Elmhurst Ballet School has launched its first-ever company for its graduate year, with its first performance, Origins, taking place in February 2019. It will be an evening of dance at Elmhurst Ballet School, Birmingham, and Lilian Baylis Studio, Sadler’s Wells, London. The inaugural programme will include excerpts from David Bintley’s The Shakespeare Suite, Kenneth MacMillan’s Elite Syncopations and Wayne McGregor’s Entity, with a wraparound outreach programme also taking place to complement Elmhurst Ballet Company activity.
The launch of Elmhurst Ballet Company is an exciting development in the school’s history, especially as it works towards marking its 100th anniversary in 2023. The company will enhance the student experience with performances in a variety of locations, including at home in Birmingham, and in London too. Students will gain a greater sense of working and touring in a professional company whilst learning and performing a diverse range of choreography.
It will help graduate students make a smoother transition to their professional dancing lives: throughout their time at the school, students enjoy many performance experiences, from working with Birmingham Royal Ballet to dancing in summer shows. Elmhurst Ballet Company will furthermore allow company artists to hone and perform challenging and well known choreography, and will take them off site to experience new venues and a touring regime. This is an important development for the next cohort of graduating students, and all those in the school years to come.
Subsequent years will see Elmhurst Ballet Company continue to deliver performances in its home city of Birmingham, return to London and develop a touring strategy that enables the company to perform in towns and cities associated with the graduate students. Elmhurst Ballet Company will also help to deliver the school’s future outreach, learning and participatory activities, starting with performances and workshops in selected state schools relating to the 2019 launch programme.