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By Megan Hussey
Tampa Bay Times
February 15, 2013

William Dugan, 16, will study at the Hamburg School of Ballet in Hamburg, Germany 2013[Tampa Bay, Florida, USA] – If Lori Dugan noticed anything about her little son William, it was his great love for movement. “He was always dancing around my living room,” the New Port Richey mother recalled with a smile. “He danced a lot and did crazy movements.”

Just a few weeks ago Lori watched her son, now 16, move around a different stage. William Dugan, a student of the Patel Conservatory in Tampa and member of the conservatory’s Next Generation Ballet preprofessional ballet company, was selected to compete in the world-renowned Prix de Lausanne dance competition in Lausanne, Switzerland, which took place Jan. 27 through Feb. 3.

Of nearly 300 young dancers ages 15-18 from around the world who auditioned for this competition, William was one of 84 candidates chosen to compete and one of only 10 selected from the United States.

“It was a week of classes where I danced before a panel jury of internationally known ballet dancers,” he said. “Then we performed solos before the jury.”

William Dugan, 16, at the Prix de Lausanne 2013William and the other dancers were judged according to their artistry, physical suitability, courage and individuality, an imaginative and sensitive response to the music, a clear grasp in communicating differing movement dynamics, and technical facility, control and coordination. Although William was not one of the 20 competitors chosen to perform in the culminating show of the Prix de Lausanne, his performance earned him five scholarship offers from ballet schools around the world. This fall he will leave for a two-year course of intensive dance study at the Hamburg School of Ballet in Hamburg, Germany.

This is the latest milestone in the budding dance career of a student who has danced with the Miami City Ballet and last year participated in another international ballet competition, the Beijing International Ballet Invitational. In January, he placed third at the regional level of the Youth America Grand Prix, regarded as the largest student ballet competition in the world. That earned him a place in the national competition in April in New York City. Back home at the Patel Conservatory, he recently danced the role of the Snow King in The Nutcracker, and next he will be seen May 19 in the Next Generation Ballet production of Cinderella, in the male lead of Prince Charming.

“I like how it feels to move,” he said. “I express myself through movement.”

By age 11 William was honing his talents at the Renaissance Academy in Port Richey, studying musical theater, jazz and other dance and performance styles. Yet he knew from an early age that ballet was his discipline of choice.

“There are so many life lessons in ballet,” he said. “You learn to be graceful, controlled, responsible.”

At age 12 William undertook a course of intensive ballet study at the Patel Conservatory, where he now attends classes at least eight hours a day, six days a week. Aside from rehearsing his role in Cinderella, he takes classes in contemporary ballet, partnering and men’s technique. He studies other subjects during evenings and weekends as a student of the Florida Virtual School.

“He puts in a very long day,” said mom Lori, a massage therapist. “I’m very proud.”

William credits his parents and his grandmother, Barbara Sbordon, with encouraging and supporting his passion for dance and his mom with teaching him techniques of movement that will help him avoid injuries while dancing. His primary influences in the ballet world are “Mikhail Baryshnikov and Mr. Peter” — as in Peter Stark, artistic director of the Next Generation Ballet, who teaches William’s ballet classes and filmed his audition video for the Prix de Lausanne.

“William has really worked hard for everything he’s achieved,” said Stark, a former lead dancer with the New York City Ballet who was featured on the cover of Dance Teacher magazine. “He has tremendous character and never moves on from a step until he achieves it perfectly. He’s determined to make it happen.”

Lori Dugan said she and her husband, Tim, are considering relocating with their son to Hamburg this fall; although she looks forward to yet another trip overseas with her globetrotting son, she remembers the Tampa teachers who taught him to move with meaning.

“I have to admit I tear up a bit when I think about leaving the village that raised my son,” she said, “but I also look forward to our next adventure.”

© 2013 Tampa Bay Times

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Adhonay Soares Silva, 15, won the Prix de Leusanne 2013-05

Adhonay Soares da Silva at 15, from Brazil, won the 41st Prix de Lausanne

Yuka Kodama Ballet Group
February 10, 2013

Prix de Lausanne 2013 (excerpt)

The Prix de Lausanne started back in 1973 and is a competition giving young non-professional dancers, aged between fifteen and eighteen years, the chance to win a scholarship to study at any ballet school they choose for a year. For those young dancers whose country does not have a state ballet school, this is a fantastic opportunity. There have been many wonderful dancers who won scholarships in this competition and went on to become world- leading principal dancers: Miyako Yoshida, Tetsuya Kumakawa, Carlos Acosta, Darcey Bussell, Alina Cojocaru and many more.

The competition takes place over six days at the Théâtre de Beaulieu and during the first four days the candidates are given opportunities to take classes by world- renowned teachers and receive coaching from leading coaches. The jury observe the course of classes and it counts towards their final scores.

These days candidates are to apply by submitting an audition DVD. Around 80 of the applicants are invited to take part in this week long event and of those approximately 20 dancers will be chosen to participate in the final.

Candidates are to dance a solo from the classical repertoire and a contemporary solo (they have to choose one each from lists of choices).

This year, there were seventy-five semi-finalists all together: thirty-five 15-16 year-olds and forty 17-18 year-olds. Out of the seventy-five, twenty made it to the final.

Adhonay Soares Silva, 15, won the Prix de Leusanne 2013-03

There were sixteen boys and four girls, which is quite an unusual ratio. It is good to see so many strong boys. The first prize went to a boy named Adhonay Silva from Brazil. He is only fifteen years old and yet his technique is already very well established and secure. And yet I could see that he made an improvement since the semi final. He was very charming and brought smiles to my face. He also had the rare quality to make what he did look easy. He was a worthy winner and I do hope to see him one day on a world stage. He also won the audience prize. Audience members are given a ballot paper and were asked to vote whom they liked best. I am not at all surprised he won this prize as well.

In total eight scholarship prizes were given and although all eight winners are given equally full scholarship to a ballet school or company of their choice, they are given in reverse order and the last one, the one to win the first scholarship prize is considered to be the best one in the competition.

Aside from Adhonay Silva, there were a few that made an impression on me…

Read the full story: http://kodamaballet.wordpress.com/2013/02/10/prix-de-lausanne-2013/

Boys and Ballet YouTube Channel

by Simon Bradley and Kuniko Satonobu
swissinfo.ch
February 1, 2013

Tetsuya Kumakawa (Photo by Ayumu Gombi)Japanese ballet star Tetsuya “Teddy” Kumakawa, a jury member at this year’s Prix de Lausanne ballet competition, talks to swissinfo.ch about the importance of the Prix de Lausanne, male dancers and a dancer’s life after 40.

The lead dancer and director of the Tokyo-based K-Ballet Company is volunteering as a jury member for the second time. He won the Gold Medal at the Prix de Lausanne in 1989.

 

swissinfo: What is the significance of this competition?

Tetsuya Kumakawa: It’s very special. For young students this competition means a lot to them as it can open new doors for their career. I was at the Royal Ballet School the year before I won the [Prix de Lausanne] gold medal in 1989, but my reputation spread thanks to this place. It really means a lot to me.

Discovering new talent is always a hard thing to do. I want to give something back to the competition that introduced me. I want to repay what I gained. I’m very happy to be here as a volunteer and if there’s anything I can do to help the young generation, as a senior member, I will. It’s as simple as that.

swissinfo: What will you be looking for as a jury member?

T.K.: We are looking at how students work, at their potential and ability, and we look much more deeply inside each candidate.

For the students it’s all about confidence and not being swallowed up by the pressures. They’ve probably trained for this competition all year.

It’s a long process over five days, as in normal competitions you get up on stage looking pretty wearing a costume and make-up and you just do a one-off performance. Here you are in a studio and are constantly being watched by judges to see how you work and if you can withstand the pressure.

swissinfo: When we see videos of you dancing in productions like Don Quixote your graceful, high leaps appear to defy gravity and you maintain incredible balance during endless spins. What sort of idealized movements or emotions are you trying to convey when you dance classical ballet?

T.K.: The music is very important. You have to instantly react to the music. You take the music into your body and digest it and sort of communicate it through movement. You have to really create passion within yourself to react to the music – you’ve got to love it.

When you are young you tend to focus on how to jump and turn but it’s a growing process. Once your body is mature you look for different things. At my age, technique is no longer so attractive. I’m more interested in the lines or how to show emotion through the music

swissinfo: Is this the same in contemporary dance?

T.K.: I’ve always been a classical dancer. In contemporary dance you have to be a good philosopher. You have to be very into yourself. You have to be able to shut yourself off from what you see. There is more deep meaning. As classical has been passed on for years, there is a very iconic style, which is not the case in contemporary. It’s a totally different approach.

swissinfo: The number of male candidates in the Prix de Lausanne is increasing. Does this reflect a growing interest for male dancers?

T.K.: The history of ballet has always been a ballerina thing. But ever since the legendary dancer Nijinsky, male dancers have also been attractive. I think from the beauty aspect, there is no difference between male and female dancers.

Male dancers athletically have more dynamic steps, which have an instant impact on audiences and people who want to become heroic dancers. But for female dancers, the beauty of the style, the deep and emotional appearance, are more developed than for the men.

I think female ballerinas reach that point of maturity earlier than men. As a young male dancer technique is more attractive…you are full of energy that just needs to be expressed. That’s the passion of being a male dancer.

swissinfo: How have classical male dancing styles evolved since you won the gold medal in 1989?

T.K.: Civilization has improved so much thanks to YouTube; everyone can see what everyone else is doing. Today everyone copies everyone and shares techniques (laughs).

But technique is not the main objective as it used to be. In my day technique was everything. When I was a little child I had to do research to find a great video of Rudolf Nureyev or Mikhail Baryshnikov and buy it with my pocket money to try to be like them.

Today people can share technique instantly. In a way today’s male dancers therefore become technically more mature earlier than in my time. For them technique is not everything. Nowadays they are looking beyond for nice dancing lines and shapes; I think that’s a good new trend.

swissinfo: You are the principal dancer and director of the K-Ballet Company in Tokyo. Last year you turned 40. Do see yourself continuing to dance for many more years?

T.K.: You have to be aware of your physical limits. At my age you can’t move around like when you were young. But I have become more mature as a dancer.

I approach it in a different way. I appreciate more the music and the dancing with the ballerinas and the rest of the company. I constantly modify the classical pieces in my own way; I try to make the story less complicated so that it’s easily understandable but adding more movements than dancers in the past.

There are so many different ways of dancing and expressing yourself on stage, so if I find a repertoire for my age, then I’ll stay on the stage. But if people expect me to do the same things I was doing in my teens and twenties, personally I don’t find that attractive.

The K-Ballet Company is a very special company. I have become a star of this private company and I have to continue to dance and sell tickets as the main dancer for as long as I can.

Tetsuya Kumakawa

Tetsuya “Teddy” Kumakawa was born in Hokkaido, Japan in 1972. He began studying ballet at the age of 10 and entered the Royal Ballet School at 15.

In 1989 he won the Gold Medal at the Prix de Lausanne. The same year he joined the Royal Ballet Company becoming the youngest soloist in their history. 1n 1993 he became principal dancer at the Royal Ballet.

In 1998 he retired from the Royal Ballet and the following year created his own company “K-Ballet company” in Japan, taking with him several Royal Ballet dancers. He set up the K-Ballet School for young dancers in 2003.

1n 2006, he won the “fifth Asahi Scenic Art Prize” for his artistic and original interpretation and presentation of the classical pieces “Don Quixote” and “The Nutcracker”

Kumakawa continues to dance both domestically and internationally as well as producing, directing and choreographing.

He has been a member of the Prix de Lausanne jury on two occasions.

© 2013 swissinfo.ch

by Ghania Adamo
Translated from French by Thomas Stephens
swissinfo.ch
February 1, 2013

Christian Pforr, Prix de Lausanne 2013The Prix de Lausanne is an annual international ballet competition which aims to discover and promote the potential of young dancers. However, not everyone agrees on the competition’s value.

Ahead of this year’s finals on February 2, when eight of 20 candidates will leave with a scholarship, swissinfo.ch spoke – separately – to both a defender and a critic of the prestigious event.

Another way of looking at the debate is to divide the two camps into Old School and Modern. Representing the former is Jean Pierre Pastori, a Swiss dance critic and ballet historian; in the other corner is Guilherme Botelho, a Brazilian-born choreographer who moved to Geneva as a teenager.

Botelho, 50, doesn’t waste any time in describing the Prix de Lausanne as “dated”. “It appears to have forgotten the importance of contemporary dance. The tests which the dancers have to take are oriented towards classical ballet – heavy on pirouettes, entrechats [jumps during which the dancer crosses his/her legs several times] and portés [moving in the air/being carried from one place to another],” he said.

“It leaves little room for the creativity of the interpreter, unlike in contemporary dance, where the dancer can move a lot more freely. This is more in tune with the times, which have moved towards a personalised art form, capable of triggering an emotion.”

Botelho, who tours the world with his dance company Alias, maintains that a training in contemporary dance is an important part of European cultural policies. “In France, for example, the majority of contemporary dance centres are dedicated to this discipline. In French-speaking Switzerland, for two years there’s been a federal proficiency certificate in contemporary dance. Proof that you can’t choose to overlook this form of artistic expression.”

 

Not a charity

Pastori, 63, sees things differently. “The Prix de Lausanne’s evaluation programme does include a contemporary dance test. The problem is that many young choreographers don’t recognise it as such. They see it as a neoclassical discipline. But let’s stop this petty squabbling!”

For him, the usefulness of the prize lies elsewhere: in the desire to offer talented young dancers an education in a famous school such as the Opéra de Paris or the Royal Ballet School in London which they couldn’t afford on their own.

“Those who don’t need additional training will receive a scholarship for a one-year internship at a renowned international company. If a place then opens up within the company, the dancer can be engaged there as a member.”

This certainly looks good on a CV. However, Pastori denies that the Prix de Lausanne is ultimately a recruitment agency. “Its aim is above all to promote excellence.”

For his part, Botelho compares the Prix du Lausanne to a philanthropic organisation intended to provide financial support for talent-rich but cash-poor artists.

Pastori stresses, however, that “charity is not on the menu”. “You can’t compare what happens here with the other competitions held in Tokyo, New York or Moscow where candidates get a gold or silver medal,” he said.

“Lausanne is not a place of athletic performance with a small fortune as a reward. I repeat: the winner here is the person with the greatest development potential.”

 

Europe vs the rest

But is this potential lacking in European candidates, whose numbers continue to dwindle in the face of competition from Asia or Latin America, with Brazilians at the fore?

Pastori believes it’s not potential that’s lacking in Europe but motivation. “Youngsters who live in rich countries have 1,001 distractions. This makes it hard to concentrate on a demanding discipline such as dance, which requires a fighting spirit,” he said.

“Young Asians on the other hand are fighters – without doubt as a result of living conditions which are harsher than ours. Add to that the fact that in China and Japan there are significantly fewer dance schools and companies than in Europe.”

It’s therefore not surprising, he adds, that young dancers from those countries try their luck here.

“A French dancer, for example, is spoilt for choice: Marseille, Lyons and Paris have excellent training centres.”

Botelho says the presence of Brazilian candidates in the Prix de Lausanne is in step with the economic boom in Brazil. “I left my country about 30 years ago. But I often visit on tour and see the giant step forward that has been made on an artistic level. Dance, for example, today benefits from state support, whereas previously it didn’t receive any sort of financial aid.”

Prix de Lausanne mission statement

The Prix de Lausanne is open to young dancers of all nationalities aged 15 to 18 who are not yet professionals. Its mission is:

To reveal the potential of exceptionally talented young dancers (ages 15 to 18) from around the globe by having them perform before a jury of world-renowned dance personalities.

To open the doors to the world’s most prestigious international schools and companies by providing top finishers with scholarships.

To promote their scholastic education (a dancer’s career is short-lived: from about age 18 to 38) by ensuring that they earn a high school diploma which will facilitate their career transition.

To preserve their health by applying a strict health policy: eating habits and body mass index are scrutinised before the competition.

(Source: Prix de Lausanne)

© 2013 swissinfo.ch

Broadway World Dance News
February 8, 2013

Joel-Woellner, Prix de Lausanne 2013Houston Ballet II Dancer Joel Woellner was awarded two prizes at the 41st Prix de Lausanne Dance Competition, the prestigious international contest held annually in Lausanne, Switzerland between January 27 and February 2, 2013. Mr. Woellner placed sixth overall out of 78 international contestants and won the Contemporary Dance Prize. Mr. Woellner was the only student from an American ballet school to be awarded a prize.

Eighteen-year-old Joel Woellner was prepared by — and accompanied to the competition in Switzerland by — Houston Ballet II Ballet Master Claudio Munoz and Houston Ballet’s Academy Director Shelly Power.

The Prix de Lausanne International Ballet Competition is open to young dancers ages 15 – 18 who are not yet professionals. The jury is composed of nine internationally renowned dance personalities, representing different countries and a broad palette of ballet styles. Young dancers from around the world send a video to Lausanne. Over 250 candidates submitted DVD’s initially. The Artistic Committee selects candidates to take part in the competition. During the week in Lausanne, candidates are judged both during a dance class and individually on stage. Twenty competitors progress to the final round, a live performance attended by key figures from the ballet world. Between 6 and 8 young dancers receive a scholarship.

Since 2009, Houston Ballet’s Academy has had five academy students win prizes at the prestigious international ballet competition the Prix de Lausanne, with one student winning the overall competition in 2010.

This year, Houston Ballet II, Houston Ballet’s Second Company of young dancers, made their first appearance in Switzerland, performing Stanton Welch’s neoclassical work, A Dance in the Garden of Mirth, at the Théâtre de Beaulieu in Lausanne, Switzerland as part of the climax of the prestigious 41st annual Prix de Lausanne International Ballet Competition and to follow were the awards ceremony. The performance was televised in Switzerland and viewers could also watch via live stream broadcast across the world.

Shelly Power, Academy Director commented, “This competition is different from others because students are seen not only on stage in their variation performances but also in daily classes in both ballet and contemporary. Coaching is another area the jury observes and evaluates how a student might grow as a professional. Joel did an amazing job as noted by the judges in all areas but especially in coaching as he demonstrated his ability to adapt to a variety of styles and repertoire which is imperative for a long and diverse career.”

A native of Sydney, Australia, Mr. Woellner is studying full time at the Houston Ballet Academy in Houston, Texas U.S.A. and is member of Houston Ballet II. He received a full scholarship with Houston Ballet as a result of his participation in the Finals of Youth America Grand Prix, 2011 New York. Joel has qualified for the semi-finals of the Prix de Lausanne in both 2012 and 2013. He has competed in many ballet competitions and eisteddfods, Welsh festivals of literature, music, and performance.

Some of his achievements include: 2011 Alana Haines Australasian Awards – 1st Runner-up B group. 2010 Finalist Senior Ballet Scholarship Sydney Eisteddfod. He will perform as part of Houston Ballet’s Academy Spring Showcase at Wortham Theater Center April 26-27, 2013. Tickets may be purchased by calling 713 227 2787 or by visiting www.houstonballet.org.

For more information on the Prix de Lausanne, log on to the Prix de Lausanne’s web site:
www.prixdelausanne.org.

Copyright 2013 Wisdom Digital Media

By Ashlee Kieler
The Urbandale Patch
December 5, 2012

Adrian Oldenburger, 14, 2011 Credit LeAnn OldenburgerDes Moines, Iowa. USA – [Step aside] Shawn Johnson, Gabby Douglas, and Lolo Jones. Adrian Oldenburger could be the next Iowan to add his name to a long list of local world champion athletes. Adrian, 15, began dancing at the age of four and now spends nearly 30 hours a week perfecting his dance at Urbandale’s Capital City Dance Center.

And that work is paying off. Adrian was recently invited to attend the 41st Annual Prix De Lausanne in Lausanne, Switzerland, early next year.

The international competition is often referred to as “the Olympics of the dance world.”

“It’s looked at as something amazing,” said Adrian, who’s from Altoona. “People just don’t go.” And he’s right, many dancers don’t make the cut. The showcase only selected 84 dancers from around the world – 10 from the United States.

“I really didn’t think I was going to go,” Adrian recalled of the application process. “When I shot the video I had a broken back. I sent it in and two days later I was still looking at it – it’s not good enough.”

When the letter came in November, it was a shock.

“The acceptance letter started out ‘Thank you for applying’, then farther down it said I was selected,” he said. “It took a couple days to process.”

Adrian is no stranger to honors in ballet. In 2011, he received a scholarship to study at the School of American Ballet in New York for the summer. Last summer, he was chosen to attend the Houston Ballet Ben Stevenson’s Academy.

Adrian Oldenburger 2012Adrian’s goal for the showcase is to impress teachers from the Royal Ballet in London. “It’s not all about the competition and winning,” he said. “It’s about getting to go and be seen – about the next crop of ballet stars, to get into a school.”

Adrian will have to perform a contemporary and a ballet piece for the showcase. But he’ll also have to get used to a new stage with the help of other trained dancers. “They use a raked stage – it’s sloped,” he said. “I hope to adjust to it.”

The great honor to perform at Prix De Lausanne comes with a price. Adrian, his family and friends are trying to raise enough money to send Adrian’s father, Greg, and teacher Emery Uyehara on the trip.

“I do need help. I’ll do whatever I can to get there,” he said of mowing lawns, shoveling snow and other tasks to raise the money. A fundraiser is also being held at Capital City Dance Center on Dec. 15 [open to CCDC students and friends]

One local business, Discover Chiropractic, has also donated to the cause. You can donate by visiting Adrian’s website.

“I’m really excited,” Adrian said of the opportunity. “I’m kind of nervous about getting all the pieces ready.”

While Adrian is looking forward to Switzerland, he’s also preparing for his role as the prince in this weekend’s “Nutcracker” production at Stephens Auditorium in Ames.

Copyright © 2012 Patch

Related Article: Dancing to the top

By Nikita Vaz
Latrobe Valley Express
January 23, 2012

Australia Day will mark the beginning of a journey to international shores for Latrobe Valley ballerino Calvin Richardson.

Legs perfectly crossed and [ballet] shoes at hand, Calvin spoke to The Express about being the only male performer to represent Australia at the Prix de Lausanne in Switzerland.

The weight of competing with 79 other young professional dancers, at what has been heralded as one of the world’s biggest ballet competitions, hasn’t affected the 17 year-old, yet. “I still can’t really believe it; it doesn’t feel like it’s actually happening,” Calvin said. “I don’t think it will really sink in until I get there, I suppose.”

Calvin’s talent for the performing arts comes as no surprise, as the Richardson family boasts a long line of dancers, artists and an aunty who’s “definitely the dramatic driving force in the family”.

“I’ve been dancing since I was five; my sisters danced and I was dragged along to their classes,” he said. “But I didn’t really like (ballet) until 2009 when I got into the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School.  “I enjoyed tap dancing and jazz, that is what I was passionate about, but once I got into school, everything just opened up from there.”

Calvin will make his debut performance on the international stage along with young international dance aspirants across the globe.

The Prix de Lausanne will not only give the young ballerino his first taste at performing internationally, but could possibly open the door to scholarships or an apprenticeship. “The whole aim of the competition is to help young people who want to go into it as a career and give them opportunities,” Calvin said. “It’s an internationally acclaimed competition so there are major companies who come and offer scholarships.”

So does the added pressure of trying to catch the eye of some of the industry’s bigwigs add to the pressure? “When I’m backstage, the nerves do build up but when your own stage just doing what you love, it’s not a big deal at all,” he said.

“I’ll admit I’m never going to be perfect, but just getting the chance to perform after all the work you put in, is a pretty big achievement in itself.”

Copyright © 2012. Fairfax Media

A student of Lauridsen Ballet Centre and South Bay Ballet senior company member, John-Paul Simoens moves on to perform before a jury of world-renowned dance personalities at the famous Prix de Lausanne competition January 29 to February 4, 2012.

Torrance, CA, November 10, 2011 –(PR.com)– John-Paul Simoens, 17, a student of Lauridsen Ballet Centre and South Bay Ballet company member, was selected to compete in the Prix de Lausanne 2012. Simoens was notified November 1 by the Prix’s Artistic Committee of his candidacy. He is one of 80 young dancers, representing 19 different nationalities that will move on to the next stage of the competition, which will take place in Lausanne, Switzerland from Saturday, January 29 to Sunday, February 4, 2012.

Now in its 40th year the Prix de Lausanne is an international competition for young dancers of all nationalities aged 15 to 18 who are not yet professionals. For this year’s competition, 226 candidates (168 girls and 58 boys), representing 30 different nationalities, applied to participate in the qualifying round by video that took place this past October 29 and 30. Of the 32 male candidates selected worldwide for the next level of competition Simoens is the only male of US nationality attending.

Simoens started his dance education at the age of seven training exclusively with Diane Lauridsen, founder of Lauridsen Ballet Centre in Torrance, California and artistic director of South Bay Ballet. In addition to the year-round curriculum provided by Lauridsen, Simoens has been invited to attend summer training programs here in the United States and abroad, including American Ballet Theatre New York Young Dancers Program, two summers at The Royal Ballet School Summer Intensive in London, Houston Ballet’s Summer Intensive, and the International Ballet Competition, all of which he attended on full scholarship. This past summer, Simoens attended the American Ballet Theatre’s Summer Intensive in New York also on full scholarship.

A senior company member of South Bay Ballet, Simoens has danced a range of corps, soloist and principal roles through the years including most recently Bluebird in Sleeping Beauty and Franz in Coppélia. He is currently in company rehearsals dancing the lead role of the Prince in South Bay Ballet’s Nutcracker to be performed December 16, 17 and 18 at the Marsee Auditorium in Torrance.

Simoens is a student of the California Virtual Academies High School placing consistently on the Dean’s Honor List.

About Prix de Lausanne
Created in 1973, the a Prix de Lausanne is an annual international competition for young dancers aged 15 to 18. Its gol is to discover, promote and support the world’s finest young talents. Over 60 of the world’s most prestigious dance schools and companies, such as the Royal Ballet School of London, the School of American Ballet in New York, and the Béjart Ballet Lausanne are associated with the Prix de Lausanne and support its activities.

One of a kind, the Prix de Lausanne represents an exceptional platform for discovering youthful talents and is open to dance professionals who can observe and establish contacts with candidates, thereby transforming Lausanne into the world’s capital for young dancers during the month of January. www.prixdelausanne.org

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