9 December 2021 15:34

Birmingham Royal Ballet and Royal Academy of Dance announce new partnership

Birmingham Royal Ballet and the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) are delighted to announce a new partnership which will create stronger links to the professional world of ballet for RAD teachers and their students through an exciting programme of events and exclusive experiences.


Birmingham Royal Ballet CEO, Caroline Milles, RAD President, Dame Darcey Bussell, and RAD Artistic Director Gerard Charles.

The programme which will launch in February 2022, following consultation with RAD teachers, will include a series of pre-show talks as part of Birmingham Royal Ballet’s Don Quixote UK tour throughout February and March, as well as practical workshops with dancers and staff, offering insights into various aspects of Company life, both on and off-stage.

The programme begins with a focus in the UK, but both organisations are keen to harness digital technology, to reach RAD teachers and students around the world. Birmingham Royal Ballet and the RAD have worked together to create a unique programme of opportunities for dance teachers and students, including pre-show talks, insights into the Company’s technical departments and choreography and music workshops.

RAD’S Artistic Director Gerard Charles enthused: "The RAD is committed to providing our teachers and students with enriching and high quality experiences. There is so much more to studying ballet than simply learning the steps, and so we are delighted that Birmingham Royal Ballet will be lifting the curtain on company life and the artistry and creativity that makes it a leading dance company. We are all part of a large dance community that includes beginners, experienced dancers and teachers, and we learn from each other. I cannot wait to see how our dancers and teachers benefit from this amazing opportunity."

Pearl Chesterman, Birmingham Royal Ballet’s Director of Learning, Engagement, Access & Participation said: "The ambition is not only to inspire more young dancers through RAD teachers and their dance schools but also to deepen their understanding and appreciation of the art form. As a Company we see a real opportunity to develop the audiences of the future."

Instagram Reels and TikTok dance challenge

The RAD and Birmingham Royal Ballet both passionately believe that ballet can be enjoyed by everyone, so to mark the beginning of the partnership, they have today launched an Instagram Reels and TikTok dance challenge inspired by festive favourite The Nutcracker.

The challenge is extended to dancers everywhere, to show us their best moves to a specially composed piece of Cuban inspired Nutcracker music. Dancers can take inspiration from Birmingham Royal Ballet dancers Hannah Martin, who won a bronze medal in The Fonteyn 2021, the RAD’s flagship international ballet competition, as well as Javier Rojas, Eilis Small, and Emma Price, throughout December. 

Simply head to Instagram to join in the fun and don’t forget to share your take on this Christmas classic by tagging both organisations and using #SugarCube. RAD and Birmingham Royal Ballet will be sharing their favourite entries on their social media channels throughout December. You can also head to the RAD’s recently launched TikTok channel to join the fun.

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