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Hong Kong Genee Competition

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It seems to be going on this week through the weekend. Here's the competitions website:


Here's a press release earlier in the year from the Royal Academy of Dance.


Those interested in the results, please remember that information about winners, etc., should be based on published official sources or the press. Please cite your source and include a Link to it if possible. Thanks for your cooperation.

P.S. It was nice to see a photo of Alex Wong, a 2003 winner and now with Miami City Ballet, in the website's photo gallery.

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Results of the 2006 Geenee International Ballet Competion should be known shortly. From the Royal Academy of Dance website:


Genée International Ballet Competition 2006

Finalists Announced

The Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) who are staging their flagship annual event, the Genée International Ballet Competition in Hong Kong for the first time, announced the 2006 Finalists at the end of the second day of Semi-finals, at which the audience were given a taste of the spectacular Final to come.

2006 Finalists

Name Age Nationality

Ye Fei Fei 18 Chinese

Gemma Graves 18 Australian

Alexandra MacDonald 18 Canadian

Eliza Mulholland 16 Australian

Jessica Morgan 18 Australian

Edgar Lai Kiu Chan 17 Chinese ( Hong Kong )

David Moore 18 British

Kostyantyn Keshyshev 19 Ukrainian

James Stout 18 Canadian

Daniel Mulligan 18 British

Jia Yong Sun 18 Chinese

Valentino Zucchetti 18 Italian

The Final of the Genée International Ballet Competition 2006 takes place in the Lyric Theatre at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts on Sunday, 3 September at 18:00.


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...and the winners are:

The audience was brought to their feet when the panel of Judges, chaired by Dame Antoinette Sibley DBE , President of the RAD announced their decision to award 18-year-old Italian, Valentino Zucchetti a gold medal – a rarity in the history of the competition.

Silver medals were awarded to Ye Fei Fei, (18) from China; Gemma Graves (18) from Australia; Kostantyn Keshyshev (19) from the Ukraine and bronze medals went to Jessica Morgan, (18) from Australia, David Moore, (18) from the UK and Jia Yong Sun (18) from China. The Sotheby's Audience Award, voted for by the audience was also presented to Ye Fei Fei.


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I went back to the Genee site and discovered that this Royal Academy of Dance competition has been going on since 1931, predating vaunted Varna by more than three decades! Scanning their list of past winners:


I found a couple of very familiar recent winners:

1995 Gold: Stella Abrera, the popular ABT Soloist.

2001 Gold: Nutnaree Pipit-Suksun (spelt Pipithsuksunt), the San Francisco Ballet revelation at this summer's Lincoln Center Festival.

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Abrera's -- along with Leanne Benjamin, 1981 Gold -- was one of only two names that lept to my eye when I scanned the list. I'm sure there are others, whose names I didn't recognize, who have gone on to distinguished professional careers. But ... why not more out of so many, many winners over the decades?

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Bart, the names are probably better known over here: there are at least 14 dancers who went on to become principals of one or other of the Royal Ballet companies, many who became soloists either there or elsewhere (especially in Australia), and other extrememly distinguished names such as John Gilpin - one of the great classical dancers of his time - Henry Danton, and (I think) Ben Stevenson, under his original name of John Stevens.

Since around 2001 there are lots of names which I think will be very well known in the future, too - several are already on their way to the top.

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Thank you, Jane, for your response. I'm really happy to hear this. :huh:

I must have missed Gilpin on the list: As a child, I actually saw him with London Festival or some such company. And Ben Stevenson is part of my current experience, since he's a frequent choreographic contributor to the rep of Ballet Florida.

In these days when so much focus is on a relatively few internationally famous jet-setting dancers, I need reminding that the great bulk of those who contribute so much to the art work more locally.

One of the great advantages of Ballet Talk is that we get to read about so many wonderful dancers whom we will probably never have a chance to see on stage. (Another argument in favor of expanding the number and range of ballet videos available to audiences around the world.)

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