26 January 2015
The 15th National Dance Awards
The Place, London: 26th January 2015
New records were set at the Critics’ Circle National Dance Awards for 2014, which took place today in London at a ceremony hosted by Arlene Phillips CBE.
The choreographer and dancer, Akram Khan MBE, became the first person to win a sixth NDA, picking up this year’s award for Best Modern Choreography for Dust, his work for English National Ballet that was part of their Lest We Forget commemoration of the centenary of the outbreak of WW1 and was subsequently featured at Glastonbury. This was Khan’s third choreographic award to add to three awards as a performer.
Christopher Wheeldon became the first person to win five awards in the same category, winning the Best Classical Choreography Award for The Winter’s Tale for The Royal Ballet. He had previously won for work in 2001, 2004, 2008 and 2013.
Natalia Osipova and Jonathan Goddard became the first dancers to pick up two awards at the same ceremony. Osipova won in the category of Outstanding Female Performance (Classical) for her performance in the title role as Giselle for The Royal Ballet; and Goddard won the Outstanding Male Performance (Modern) for his portrayal as Dracula for Mark Bruce Company (which won the award for Best Independent Company). Both Osipova and Goddard went on to be named as the Best Dancers of 2014. This was Goddard’s second naming as The Dancing Times Best Male Dancer (he had previously won in 2007) and it was a record-breaking fourth time as Grishko Best Female Dancer for Osipova (following her awards in 2007, 2010 and 2013).
The Outstanding Company of 2014 was English National Ballet and the award was received by the company’s artistic director and principal ballerina, Tamara Rojo.
The De Valois Award for Outstanding Achievement was presented by Darcey Bussell CBE to Carlos Acosta CBE in recognition of his outstanding career as a dancer and as a producer of new work.
The Dance Section of the Critics’ Circle introduced a new award for 2014 to recognise Emerging Artists and this was won by the Royal Ballet soloist, Francesca Hayward, who has impressed and delighted critics over the past year in a number of new roles, notably in her performances of the Ashton repertoire.
The Outstanding Male Performance (Classical) was won by Xander Parish, a dancer from Hull who left The Royal Ballet in 2010 to join the Mariinsky Ballet of St Petersburg. He won the award for his performances of George Balanchine’s Apollo during the Mariinsky’s season at the Royal Opera House in August 2014.
The Outstanding Female Performance (Modern) went to Wendy Houstoun, a performer now in her 50s, for her extraordinary one-woman show, Pact with Pointlessness, inspired by the death of choreographer, Nigel Charnock.
And the Dance UK Industry Award, determined by a separate panel of judges chosen by Dance UK, went to parliamentarian Frank Doran MP, who steps down at the forthcoming General Election, for his many years’ service as Secretary to the All Party Parliamentary Group for Dance.
With the exception of the Dance UK award, the National Dance Awards are decided by the 60 members of the Dance Section of the Critics’ Circle after an extensive round of nominations and voting. To be eligible, performances had to be given in the UK between 1st September 2013 and 31st August 2014.
The full list of winners is given below:
Critics’ Circle National Dance Awards Winners 2014
OUTSTANDING MALE PERFORMANCE (MODERN)
Jonathan Goddard in the title role as Dracula for Mark Bruce Company
OUTSTANDING FEMALE PERFORMANCE (CLASSICAL)
Natalia Osipova in the title role as Giselle for The Royal Ballet
BEST MODERN CHOREOGRAPHY
Akram Khan for Dust by English National Ballet
OUTSTANDING MALE PERFORMANCE (CLASSICAL)
Xander Parish in the title role as Apollo for the Mariinsky Ballet
OUTSTANDING FEMALE PERFORMANCE (MODERN)
Wendy Houstoun for Pact with Pointlessness
BEST CLASSICAL CHOREOGRAPHY
Christopher Wheeldon for The Winter’s Tale by The Royal Ballet
JANE ATTENBOROUGH DANCE UK INDUSTRY AWARD
Frank Doran MP, Secretary of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Dance
GRISHKO AWARD FOR EMERGING ARTIST
Francesca Hayward of The Royal Ballet
BEST INDEPENDENT COMPANY
Mark Bruce Company
STEF STEFANOU AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING COMPANY
English National Ballet
THE DANCING TIMES AWARD FOR BEST MALE DANCER
GRISHKO AWARD FOR BEST FEMALE DANCER
DE VALOIS AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT
Carlos Acosta CBE
Speaking at the event, Arlene Phillips CBE said: “I am thrilled to be invited to present the National Dance Awards for 2014. Dance, dancers and choreography were outstanding in every category and I would like to congratulate all nominees and the winners”.
The Chairman of the Awards committee, Graham Watts OBE, said: ‘These awards are a celebration of brilliance amongst the rich diversity of dance forms we enjoy in the UK, both from home-based companies and the many touring ensembles from overseas, several of whom have been recognised in this year’s nominations. The 383 recommendations from British dance critics for companies, choreographers and performers seen in 2014 easily represented a new record, which must say something about the ever-increasing spread of excellence in dance.’
The dance section of the Critics’ Circle is delighted and honoured to thank the 2014 National Dance Awards Sponsors:
Grishko, Dancing Times, Stef Stefanou, The Critics’ Circle, The Ballet Association, Lee McLernon, The Office of Architectural Culture and Dance UK for the Jane Attenborough Dance UK Industry Award. Dance UK announced that Sprizzato will sponsor the Industry Award in 2015.
The next National Dance Awards are scheduled to be held in London on 25th January 2016.