   Matthew Lawrence and Carol-Ann Millar, Principal Dancers, left during the 2012-13 season
   Victoria Marr, First Soloist
   Kristen McGarrity and Laura Davenport, Artists.

   Momoko Hirata and Tyrone Singleton, from First Soloist to Principal Dancer
   Yijing Zhang from Artist to First Artist.

Ballet Association Awards 2013

Royal Ballet School Following the performance on the Opera House stage on July 14th David Bain attended the School’s graduation ceremony where he presented the 2013 awards to First Year Upper School student Chisato Katsura and Second Year students Reece Clarke and Adam Russell-Jones.

This year we presented an additional award which was veruy generously donated by Leanne Benjamin. She asked that her leaving present from the Ballet Association should be passed on to help a student at the School. It went to First Year student Harry Churches.

Reece Clarke, David Bain, Chisato Katsura and Adam Russell-Jones. Photo ©Brian Slater

Harry Churches
David Bain with Harry Churches.
 Photo ©Brian Slater

Elmhurst School for Dance During the Ballet Association's annual visit to Elmhurst and Birmingham Royal Ballet in June our 2013 award was made to Riho Majima.

Royal Ballet School Graduate Contracts 2013
Bavarian State Ballet 2  Alexander Bennett
Berlin Ballet  Danielle Muir
Birmingham Royal Ballet  Yaoqian Shang, Nikita Ruhl, Mariko Sasaki
Colorado Ballet  Kevin Hale
Dortmund Ballet  Takahiro Tamagawa
English National Ballet  Daniele Silingardi, Joan Zamora
Hamburg Ballet  Hannah Beach
National Ballet of Portugal  Callum Collins
Nederlands Dans Theater  Luke Cinque-White
San Francisco Ballet  Esteban Hernandez
Sarasota Ballet  Lucy Gold
Scottish Ballet  Evan Loudon
Singapore Dance Theatre  Lewis Gardner
The Royal Ballet  Luca Acri, Matthew Ball, Annette Buvoli, David Donnelly, Anna Rose O'Sullivan, Marcelino Sambé
Vienna State Opera Ballet  Nikisha Fogo, Suzan Opperman, James Stephens
Zurich Ballet 2  Matthew Knight

Flower Throws
Flower throws are an expression of affectionate honour for Principal Dancers on their retirement or sometimes their return from long recuperation from injury. With the permission of House management (and due warning to long-suffering stage management), money collected informally from ballet-goers, together with a donation from the Ballet Association, is used to buy flowers in bulk.

At the final curtain calls, flowers shower the dancer from the boxes adjacent to the stage, thrown by members of the Ballet Association, the House staff or other volunteers. As the cascade of flowers rains down, the audience applauds and often stands in ovation, creating a wonderful atmosphere and a touching and memorable scene.

Darcey's farewell
Miyako Yoshida on a flower-strewn stage at the final curtain call of her last appearance at the
Royal Opera House in April 2010 after dancing Cinderella in Sir Frederick Ashton's ballet.
Photo ©Bill Cooper 2010

Memorial to the founders of the Royal Ballet in Westminster Abbey

On November 17, 2009 a service was held in Westminster Abbey to dedicate a memorial stone in Poets' Corner marking the contributions made by Dame Ninette de Valois, Founder Director, Sir Frederick Ashton, Founder Choreographer, Constant Lambert, Founder Music Director and Prima Ballerina Assoluta Dame Margot Fonteyn in establishing Britain's flagship national ballet company, along with its sister company Birmingham Royal Ballet and the Royal Ballet School.

The memorial stone designed by Stephen Raw (more details and photos here) was unveiled by The Lady Sarah Chatto, Vice President of The Royal Ballet. The service was conducted by The Very Reverend Dr John Hall, Dean of Westminster who gave the address and there were readings by Sir John Tooley, David Bintley and Dame Monica Mason.

Photo by Andrew Dunsmore ©The Dean & Chapter of Westminster

The service included solos from works by Dame Ninette de Valois and Sir Frederick Ashton: Satan’s Solo from de Valois’s Job danced by Steven McRae and simultaneously on a second stage by Robert Parker, followed by Natasha Oughtred and Romany Pajdak in the solo from Ashton’s The Wise Virgins. White Lodge pupils Charlotte Edmonds, Thomas Bedford, Magdalena Chan and Ashley Hardwick, performed a new piece choreographed by Liam Scarlett to Constant Lambert’s ‘Rondino’ from his Romeo and Juliet Tableau no. 1. The Choir of White Lodge performed two pieces and before and after the service the Royal Ballet Sinfonia conducted by Barry Wordsworth performed excerpts from works in the Royal Ballet's heritage repertory.

Wise Virgins
Natasha Oughtred and Romany Padjak (in background) in the solo from The Wise Virgins.
Photo by Andrew Dunsmore ©The Dean & Chapter of Westminster

Personal Memories of the Royal Ballet

Company 50th

To celebrate the 75th anniversary in 2006 of the founding of what was to become the Royal Ballet, Ballet Association members contributed to a collection of memoirs and photographs.

Click for the text only version of the memoirs. Click for the illustrated and fully formatted version (1.2Mb, requires Adobe Reader).

The photograph shows Dame Ninette de Valois with past and present members of the Company in 1996 at the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the first performance of The Sleeping Beauty. Photo by Peter Howard.