Tamara Rojo to lead English National Ballet

posted by Wendy Perron on Friday, Apr 13, 2012
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Tamara Rojo in Ashton's Five Brahms Waltzes in the Manner of Isadora Duncan. Photo by Nan Melville.

The fabulous, dynamic, gorgeous dancer Tamara Rojo has been named artistic director of English National Ballet. A principal with The Royal Ballet for more than a decade, she was a principal with ENB first.

Rojo will undoubtedly bring new energy and ideas (she’s been preparing for this role by attending Dance East’s retreat for “future leaders" and by shadowing Karen Kain at National Ballet of Canada). But the best part is that she’s not stopping dancing: She will perform with ENB—and who knows, maybe she’ll continue guesting all over the world (except NYC dammit) as she has been doing.

In 2009 when The Royal Ballet came to the Kennedy Center, I was wowed by her Manon with Carlos Acosta. (You can see them dance Manon in this clip.) And the next fall I got to see her in Havana, rehearsing Ashton’s Five Brahms Waltzes in the Manner of Isadora Duncan. She was stunning, with drama based on breath—totally musical. I wrote about it in my post on the highlights of the Havana festival.

A performance of Rojo in that Ashton solo is captured on a DVD that we recently covered in Plugged In. 

It's still not really explained why Wayne Eagling is leaving so quickly as head of ENB, as I mentioned in this blog post. Rojo takes over as artistic director in September. —Wendy Perron