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The Graduate Professional Programme (media release)

Press release date 
Wed 27 Mar 2013

Northern Ballet is launching an exciting new finishing year course for ballet graduates, designed by David Nixon OBE, Northern Ballet’s Artistic Director and Director of Northern Ballet Academy and Yoko Ichino, Associate Director of Northern Ballet Academy, to help bridge the gap between leaving full-time training and starting life as a professional dancer.

The Graduate Professional Programme, which will run from late August 2013 to late June 2014 from Northern Ballet’s headquarters in Leeds, will improve the standards of dancers who demonstrate real potential but who are not yet strong enough to gain an apprenticeship with a professional company and would benefit from a further year’s training.
Places on the programme will be limited to ensure that time can be spent with each individual on a one-to-one basis. Students will receive intensive training to strengthen their classical technique. This will include repertoire and Pilates, as well as some unique opportunities to perform with the professional Company.

David says: ‘The dance world is hugely competitive. Thousands of students graduate each year, all competing for a comparatively small number of jobs. Directors and choreographers are looking for people who really stand out. It is a very big jump from the training school to the rigours and demands of life as a full time professional dancer. 

I have found at company auditions that I was seeing some great talent but that many of the dancers were not quite ready and would benefit from an extra years training. Our Graduate Programme offers dancers the chance to extend their training that bit further, ensuring they are fully prepared to pursue their dance careers.’ 

Dancers applying must be aged between 18 and 20 (18 by August 2013) and hold an EC or UK passport.

The deadline for applications is Tuesday 28 May 2013. Applicants need to submit a full CV, a recent classical ballet photo and a DVD or link to online video of class with long combinations (adage, pirouettes, jumps and travelling combinations). Female applicants must also include pointe work in their video.

The fee for the full year is £3,000. Those interested in applying should contact Faye Cardwell on 0113 200 8000 or email  for further information.

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