|Course Consultants:||Doreen Wells, Marchioness of Londonderry|
Course Director & Artistic Director, Images of Dance: Margaret Barbieri
This year provides the intensive training that is required by advanced classical ballet students who wish to pursue a professional career. It was developed under the guidance of the original course consultant, Dame Alicia Markova, together with Margaret Barbieri. It aims to enable students to meet the diverse and varied dance styles demanded by a present day ballet company, fostering a critical awareness of the major schools of classical ballet, with particular, but not exclusive, emphasis on the English tradition and the romantic repertoire.
In addition to daily ballet classes, specialist courses in repertoire, virtuosity, pas de deux and pointe work are included in the curriculum. These are complemented by other disciplines considered essential for a career as a professional ballet dancer, including contemporary dance, choreography and body control. Master classes and workshops with leading figures in the dance world are organised during the year. Stagecraft, injury prevention and audition technique are also studied during this final year of training, ensuring that the students receive a comprehensive education that prepares them for professional careers as classical dancers.
"A unique combination of the most respected teachers in the field of classical ballet"
IMAGES OF DANCE
Images of Dance, the first of the Studio’s performing companies, was formed in 1991 in order to provide classical ballet students with invaluable performing experience and to bring all aspects of classical ballet to new and younger audiences. Its policy is to provide an insight into the work of British choreographers, presenting diverse programmes of new, innovative works, as well as revivals of the classical and romantic narrative ballets. From the twentieth century repertoire, the company has danced Frederick Ashton’s Façade, George Balanchine’s Divertimento No. 15, Donizetti Variations and Stars and Stripes, John Cranko’s Pineapple Poll, Ninette de Valois’ The Rake’s Progress and Sir Kenneth MacMillan’s Elite Syncopations. The company has also performed The Kingdom of the Shades from La Bayadère, Raymonda Suite, Dame Alicia Markova’s production of Les Sylphides, Swan Lake Act II, Galina Samsova’s productions of Paquita and Laurencia, The Fantasy Garden from Le Corsaire and Irek Mukhamedov’s Dances from Don Quixote. Mark Baldwin, Matthew Bourne, Jack Carter, Geoffrey Cauley, Laurent Cavanna, Adam Cooper, Michael Corder, David Fielding, Christopher Hampson, Matthew Hart, Oliver Hindle, Michael Ho, Jennifer Jackson, Darius James, Harold King, Isira Makuloluwe, Christopher Marney, Cathy Marston, Ashley Page, Renato Paroni, Viacheslav Samodurov, Stephen Sheriff, Wayne Sleep, William Tuckett, Dominic Walsh and Christopher Wheeldon have all created new works for Images of Dance.
Senior principal dancers from major companies, such as The Royal Ballet, English National Ballet and Rambert Dance Company rehearse the company and coach individual students. This enables them to study particular roles intensively, acquiring the performance skills that are essential to the professional dancer. Students collaborate with major choreographers in the creation of new ballets. This provides them with the ideal opportunity to understand the development of a professional production for the stage.
The tour completes the students’ education as professional dancers, allowing them time to develop and sustain their roles in the programme of ballets that the company is presenting. The tour culminates in a final London performance, which acts as a showcase attended by artistic directors, choreographers and other potential employers.
Companies that graduates have joined include The Royal Ballet, English National Ballet, Scottish Ballet, Dutch National Ballet, Rambert Dance Company, New Adventures, Royal Swedish Ballet, The Peter Schaufuss Ballet, Ballet Ireland, LeipzigerBallett, Ballett am Rhein, Mainz Ballet, K-Ballet Company (Japan), Norwegian National Ballet, Australian Ballet, New National Theatre Ballet (Tokyo), Sarasota Ballet, Cape Town City Ballet, Ballett der Staatsoper (Dresden), Ballett der Buhnen der Landeshaupstadt, Kiel, The Israel Ballet, Malmo Baletten, Orlando Ballet and Ballet San Jose (Cleveland).