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Scottish Ballet is the national ballet company of Scotland and one of the four leading ballet companies of the United Kingdom, alongside the Royal Ballet, English National Ballet and Birmingham Royal Ballet. Founded in 1957, the company is based in Glasgow, the resident ballet company at the Glasgow Theatre Royal and from 2009 in their purpose-built ballet centre in Tramway Arts Centre, Glasgow.
Founded by Peter Darrell and Elizabeth West as the Western Theatre Ballet in Bristol in 1957, the company moved to Glasgow in 1969 and was renamed Scottish Theatre Ballet, changing to Scottish Ballet in 1974. A year later its home theatre became the Theatre Royal, Glasgow when Scottish Opera bought it and transformed it as the first national opera house in Scotland. The Company performs across Scotland, the UK and abroad, with strong classical technique at the root of all of its work. Its broad repertory includes new versions of the classics, seminal pieces from the 20th century modern ballet canon, signature pieces by living choreographers and new commissions. As a national company, Scottish Ballet performs at theatres in Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness and in smaller venues throughout Scotland. The company's long history of touring internationally includes visits to China, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Portugal, Ireland and the rest of the UK. Scottish Ballet's many recent awards include the 2004 TMA Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dance in recognition of its modernisation programme and dynamic performances. Scottish Ballet's current artistic director Christopher Hampson joined the company in 2012.
Its education initiatives and classes include work with people of all ages and abilities and its Associate Programme encourages young dancers to train for a career. As part of this commitment to broadening audiences, Scottish Ballet was the first dance company in the UK to offer live audio-description for the visually impaired; it maintains a programme of regular audio-described performances today.
The company has a broad repertoire, encompassing classical ballet, contemporary dance and new versions of classic full-length ballets. From the work of Kevin Walls to world premières by Stephen Petronio, Scottish Ballet's repertoire covers a wide range.
- Dangerous Liaisons (1985) by Richard Alston
- Apollo (1928) by George Balanchine
- Episodes (1959) by George Balanchine
- The Four Temperaments (1946, revised 1977) by George Balanchine
- Rubies (1967) by George Balanchine
- Five Rückert Songs (1978) by Peter Darrel
- White Man Sleeps (1988) by Siobhan Davies
- Suite From Artifact (1984, as Suite from Artifact 2004) by William Forsythe
- Twilight (1972) by Hans van Manen
- Two Pieces for HET (1997) by Hans van Manen
- Acrid Avid Jam (2001) by Ashley Page
- Cheating, Lying, Stealing (1998) by Ashley Page
- Cinderella (2005) by Ashley Page
- Nightswimming into day (2004) by Ashley Page
- The Nutcracker (2003) by Ashley Page
- The Pump Room (2005) by Ashley Page
- Refurbished Behaviour (1985, revised 2005) by Ashley Page
- Soft Underbelly (1999) by Ashley Page
- Walking In The Heat (1990) by Ashley Page
- 32 Cryptograms (1996) by Ashley Page
- MiddleSexGorge (1990) by Stephen Petronio
- Agon (1957) by George Balanchine
- Afternoon of a Faun (1953) by Jerome Robbins
- In Light and Shadow (2000) by Krzysztof Pastor
- Room of Cooks (1997) by Ashley Page
- The Nutcracker – Diverts (2003) by Ashley Page
- Façade (1931/1935) by Frederick Ashton
- Sirocco (2006) by Diana Loosmore
- Othello (1971) by Peter Darrell
- The Sleeping Beauty (2007) by Ashley Page
- Ride The Beast (2007) by Stephen Petronio
- Fearful Symmetries (1994) by Ashley Page
- For M.G. – The Movie (1991) by Trisha Brown
- Chasing Ghosts (2007) by Diana Loosmore
- Romeo and Juliet (2008) by Krzysztof Pastor
- Traume (2008) by Gregory Dean
- Lull (2008) by Diana Loosmore
- Pennies from Heaven (2008) by Ashley Page
- Carmen (2009) by Richard Alston
- Workwithinwork (1998) by William Forsythe
- Petrushka (2009) by Ian Spink
- Scènes de Ballet (1947) by Frederick Ashton
- Still Life (2010) by Val Caniparoli
- From Where (2008) by Paul Liburd
- Alice (2011) by Ashley Page
- Song of the Earth (1965) by Kenneth MacMillan
- New Work (2011) by Jorma Elo
In 2009, Scottish Ballet moved into its purpose-built home at the Tramway complex in Glasgow, creating a production and presentation facility of a scale and artistic mix unrivalled in the UK. Designed by Malcolm Fraser Architects, the building features three full size dance studios, including the Peter Darrell Studio which is the largest dedicated dance rehearsal studio in Europe; a technical workshop; wardrobe facilities including shoe and costume stores, fitting rooms and dyeing rooms; a small practice studio; a dedicated Education Studio for classes and workshops; a fitness suite with Gyrotonic equipment; office space, and a social space and green room.
The gold roof has become a landmark of Glasgow's South Side, and the building has received awards including the Grand Prix and the Public Building awards at the Scottish Design Awards and a Silver Award in the Public Building category at the Roses Design Awards.
- "Scottish Ballet". Scottish Ballet. Retrieved 2012-10-22.
- Goodwin, Noël (1979). A Ballet for Scotland: the first ten years of the Scottish Ballet. Edinburgh: Canongate. ISBN 0-903937-88-3.
- Smith, Graeme (2008). The Theatre Royal: Entertaining a Nation. Glasgow: Glasgow Publications. ISBN 978-0-9559420-0-6.