Dance

Francesco Ventriglia

Italy/Austria

Having graduated from La Scala Ballet School, Francesco joined the ballet company of La Scala in 1997, making his debut as a soloist in William Forsythe’s In The Middle, Somewhat Elevated at La Scala in 1998.

He danced numerous soloist roles and performed works by Balanchine, Ailey, Neumeier, Cranko, Preljocaj, Godani, Kylián and Béjart.

He began his chorographic career whilst he was a dancer at La Scala, having created a diverse repertoire for the Ballet School of La Scala, his own company Heliopolis and other freelance works.

The Heliopolis Company made its debut at the Venice Biennale in 2007, with a new piece “Il Mare in Catena”, an investigation of eroticism and physical disability with the original music of Emiliano Palmieri, which was nominated for the Golden Lion. The following year he created a new work “Normale”, which explored the concept of love and mental health. That year, he also created Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Jago, the honest poetry of deception, for the Arena di Verona, with étoile of the Opéra National de Paris, Eleonora Abbagnato and Alessandro Riga. In 2008 for the Mariinsky Theatre in St Petersburg he created Contraddizioni for Ulyana Lopatkina. In 2009 he created a new work specifically for Svetlana Zakharova titled SuperGame: a multimedia collaboration for the prima ballerina and six principal dancers of the Bolshoi Ballet. Additionally, his works included Immemoria, a work for 40 dancers to music by Shostakovich, premiering at La Scala in May 2010.

Between 2007 and 2012, Francesco and Emiliano Palmieri collaborated on four creations: Il Mare in Catene, Normale, Pinocchio and Willy Wonka and Chocolate Factory.

In October 2010 he was appointed ballet director of MaggioDanza in Florence, Italy.

In 2014, for Anna Antonickeva and Andrey Merkuriev (Principals of the Bolshoi Theatre) he created the evening “Fortuna vis Lucem: Bolero and Carmina Burana”, performed with the New Ballet RU of Moscow, in tour across Russia and Cannes.

Francesco was appointed as the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s Artistic Director in November 2014. In 2015 he led the company on an international tour (United Kingdom and Italy). Additionally, he increased the repertoire of the Company.

In 2018 Francesco was appointed Adjunto a la dirección artística del Ballet Nacional Sodre, Uruguay, alongside Artistic Director Igor Yebra.

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