Posted on 1st February 2019

HRH The Prince of Wales attends School performance

HRH The Prince of Wales, President of The Royal Ballet School, The Royal Ballet, and Patron of the Royal Opera House, attended a special world premiere of the ballet The Cunning Little Vixen by alumnus Liam Scarlett at the Royal Opera House in February. This new one-act ballet was staged in honour of The Prince of Wales’s 70th birthday.

On arrival, His Royal Highness was greeted by our Chairman, The Duchess of Wellington, Alex Beard, Chief Executive of the Royal Opera House and Royal Ballet School student Krista, who presented him with a performance programme.

Set to Leoš Janáček’s score of the same name, The Cunning Little Vixen featured a cast of talent drawn from both White Lodge and the Upper School.  It was presented as a double bill, on 12, 14 and 16 February, with Frederick Ashton's The Two Pigeons, performed by The Royal Ballet.

Liam Scarlett said: 'What the students achieved was phenomenal. Throughout the whole process I have really pushed them, not beyond their capabilities but what they thought was possible of themselves, and they have produced something magnificent and something that they should all be very proud of.

'The one thing I didn’t want to do was treat them like students. I think for them to have a piece created on them is the best way to get a taste of the career they’re aiming to have, to give them that sense of how it’s all going to work in the real world.

'The wonderful thing about coming in and working with students who are just beginning their careers and just finding themselves as people and as dancers, is there is a certain naive nature to them which means they’re open to endless possibilities more so than some of the professional dancers and it’s that willingness to be open to anything. The conversations, interactions and collaborations with the students have been the highlight for me.'

Artistic Director of The Royal Ballet School, Christopher Powney, said: ‘We are proud to have been part of this collaboration bringing together the School and Company on the same stage.

'Liam Scarlett started his choreographic career when he was a student of The Royal Ballet School so it is particularly fitting that his new work was at the centre of this special shared programme.

'Working with him has been an enriching experience for all the students involved. It has been inspiring for them to be part of his creative process and witness this exciting new choreography taking shape.’

Choreographer Scarlett created his first commissioned ballet while still a student at The Royal Ballet School. Now Artist in Residence at The Royal Ballet, Scarlett has since become a world-renowned choreographer.

Scroll through our photos:

HRH meeting members of cast of The Cunning Little Vixen and The Two Pigeons

HRH The Prince of Wales visits The Royal Opera House to see The Cunning Little Vixen

Students performing Liam Scarlett's The Cunning Little Vixen

Liam Scarlett's The Cunning Little Vixen

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