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New Year brings new faces to RNZ Ballet

Media Release –15 January 2013

New Year brings new faces and international talent to the Royal New Zealand Ballet

Laura Jones

The Royal New Zealand Ballet has today announced the appointment of Martin Vedel who will join the RNZB artistic team as Ballet Master.

“We are lucky that Martin has chosen to share his considerable experience with our dancers. That we attract such talent to join in our vision for the future is a testament to the RNZB’s ever-growing international reputation,” says Amanda Skoog, Managing Director RNZB.

Most recently Ballet Master for the Royal Ballet of Flanders and guest teacher at English National Ballet, Martin Vedel brings with him a wealth of classical and contemporary ballet experience and understanding. He officially joins the RNZB on 22 January.

The RNZB has also welcomed three new dancers to the fold. Arata Miyagawa received his training at the prestigious John-Cranko School in Stuttgart and has performed with the famous Stanislavski Ballet in Russia. He won a silver medal at the 2012 Varna Competition in Bulgaria, regarded as one of the world’s most prestigious ballet competitions.

"I am truly happy that Arata has chosen the RNZB as his new professional home. It is exciting that an extremely talented young male dancer, having just won second place in Varna, wants to share and develop his artistry in our company. I know he is eager to begin working with the RNZB and we are equally enthused to welcome him on board," says Ethan Stiefel, Artistic Director of the RNZB.

Young Australian dancer Laura Jones joined the RNZB for the TelstraClear Season of Giselle in October 2012 and now officially joins the company as the 2013 Todd Scholar. The scholarship is awarded annually to a promising graduate of the New Zealand School of Dance and has been generously provided by Todd Corporation for the last 13 years.

Sir John Todd, former Chairman of Todd Corporation, says the corporation is dedicated to nurturing young ballet talent. “We see this scholarship as offering a vital stepping stone on the pathway of success. For a young graduate of the New Zealand School of Dance, a place on stage with the Royal New Zealand Ballet is the realisation of a long held aspiration.”

Arata and Laura, together with new apprentice Hayley Donnison (Australian Ballet School), make their debut as company members in Made to Move, world premieres of new works by Stiefel, Andrew Simmons and Javier De Frutos. The season opens in Wellington on February 27 and tours nationally to six other centres, closing in Ashburton on 24 March.


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