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Karen Kain Promotes Nine Dancers for the 2021/22 Season
June 22, 2021

“This has been a year unlike any other with immense challenges for our company,” said Artistic Director Karen Kain, “but I take great pride in the spirit with which our dancers have persevered and what we have accomplished despite all of the obstacles. It is my great pleasure to recognize the contribution of these exceptional artists with promotions for the 2021/22 season.”

Promotions1

Koto Ishihara, Siphesihle November, Tina Pereira and Ben Rudisin. Photos by Karolina Kuras.

Koto Ishihara to Principal Dancer

Koto Ishihara joined The National Ballet of Canada as a First Soloist in 2019. Prior to this, she danced with San Francisco Ballet as a Soloist. With the National Ballet, Ms. Ishihara made her debut as the Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker and as the Second Fairy in The Sleeping Beauty. With her virtuosity and impeccable technique, she shone in featured roles in Chaconne, Etudes, Piano Concerto #1 and Chroma. Ms. Ishihara was featured in the commissioned dance film of Tarantella, part of Spotlight Series and the company’s virtual season.

Siphesihle November to Principal Dancer

Siphesihle November joined The National Ballet of Canada as a member of the Corps de Ballet in 2017 and became a First Soloist in 2020. The charismatic dancer has been hailed as a “technical wizard” (Ludwig Van.com) and has thrilled audiences in such roles as Lewis Carroll/White Rabbit in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Puck in The Dream, a featured role in Angels’ Atlas as well as Bluebird in The Sleeping Beauty. Dance Magazine wrote of his Bluebird debut, “Siphesihle November quickly established himself as the rightful heir to one of the most challenging male parts in the classical repertoire.” Mr. November returned to the role of Bluebird opposite Ms. Pereira in The Sleeping Beauty Variations dance film created for Spotlight Series. In 2019, Mr. November won The International Competition for The Erik Bruhn Prize.

Tina Pereira to Principal Dancer

Tina Pereira has been a First Soloist since 2009. She joined The National Ballet of Canada in 2001, briefly danced with Het Nationale Ballet from 2004 to 2006 and re-joined the company in 2006. With her “gorgeous line” (Danceview Times) and “sky-high extensions” (National Post), Ms. Pereira has stood out in such roles as Valencienne in The Merry Widow, Lise in La Fille mal gardée, Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker, Spring in The Four Seasons and the title role in Carmen. Ms. Pereira won The International Competition for The Erik Bruhn Prize in 2007.

Ben Rudisin to Principal Dancer

Ben Rudisin joined The National Ballet of Canada as an RBC Apprentice in 2013 and was promoted to First Soloist in 2019. He has excelled in such dramatic roles as Rothbart in Swan Lake, Prince Gremin in Onegin, Paris in Romeo and Juliet, the male lead in Being and Nothingness and displayed his versatility as the tap-dancing Mad Hatter in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. In Nijinksy, "Ben Rudisin was a haughty, vaguely menacing Diaghilev and showcased impressive strength touched with sensuality" (ArtsFile.ca). Mr. Rudisin was featured in the world premiere of Soul by Jera Wolfe, one of the commissioned new works of Spotlight Series.

Promotions2

Jeannine Haller and Calley Skalnik. Photos by Karolina Kuras.

Jeannine Haller to First Soloist

Jeannine Haller joined The National Ballet of Canada as an RBC Apprentice in 2015 and became a Second Soloist in 2019. With her “crisp energy and lightness” (The Globe and Mail), Ms. Haller’s repertoire includes the Second Fairy in The Sleeping Beauty and Polyhymnia in Apollo. She recently appeared in the Spotlight Series commissioned dance film of Apollo. In 2019, she represented the National Ballet in The International Competition for The Erik Bruhn Prize and was awarded the RBC Apprentice Award in 2016.

Calley Skalnik to First Soloist

Calley Skalnik joined The National Ballet of Canada as an RBC Apprentice in 2014 and was promoted to Second Soloist in 2019. Ms. Skalnik’s “athletic spirit with gorgeous buoyancy and grace” (The Globe and Mail) has shone in such roles as Calliope in Apollo, Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker, Russian Princess in Swan Lake, and Kitty in the North American premiere of Anna Karenina. She recently appeared in the Spotlight Series commissioned dance film of Apollo. In 2016, Ms. Skalnik represented the National Ballet in The International Competition for The Erik Bruhn Prize.

Promotion3

Brenna Flaherty, Noah Parets and Genevieve Penn Nabity. Photos by Karolina Kuras.

Brenna Flaherty to Second Soloist

Brenna Flaherty joined The National Ballet of Canada as an RBC Apprentice in 2016 and in 2018, became a member of the Corps de Ballet. Ms. Flaherty’s repertoire includes Swan Lake, The Sleeping Beauty, Romeo and Juliet, Giselle, The Nutcracker, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Angels' Atlas.

Noah Parets to Second Soloist

Noah Parets joined The National Ballet of Canada as an RBC Apprentice in 2018 and became a member of the Corps de Ballet in 2020. His repertoire includes The Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Giselle, Anna Karenina, Marguerite and Armand, Etudes, Chroma, Angels’ Atlas and Orpheus Alive. Mr. Parets was awarded the RBC Emerging Artist Award in 2019.

Genevieve Penn Nabity to Second Soloist

Genevieve Penn Nabity joined The National Ballet of Canada in 2018 as an RBC Apprentice and became a member of the Corps de Ballet in 2019. She has danced in such ballets as The Sleeping Beauty, Romeo and Juliet, Giselle, The Nutcracker, The Dream, Etudes, Angels’ Atlas and Orpheus Alive. Ms. Penn Nabity was awarded the RBC Emerging Artist Award in 2019.

PatronAward

Alexander Skinner and Selene Guerrero-Trujillo. Photos by Karolina Kuras.

Patron Award of Merit

Congratulations to Selene Guerrero-Trujillo and Alexander Skinner who have been awarded the Patron Award of Merit by the Patrons’ Council Committee of The National Ballet of Canada. This season, because not all eligible dancers have been given the same performance opportunities, the award criteria has been amended to honor two dancers from the Corps de Ballet who went above and beyond in their overall participation. The Patrons' Council Committee also decided to increase the amount allocated to each of the two dancers to $1,500.

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