Ballet NEWS | The Young British Dancer of the Year Award 2011

February 10, 2011

Ballet, Press Releases

Young Dancer of the Year logo


The Young British Dancer of the Year Award 2011 (YBDY) commences with preliminary rounds on Saturday 12 March with the final taking place at the Linbury Studio Theatre, Royal Opera House Covent Garden on Saturday 19 March.

Manuel Legris, Artistic Director of Vienna State Opera Ballet, becomes Chairman of the YBDY 2011 panel of distinguished judges.

On 12 March, more than 100 of the most talented young British dancers aged 15-17 will arrive in London from all over the UK to compete for this year’s coveted title of Young British Dancer of the Year.  

Competitors will perform a variety of solos from the classical repertoire for a panel of distinguished judges with 32 of them being invited to participate in the semi finals on Sunday 13 March. The Young British Dancer of the Year 2011 will be chosen from just 16 finalists on Saturday 12 March at a ‘live’ sell-out public performance at the Linbury Studio Theatre, the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden on Saturday 19 March. 

YBDY is the UK’s only dance competition dedicated to British and British-trained classical dancers.  Since its launch in 2000, it has become one of the most anticipated dance competitions in the UK dance calendar and an exciting showcase of the cream of British dance talent.

This year, YBDY is privileged to welcome as Chairman of the Judging Panel Mr Manuel Legris, former Etoile of the Paris Opéra Ballet, now Artistic Director of the Vienna State Opera Ballet. Mr Legris will be joined by some of the most distinguished people from the British ballet world: Deanne Bergsma (former Principal dancer of The Royal Ballet), Wayne Eagling (Artistic Director, English National Ballet) Dame Monica Mason DBE (Director, The Royal Ballet), Steven McRae (Principal Dancer, The Royal Ballet), David Nixon OBE (Artistic Director, Northern Ballet, Ashley Page OBE (Artistic Director, Scottish Ballet) and Marguerite Porter (former Principal dancer of The Royal Ballet).

YBDY’s founding sponsor, Ricki Gail Conway, comments “YBDY continues to attract the most talented young dancers from every corner of the UK and the standard of participants continues to grow. The competition presents aspiring young artists with the extremely valuable experience of performing in front of some of the most distinguished people in the ballet world, enabling them to develop their technique and artistry. For the public, the YBDY Final represents a rare opportunity of attending one of the most exciting dance events of the year performed by a new generation of extraordinary talent’

Past YBDY Winners

2010    Francesca Hayward                            The Royal Ballet School/joining The Royal Ballet

2009    Yasmine Naghdi                                  Artist, The Royal Ballet

2008    William Bracewell                                Artist, Birmingham Royal Ballet

2007    Sergei Polunin                                     Principal, The Royal Ballet

2006    James Hay                                          Artist, The Royal Ballet

2005    Ruth Bailey                                          Artist, The Royal Ballet

2004    Aaron Robison                                    Soloist, Corella Ballet

2003    Joseph Caley                                     First Soloist, Birmingham Royal Ballet

2002    Anniek Soobroy                                   Artist, Birmingham Royal Ballet

2001    Lauren Cuthbertson                            Principal, The Royal Ballet

2000    Jamie Bond                                         Principal, Birmingham Royal Ballet

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