Durante is new Artistic Director of ENB School

Published: 1 September 2020
Reporter: Vera Liber

Viviana Durante and Mbulelo Ndabeni in THREE.8:38/SEVEN Credit: David Scheinmann

Viviana Durante will become Artistic Director of English National Ballet School for the 2020–21 academic year, following her appointment as Director of Dance in August 2019, since when she has introduced guest teachers including Ivan Putrov, Amanda Maxwell and Mavin Khoo from Akram Khan Company and launched a new professional trainee programme.

Durante initiated World Ballet School Day in July 2020 which saw English National Ballet School link up with eleven other schools. For the 2020 Summer Performance, she commissioned Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, Andrew McNicol and Didy Veldman to create new works for the students to perform virtually in a film produced by the BalletBoyz.

Durante was principal dancer with The Royal Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Teatro alla Scala and K-Ballet. In 2017, she founded the Viviana Durante Company to bring forgotten masterpieces alongside new works to new audiences, and in February 2020 presented Isadora Now at the Barbican.

She said, “in the short time I’ve been at the school, we have sought to unleash individual potential by providing our students with a rich, ambitious and supportive environment that inspires them to become their best selves and pioneering artists of the future.

"The ongoing pandemic has brought many challenges but has also strengthened bonds, unlocked creativity and attested to the resilience, resourcefulness and dedication of our gifted students. Together with all the school’s staff, I look forward to finding new and innovative ways to ensure that our students remain active, engaged and passionate about our art form. I am more optimistic than ever about its future in their hands.”

James Mee, Chairman of ENB School, said, “we are all delighted that Viviana has agreed to be our Artistic Director for the coming year. Alongside Executive Director Jon Singleton, we are incredibly fortunate to have such a talented and committed executive team to help the school navigate through the current global pandemic. Despite the challenges, the many successes this past year are testament to their leadership.”