Press release

Aaron S. Watkin to lead English National Ballet

Porträt Ballettdirektor Aaron S. Watkin

Dresden, 24 August 2022. Aaron S. Watkin, Ballet Director of the Semperoper Dresden, will take over as Artistic Director and head of English National Ballet in London from season 2023/24.

Since 2006, Canadian-born Watkin has developed the Semperoper Ballett into one of the world’s foremost dance companies, celebrating impressive successes under his leadership both in Dresden as well as on international guest performances and tours.

»It has been a real honour to lead the Semperoper Ballett and to have worked in collaboration with the entire house over the past 17 years. I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with such a unique group of talented and dedicated artists and professionals«, said Aaron S. Watkin. »I am extremely proud of what we have all accomplished together in building the Semperoper Ballett to an internationally renowned and respected dance company. I am excited to begin this next chapter in my career and thrilled at the opportunity to lead the English National Ballet, working alongside the Company’s exceptional dancers, creatives and staff, to build a vibrant future.«

According to Peter Theiler, Artistic Director of the Saxon State Opera: »In the 2023/24 season, the Semperoper and the Semperoper Ballett will say goodbye to a unique artistic personality and a highly esteemed colleague. Semperoper Ballett owes its outstanding position in the dance world as well as its extraordinary popularity among the Semperoper’s international guests, to the artistic brilliance and unwavering commitment of Aaron S. Watkin.  Although we all deeply regret his departure, we would like to congratulate him on this exciting new phase of his career. But first we look forward together to the upcoming season in Dresden with the knowledge that the Semperoper Ballett will always remain grateful to Aaron S. Watkin, even after his move to London.«

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Photo: Aaron S. Watkin © Semperoper Dresden/Jubal Battisti