In December, 2016, our student, Claire Wu became the second Rachel’s Ballet student to compete in the prestigious Genee International Ballet Competition, which this year took place in Sydney, Australia. This is the flagship event of the Royal Academy of Dance and is held in a different country every year. In order to qualify for the Genre, students must have passed their RAD Advanced 2 examination with a Distinction. This year there were 88 candidates from around the world.
The first several days of the competition were master classes with internationally known faculty, as well as coaching sessions on their prepared variations. Each candidate had to come with a Classical Variation from a selected list, and also a “Dancer’s Own” Claire’s prepared a variation from Raymonda, and “Siren” choreographed by Isabelle Sjahsam to original music by Daniel Crook. Claire was one of three candidates representing the USA.
There were three days of semi-final competition onstage- first a live ballet class, taught by the Artistic Director of the RAD, Lynn Wallis. Day two was the “Dancer’s Own” variations, and the last day of semi-finals was the classical variations. Twelve finalists were chosen to compete for medals at the iconic Sydney Opera House, and all the candidates came on stage for the medal ceremony in a Grand Defile by country.