Promotions were announced a couple night ago. The Press Release is out. It will be an interesting year next year and I look forward to seeing the new additions from Houston. Did they only take 2 apprentices or were there only 2 from NBS? A huge congratulations to all those promoted.
Media > | Media Release
NEW PRINCIPAL DANCER ZDENEK KONVALINA
KEIICHI HIRANO AND JILLIAN VANSTONE PROMOTED TO FIRST SOLOIST
ALEJANDRA PEREZ-GOMEZ, KEVIN BOWLES,
DONG HYUN SEO PROMOTED TO SECOND SOLOIST
BRIDGETT ZEHR JOINS AS SECOND SOLOIST
May 24, 2006...Toronto, Ontario... Karen Kain, Artistic Director of The National Ballet of Canada, today announced the company’s 2006/07 roster. Zdenek Konvalina, Principal Dancer with Houston Ballet for five seasons, joins the company as Principal Dancer in July 2006.
Mr. Konvalina has been critically acclaimed for his performances in lead roles in Swan Lake, The Sleeping Beauty, Romeo and Juliet, Giselle, La Fille mal gardée, Manon, La Bayadère as well as works by George Balanchine including Apollo, Theme and Variations and Symphony in C. Mr. Konvalina has also danced lead roles in the contemporary repertoire, including works by William Forsythe, Maurice Bejart and Mark Morris. Born in Brno, Czech Republic, Mr. Konvalina was trained at Brno Conservatory and was a Principal Dancer with National Ballet of Moravia-Silesia before joining Houston Ballet in 2001. He has performed throughout Europe, the U.S. and Asia.
“Mr. Konvalina is a gifted dancer, with dramatic flair and strong classical technique. His artistry will be a wonderful addition to our company,” said Ms. Kain.
Promotions within the company include Keiichi Hirano and Jillian Vanstone to First Soloist. Mr. Hirano danced major roles with the company including the Bluebird in The Sleeping Beauty, Colas in La Fille mal gardée, and this season, Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet. Ms. Vanstone danced The Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker, Calliope in Apollo, the Ballerina in Petrouchka, Spring in The Four Seasons and the lead in Diamonds.
Alejandra Perez-Gomez , Kevin Bowles and Dong Hyun Seo have been promoted to Second Soloist. Ms. Perez-Gomez made her debut this season as Lady Capulet in Romeo and Juliet. She also danced the lead in A Delicate Battle and The Four Temperaments. Mr. Bowles danced the role of Rothbart in Swan Lake and Uncle Nikolai in The Nutcracker, as well as Beaujolais, a role that he created in An Italian Straw Hat, during the company’s tour to Ottawa. Mr. Seo made his debut as Paris in Romeo and Juliet this past spring, and danced the lead in Diamonds and a featured role in The Four Temperaments during the winter.
Bridgett Zehr , also from Houston Ballet, will be joining the company as Second Soloist. Ms. Zehr has danced Odette in Swan Lake, Calliope in Apollo plus featured roles in Forsythe’s In the Middle, somewhat elevated and Balanchine’s Theme and Variations. Ms. Zehr was born in Florida and studied at Houston Ballet’s Ben Stevenson Academy, where she received the Rudolf Nureyev Scholarship in 2002.
Three dancers from the National Ballet of Canada’s RBC Apprenticeship Programme will join the corps de ballet; Courtney Gibbs, Marissa Parzei and Noah Long.
Corps de ballet member Sophie Letendre, who joined the company in 1991, retired at the end of the spring season. Leaving to pursue other interests are corps de ballet members Joshua Grant, Nathaniel Kozlow, Daisuke Ohno, Erin Richardson and Kanako Sakamoto.
Two of Canada’s National Ballet School graduates, Naoya Ebe and Julia Jensen, will join the RBC Apprenticeship Programme.