The Erik Bruhn Prize - March 3
Keiichi Hirano and Bridgett Zehr
Represent The National Ballet of Canada
Veronica Tennant and Rex Harrington Host
January 16, 2007...Toronto...Ontario...Karen Kain,
Artistic Director of The National Ballet of Canada, today announced that
First Soloist Keiichi Hirano and Second Soloist
Bridgett Zehr will represent the company at The
Seventh International Competition for The Erik Bruhn Prize on Saturday,
March 3, 2007 at 7:30 pm in the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts.
Former Principal Dancers Veronica Tennant and Rex
Harrington will host the event.
Competitors from The Royal Danish Ballet, The Royal Ballet
and American Ballet Theatre will be announced shortly. Judging the
competition are Artistic Directors Karen Kain,
Kevin McKenzie (American Ballet Theatre), Frank Andersen
(Royal Danish Ballet) and Assistant Director Jeanetta
Laurence (The Royal Ballet).
During the evening The National Ballet of Canada will
perform Voluntaries as a tribute to Glen Tetley,
Artistic Associate of the company from 1987 to 1989 and to mark his 80th
birthday. Mr. Tetley created Oracle (1994), Tagore (1989),
La Ronde (1987) and Alice (1986) on the National Ballet
and the company has Rite of Spring, Daphnis and Chloë, Sphinx as
well as Voluntaries in the repertoire. Glen Tetley will be in
attendance at the performance.
Erik Bruhn, one of the greatest male classical
dancers of the 20th century, was Artistic Director of The
National Ballet of Canada from 1983 until his death in 1986. In a codicil to
his will, Mr. Bruhn left part of his estate for the establishment of The
Erik Bruhn Prize, involving the companies with whom he was most closely
associated. The Royal Danish Ballet, The Royal
Ballet, American Ballet Theatre and The
National Ballet of Canada are each invited to send one male and one
female dancer to the competition. He specified that the prize be awarded to
two young dancers who "reflect such technical ability, artistic
achievement and dedication as I endeavoured to bring to dance."
The dancers, all between the ages of 18 and 26, are selected
by the Artistic Directors of their companies. Competitors appear in a
classical pas de deux and variations and a contemporary pas de deux or solo
repertoire. Each participant receives a medal and the winners each receive a
prize of $7,500 and a sculpture by Canadian Artist Jack Culiner.
Nearly all of the past winners have gone on to hold
Principal Dancer positions with their companies and to enjoy international