News: Ross Stretton to leave Royal Ballet

Wednesday 25 September 2002

Ross Stretton – Director of The Royal Ballet today announced his resignation. He was appointed Director in March 2000. He took up his post in August 2001 following the retirement of Sir Anthony Dowell.

He commmented: “The last eighteen months have been enormously challenging and rewarding both professionally and personally. Even though I have enormous respect for the great heritage of this Company, my interest lies primarily in developing the future of ballet, and that is what I want to spend my time doing. I have discussed this matter with the Royal Opera House Board, and I feel that I am choosing the most appropriate course of action. I am delighted that I have had the opportunity to experience this remarkable company first hand, and work with a team of dedicated and world-class dancers and artists. I feel I am leaving The Royal Ballet in the same good health that it was in when I arrived here, and wish the dancers and staff all best wishes for a successful future, in particular over the coming Season”.

Sir Colin Southgate, Chairman of the Board of Directors at the Opera House said: “It is with deep regret that I have accepted the resignation of Ross Stretton with immediate effect. I would like to thank him for his work over the last twelve months and in the period building up to his arrival here. The Royal Ballet has been introduced to some new and interesting works under Ross’s stewardship. In the last Season he has brought us John Cranko’s Onegin and introduced audiences to further work by some of the finest living choreographers, including Mats Ek, and Nacho Duato. As we enter the 2002/3 Season we look forward to seeing further examples of such work, as well as the strong line-up of heritage ballets in particular the work of Sir Kenneth MacMillan and Sir Frederick Ashton. Ross has also nurtured remarkable talents within the Company including new Principals.

Until a new Director is appointed, Monica Mason, Assistant Director, has generously agreed to lead the Company, with Anthony Russell-Roberts continuing in his role as Administrative Director.

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