Following 10 years of incredible creativity and leadership, today we announce that Tamara Rojo CBE, will be stepping down as Artistic Director of English National Ballet in late 2022 to take up the role of Artistic Director at San Francisco Ballet.
Since Tamara’s appointment in 2012, she has gained acclaim for artistic excellence and creativity by introducing ground-breaking works into the Company’s repertoire, whilst continuing to celebrate the tradition of great classical ballet and attracting world-class talent. She has evolved the artform with bold commissions from both established and emerging creatives, including more than 40 works choreographed by women across English National Ballet’s programming.
Tamara led the Company into a new chapter in 2019, by moving it into the RIBA award-winning Mulryan Centre for Dance, a purpose-built, state-of-the-art new home in east London. Here, Tamara’s ambition to connect with more people and demystify the artform came to the fore, with a renewed commitment to public access, community engagement and digital innovation. Her investment in the future of ballet continued, with the introduction of forward-focused programmes including internal dancer development initiative, Dance Leaders of the Future, and Ballet Futures, a children’s training programme which aims to diversify the talent pipeline.
Throughout the immense challenges of the last two years, Tamara has been a dedicated advocate, not just for English National Ballet but for the wider creative industries, making the case for the importance of the arts and demonstrating the strength, resilience, and collective determination within the industry to persevere and innovate.
Later this month, Tamara will make her choreographic and directorial debut with Raymonda, her first full-length ballet which English National Ballet will perform at the London Coliseum.
ENB will appoint an Artistic Advisory Panel to support the board in the search for a new Artistic Director and Tamara will remain in her post until late in the year to ensure a smooth transition.
Tamara Rojo said: “It has been an honour to have led this extraordinary company for the last 10 years. I am incredibly proud of all that we have achieved together, from the tremendous talent working within and alongside the Company, to creating and moving into the amazing new building we now call our home, to the off-stage communities we have established with our education and engagement work.
English National Ballet’s fundamental aim to bring world-class ballet to the widest possible audience has always resonated with me. It is the reason the Company has been a part of my life for so many years, from performing here as a dancer early in my career, to returning as Artistic Director in 2012. My admiration and support do not end here, I will remain invested in English National Ballet’s continued success in the years to come.
It has been a privilege to be the custodian of English National Ballet and as I prepare to hand over the reins, I am confident that this world-class company which is at the forefront of ballet’s growth and evolution with a much-deserved place on the international stage, will continue to flourish and thrive.”
English National Ballet’s Chair, Sir Roger Carr, said:
“Tamara is a remarkable person whose vision, intellect and energy has propelled English National Ballet to new heights. The Company has outstanding dancers, a fine building with state-of-the-art facilities and a repertoire strengthened by significant new works. Collectively, these assets will provide a strong foundation on which the new Artistic Director can build the next exciting chapter in the life of this remarkable Company.
After ten years at the helm, the legacy that Tamara leaves will be long lasting and it is hoped that in her new position in San Francisco she will have the opportunity to capitalise on past achievements and build a bridge between these two great ballet companies for joint endeavours to our mutual benefit. I speak on behalf of us all at the English National Ballet when I offer my sincere thanks and wish Tamara every success in the future.”