BalletBoyz Case Study - Harlequin chat to Michael Nunn and William Trevitt

21st October 2022

Harlequin has worked with Michael Nunn and William Trevitt, founders of the BalletBoyz, on a number of projects providing Harlequin floors for their studios, tours and film productions.

Founded in 2000, BalletBoyz established itself as one of the most original and innovative forces in modern dance. Classes, workshops and residencies are delivered from the BalletBoyz studios, working with a diverse range of participants across a variety of dance disciplines.

The BalletBoyz have two studios in Kingston Upon Thames with Harlequin Activity sprung floor and Harlequin Cascade vinyl floor. The BalletBoyz rehearse for their tours there as well as hosting workshops including Parkinson’s CAN Dance.

When speaking to Harlequin, Michael said: “When we started our own company in 2000 and then found our own studio space 10 years ago, we asked Harlequin if they could come and fit permanent floors and they are still here today and in remarkable condition. We’ve shot many films in our studios, we’ve had ballet classes, tap dancing, and it still looks brand new!”

When touring, the BalletBoyz have also danced on Harlequin Studio and Harlequin Reversible vinyl floors.

This year they returned to the stage with their Deluxe tour. The show features work by choreographer Xie Xin, composer Jiang Shaofeng, Punchdrunk’s Maxine Doyle and jazz musician and composer Cassie Kinoshi.

Credit: George Piper

In 2019 Michael and William directed the film Romeo and Juliet: Beyond Words where all performers, featuring dancers from the Royal Ballet, danced on printed Harlequin Cascade vinyl floors laid over Harlequin Liberty sprung floor panels.

Michael said “We took the Royal Ballet to Budapest to record it in a real environment, outdoors, in a mock Verona and we used Harlequin floors for all of that.”

William added: “We had a limited time to make the film so we knew the most important thing was that the dancers had no questions or concerns about the floor surface. If there was anything wrong with it then that would have entirely ruined the schedule so we had exactly what they were used to dancing on at the Royal Opera House. It was just printed by Harlequin so we could reassure them it would be entirely what they are used to and there would be no surprises.”

BalletBoyz has won numerous awards and nominations including an Olivier Award, National Dance Awards, an International Emmy and The Golden Prague and Rose d’Or Awards twice. In 2013 BalletBoyz won Best Independent Company in the National Dance Awards, Best Modern Choreography for Russell Maliphant’s Fallen, while Michael Hulls won the 2014 Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dance for his work with BalletBoyz. In 2016, the company’s first feature film was broadcast: Young Men won The Golden Prague Arts Award (2017) and the Rose d’Or in the Arts Category. Michael and William are Associate Artists at Sadler’s Wells and were made OBEs in 2012.