London, February 2009
2009 marks the tenth anniversary of the Young British Dancer of the Year competition. The UK’s only dance competition focussed on young British and British-trained classical dancers this year begins on 7 March 2009 with preliminary rounds at The Royal Ballet School in London’s Covent Garden. The highlight of the competition is the Gala Final at the Linbury Studio Theatre, The Royal Opera House on Sunday 15 March.
In special celebration of the tenth anniversary, all nine previous winners of the competition will perform at the Gala Final while the judges convene to make their final selection and immediately before the 2009 winners are announced.
One hundred young dancers from dance schools throughout the UK will compete this year. The 15-17 year olds will dance excerpts from the classical ballet repertoire including Swan Lake, The Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker, Giselle, La Bayadere and Paquita.
Previous winners and runners-up of Young British Dancer of The Year have won contracts with The Royal Ballet, Birmingham Royal Ballet, English National Ballet, Northern Ballet Theatre, Scottish Ballet, American Ballet Theater, Ballet du Capitole (Toulouse, France) and Ballet du Rhin (Mulhouse, France).
YBDY’s founding sponsor Ricki Gail Conway comments:
I am excited that all previous First-Prize winners of YBDY will be performing during this year’s Gala Final in special celebration of the competition’s tenth anniversary - a wonderful opportunity to see the competition’s achievements during the past ten years. YBDY is designed to develop the artistry of young British and British-trained classical dancers by encouraging them to refine their performance skills and engage with their audiences. It is extremely gratifying to know that so many former participants are now performing with some of the world’s leading ballet companies - splendid ambassadors of British ballet training and YBDY.
For further information, please contact
Jim Fletcher, Development Manager
Tel: 020-7845 7074; Mobile 07768 455667
Notes for Editors
Young British Dancer of the Year 2009 - schedule
Saturday 7 March Prelims The Royal Ballet School
Sunday 8 March Semi-Finals The Royal Ballet School
Sunday 15 March Finals Linbury Theatre, The Royal Opera House Covent Garden
Previous YBDY First Prize winners Where they are now
2000 Jamie Bond First Soloist, Birmingham Royal Ballet
2001 Lauren Cuthbertson Principal Dancer, The Royal Ballet
2002 Anniek Soobroy Artist, Birmingham Royal Ballet
2003 Joseph Caley Soloist, Birmingham Royal Ballet
2004 Aaron Robison First Artist, Birmingham Royal Ballet
2005 Ruth Bailey Artist, The Royal Ballet
2006 James Hay Artist, The Royal Ballet
2007 Sergei Polunin Soloist, The Royal Ballet
2008 William Bracewell The Royal Ballet School
Elisabeth Platel, Former Danseuse Etoile, now Directrice, Paris Opera Ballet School.
Wayne Eagling, Artistic Director, English National Ballet
Cynthia Harvey, Former Principal Dancer, The Royal Ballet and American Ballet Theater
Dame Monica Mason OBE, Director, The Royal Ballet
Steven McRae, First Soloist, The Royal Ballet
David Nixon, Artistic Director, Northern Ballet Theatre
Monica Zamora, Former Principal Dancer, Birmingham Royal Ballet