The Royal Ballet announces programme celebrating the centenary of Margot Fonteyn’s birth

Margot Fonteyn-Roger Wood

This June, The Royal Ballet pays tribute to Prima Ballerina Assoluta Dame Margot Fonteyn with a special programme of works celebrating the centenary of her birth. Margot Fonteyn: A Celebration will take place on 8 June 2019, with a performance of The Firebird, one of her signature ballets, alongside a selection of other works closely associated with one of ballet’s most revered and influential dancers.

Director of The Royal Ballet, Kevin O’ Hare comments: ‘I’m thrilled to be able to announce this special evening celebrating the life and legacy of Margot Fonteyn. She was an icon of British ballet and a celebrity beyond the stage, her impact and influence without parallel. She captured the hearts of the Company and audiences all around the world. It’s a privilege to honour our Prima Ballerina Assoluta with this one-off performance in her centenary year.’

Margot Fonteyn as Ondine 1958 Photo Roger Wood
Margot Fonteyn as Ondine 1958 Photo Roger Wood

Fonteyn was born in Reigate, Surrey, and studied in the UK and Shanghai. She made her debut with the Vic-Wells ballet while still a student before joining the Company in 1935, her special qualities immediately recognised by Director Ninette de Valois. She was renowned in classics such as The Sleeping Beauty and became muse to Frederick Ashton, Founder Choreographer of The Royal Ballet, who created many roles for her including OndineSylvia and Daphnis in Daphnis and Chloë. She forged distinguished dance partnerships with Robert HelpmannMichael Somes and latterly with Rudolf Nureyev.

This celebration will also include a free exhibition of Margot Fonteyn related items from the Royal Opera House archive as well as a series of talks and Insights celebrating her legacy. Futher details will be announced in due course.

P56 Scènes de ballet 1948-Fonteyn-Somes-Roger Wood
P56 Scènes de ballet 1948-Fonteyn-Somes-Roger Wood
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