Ed Milliband brings Royal Ballet to Doncaster

Doncaster to welcome The Royal Opera Houses national learning programme
Doncaster to welcome The Royal Opera Houses national learning programme

Ed Miliband MP has spearheaded a campaign to bring the Royal Ballet to Doncaster.

The town is to welcome The Royal Opera House’s national learning programme, in a bold and ambitious partnership set for 2019/20. The Royal Opera House will partner with Doncaster through ‘Doncaster Creates,’ Cast, and Doncaster Council marking 2020 as a new chapter for the town which aspires to be place of nationally significant cultural excellence.

Through the national learning programme, the Royal Opera House will work with every school in Doncaster over three years, putting on a mass community engagement performance in summer 2020.

Alongside this, The Royal Ballet will perform a gala at Cast, and the ROH’s popular Chance to Dance talent development programme will also continue.

Spearheaded by Ed Miliband MP, the Royal Ballet’s 27-year track record for excellence is now building a national presence and being the catalyst for systemic change in Doncaster.

Mr Miliband, MP for Doncaster North, said: “I am thrilled the Royal Ballet is coming to Doncaster in 2020 as part of Doncaster Creates. This will be a significant community project, running over three years and working with the local community and schools in the Borough. The Royal Ballet is renowned for its talent, creativity, skill and passion and I am sure that people in Doncaster will be incredibly excited to take part in the project.”

To create more opportunities for aspiring young dancers to engage in further training, the Royal Opera House works collaboratively with local and national dance education partners to model best practice in the creative teaching of ballet and establish more accessible pathways, especially for those who face difficulty accessing existing opportunities.

Chance to Dance will give primary school children from across the borough who do not have access to ballet in areas facing numerous disadvantages their first opportunity to engage creatively with ballet, connecting closely with the inspirational repertory, choreographers and dancers of The Royal Ballet.

Deborah Rees, director for Cast, said: “This partnership marks a shared ambition for culture in Doncaster. Positive outcomes for local young people remain our greatest challenge as a town and our most exciting opportunity to inspire a generation. Culture should be an essential part of every childhood, so to see every school participate and enjoy in this fantastic cultural experience is a great step forward in our collective responsibility to help our children thrive.”

Juliet Farrar, executive director for Doncaster Creates, added: “Participating in all kinds of dance is big in Doncaster - creativity, talent development, well-being and joy are at the heart of Doncaster Creates programming for everyone. We’re tremendously excited to welcome the Royal Ballet, further demonstrating that Doncaster is a place where you can participate in and experience world-class culture.”

Coun Nuala Fennelly, cabinet member for Children, Young People and Schools at Doncaster Council, said: “This is great news for children and young people in Doncaster. The arts can play a much more prominent role in raising the aspirations, ambitions and wellbeing of Doncaster. Over the next couple of months, a range of cultural partners will come together to reveal a huge amount of future activity across the borough. This partnership with Britain's largest ballet company is just one of the many transformative opportunities we’re supporting which will allow the arts to play a sustainable role in improving outcomes for people from across the borough.”

Full details of the exclusive Ballet Gala at Cast in July 2020, and free outdoor screenings live from the Royal Opera House are to be announced later this year.