Xiao Nan Yu

Xiao Nan Yu 2013-14 Photo Credits

Xiao Nan Yu. Photo by Aleksandar Antonijevic.

  • (Thumbnail) Xiao Nan Yu - head shot 2011
    Xiao Nan Yu - head shot 2011

    Xiao Nan Yu. Photo by Aleksandar Antonijevic.

  • (Thumbnail) Xiao Nan Yu 2012/13
    Xiao Nan Yu 2012/13

    Xiao Nan Yu. Photo by Aleksandar Antonijevic.

  • (Thumbnail) Xiao Nan Yu in Onegin.
    Xiao Nan Yu in Onegin.

    Xiao Nan Yu in Onegin. Photo by Aleksandar Antonijevic.

  • (Thumbnail) Xiao Nan Yu - Giselle
    Xiao Nan Yu - Giselle

    Xiao Nan Yu with Artists of the Ballet in Giselle. Photo by David Cooper. 

  • (Thumbnail) Xiao Nan Yu in Swan Lake
    Xiao Nan Yu in Swan Lake

    Xiao Nan Yu in Swan Lake. Photo by Aleksandar Antonijevic.

  • (Thumbnail) Xiao Nan Yu in Don Quixote
    Xiao Nan Yu in Don Quixote

    Xiao Nan Yu in Don Quixote. Photo by Cylla von Tiedemann. 

  • (Thumbnail) Xiao Nan Yu in Serenade
    Xiao Nan Yu in Serenade

    Xiao Nan Yu with Artists of the Ballet in Serenade. Photo by Cylla von Tiedemann. 

  • (Thumbnail) Xiao Nan Yu in Song of the Earth
    Xiao Nan Yu in Song of the Earth

    Xiao Nan Yu with Artists of the Ballet in Song of the Earth. Photo by Bruce Zinger. 

  • (Thumbnail) Xiao Nan Yu with Artists of the Ballet in The Sleeping Beauty
    Xiao Nan Yu with Artists of the Ballet in The Sleeping Beauty

    Xiao Nan Yu with Artists of the Ballet in The Sleeping Beauty. Photo by Cylla von Tiedemann. 

  • (Thumbnail) Xiao Nan Yu backstage of Jewels
    Xiao Nan Yu backstage of Jewels

    Xiao Nan Yu backstage during a performance of Jewels. Photo by Bruce Zinger. 

  • (Thumbnail) Xiao Nan Yu in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
    Xiao Nan Yu in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

    Xiao Nan Yu and Artists of the Ballet in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Photo by Bruce Zinger. 

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    Xiao Nan Yu Interview

Biography

Born in Dalian, China, Xiao Nan Yu trained at the Shen Yang School of Dance, the Beijing Dance Academy in China and Canada’s National Ballet School. She joined The National Ballet of Canada in 1996 and has been a Principal Dancer since 2001.  

Ms. Yu has danced many of the classical and contemporary works in the company’s repertoire including Swan Lake, Giselle, Onegin, Romeo and Juliet, The Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker, Cinderella, The Merry Widow, The Firebird, Madame Butterfly, Song of the Earth, Carmen, Opus 19/The Dreamer, Etudes, and La Bayadère. She has an extensive George Balanchine repertoire, including Apollo, Serenade, Theme and Variations, The Four Temperaments, Symphony in C and Diamonds and Rubies from Jewels. Ms. Yu has created roles in works by James Kudelka, Aszure Barton, Matjash Mrozewski, Jean-Pierre Perreault and Dominique Dumais. Recently, Ms. Yu made her debut in the role of the Queen of Hearts in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Christopher Wheeldon and danced the role of Eleonora in the Canadian premiere of Nijinsky by John Neumeier. 

Ms. Yu was awarded the Gold Medal at the Tao Lee Cup Ballet Competition in China and the Silver Medal at the All Japan International Ballet Competition. In 2009, Ms. Yu won the Outstanding Profile – Arts, and Best of the Best Awards at the Mandarin Profile Awards in Toronto. In 2002, she was the winner of the Chinese Cultural Centre of Greater Toronto’s 21st Century Youth of the Year Award. 

Quotes 

Swan Lake 
“Yu gave one of the best Odette/Odile performances I have ever seen. A great classicist, every move she takes is precise in placement and execution... In her magnificent interpretation of this notoriously difficult dual role, her different performances of Odette and Odile are outstanding.” The Globe and Mail, 2010 

Onegin  
“a perfect Tatiana… [Yu] was simply exquisite, as both the innocent and the mature Tatiana. Her profound grief at the end of the ballet, as she stands alone onstage, was palpable” The Globe and Mail, 2010 

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland 
“Xiao Nan Yu as Queen of Hearts, was about as bloodthirsty a monarch as you could conceive. She's a dancing Joan Crawford crossed with Gloria Swanson.”  Toronto Star, 2012