Jillian Vanstone

Principal Dancer

Jillian Vanstone View Gallery


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A native of Nanaimo, British Columbia, Jillian Vanstone trained at the Kirkwood Academy of the Performing Arts and Canada’s National Ballet School. She joined The National Ballet of Canada in 1999 and was promoted to Principal Dancer in 2011.

Jillian has danced the title role in the North American premiere of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Christopher Wheeldon, Stella in the Canadian premiere of A Streetcar Named Desire and principal roles in The Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker, Giselle, The Taming of the Shrew, Manon, Onegin, La Fille mal gardée, The Seagull, The Dream and the world premiere of Frame by Frame by Robert Lepage and Guillaume Côté. She has performed lead roles in Nijinsky, Jewels, The Four Seasons, Symphony in C and Theme and Variations as well as featured roles in Swan Lake, A Month in the Country, Apollo, Pinocchio, The Winter’s Tale, The Firebird, Les Sylphides, Etudes, Petite Mort, Paz de la Jolla and The Dreamers Ever Leave You. She has performed in company premieres by such choreographers as Alexei Ratmansky, John Neumeier, Kevin O’Day and Jerome Robbins.

“Vanstone deftly and compellingly negotiated the entire dramatic arc of Giselle.”
Dancing Times

In 2011, Jillian was the recipient of the Rolex Dancers First Award for her role as Alice in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

Jillian Vanstone is sponsored through Dancers First by George & Kathy Dembroski.

Quick Facts

Born: Nanaimo, British Columbia
Trained: Kirkwood Academy of the Performing Arts in Nanaimo, British Columbia and Canada’s National Ballet School
Joined: 1999
Principal Dancer since: 2011


Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
“Vanstone is an absolute charmer… Her Alice is a feisty girl who isn’t afraid of anything, and who throws herself into every new adventure with gusto.”
— The Globe and Mail

“[Jillian Vanstone] is thrilling, completely at ease. Her first-class technique makes way for liquid turns and daredevil leaps.”
— FjordReview.com

The Sleeping Beauty
“Jillian Vanstone… was poised and assured during the famous Rose Adagio, gliding from one impeccable balance to another with an appealing grandness and effervescence.”
— DanceTabs.com