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There is a beautiful photograph on Ted Brandsen's Facebook page of two of my favourite dancers: Jessica Xuan and Cristiano Principato. They are wearing the most gorgeous costumes from a white act. No gossamer sleeves so it can't be La Bayadḕre and I can't see any feathers so I don't think it is Odette. Be that as it may the important words are at the base of the photo:
"Wow! 🤩 Jessica Xuan has won the gold medal at the prestigious VARNA - International Ballet Competition! Congratulations! 👏👏👏"I first saw Jessica in 2013 when she danced the first pas de deux with Nathan Brahane in Rudi van Dantzig's Swan Lake (see The Junior Company of the Dutch National Ballet - Stadsshouwburg Amsterdam 24 Nov 2013 25 Nov 2013). As I said then: "The audience loved them and so did I." I have been following Jessica's career and the careers of the other young dancers ever since. I think the last time I saw her was as the Queen of the Dryads in Don Quixote earlier this year (see A Day of Superlatives - Dutch National Ballet's Don Quixote 1 March 2018.
I wrote about Varna on 23 Feb 2017 as it has its own opera house and ballet company in which Owen Morris danced for a while. Its International Ballet Competition is one of the most prestigious in the world. It has launched a lot of distinguished careers. Jessica has done brilliantly. I send her my heartiest congratulations and lots of love.