On pointe: Singapore to hold its first International Ballet Grand Prix
In a bid to provide a space for young ballet dancers to thrive and grow, non-profit organisation Singapore Dance Alliance, the National Arts Council (NAC) and Singapore Dance Theatre (SDT) have come together to stage Singapore’s first ever International ballet competition, International Ballet Grand Prix Singapore (IBGPS).
The International Ballet Grand Prix Singapore (IBGPS), which will run from June 12 to 16, is open to ballet dancers aged seven to 18.
The winners of this competition will dance their way to prestigious scholarships from different schools, including Australian Ballet School, National Theatre Ballet School and the Elmhurst Ballet School.
While participants for most ballet competitions are judged when they are on stage, the IBGPS competition uses an international-based judging system where dancers are also graded in a required technical class.
The IBGPS competition runs in Victoria Street from June 14 to 16. The technique class will be held at the Singapore Dance Theatre while the semi-finals and finals will take place at the Drama Centre Theatre in the National Library Building.
In addition to the competition, there will also be a workshop that will also be open to dancers not taking part in the competition so they can learn from renowned guest teachers. Instructors who will be attending the workshop include principal dancer at the Singapore Dance Theater, Chihiro Uchida, Artistic Director of the National Theatre Ballet School in Australia, Damian Smith and Artistic Director of the Singapore Dance Theatre, Janek Schergen.
There will be two workshops (ballet and contemporary) conducted each day. Held on 12 and 13 June 2019, these workshops provide an excellent platform for dancers to gain valuable exposure while expanding their knowledge about dance at the same time.
Aside from the competition and workshop, there will also be conferences to help dancers get to the next level of their career.
Covering a range of topics on dance education and dance as a career, this conference aims to connects students and their parents with leaders within these fields, providing them and the public with useful information, greater depth of understanding and an insider’s perspective on the dance industry. It will be held between 12 and 13 June 2019.
In a press conference with the media held yesterday (17 April), Singapore Dance Theatre’s artistic director Janek Schergen said that these workshops and conferences will provide a platform for students from different schools to interact. They will also help dancers and their parents to learn more about how they might choose a vocational school and pursue a dance career.
When asked about the ballet scene in Singapore, Schergen shared that more can be done: “Dedicated programmes for 11 to 13-year-old dancers don’t exist in Singapore. In the rest of the world, the training for dancers at the pre-professional level is more rigorous. This is lacking in national schools. However, he expressed hopes for these gaps to be filled through the annual
International Ballet Grand Prix Singapore (IBGPS).
Register and get more information here.