Master Classes – Céline Gittens and Kit Holder

Don’t miss our next exciting Master Classes with Céline Gittens and Kit Holder from the Royal Birmingham Ballet!
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IMG_3459Céline Gittens joined Birmingham Royal Ballet in 2006 and is one of our most recently promoted Principals. She was born in Trinidad and grew up in Vancouver, Canada, where her training, both with her mother and at Vancouver’s Goh Ballet Academy, led to her winning the gold medal and audience choice award at the prestigious Royal Academy of Dance Genée International Ballet Competition in 2005. Céline is a dancer of immense strength, her powerful technique being redolent of the kind of dancing we most readily associate with North America and which has already been seen to such strong effect in performances as the Striptease Girl in Balanchine’s Slaughter on Tenth Avenue, Fortuna in Carmina burana and the leading role in Elite Syncopations. Having spent all her professional life with a British company however, Céline has developed a more understated side to her performances which is standing her in good stead for the classics. She debuted the dual roles of Odette / Odile in Swan Lake in 2012, but her big breakthrough came during our 2015 tour to Japan when, due to another dancer being injured, and with only one day’s notice, she stepped in to perform this most taxing ballerina role on opening night in Tokyo to great acclaim. Other leading roles which are garnering her plaudits include the Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker, Swanilda in Coppélia, the Gypsy Girl in The Two Pigeons and most recently a very demure and youthful Juliet in Romeo and Juliet. Celine also gained a Master of Philosophy from the University of Birmingham in 2012.

image1Born in Leamington Spa, Kit Holder trained with Audrey Roper in Sutton Coldfield, Birmingham and at the Royal Ballet School, London. He joined Birmingham Royal Ballet in 2000, promoted to First Artist in 2008 and Soloist in 2014. Kit’s British training has lead him to master the technical intricacies of the company’s British choreographers. He excels in the roles of “Alain” in Sir Frederick Ashton’s La Fille mal gardée, “Hilarion” in David Bintley and Galina Samsova’s production of Giselle, and as the “King of the North” in David Bintley’s Prince of the Pagodas. Kit also has a passion to choreograph and gained a Masters degree in Choreography with the University of Kent in 2015. His choreography includes Conversations pas de deux (Linbury Theatre for The Royal Ballet’s 75th anniversary, 2006), Small Worlds (Birmingham Royal Ballet, 2007), Romany Wood (Elmhurst School for Dance, 2009), Printer Jam (Birmingham Royal Ballet, 2010), 9-5 (Birmingham Royal Ballet, 2012), Basse Danse (Central School of Ballet’s Graduate Tour, 2013), Quatrain (Birmingham Royal Ballet, 2014), Hopper (Ballet Central, 2015), To Fetch a Pail of Water (Ballet Black, 2015), Wolves are People Too (Independent – produced in association with Birmingham Royal Ballet, 2016).

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