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David Bintley to step down as Director at the end of 2018/19 season

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3 minutes ago, JMcN said:

I'm in shock.  I wish David all the best for the future.

Me too...I was also in shock when he left National Ballet of Japan because that was the best days of this company. Hope he continues to create on BRB and National Ballet of Japan as well as other companies. 

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BRB has a very distinct personality based on Mr Bintley's creations and some of the most wonderful revivals from the Royal companies past, who ever thought we'd see Ashton's Dante Sonata  or Helpmann's Miracle in the Gorbals?  I do hope whoever succeeds him stays true to his artistic heritage.

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I would like to see continuity which, after all, has made the company what it is today.  I do hope that the current Bintley masterpieces in the rep are retained (Hobson's Choice, Madding Crowd, Cyrano and many one acters including his jazz-based ballets).

My vote would go to Robert Parker (currently AD at Elmhurst School for Ballet) or possibly Iain Webb or Cathy Marston.

The AD does not have to be a choreographer.


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While it was wonderful to see Dante Sonata restored to the company's repertory during his tenure as  director I have never understood Bintley's failure to revive more of the ballets which were restored to the stage during Sir Peter's directorship after years of neglect such as The Prospect Before Us which was staged to mark the centenary of De Valois' birth and turned out to be a much better comic ballet than its years of neglect suggested it was. It must have taken a great deal of time and effort to restore it and yet although the company received a SWET award for it, the ballet has, I think, never been revived . There are  plenty of other examples of important  ballets revived by Sir Peter and ignored by Bintley such as Massine's Choreatium ,Joos' Green Table and Ashton's Valses Nobles et Sentimentales. It often seems to me that much of BRB's reputation for being a fine custodian of historically significant repertory is based almost entirely on Sir Peter's work as director.  I hope  that whoever is appointed as director is sufficiently interested in the company's history to revive the historically significant works which Sir Peter worked hard to stage.

One thing is certain Bintley's successor is going to need even more skill  and luck than a new director usually requires, if only because of the financial challenges he/she will face as a result of the swingeing cuts to its financial support which the company has sustained. The cuts are going to present a real challenge to the new director but they have produced one benefit. They have prevented the company staging Stanton Welch's version of La Bayadere for which, having read a bit about it on this site, I think all BRB 's followers should be truly grateful. I  wonder whether those responsible for appointing the new director will want another choreographer- director simply because Bintley's work has come to dominate the company's repertory in a way that some feel has not been entirely beneficial for the company , There is the suggestion that the initials  B.R.B. now stand for Bintley's Royal Ballet rather than Birmingham Royal Ballet. As far as potential candidates are concerned  I question whether Robert Parker would really want to leave his post at Elmhurst barely five minutes after he took it up.  Given the company's financial position I imagine that the appointment panel will be looking for someone with a bit of experience in running  a company rather than someone with no experience who is  likely to command  a great deal of goodwill within the company. I can think of one young energetic former artistic director with a proven track record  as far as choice of repertory and dancer development are concerned who seems to have time on his hands at present. The question is whether he would want to run a company so closely connected with the Royal Ballet ?   

Edited by Ashton Fan
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