Genee, ballet, awards, medals
Photograph : Elliott Franks

21 November 2010, LONDON — Recognised as one of the ballet world’s most prestigious competitions and the flagship event of the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) the Genée International Ballet Competition 2010 finished in top form, as the Final held at Sadler’s Wells,  London’s  dance house, drew to a close on November 21, 2010 with a sold-out auditorium.

Crowned with success, the overwhelming public response and support for this year’s Genée once again proves the competition’s reputation as a tour de force in the worldwide ballet scene. Fra 

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Genee Medalists Photograph : Elliott Franks

Coming out on top with silver medals – no gold medals were awarded this year – were British students Francesca Hayward for the females and Sean Bates for the males.  The Audience Choice Award, an honour bestowed to the candidate who in the eyes of the audience deserves the top prize, after a very close count was also awarded to Francesca Hayward. The audience prize was awarded by Claudia Dean, who was the 2009 gold medalist as well as the recipient of last year’s Audience Choice Award.


Other medalists are Lachlan Monaghan from Australia and Orazio Di Bella from Italian who were awarded bronze medals.

Genee, ballet, dance, news, awards, medals
Dame Sibley, Lachlan Monaghan Photograph : Elliott Franks


Ballerina Tierney Heap, another British student won a Bronze medal.

Afterwards, Dame Antoinette Sibley, chair of the panel of esteemed judges and President of the Royal Academy of Dance said, “It is at the judges’ discretion whether or not to award gold medals. We have a very clear idea of what a gold performance is and although we saw some outstanding talent this evening, we did not feel that any one, young performer delivered that rare performance that merits a gold medal. The standard across the board was very high this year and my fellow judges (Dame Monica Mason, The Royal Ballet & David Nixon OBE, Northern Ballet) and I feel that the future of ballet is very safe indeed.”

“The warmth and enthusiasm that membership in UK and Ireland has exuded for the Genée has been phenomenal; they have not only come out in numbers this evening to watch and support the young dancers, they also orchestrated a remarkable number of events and activities all around the country to raise funds for the Genée” said Chief Executive of RAD, Luke Rittner. “It has been so successful and it really shone a spotlight on British ballet and British talent.”

As this year’s competition comes to a fulfilling close, bringing to light the young ballet stars on the rise, in a very successful return to London, the international ballet community looks forward to the next Genée International Ballet Competition in 2011; which Luke Rittner announced would take place in Cape Town, South Africa, for the first time ever.

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Silver medallist Francesca Hayward Photograph : Elliott Franks

The Genée International Ballet Competition is dedicated to promoting and rewarding standards of excellence in ballet dancers internationally. This is achieved by offering aspiring dancers the unique opportunity to work with world-renowned choreographers and professionals as well as the chance to perform on an international stage.

With over 13,000 members’ spread across 79 countries, the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) is one of the largest and most influential dance education and training organisations in the world.  Established in the 1920’s, to improve standards and re-invigorate dance training initially within the UK, the Academy helps and encourages its teachers to perfect their teaching skills and pass on this knowledge to their students. There are currently over 1,000 students in full-time or part-time teacher training programmes with the Academy and each year, the examination syllabus is taught to more than a quarter of a million students worldwide. The RAD celebrates its 90th anniversary, this year.

The medallists :

Tierney-Ann Heap

Age: 17

Nationality: British

School: Centre Pointe Dance School, Elmhurst School for Dance, Royal Ballet Senior Associates, Royal Ballet School

Trained by: Anita Young, Caroline Wright, Alexandra Howarth, Samira Saidi, Marion Tait, Katya Zvelebilova, Meelis Pakri, David Peden

Sean Bates

Age: 18

Nationality: British

School: Gaynor Cameron School of Dance, The Royal Ballet School

Trained by: Gary Norman, Gaynor Cameron, Hope Keelan, Anthony Swell, David Yow, Antonio Castilla, Meelis Pakri, David Peden

Orazio Di Bella

Age: 19

Nationality: Italian

School: Elmhurst School for Dance 

Trained by: Errol Pickford, Desmond Kelly, Denise Whiteman

Lachlan Monaghan

Age: 17

Nationality: Australian

School: The McDonald College, The Royal Ballet School

Trained by: David Peden, Julie Wells, Josephine Jason, Jane Kesby, Allan Cross, Jacqui Dumont, Meelis Pakri

Francesca Hayward

Age: 18

Nationality: British

School: Royal Ballet School

Trained by: Gailene Stock, Petal Miller-Ashmole, Anita Young, Katya Zvelebilova, Diane Van Schoor