Jane Simpson

RDB: new corps dancers and aspirants

16 posts in this topic

The RDB has recently updated the dancers' list on its website to show 5 dancers promoted from aspirant (apprentice) to corps de ballet:

Emma Håkansson

Josephine Berggreen

Stephanie Sahlgren

Benjamin Buza

Jón Axel Fransson

There are 9 new aspirants, more than I can remember in the last few years:

Astrid Elbo

Benita Bünger

Ida Praetorius

Stephanie Chen Gundorph Møller

Viktoria Falck-Schmidt

Jeppe Banke

Lukas Hartvig-Møller

Luke Schaufuss

Magnus Christoffersen

All of them are Danish. David Amzallag recently posted photographs of several of them, and those who were at the 2005 Bournonville Festival will probably remember Ida Praetorius as the little girl, Fanny, in Conservatoire.

They join 2nd year aspirants Andreas Kaas and Oscar Nilsson.

Claire Ratcliffe and Aurore Casanova have left the company, and as previously known, Nehemiah Kish has also left to join the Royal Ballet in London.

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and those who were at the 2005 Bournonville Festival will probably remember Ida Praetorius as the little girl, Fanny, in Conservatoire.

Yes I certainly do remember her as Fanny; I also remember an adorable little boy called Tobias with the same surname who was marvellous in the Kenneth Greve version of Nutcracker: is he her brother?

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thanks, Jane.

is Luke Schaufuss related the Schaufuss name we know from Frank and Peter fame?

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I also remember an adorable little boy called Tobias with the same surname who was marvellous in the Kenneth Greve version of Nutcracker: is he her brother?

Yes, I think so - I've certainly seen a review from 2005 which referred to them as brother and sister.

thanks, Jane.

is Luke Schaufuss related the Schaufuss name we know from Frank and Peter fame?

Yes, he's the son of Peter Schaufuss and Zara Deakin. I think he was at one of the RDB schools outside Copenhagen for a time but he left and danced with his father's company in some quite big roles. But I think he's still only about 17.

(Love this 'multiquote' reply feature!)

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It is great to see, that the school is able to produce so many new dancers, and four of them being male! Maybe the large number of apprentices is a new strategie: to let the talented ones have a go at it and see if they can fly. Or maybe it is a direct result of Hübbe's intensions about upgrading the effort of the school, and it is therefore actually beginnnig to produce more talent. In an interview by Jane Simpson in Ballet.co.uk Magazine in December (there is a link to it somewhere else on this board) he says explicitely, when asked if he cares, that "of the 93 dancers currently listed, just over half are Danish":

"I do care. I do care, because I love the school - I think our education is everything - but I don't think the school produces enough. It's a big problem, and I have to do something about it - it's my next big quest. I love dancers, OK? - I LOVE this dancer, that dancer, I don't care what their nationality or their background is, or for that matter their schooling - I love a French dancer as much as a Russian - if it's a good dancer it's a good dancer - but I for pride, I guess, some strange national pride, I am concerned. And also - I guess this has to do with the tradition - I want the school to produce dancers I like, dancers I can agree with. And I pay money to the school so it can exist - five and a half million people pay tax to the upkeep of this school - and for that plain pragmatic reason, I want something for my money!"

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The list of corps de ballet dancers on the RDB site now also includes Tara Schaufuss, who was listed as an aspirant for a time last season.

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Do you know, if Tara Schaufuss is a member of the famous family too?

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Do you know, if Tara Schaufuss is a member of the famous family too?

Yes, she's the younger of Peter Schaufuss's two daughters from his marriage to Janette Mulligan who was a dancer with English National Ballet.

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David Amzallag has added some photos of two of the new aspirants - Benita Bünger and Ida Praetorius - to his photoblog pages. (There are also some nice shots of Bojesen and Lendorf and of Carling Talcott, all in Swan Lake, on adjacent pages.)

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Do you know, if Tara Schaufuss is a member of the famous family too?

Yes, she's the younger of Peter Schaufuss's two daughters from his marriage to Janette Mulligan who was a dancer with English National Ballet.

Are you really sure about that?!

On her CV it says that she´s from Brisbane, Australia

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Janette Mulligan is Australian. Perhaps she returned there after her break-up from Peter Schaufuss?

I well remember Janette Mulligan from my early ballet-watching days. She was a particularly wonderful Tatiana in Onegin amongst many other roles I saw her perform.

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Do you know, if Tara Schaufuss is a member of the famous family too?

Yes, she's the younger of Peter Schaufuss's two daughters from his marriage to Janette Mulligan who was a dancer with English National Ballet.

Are you really sure about that?!

On her CV it says that she´s from Brisbane, Australia

I know for sure, that she is the daugther of Peter Schaufuss

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David Amzallag has added some photos of two of the new aspirants - Benita Bünger and Ida Praetorius - to his photoblog pages. (There are also some nice shots of Bojesen and Lendorf and of Carling Talcott, all in Swan Lake, on adjacent pages.)

On facebook there is a groupe called

blueballet - the almost all Royal Danish Ballet photography page

Here you can see a lot of the pictures from david amzallag

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OFF TOPIC: I love the closeup shot of Ida Praetorius as a black swan, taken from the wings. It's a very interesting and intelligent face. Based on her facial expression alone -- and those eyes -- I'd like to see more of her.

Thanks, Jane, for the link, and Joan for the additional information. And, Joan: welcome to Ballet Talk. :flowers:

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Practically all of the Aspirants listed in the first post, above, were in Washington, DC, this past weekend dancing 'B is for Bournonville' at the Kennedy Center. Ida Praetorius was especially lovely in her solo segments and, yes, I remember seeing her at the 2005 B'ville Festival in Copenhagen, as the little girl in Konservatoriet. :thumbsup:

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