Big Changes at the English National Ballet

(Van Le Ngoc's Vue de L'autre, photograph by Tristram Kenton)

 

The English National Ballet announced on Monday that next year inaugurates a partnership between the company and London’s Sadler’s Wells Theatre.

ENB has always been England’s touring company and has also had a longstanding performance relationship with the London Coliseum. Now, starting in March 2015, ENB will serve as the first associate ballet company at Sadler’s Wells and will perform there for two seasons per year.

This partnership will likely change the dance landscape in England. ENB’s artistic director, Tamara Rojo, has worked to revitalize the company’s repertoire—however, ENB’s seasons in large theaters and on extended tours have made it difficult to invest in new, contemporary work. To sell tickets, the company has to rely on the classics. Sadler’s Wells has cultivated an audience of dance lovers who might be more open to edgy choreography, affording Rojo and ENB an advantage they didn’t have at the Coliseum.

However, the two-season agreement will likely affect ENB’s touring schedule (the company will also continue its winter season at the Coliseum for three more years), and it remains to be seen how the company will fulfill its dedication to domestic and international touring.

Latest Posts


Left to right: Dance Theatre of Harlem's Daphne Lee, Amanda Smith, Lindsey Donnell and Alexandra Hutchinson in a scene from Dancing Through Harlem. Derek Brockington, Courtesy Dance Theatre of Harlem

Dancers Share Their Key Takeaways After a Year of Dancing on Film

Creating dances specifically for film has become one of the most effective ways that ballet companies have connected with audiences and kept dancers employed during the pandemic. Around the world, dance organizations are finding opportunities through digital seasons, whether conceiving cinematic, site-specific pieces or filming works within a traditional theater. And while there is a consistent sentiment that nothing will ever substitute the thrill of a live show, dancers are embracing this new way of performing.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

#TBT: Mikhail Baryshnikov in "Fancy Free" (1981)

In Jerome Robbins's 1944 ballet Fancy Free, three sailors on leave spend the day at a bar, attempting to woo two young women by out-dancing and out-charming one another. In this clip from 1981, Mikhail Baryshnikov, who was then both the artistic director of American Ballet Theatre and a leading performer with the company, pulls out all the stops to win the ladies' affections.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Bethany Kirby, Courtesy Tulsa Ballet

An Infectious-Disease Physician on What Vaccines Mean for Ballet

As the coronavirus pandemic grinds into its second year, the toll on ballet companies—and dancers—has been steep. How long before dancers can rehearse and perform as they once did?

Like most things, the return to normal for ballet seems to hinge on vaccinations. Just over 22 percent of people in the U.S. are now vaccinated, a way from the estimated 70 to 85 percent experts believe can bring back something similar to pre-pandemic life.

But what would it mean for 100 percent of a ballet company to be vaccinated? Tulsa Ballet artistic director Marcello Angelini is about to find out—and hopes it brings the return of big ballets on the big stage.

"I don't think companies like ours can survive doing work for eight dancers in masks," Angelini says. "If we want to work, dance, and be in front of an audience consistently and with the large works that pay the bills, immunization is the only road that leads there."

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks