News: Matz Skoog, Artistic Director of English National Ballet

Tuesday 5 April 2005

Matz Skoog, Artistic Director of English National Ballet is leaving the company in October this year to take on a wider range of arts projects.

He has been in the post since 2001 – and was previously a Principal Dancer with the Company from 1979 to 1991. Prior to his current position, Matz was Artistic Director of Royal New Zealand Ballet between 1996 and 2001.

Matz has been responsible for developing and implementing the Company’s artistic and strategic policies through a period of great change for English National Ballet. With a vast knowledge of the art form and its history, he has developed the artistic direction whilst also acknowledging the Company’s heritage and retaining its integrity. Since Matz began with the Company, English National Ballet has been nominated for and received a number of Awards. He was personally nominated for the Outstanding Achievement in Dance category of the 2003 TMA Theatre Awards for his “enterprise and daring in commissioning new British work”. He developed two critically acclaimed programmes for the Company’s return to Sadler’s Wells after a 15 year absence and for its first ever appearance at the Royal Opera House. Matz also commissioned Christopher Hampson’s Double Concerto, Michael Corder’s Melody on the Move as well as Wayne McGregor’s 2 Human.

He said: It is with deep regret that I announce my departure from the Company with which I have been associated for over twenty-five years. It has been enormously rewarding to work with ENB. There have been turbulent times and yet we have achieved a great deal. One area that has been particularly stimulating was seeing the creation of new work by some of Britain’s most talented choreographers. I leave behind a great artistic team and a sense of stability that will serve the Company long into the future. Most of all I take away the joy of working with the dancers of English National Ballet, the heart and soul of the Company, who I believe are happy and dancing better than ever. Following discussions with the Chairman of English National Ballet, I will remain in post until the opening of Kenneth Macmillan’s production of Sleeping Beauty later this year.

John Talbot, Chairman of English National Ballet, said: Matz has made an important contribution to English National Ballet, both as a performer and as Artistic Director. Matz has built a dynamic artistic team and a strong, talented company of dancers during his time with the Company. The Board and I know that Matz’s commitment and love for dance will ensure his continuing contribution to the arts world and we wish him every success in the future.

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