News: National Dance Awards 2009

Thursday 21 January 2010

The National Dance Awards 2009 were announced today (21 January) in a ceremony at the Royal Opera House.

The annual event is organised by the Dance section of the Critics’ Circle to celebrate the diversity of dance in the UK today, but this tenth occasion started with a warning from Chairman Mike Dixon that it may be the last if additional sponsorship isn’t forthcoming.

The ceremony was compered by Angela Rippon, with awards presented by, amongst others, representatives of the Royal Ballet, Rambert Dance Company, Northern Ballet Theatre, Sir Gerald Kauffman MP. Celeste Dandeker, Val Bourne and Patron of the awards, Dame Beryl Grey.

Two dancers who are due to retire later this year were honoured – Paul Liburd of Scottish Ballet got the Best Male Dancer Award (which he also won in 2005 when he was dancing with Rambert) and freelancer Amy Hollingsworth, who has worked closely with choreographer Rafael Bonachela for ten years won the Outstanding Female Performance (Modern) award.

Cassa Pancho, Director of the dynamic young company Ballet Black was clearly delighted to receive the Outstanding Company award – especially in the face of competition from Morphoses/ The Wheeldon Company and Scottish Ballet.

The Royal Ballet were well represented amongst the winners – with dancers Leanne Benjamin, Sergei Polunin and Melissa Hamilton all scooping awards and resident choreographer Wayne McGregor receiving the award for Best Classical Choreography for Infra.

The National Dance Awards 2009
De Valois Award For Outstanding Achievement
Alexander Grant – former Royal Ballet Principal & Artistic Director of the National Ballet of Canada (1976-83)

The Dancing Times Award For Best Male Dancer
Paul Liburd , Scottish Ballet
Also nominated: Federico Bonelli of The Royal Ballet and Colin Dunne – freelance

Richard Sherrington Award For Best Female Dancer
Leanne Benjamin of The Royal Ballet
Also nominated: Elena Glurdjidze & Daria Klimentová, both of English National Ballet

Dance Europe Award For Outstanding Company
Ballet Black
Also nominated: Morphoses/The Wheeldon Company, Scottish Ballet

Best Classical Choreography
Wayne McGregor, Royal Ballet resident choreographer for _*Infra* _
Also nominated: English National Ballet’s David Dawson For Faun(E), Royal Ballet’s Liam Scarlett For Consolations and Liebestraum

Best Modern Choreography
Christopher Bruce, Rambert Dance Company for _*Hush* _
Also nominated: Rambert Dance Company’s Itzik Galili for A Linha Curva, Lloyd Newson And DV8 Dancers for To Be Straight With You

PMB Presentations Award For Best Foreign Dance Company
Merce Cunningham Dance Company **Also nominated: The Forsythe Company, Royal Ballet Of Flanders

Outstanding Female Performance (Classical)
Melissa Hamilton, Royal Ballet
Also nominated: Martina Forioso of Scottish Ballet, Sarah Kundi of Ballet Black

Outstanding Male Performance (Classical)
Sergei Polunin, Royal Ballet
Also nominated: Tobias Batley of Northern Ballet Theatre, Esteban Berlanga of English National Ballet

Outstanding Female Performance (Modern)
Amy Hollingsworth – freelance **Also nominated: Malgorzata Dzierzon of Rambert Dance Company, Sally Marie – freelance

Outstanding Male Performance (Modern)
Thomasin Gülgeç, Rambert Dance Company
Also nominated: Robin Dingemans – freelance, Dominic North of New Adventures

The Jane Attenborough Dance UK Industry Award
Marie McCluskey, Artistic Director of Swindon Dance

Royal Ballet Governors Medal
Elizabeth Anderton – teacher and coach to the Royal Ballet

Patron’s Award – chosen by Dame Beryl Grey
Richard Bonynge, international conductor and pianist

Angelina Ballerina Children’s Award
Lucy Wood (Susan Robinson School of Dance)

Council for Dance Education and Training Student Of The Year Award
Sam Chung (Tring Park School for the Performing Arts)

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