Elmhurst Ballet School Series Part 1: Robert Parker, Artistic Director

Elmhurst Ballet School Artistic Director Robert Parker by Richard Battye

Elmhurst Ballet School Artistic Director Robert Parker, is an award winning former principal dancer with the Birmingham Royal Ballet.

Elmhurst is the oldest and one of the most successful ballet schools not just in the UK, but across the world. Elmhurst schools young ballet students to succeed in the professional dance world, providing high quality, holistic vocational dance training.

Significantly, this renowned ballet school trained a quarter of this year’s finalists of the prestigious Genée International Ballet Competition.  One of their students, Hamish Scott, went on to win Bronze.

This is the first in our 3 part mini-podcast series on Elmhurst Ballet School, starting with Artistic Director Robert Parker, followed by dance graduates Hamish Scott and Lydia Holt.

Elmhurst Ballet School Artistic Director, Robert Parker, Photo by Andy Ross
Elmhurst Ballet School Artistic Director, Robert Parker, Photo by Andy Ross

Together they provide a unique insight into the school, the artistic and academic vision, what it’s like as a student, and how the school prepares young dancers for their first step into professional dance life.

Robert shares his own dance journey from training with the Royal Ballet School before joining Birmingham Royal Ballet, under the directorship of the incredible Sir Peter Wright where he rose quickly to principal dancer.

After almost 10 years with Birmingham Royal Ballet, Robert took a sabbatical where he learned to fly! He also obtained a Master’s degree in Philosophy in Education, and attained RAD Professional Dancers’ Teaching Diploma with distinction.

Robert became Artistic Director of Elmhurst almost 5 years ago, and he talks about his vision for the school, new programmes he’s introduced and the key elements of ballet training for the next generation of ballet dancers.

Listen to Robert’s advice for students seeking a position at Elmhurst Ballet School.

Elmhurst Ballet School Summer Show – 7 to 14 July 2017

You can also get tickets to Elmhurst Ballet School’s Summer Show and see the fabulous graduate students performing in David Bintley CBE, Director of Birmingham Royal Ballet‘s first choreographic work for the school. Entitled Comic Cuts, the 15 minute work in five sections has witty bursts of entertainment will showcase the personalities of each dancer.

David Bintley said:I have very much enjoyed returning to Elmhurst to choreograph my new piece for the summer show. Many of Birmingham Royal Ballet’s current dancers trained at the school, and former dancers have gone on to teach there, so it is an incredibly important part of the Company. The Upper School students have impressed me with their professionalism, energy and enthusiasm. Many of them will be graduating from the school this summer, and I wish them all the best for the future.

The shows take place at Elmhurst’s studio theatre in the school’s Birmingham home from Friday 7 to 14 July 2017. Book Now!