Neoclassical ballet

Jillian Vanstone retires from The National Ballet of Canada after 22 years

Barry Hughson, Executive Director of The National Ballet of Canada, today announced that Principal Dancer Jillian Vanstone will retire in 2022 after an incredible 22-year career with the company. Ms. Vanstone will appear in the After the Rain company premiere of Christophe Wheeldon, acquired especially for its farewell performances, from March 23 to 27, 2022.

“Watching Jillian’s growth as an artist over the past 22 years has been a real pleasure,” said Karen Kain, artistic director emeritus. “Effervescent stage presence, technical mastery and fine characterization are her hallmarks. A wonderfully versatile dancer, Jillian brings joy and finesse to every role she performs. couldn’t think of a more fitting ballet than Christophe WheeldonBorn in Nanaimo, British Columbia, Ms. Vanstone trained at the Kirkwood Academy of the Performing Arts and Canada’s National Ballet School. She joined The National Ballet of Canada in 1999 and was promoted to Principal Dancer in 2011 after making her debut as Alice in the North American premiere of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Christophe Wheeldon. The Globe and Mail praised “Vanstone is an absolute charmer… His Alice is a fiery girl who fears nothing and embarks on every new adventure with gusto.”“I knew I wanted to say goodbye with a work by Christophe Wheeldon because dancing to his work and being with him in the studio has been some of the best moments of my career. I chose After the Rain because it’s a piece I’ve always wanted to dance. It’s visually beautiful and has a depth of emotion that will be very meaningful to me in the final performances of my career,” Ms Vanstone said. “I’m very grateful for the career I’ve had. There were some truly amazing experiences and people that made my time with the company extra special. I’m leaving with great memories and wonderful friends.”

A versatile performer, Ms. Vanstone excels in both classical roles and contemporary neo-classical pieces. Some of Ms. Vanstone’s most memorable performances include Princess Aurora in Rudolf Nureyevof Sleeping Beauty, the Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker and the title roles in Giselle and Manon. Her contemporary repertoire includes roles such as Stella in the Canadian premiere of John Neumeier’s A Streetcar Named Desire, Perdita in the North American premiere of Mr. Wheeldon’s The Winter’s Tale and Spring in James Kudelka’s The Four Seasons. Ms. Vanstone also has an extensive Balanchine repertoire, performing lead roles in Jewels, Symphony in C, Apollo and Theme and Variations, among others.

Ms. Vanstone will next perform on stage during the fall season at George Balanchine‘s Serenade, presented in a mixed program with crystal pitAtlas of Angels, November 11 – 27, 2021.