On Monday 30th November 2020 we are delighted to welcome Royal Ballet Principal Yasmine Naghdi as our guest. Yasmine joined the Royal Ballet in 2010 having won Young British Dancer of the Year in 2009. She was promoted to Principal in 2017. A regular attendee at Association Annual Dinners, Yasmine first spoke to the Association in 2011 and then again in 2018.
She has danced roles across the whole of the Royal Ballet’s classical, heritage and contemporary repertoire including Odette/Odile, Aurora, Giselle, Juliet, Gamzatti, Kitri, both Tatiana and Olga in Onegin, Swanilda, Sugar Plum Fairy, Firebird, the Young Girl in Two Pigeons and in ballets by Balanchine, McGregor and Wheeldon. Always an entertaining speaker, we can expect a very interesting evening.
Our AGM will follow our meeting on Monday 30th November 2020, which would include in the agenda as follows: 1) Apologies; 2) Minutes of AGM 2019; 3) Matters Arising; 4) Chairman’s Report; 5) Financial Report; 6) Election of Committee; and 7) Any Other Business.
At this meeting we shall be electing Honorary Officers and Committee Members. The Committee for 2019-20 season was David Bain (Chairman and Organising Secretary), Liz Atkins (Membership Secretary and Joint Deputy Chairman), Ann Dawson (Joint Deputy Chairman), Melanie Shipton (Treasurer), Liz Bouttell (Reporting Secretary), Ann Maclennan (Events Secretary), Rachel Holland, Chiara Gorodesky, Roger Handley, Jacqui Sporle, Linda Gainsbury, Paul Pan and Yurika Yamagata.
At our first meeting of the New Year on Wednesday 20th January 2021, we will welcome First Soloist Mayara Magri and Principal Matthew Ball as our guests. Those of you who attended the only live Royal Ballet performance this season will have seen them dance a pas de deux from Le Corsaire.
From Brazil, Mayara spent one year at the Royal Ballet Upper School having won the Senior Age Division of Youth America Grand Prix and the Prix de Lausanne Scholarship and Audience Prize. She joined the Royal Ballet in 2012 and was promoted to First Soloist in 2018. She has performed roles across the Company’s repertoire including Gypsy Girl, Lilac Fairy, Mercedes, Kitri, Rose Fairy, Mitzi Caspar, Gamzatti, Lescaut’s Mistress and Swanilda, and was due to make her debut as Odette/Odile when lockdown occurred.
Matthew, from Liverpool, trained at the Royal Ballet School from age 11 and graduated into the Company during the 2013/14 season. He was promoted to Principal in 2018. His roles include Siegfried, Romeo, Armand, Rudolf, Solor, Lensky and Basilio, as well many in new creations including, most recently, Daniel Baremboim in The Cellist.
The second on Wednesday 27th January 2021 will be our annual meeting with our Royal Ballet School award winners with one of their teachers. So, on Wednesday 27th January 2021 we welcome our 2020 award winners, first year Isabella Boyd and second years Julie Petanova and Alejandro Valera from the USA, Czech Republic and Spain respectively along with Upper School teacher Zhan Atymtayev.
Zhan trained in Russia where he danced as a Principal in both the Russian National Ballet and the St Petersburg State Ballet as well as guest appearances around the world. He joined English National Ballet in 2006 and pursued a new challenge as a teacher. He joined the staff of the Royal Ballet School in 2013. These meetings with our award winners are always a delight and provide an opportunity to hear from talented students before they embark on their professional careers.