News: Genée International Ballet Competition Glasgow 2013

Friday 4 October 2013 by Lise Smith

2013 Genée International Ballet Competition medallists with the judges. Image: Andrew Ross.

The finals of the Genée International Ballet Competition, held annually by the Royal Academy of Dance, were held in Glasgow this weekend.

Two British dancers received bronze medals: Natasha Watson, 17, from Ballet West, who was also winner of the level 2 Genée Dance Challenge in 2010; and John Rhys Halliwell, 18, from the English National Ballet School, who was previously a finalist in the RAD’s Fonteyn Nureyev Young Dancers Competition 2006 and winner of the RAD’s Phyllis Bedells Bursary 2011. Rory Ferguson, 17, from the Tanya Pearson Classical Coaching Academy in Australia, also received a bronze medal.

German-born Isabelle Brouwers, 17, who has lived in Britain for five years and trained with English National Ballet School since 2011, was awarded a silver medal. Brouwers, who completed her initial training at the Royal Ballet Lower School, also represented ENBS at the Prix de Lausanne earlier this year. Another silver medal went to Australian Sasha Leong, 15, from Sydney Ballet School.

In addition to his bronze medal John Rhys Halliwell won the The Sotheby’s Audience Award, voted for by the audience. The new Dancer’s Own Choreographic Award, was presented to Padua Eaton, who created her own solo variation. No gold medals were awarded this year.

Darcy Busseell CBE, one of the Genée judges, says, “The distinct elements of the Genée – particularly with this year’s introduction of the new Dancer’s Own Choreographic Award – prepare young dancers for the challenges of modern ‘company’ life. Many former Genée Finalists and Medallists have gone on to exciting and high-profile careers with companies as diverse as The Royal Ballet, National Ballet of Canada, San Francisco Ballet, Australian Ballet and Mariinsky Ballet (formerly the Kirov).”

The Genée International Ballet Competition was first staged in 1931 and is named in honour of Dame Adeline Genée, co-founder and first President of the Royal Academy of Dance. This was the first time the annual competition has been hosted in Scotland. The event has previously been staged in Wellington, Cape Town, London, Singapore, Toronto, Hong Kong, Athens and Sydney.

Photo: 2013 Genée International Ballet Competition medallists with the judges. Image: Andrew Ross.

What’s On