ENB winter update

Published: 10 November 2020
Reporter: Vera Liber

Alina Cojocaru Credit: Moran Norman
Grant Rae, Alina Cojocaru and Jane Haworth in The Sleeping Beauty Credit: Laurent Liotardo
Vadim Muntagirov and Alina Cojocaru in Le Corsaire Credit: ASH

Alina Cojocaru departs English National Ballet, new dancers are welcomed to the company and there is an updated performance schedule for Nutcracker Delights at the Coliseum.

Cojocaru joined the company in 2013 as a Lead Principal Dancer and has performed in classical roles including Juliet in both Rudolf Nureyev’s and Derek Deane’s versions of Romeo & Juliet, the title roles in Giselle, Manon and Cinderella, Medora in Le Corsaire, Princess Aurora in The Sleeping Beauty, Clara in Nutcracker and Odette/ Odile in Swan Lake. She has also performed in contemporary works including Approximate Sonata 2016, In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated, Spring and Fall, No Man’s Land, Second Breath and Akram Khan’s Giselle.

ENB Artistic Director Tamara Rojo said, “it has been an absolute privilege to have an artist of Alina’s calibre as part of the English National Ballet family. I am so thankful for her immense contribution to the company over the past 7 years, and I hope to welcome her back as a guest in the future.”

New dancers joining the company are Natascha Mair, Matei Hadrian Holeleu, and Eric Snyder. Mair, who previously performed with Vienna State Opera Ballet (Wiener Staatsballett), joins as a Principal. Holeleu joins as a 1st Year Artist of the Company following his success at the 2020 Prix de Lausanne competition. Snyder joins as an Artist (Extra) from English National Ballet School.

Whilst planned performances of Reunion: An Evening with English National Ballet are unable to go ahead at Sadler's Wells due to the November lockdown in England, Nutcracker Delights, a special 75-minute version of the Christmas classic, will now open at the London Coliseum on 17 December 2020 and run until 3 January 2021.

Performing in the roles of Clara and Sugar Plum Fairy are Lead Principals Erina Takahashi and Fernanda Oliveira; Principals Shiori Kase and Natascha Mair; and First Soloists Emma Hawes and Katja Khaniukova. Lead Principals Joseph Caley, Jeffrey Cirio, Isaac Hernández and Francesco Gabriele Frola will perform the role of Prince, whilst First Soloist Junor Souza will dance both Prince and Nutcracker. First Soloist Aitor Arrieta, Soloist Skyler Martin and Artist of the Company Fernando Carratalá Coloma dance the role of Nutcracker. Nightly casting for Nutcracker Delights will be announced soon.

ENB has also appointed new members to its Board of Trustees: Marilyn Berk, Lady Debbie Buffini, Kamara Gray, Chris Marks, Paul Pacifico and Dr. Shirley J Thompson OBE.