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Press Release: Rambert School Celebrates its Centenary

Jan McNulty

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Rambert School celebrates its Centenary Year


This year marks the Centenary of Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance, with celebrations taking place throughout the year that give opportunities for the School to honour its rich history and look forward to the future. 


Founded by dance pioneer Marie Rambert in 1920, it is the UK’s oldest vocational dance school and still stands by its founding principles of innovation, creativity and individuality that is reflected in the School’s holistic approach to nurturing talent and developing the dance artists of tomorrow.


For a century Rambert School graduates have occupied places across the dance profession as leading choreographers and dancers in some of the world’s most renowned companies including Rambert, Akram Khan Company, BalletBoyz, Ballet Black, Hofesh Shechter Company, Mark Bruce Company, New Adventures, Nederlands Dance Theater, Phoenix Dance Theatre, and Russell Maliphant Company. 


Amanda Britton, Principal and Artistic Director of Rambert School said: “At Rambert School we cherish our history and tradition whilst embracing innovation within our training. Our Centenary gives us the opportunity to reflect and celebrate the creativity, artistry and passion of our students past and present. 


“This year we will be looking back over a century of incredible dance training and the impact the School has had across the world, as well as looking forward with excitement to the next chapter in our history as we continue to nurture future generations of dancers, choreographers and dance professionals. 


“As a graduate of Rambert School I feel extremely privileged to be leading this incredible organisation into the next 100 years.” 


The Centenary programme begins with CELEBRATION, a specially curated performance at the Royal Opera House’s Linbury Theatre on 24 June. Dedicated to the School’s patrons and supporters, the evening will embody the adventure, imagination, and technical excellence that has characterised Rambert School for the last century. 


CELEBRATION will feature pieces from some of the most influential choreographers from Frederick Ashton to Christopher Bruce, as well as rising stars in the dance world and our very own students. They will be performed by the School’s exceptionally talented students alongside alumni from the world’s leading dance companies. 


Further performances by the School’s students include a second show at The Linbury Theatre on 25 June and additional performances at a major London theatre. More details to be announced shortly. 


As part of its Centenary celebrations, Rambert School is proud to be working with a number of renowned names from the dance world who will help advocate for the School throughout its Centenary year and inspire current and future students. Centenary Ambassadors include Artistic Director of Rambert Benoit Swan Pouffer, Kerry Nicholls, Russell Maliphant, Wayne McGregor, Christopher Bruce, Matthew Bourne and Akram Khan. 


Artistic Director of Rambert and Centenary Ambassador Benoit Swan Pouffer said: “I am continually impressed by the graduates of Rambert School and their ability to adapt and thrive in the professional settings of both the main Rambert Company and Rambert2. Their technique and dedication is a testament to the training they received whilst at Rambert School, whose 100 year history creates a benchmark for both UK and Global dance education.”


Choreographer and Centenary Ambassador Akram Khan said: “Some of the strongest, and most talented dancers are coming out of Rambert School, and that is a clear sign. A sign that shows that they deeply believe in rigour, discipline, and curiosity. It gives me great pleasure to be an ambassador to a school that I feel truly embodies the very fabric of my own approach to dance and dance training”. 


Rambert School is committed to providing innovative and accessible dance training. In 2018 it launched Rambert2, a collaboration with Rambert that delivers a one year MA course in Professional Dance Performance. In July 2019, the School and Company launched Rambert Grades, a bespoke syllabus born from the School’s own training ethos that supports the growing interest, accessibility and professional opportunities in contemporary dance for young people on an international scale. Rambert School has also introduced a new Learning and Participation programme to help widen engagement in dance activity through community classes and projects with local schools and colleges. For more information see www.rambertschool.org.uk


To support the School’s ambition and growing student numbers it has recently launched a capital campaign that has seen the reconfiguration of its theatre studio space and will look to extend its existing premises in Twickenham to allow the School to continue its internationally renowned training programme. See www.rambertschool.org.ukfor information on how you can help support Rambert School. 


Full programme and casting for CELEBRATION and further performances this summer will be announced shortly. 




Notes to Editors 


Rambert School at a Glance  

  • Our mission is to provide world-leading training and education in ballet and contemporary dance. 
  • In 2020 we celebrate 100 years, we are the oldest vocational dance school in the UK. 
  • We were founded by dance pioneer Marie Rambert. 
  • We are a world-class, well respected ballet and contemporary dance school with a long and illustrious history. 
  • Our 50/50 equal emphasis on ballet and contemporary dance is unique within the UK. 
  • We attract highly sought-after international guest teachers and choreographers. 
  • 46% of the School’s students come from overseas. 
  • We receive approximately 400 applications and award 45 places in our first year based purely on talent. 
  • 65% of our students receive financial assistance through our bursary fund.
  • Our students graduate with a foundation degree and BA Hons in Ballet and Contemporary Dance ensuring they are equipped for a career in the dance profession. 
  • We produce highly skilled versatile dancers in all areas of the profession as dancers, choreographers, teachers, academics, producers and directors. 
  • Graduates are characterised by their individuality, creativity, artistic expression and strong technique. 
  • In 2019 Rambert School launched Rambert Grades, a contemporary ballet syllabus for young people to be taught both in the UK and internationally. 
  • Rambert2 is an MA course in Professional Dance Performance and was launched in partnership with Rambert. 
  • We are committed to widening access into training and our participation programme reaches over 1000 students per year, reaching new and diverse audiences. 

Rambert School Patrons

Lady Sainsbury of Preston Candover, CBE

Sir Robert Cohan CBE


With the generous support of The Linbury Trust, Garfield Weston Foundation and The Wolfson Foundation, in 2020 the School plan to undertake capital improvement work to its facilities. 


Rambert School Alumni 

With a history spanning 100 years Rambert School has, and continues to make, an incredible impact on the world of dance. 

Graduates of the School include some of history’s most significant choreographers including Frederick Ashton, Agnes de Mille, Antony Tudor and Christopher Bruce CBE. 

The School is intrinsically linked to Rambert and usually around a fifth ofthe company dancers are graduates of the School. Many other high profileand ground-breaking companies both nationally and internationally, benefit from the School’s graduates joining their ranks including; 

Akram Khan Company 
Ballet Black 
Compañía Nacional de Danza 
Danish Dance Theatre 
Hofesh Shechter Company 
Joss Arnott Dance 
Julia Cunningham Company
Mark Bruce Company 
National Ballet de Marseille 
National Dance Company Wales 
New Adventures
Nederlands Dance Theater 
Phoenix Dance Theatre 
Pilzen Ballet
Richard Alston Dance Company
Russell Maliphant Company 
Scottish Dance Theatre 
Sydney Dance Company

Other graduates have found much success in creating their own companies, such as the Mark Bruce Company, Arielle Smith Company and Richard Chappell Dance. 

Alumni have also been appointed to important roles such as Artistic Director of the Royal Ballet School, Artistic Co-Director of Candoco Dance Company, Director of Dance at Trinity Laban and indeed our own Principal, Amanda Britton.


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