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Alessandra Ferri

Alessandra Ferri (born 6 May 1963, Milan) is a retired Italian prima ballerina assoluta. She received her training at the La Scala Theatre Ballet School and the Royal Ballet School. She danced with the Royal Ballet (1980 1984), American Ballet Theatre (1985 2007) and La Scala Theatre Ballet (1992 2007) and as an international guest artist, before retiring on 10 August 2007, aged 44.

Contents


Career

Alessandra Ferri was born in Milan, Italy. She began studying ballet at the La Scala Theatre Ballet School,[1] later transferring to the upper school of the Royal Ballet School. She represented the Royal Ballet School in the 1980 Prix de Lausanne, winning a scholarship which enabled her to continue studying at the school.[2]

Royal Ballet

Ferri joined the Royal Ballet in 1980 and in 1982, for her first major role in the ballet Mayerling,[3] she was nominated for the Laurence Olivier Award for Outstanding First Achievement of the Year in Ballet. In 1983, she was nominated for and won the Laurence Olivier Award for Outstanding Individual Performance of the Year in a New Dance Production for her role in Sir Kenneth MacMillan's Valley of Shadows. In 1984, she was promoted to the rank of Principal Dancer.

American Ballet Theatre

In 1985, Ferri left the Royal Ballet at the request of Mikhail Baryshnikov to become a Principal Dancer with American Ballet Theatre, under Baryshnikov's own direction.[4] She stated that she needed a more rigorous training program that the company could provide.[3] In 2007 she brought Roberto Bolle to dance opposite her in her farewell performance of Romeo and Juliet.[4]

La Scala Theatre Ballet

In 1992, Ferri became a Guest Star of American Ballet Theatre and began a very close collaboration with La Scala Theatre Ballet, becoming recognised as Prima Ballerina Assoluta of the company.

Created Roles

Statue of Alessandra Ferri as 'Juliet' by Nathan David inside the Royal Ballet School.
Statue of Alessandra Ferri as 'Juliet' by Nathan David inside the Royal Ballet School.

  • 1981 Chanson (pas de deux) Choreography by Sir Kenneth MacMillan, with the Royal Ballet.
  • 1981 Isadora Choreography by Sir Kenneth MacMillan, with the Royal Ballet.
  • 1982 Invitation au Voyage Choreography by Michael Corder, with the Royal Ballet.
  • 1983 Consort Lessons Choreography by David Bintley, with the Royal Ballet.
  • 1983 Valley of Shadows Choreography by Sir Kenneth MacMillan, with the Royal Ballet.
  • 1984 Different Drummer Choreography by Sir Kenneth MacMillan, with the Royal Ballet.
  • 1985 Swan Lake Choreography by Rosella Hightower, with La Scala Ballet.
  • 1986 Requiem Choreography by Sir Kenneth MacMillan, with the American Ballet Theatre.
  • 1989 Le Diable Amoureux Choreography by Roland Petit, with the Ballet National de Marseille.
  • 1990 Birdy Choreography by Jean-Pierre Aviotte, with the Ballet National de Marseille.
  • 1991 White Man Sleeps Choreography by Daniel Ezralow, with Maggiodanza.
  • 1992 Un Petit Train de Plaisir Choreography by Amedeo Amodio, with Aterballetto.
  • 1993 Le Baiser de la F e Choreography by Micha Van Hoecke, with La Scala Ballet.
  • 1994 Le Sang d'un Po te, La Voix Humaine Choreography by Roland Petit, for Teatro Studio, Milan.
  • 1995 William Tell Choreography by Heinz Spoerli, with the Ballet Nacional de Cuba.
  • 1996 Armide Choreography by Heinz Spoerli, with La Scala Ballet.
  • 1997 Vespri Siciliani Choreography by Heinz Spoerli, with the Rome Opera Ballet.
  • 1997 In Volo Choreography by Jean-Christophe Maillot, with the American Ballet Theatre.
  • 1998 Quartetto Choreography by William Forsythe, with La Scala Ballet.
  • 1998 Faust Tango Choreography by Oscar Araiz, for the Ravenna Festival.
  • 1999 Mambo Suite Choreography by Annamaria Steckelman, for the Colon Theatre, Buenos Aires.
  • 2004 Europa Riconosciuta Choreography by Heinz Spoerli, with La Scala Ballet.

Guest appearances

As an international guest artist, Ferri performed with the Paris Opera Ballet at the Palais Garnier and the Op ra Bastille, the Kirov Ballet at the Mariinsky Theatre, the National Ballet of Canada, the Tokyo Ballet, the Cuban National Ballet, the Hamburg Ballet, the Stuttgart Ballet, the Ballet National de Marseille, the Ballet National de Nancy and others.

She is best appreciated in story ballets by Kenneth MacMillan, Roland Petit, John Cranko and John Neumeier.[5]

She danced with the most important male dancers of her generation: Rudolf Nureyev (in Los Angeles for his 50 birthday in 1988) Mikhail Baryshnikov (also in the movie "Dancers" in 1987 http://www.amazon.com/Dancers-VHS-Mikhail-Baryshnikov/dp/6301016998), Anthony Dowell, Patrick Dupond, Peter Schaufuss, Maximiliano Guerra, Laurent Hilaire, Manuel Legris, Julio Bocca (her favourite)[6] and Marcelo Gomes.

Private life

Ferri has two daughters: Matilde (born in 1997) and Emma (born in 2002), who joined their mother on stage at her farewell performance.[6] Their father is the Italian photographer Fabrizio Ferri,[6] who founded the art school Universit dell'Immagine, in Milan, Italy. They live in New York.

Video recordings

  • 1984 Sir Kenneth MacMillan's Romeo and Juliet as Juliet, with Wayne Eagling and London's Royal Ballet.
  • 1987 Herber Ross's film Dancers as Francesca, with Mikhail Baryshnikov, Leslie Browne, Julie Kent, Tommy Rall and American Ballet Theatre (VHS Tape Only).
  • 1987 George Balanchine's La Sonnambula as The Sleepwalker, with Mikhail Baryshnikov and American Ballet Theatre.
  • 1996 Giselle as Giselle, with Massimo Murru and La Scala Ballet.
  • 1998 Romeo & Juliet Pas de Deux with Julio Bocca, on a mixed bill DVD titled American Ballet Theatre Now Variety and Virtuosity.
  • 2000 Romeo and Juliet as Juliet, with Angel Corella and La Scala Ballet.
  • 2003 Sir Frederick Ashton's The Dream as Titania, with Ethan Stiefel, Herman Cornejo and American Ballet Theatre.
  • 2003 Roland Petit's La Chauve-Souris as Bella, with Massimo Murru and La Scala Ballet.
  • 2007 George Balanchine's A Midsummer Night's Dream as Titania, with Roberto Bolle, Massimo Murru and La Scala Ballet.

Awards and honours (selected)

  • 1982 Olivier Award Outstanding First Achievement of the Year in Ballet Nominated[7]
  • 1983 Olivier Award Outstanding Individual Performance of the Year in a New Dance Production WON[8]
  • 1990 Premio L onide Massine, Positano
  • 2000 Prix Benois de la Danse, Moscow
  • 2005 Italian Order of Merit of the Republic
  • 2005 Dance Magazine Award, New York

Notes and references

External links

ar: ca:Alessandra Ferri de:Alessandra Ferri es:Alessandra Ferri fr:Alessandra Ferri it:Alessandra Ferri ja: sr: sv:Alessandra Ferri






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