The Fonteyn 2023

20th November 2023

The Margot Fonteyn International Ballet Competition took place at the RAD global headquarters this year with the final at His Majesty’s Theatre in London. 

The Fonteyn is the RAD’s flagship annual event dedicated to rewarding standards of excellence in young ballet dancers internationally. The ballet competition was held last month from 21-29 October, providing an opportunity for dancers to work with world-renowned choreographers and professionals, as well as the chance to perform on an international stage.

The competitors rehearsed throughout the week in the RAD HQ studios with a Harlequin Activity sprung floor and Harlequin Cascade vinyl performance floor. The semi-finals took place in its 193-seat performance space, the Aud Jebsen Studio Theatre.

IMG 3494 | Professional Sprung & Vinyl Dance Floors | Harlequin Floors

Tim Arthur, RAD Chief Executive, said: “It’s a really special year for us with The Fonteyn because it’s the first live Fonteyn we’ve had since 2019 because of the pandemic. We’re also able to host it for the first time here in London and in our own headquarters.

“What’s really important for us is that anyone who comes to the headquarters, whether it’s the competitors of the Fonteyn or our students that we have throughout the year, that they have the best possible experience and the safest possible experience as well. There’s no better floors than Harlequin floors and so for us to know that we can provide the best possible equipment for any of our dancers is really important.” 

The final this year, at His Majesty’s Theatre in London, included a performance from the 79 candidates dancing on a Harlequin Liberty sprung floor and a Harlequin Cascade vinyl floor. The performance was a newly choreographed piece, Jeunesse, created by The Fonteyn’s guest choreographer, Valentino Zucchetti, First Soloist with The Royal Ballet.

Dame Darcey Bussell, President of the RAD, awarded a total of four medals to the deserving winners: Jakob Wheway Hughes (Gold), Lucia Moore (Silver), Zai Calliste (Bronze) and Ed Cooley (Bronze). Zai Calliste was also the recipient of the Dame Margot Fonteyn Audience Choice Award, and Alfie-Lee Hall took home the Dancer’s Own Choreographic Award.

Harlequin were proud to support The Fonteyn again this year. For more information about the Margot Fonteyn International Ballet Competition, click here.

Final image credits: The Fonteyn 2023 © Royal Academy of Dance. Photo by Martin Bell Photography