Carlos Acosta pays tribute to departing English National Ballet boss Tamara Rojo

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  • Tamara Rojo
    Spanish ballet dancer
  • Carlos Acosta
    Carlos Acosta
    Ballet dancer
 (Dave Benett)
(Dave Benett)

Ballet legend Carlos Acosta has paid tribute to the “incredible” Tamara Rojo after she announced she was leaving English National Ballet after a decade in charge.

The Spanish-born dancer is moving to the United States to take over at the San Francisco Ballet at the end of this year.

Acosta said: “As Director of ENB for the last ten years she has showed a great instinct for programming that has stretched the boundaries of ENB and consistently captured audience’s imagination. She challenged audiences but always entertained them with the highest quality of dance and dramatic delivery.

“Her input into our artistic ecosystem here in the UK will be greatly missed and I personally will miss having her around. I know she will be a tremendous success in San Francisco.”

Carlos Acosta (Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)
Carlos Acosta (Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

Rojo’s partner, Isaac Hernández, was recently appointed a principal dancer at the San Francisco company.

ENB will appoint an Artistic Advisory Panel to support the board in the search for a new Artistic Director and she will stay in the post until later this year.

Rojo oversaw the ENB’s move to a brand new HQ in Canning Town, East London, in 2019 only months before the pandemic hit and said it had “been an honour” to lead the company for 10 years.

ENB’s east London building (©Huftron+Crow)
ENB’s east London building (©Huftron+Crow)

She added: “I am incredibly proud of all that we have achieved together, from the tremendous talent working within and alongside the Company, to creating and moving into the amazing new building we now call our home, to the off-stage communities we have established with our education and engagement work.

“English National Ballet’s fundamental aim to bring world-class ballet to the widest possible audience has always resonated with me. It is the reason the Company has been a part of my life for so many years, from performing here as a dancer early in my career, to returning as Artistic Director in 2012. My admiration and support do not end here, I will remain invested in English National Ballet’s continued success in the years to come.

 (PA)
(PA)

“It has been a privilege to be the custodian of English National Ballet and as I prepare to hand over the reins, I am confident that this world-class company which is at the forefront of ballet’s growth and evolution with a much-deserved place on the international stage, will continue to flourish and thrive.”

She is one of ballet’s biggest names and also spent many years dancing with the Royal Ballet.

A spokeswoman for San Francisco Ballet said Rojo was a “dynamic leader” the “the voice of the future” in dance.

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