World Ballet Day has been running a few years now, but it’s about to get a cousin: World Ballet School Day, the inaugural edition of which is Tuesday July 7, 2020 from 12 noon (UK), with both English National Ballet School and The Royal Ballet School participating.
From an idea originally conceived by Viviana Durante, director of dance at English National Ballet School, the event is a collaboration between Boston Ballet School, Canada’s National Ballet School, ENBS, New Zealand School of Dance, Palucca University of Dance Dresden, and the Prix de Lausanne.
Those six schools will be joined by a further six from around the world: The Australian Ballet School, Paris Opera Ballet School, Dutch National Ballet Academy, The Royal Ballet School, Royal Danish Ballet School, and San Francisco Ballet School.
The aim is to connect the next generation of young professional dance artists with young people from around the world. Created by students for students, it is a platform for young artists in training and a place where they can come together as one, sharing the language of ballet and dance.
Students from participating schools will join together in a round table to provide insights into the world of professional ballet and dance training, especially during the present restrictions, and will introduce segments from each school featuring behind the scenes and performance footage filmed both before and during lockdown.
World Ballet School Day will also feature the world premiere of a new dance work. Six international ballet schools worked with choreographer Didy Veldman to explore the theme of physical restriction in a project led by The Royal Ballet School. Other participating schools in the creative choreographic challenge are San Francisco Ballet School, Canada’s National Ballet School, Paris Opera Ballet School, The Royal Danish Ballet School and the Dutch National Ballet Academy. The dancers worked in six groups and created and rehearsed with Veldman over Zoom. The students then filmed their individual performances, the footage put together and edited by Veldman and The BalletBoyz.
Viviana Durante says, “World Ballet School Day is about uniting students training at professional ballet and dance schools around the world. We want to showcase their resilience, strength, dedication, talent, intellect and passion, celebrating how their journey begins and why – now more than ever – ballet, dance and art matter so much.”
Christopher Powney, artistic director of The Royal Ballet School, says, “I am delighted that The Royal Ballet School is taking part in the inaugural World Ballet School Day at a time when celebrating our young dancers feels more important than ever. Forced to train in isolation and in often very challenging spaces, they have continued to find the energy, motivation and focus they need to keep going. I am inspired daily by the passion and commitment our young dance community has shown in the face of such unprecedented and difficult circumstances.”
World Ballet School Day will be streamed online on Tuesday July 7 from 12 noon BST. Visit www.worldballetschoolday.com for more details.