As a School we see the importance of classical competition such as the Genee and the Prix de Lausanne as they not only provide dancers with a platform to be seen by influential members of our industry but they also provide dancers with recognised status, especially if they reach the finals and more so win in a category. In addition, events such as these provide great networking opportunities where dancers meet their peers from around the world.
This year a new classical competition was launched in the UK which was hosted at The School of Ballet Theatre UK. British Ballet Grand Prix follows in the footsteps of other classical competition and provides its competitors with bursaries and scholarships (over £50,000) to some of the worlds leading classical institutions including English National Ballet and Elmhurst Ballet School within the UK and Kirov Academy and The Bolshoi Ballet Academy from around the world, to name but a few.
In addition to the competition, dancers were able to take part in masterclasses led by Artistic Directors and Heads of Dance from leading vocational schools from around the world.
Principal and Founder Christopher Moore said,
The competition was a great success. It allowed students from our school the opportunity to not only work with dancers and teachers from around the world but also see their peers and learn from them. Dance events like this are paramount in the development of elite dancers as it allows dancers to see and learn from their peers, who will inevitably become their competition at auditions. Having a greater understanding of the industry before taking their first steps into the audition circuit enables dancers to be fully prepared and know what to expect and what is expected of them.
The competition saw over 100 dancers from around the world compete in six categories from the ages of 9 – 21.
We are proud to share that we have three students from our full-time school, along with a dancer on the Associate Programme, reach the finals in the Advanced Solo categories and three couples within the Pas de Deux category.
Holly Saw and Michael Maple not only were finalists in the Pas de Deux category but won Gold with their performance of the Peasant Pas de Deux from Giselle, Act I.
In addition, Holly Saw was presented with the Artistic Achievement Award, given to one dancer from the competition who the panel of judges felt showcased a mature and strong performance quality performed with exceptional technique from classwork, the preliminary rounds and the finals.
First year student, Michael Maple, adds
The competition was a wonderful experience. To work with the faculty of the School in such a focused and intensive process was inspiring. I feel honoured to have represented the School and proud to be the current gold medallist for the British Ballet Grand Prix, it is something I will state with pride on my CV! I will definitely be applying for 2020!
We are so proud of all out students who competed, those who reached the finals and those who went on to win a prize. You should all be very proud of what you have achieved!