Hans van Manen
Hans van Manen has succeeded in bringing modern ballet – as a combination of classical ballet and modern dance and movement techniques – to a wide audience.
Van Manen's international fame is widespread, illustrated by the fact that his ballets are performed by more than fifty companies worldwide. The international stars who have performed his ballets include Anthony Dowell, Marcia Haydée, Natalia Makarova and Rudolf Nureyev. To date, Van Manen has created more than 120 ballets. Besides being a choreographer, Hans van Manen has also been active as a photographer for ten years. His work has been included in international books and exhibitions.
Hans van Manen (1932, Nieuwer Amstel, the Netherlands) had his first ballet lessons in the late forties from Sonia Gaskell, who engaged him in her group Ballet Recital in 1951. Van Manen went on to dance with the Netherlands Opera Ballet and Roland Petit's Ballets de Paris. In 1957, he made his debut as a choreographer with the ballet Feestgericht, which received the State Award for Choreography. From 1961 onwards, Van Manen has worked alternately with the two main dance companies of the Netherlands. After co-directing Nederlands Dans Theater, he became a resident choreographer – first with the Dutch National Ballet, then with Nederlands Dans Theater. Since 2005, he has held the post of resident choreographer with the Dutch National Ballet.
In 2007, the Dutch National Ballet organised the Hans van Manen Festival, as a tribute to the choreographer on the occasion of his 75th birthday. During the festival, Hans Van Manen was made a Commander in the Order of the Netherlands Lion. In June 2013, he was appointed a patron of the National Ballet Academy (part of the Amsterdam School of the Arts).Van Manen received the Erasmus Award (2000) and the Golden Age Award (2013). Since January 2015 he is a member of the Dutch Academie for Arts. In July 2017 he received the title of 'Commandeur des Arts et des Lettres', which is the highest cultural state distinction in France in the field of art and literature. In February 2018 Van Manen received the Medal of Honour for Art and Science of the ‘Huisorde van Oranje’, because of 'his enormous contribution to the arts in the Netherlands and ballet in particular’.
- 2018, Medal of Honour for Art and Science of the ‘Huisorde van Oranje’
- 2017, Commandeur des Arts et des Lettres
- 2013, Golden Age Award
- 2013, Patron of the National Ballet Academy
- 2013, Benois de la Danse for 'Variations for Two Couples'
- 2007, Commander in the Order of the Netherlands Lion
- 2005, Benois de la Danse Life Time Achievement Award
- 2004, Musikpreis der Stadt Duisburg
- 2004, Deutsche Tanzpreis
- 2000, Erasmus Prize
- 1991, Sonia Gaskell Prize
- 1991, Choreography Award from the Dutch Association of Theatres and Concert Halls for 'Two'
- 1957, State Award for Choreography for his debut 'Feestgericht'
“Wat staat ons te doen? Om te beginnen geloof ik, om de hand maar meteen in eigen boezem te steken, dat er aan de bestendiging van het repertoire gewerkt moet worden. Zonder repertoire geen traditie. En zonder traditie geen aansluiting bij wat is voorafgegaan. Traditie is niet iets van het verleden. Traditie is wat we vandaag de dag met het verleden doen. De toekomst is ontdekken wat in het verleden goed was en daarop voortbouwen. Hier ligt ook een taak voor de media. En voor de overheid….”