Sunday, 19 July 2015

The Junior Company One Year On

Michaela DePrince  "A Million Kisses to my Skin"
Photographer  Angela Sterling
Copyright 2015 Dutch National Ballet
All rights resered
Reproduced with kind permission of
Richard Heiderman, press manager of the company

The idea of recruiting 12 of the world's best young dancers, training them for stardom in a special Junior Company within the Dutch National Ballet and giving them stage experience in venues throughout the Netherlands is an exciting one. It has already injected exceptional talent into the Dutch National Ballet such as Michaela DePrince, who entered the Junior Company 2 years ago and leapt from élève (equivalent to apprentice in a British company) to coryphée in a single year. 

The Artistic Coordinator of the Junior Company is Ernst Meisner and I featured him and the Company in Meet Ernst Meisner and his talented young dancers 6 Dec 2014. In Ernst Meisner’s Work with the Dutch National Ballet 2 Dec 2014 Ernst explained how the Junior Company came to be formed. In The Junior Company 3 Dec 2014 he said a little bit more about the Company and his work with the dancers.

Tomorrow, Monday the 20 July 2015, Ernst will be the guest of the London Ballet Circle. He will speak to the Circle at the Civil Service Club, 13-15 Great Scotland Yard, London SW1A 2HJ at 19:30. The meeting is open to the public. Members of the Circle are admitted for £5. Everybody else will pay £8. The Club is located almost next door to the Nigerian high commission which is at the corner of Great Scotland Yard and Northumberland Avenue. The nearest underground stations are Charing Cross (Bakerloo and Northern lines) and Embankment (District and Circle).

Martin ten Kortenaar who joined the Junior Company only last year has entered the corps de ballet. So, too, has Nancy Burer who danced the Balinese role so beautifully in Cinderella last week (see Wheeldon's Cinderella 13 July 2015. Nathan Brhane,  Wentao Li, Daniel Montero and Sho Yamada, who joined the Junior company in 2013 are now élèves. So, too, are Riho Sakamoto and
Yuanyuan Zhang who entered the company last year. Thomas van DammeLisanne Kottenhagen, Antonio Martinez, Cristiano Principato and Emiie Tassinari remain with the Junior Company.

According to their Facebook pages, Bart Engelen whose struggle with the pillow to the tune of the Dance of the Knights from Prokofiev's Romeo and Juliet in Siderova's Full Moon was unforgettable (see The Dutch National Ballet Junior Company's best Performance yet 8 Feb 2015) has joined the Norwegian National Ballet and Veronika Verterich the mighty Stuttgart Ballet. A mention on Ernst's Faceook page suggests that Ryosuke Morimoto has gone to Hungary, presumably the Hungarian National Ballet.

I should like to congratulate all those dancers on their promotions, appointments and contract renewals and wish them all the best for the future,

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