Birmingham Royal Ballet

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An offshoot of the Royal Ballet organization, now a fully autonomous company based in Birmingham, England. Until 1997, when it severed its links with the Royal Opera House, it was the touring company of the Royal Ballet. Its origins extend as far back as 1946 to the Sadler's Wells Opera Ballet, the company Ninette de Valois created for Sadler's Wells Theatre when the Sadler's Wells Ballet moved to Covent Garden. In 1947 it became Sadler's Wells Theatre Ballet, in 1957 the Royal Ballet Touring Company, and in 1976 Sadler's Wells Royal Ballet. In 1990 the company left Sadler's Wells and moved to Birmingham, thus confirming the distinctive identity it had already forged for itself. In the early years, as ‘sister company’ to the resident company at Covent Garden, it acted as a training ground for dancers and choreographers (most notably Cranko and MacMillan), and some of the most important British ballets were made for it, including Cranko's Pineapple Poll and The Lady and the Fool, MacMillan's The Invitation, and Ashton's The Two Pigeons. It has also been home to some of Britain's finest dancers, among them John Field, Doreen Wells, Peggy van Praagh, David Blair, Margaret Barbieri, and Marion Tait. It was directed from 1975 to 1995 by Peter Wright, who gave the company fine productions of the classics, as well as reviving important early 20th-century works, such as Massine's Choreartium and Jooss's The Green Table. In 1995 David Bintley (another choreographer whose career had been nurtured here) became director, and created many new works for the company, among them Carmina Burana, Far from the Madding Crowd, Nutcracker Sweeties, and Arthur. In 2004 the Elmhurst Ballet School moved up to Birmingham to become the company's associate school.

http://www.brb.org.uk BRB company website

Subjects: Dance.

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