RWB Welcomes Soloist Artjom Maksakov from Boston Ballet for 2013/14
Winnipeg, Manitoba – André Lewis, Artistic Director of Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet, proudly announces that Artjom Maksakov, former Company dancer with Boston Ballet, joins the RWB Company for the 2013/14 season. Maksakov, named one of the Outstanding Dancers of 2010 by Dance Europe Magazine, enters the Company in the rank of Soloist. Lewis also announced the hiring of another international talent for the 74th season: Olga Malinovskaya, formerly with the Estonian National Ballet, joins the Corps de Ballet.
“I am delighted to be welcoming new talent into the Company both from inside and outside our organization,” said Lewis. “New faces bring fresh ideas and approaches, which is an absolutely essential part of the natural process of evolution for our Company.”
Lewis also announces the promotion of RWB rising star Sophia Lee to Soloist. Sophia Lee, who was last seen in Moulin Rouge® – The Ballet dancing the role of La Goulue, joined the Company directly from the RWB School in 2011 and has performed numerous Soloist roles with the Company since then, including Clara in Nutcracker and The Queen of the Underworld in Twyla Tharp’s The Princess & The Goblin.
Each year the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School, under the direction of Arlene Minkhorst, produces incredible new talent for the Company. Katie Bonnell, Kylie Duggan, Manami Tsubai and Ryan Vetter have been hired from the RWB School Aspirant Program and are joining the Company as Apprentices for the dynamic 74th Season. As well, former students and RWB Apprentices Stephan Possin and Chenxin Liu have been promoted into the Corps de Ballet.
Single tickets are now on sale for the RWB’s 2013/14 season, which opens October 16 with the World Premiere of The Handmaid’s Tale, based on the novel by Margaret Atwood. Fans of the novelist will be able to hear her personal insights on the award-winning novel on opening night at the Centennial Concert Hall. Ms Atwood will be joined by André Lewis onstage for the not-to-be missed pre-show chat. (The pre-show chat will be shown for the run of the show in the lobby before the performance.)
Nutcracker, Romeo + Juliet, and a Mixed Programme, featuring works by Forsythe, Kudleka and Winnipeg’s Jorden Morris finish off the eclectic season. Subscriptions for the 2013/14 Season are available online at and through the RWB Customer Service Office in person or by calling (204) 956-2792.
Ukrainian born Artjom Maksakov studied at the Tallin Ballet School before being accepted into the Estonian National Ballet in 2003. He previously danced with the Het National Ballet and Boston Ballet before joining Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet as a Soloist for the 2013/14 season. Maksakov’s repertoire includes the role of Siegried in Marius Petipa’s Swan Lake, Prince Désiré in The Sleeping Beauty, Basilio in Don Quixote; as well as principal roles in La Sylphide, Coppélia, Manon, Wuthering Heights, The Three Musketeers, Balanchine’s Who Cares?, and Nutcracker. The winner of numerous International Ballet Competition’s, Maksakov was named one the of 170 Outstanding Dancers of the 2010 Season by Dance Europe Magazine.
Originally from South Korea, Sophia Lee lived and trained in Langley, BC, before joining the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School Professional Division. She graduated from the School in 2010 and joined the RWB Aspirant Program for one year before being promoted directly into the Corps de Ballet. Lee was promoted to Second Soloist in 2012. Her RWB repertoire includes, Clara in Nutcracker, Lilac Fairy in The Sleeping Beauty, the lead role in Carmina Burana, and she was selected by Twyla Tharp to dance the role of the Queen of the Underworld in Twyla Tharp’s The Princess & The Goblin. She has also had roles created on her, including Svengali’s First in Mark Godden’s Svengali, as well as a solo set to Hallelujah in Jorden Morris’ The Doorway: Scenes from Leonard Cohen.
CORPS DE BALLET
Born in Chenzhou, Hunan, China, Chenxin Liu trained at the Beijing Dance Academy before joining the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School’s Aspirant Program. She joined the RWB as an Apprentice in 2012. Her repertoire includes Twyla Tharp’s The Princess & The Goblin, Moulin Rouge® – The Ballet, Red Riding Hood and Canari Fairy in The Sleeping Beauty and Nutcracker. Liu has performed internationally at the Monaco Dance Forum and Prix de Lausanne, and has also studied at the Banff Centre dance summer program.
Olga Malinovskaya studied at the Moscow Bolshoi Ballet Academy for eight years before becoming a Principal dancer with the Estonian National Ballet in 2008. She spent a season with Boston Ballet before joining Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet as a member of the Corps de Ballet for the 2013/14 season. Her performance credits include the lead roles of Odette/Odile in Swan Lake, Kitri in Don Quixote and Swanilda in Coppélia. She has also appeared in Nutcracker, The Three Musketeers, Paquita Romeo & Juliet, Balanchine’s Symphony in Three Movements, Who Cares? and Pas de Trois. The recipient of numerous awards including the Gold Medal at the International Dance Olympus Competition in 2006, Malinovskaya was named one of the Outstanding Dancers of 2010 by Dance Europe Magazine.
Born in Munich, Germany, Stephan Possin began his dance training at the Pacific Northwest Ballet School in Seattle, Washington in 2004. After working one-on-one with former PNB Principal dancer Deborah Hadley for more than a year, Possin joined the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School Aspirant Program in 2010. Possin danced as a Company Apprentice for one year before being promoted to Corps de Ballet in 2013. During his time with the RWB, Possin has danced in numerous productions including Twyla Tharp’s The Princess & The Goblin, Carmina Burana, Svengali, Giselle, Moulin Rouge® – The Ballet and Nutcracker.
Originally from Oakville, Ontario, Katie Bonnell started dancing with Virginia Fleming at The Fleming School of Performing Arts and Sarah Baeumler at Balletomane before beginning her training at the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School Professional Division in 2008. She joined the Aspirant Program in 2011 and was promoted to Apprentice in 2013. Her repertoire with the Company includes Nutcracker, The Sleeping Beauty and Moulin Rouge®- The Ballet. As a student she performed in Swan Lake , “Hula” from William Forsythe’s The Second Detail, as well as the grand pas de deux from Paquita for Ballet in the Park 2012.
Originally from Laguna Hills, California, Kylie Duggan began dancing at age three at the Pacific School of Ballet, later training with Melissa Allen Bowman at California Conservatory of Dance. In 2010, she competed at the New York City Finals of the Youth America Grand Prix, where she was awarded summer scholarship to the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School Professional Division. Duggan trained at the RWB School for one year before joining the Aspirant Program. She was promoted to Apprentice in 2013. Her repertoire includes Giselle, The Sleeping Beauty, as well as the role of Spanish in Nutcracker.
Born in Osaka, Japan, Manami Tsubai began dancing at the age of three. She studied at Soda Ballet School in Japan until 2007 when she moved to Canada to begin her training at the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School Professional Division. Tsubai’s repertoire includes Giselle, The Sleeping Beauty and Nutcracker, as well as William Forsythe’s Hula, and La Bayadere. In 2012, she toured with the RWB performing Moulin Rouge® – The Ballet and The Sleeping Beauty.
Originally from Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Ryan Vetter danced at the Dance Gallery under teacher Jackie Kriens before joining the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School Professional Division in 2008. After dancing in the RWB Aspirant Program for one year, Vetter was promoted to Apprentice in 2013. Vetter’s repertoire with the RWB Company includes Giselle, Moulin Rouge® – The Ballet, The Sleeping Beauty and Nutcracker. As a student Vetter choreographed two original pieces for the Professional Division choreographic competition First Steps.