The Genée International Ballet Competition, fondly known as ‘The Genée’ is the RAD’s flagship annual event and is named after Dame Adeline Genée DBE, co-founder of the Association of Operatic Dancing, as the RAD was then known.
The competition originated quite humbly in 1931 as the ‘Adeline Genée Gold Medal’ and was introduced as an additional incentive for candidates who had passed the Solo Seal examination. Felicity Garratt was the first recipient of this award with a silver medal and then a bronze medal added in 1934 and 1956 respectively, and both gold and silver medals introduced for male dancers in 1938.
The award continued to progress and develop into a competition format and remarkably it has taken place almost every year since 1931, even during the Second World War. In 2002, however Luke Rittner, Chief Executive, took the landmark decision to hold the competition outside London in order to embrace its international spirit. The competition has since been held in Sydney, Australia; Birmingham; Athens, Greece; Hong Kong; Toronto, Canada; Singapore and Cape Town, South Africa.
The Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) reveals the medallists of the prestigious Genée International Ballet Competition 2017 held at Teatro Camões in Lisbon on 16 September 2017.
The competition attracted 52 of the world’s finest young dancers from 14 countries, aged between 15 to 19 years old and culminated in a competitive final that was judged by former Director of The Royal Ballet Dame Monica Mason, former Artistic Director of the Royal Academy of Dance Lynn Wallis OBE and CEO/Artistic Director of Scottish Ballet Christopher Hampson.
The prestigious gold medal was awarded to British dancer Harris Beattie, aged 18 trained by Karen Berry, Danscentre and Resmi Malko, Central School of Ballet. Silver medals were awarded to Australian dancers Lucy Christodoulou, aged 17 trained by Annette Roselli, Annette Roselli Dance Academy, and Matthew Maxwell, aged 15 also trained by Annette Roselli, Annette Roselli Dance Academy. British dancer Ryan Felix aged 17 trained by Sarah Dickinson, Elmhurst Ballet School and Japanese dancer Lin Fujimoto aged 18, trained by Denise Whiteman, Elmhurst Ballet School were awarded bronze medals.
Harris Beattie was also presented with the Margot Fonteyn Audience Choice Award and the Choreographic Award for his Dancer’s Own variation Torn, which he choreographed with his teacher Karen Berry. The judges felt that his choreography demonstrated the highest standard of choreography within the Dancer’s Own category.
Harris Beattie is the first dancer to win all three awards: gold medal, Audience Choice Award and the Choreographic Award.
Now in its 86th year, the Genée International Ballet Competition is named after RAD's first president Dame Adeline Genée and is renowned for launching the professional careers of young dancers. Past medallists have gone on to join celebrated companies around the world including: The Australian Ballet, The Mariinsky Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, The National Ballet of Canada, English National Ballet and The Royal Ballet.
The Genée provides pre-professional dancers the opportunity to receive world-class coaching with renowned choreographers and teachers. This year’s Commissioned Choreographer, Lisbon-native César Augusto Moniz, created choreography specifically for the Genée which was revealed for the first time in the competition final.
As the 2017 competition comes to close, the international ballet community looks forward to the next Genée International Ballet Competition in 2018 which the RAD is pleased to announce will take place in Hong Kong.
For more information, visit: www.rad.org.uk/achieve/the-genee/genee-2017
Following the 80th anniversary of the RAD in Australia, Sydney hosted the 2016 Genée International Ballet Competition.
The Semi-finals were held at The Concourse in Chatswood from 7–9 December, with the Final taking place at The Joan Sutherland Theatre, Sydney Opera House, on 11 December.
The decision to return to Sydney was made in recognition of Australia’s long commitment to the Genée, where it has produced outstanding candidates every year for the past decade, including the 2015 silver medal winner Lania Atkins, and bronze medal winner Makensie Henson.
For more information, visit: www.rad.org.uk/genee2016