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David Dawson

Associate Artist

David Dawson (1972, London, United Kingdom) was resident choreographer with Dutch National Ballet from 2004 to 2006. Since 2015, he has held the position of ‘artistic associate’ with the company.

British choreographer David Dawson (1972, London, United Kingdom) is one of the leading dance makers working in classical ballet today. His choreographic style transforms classical ballet in new ways, and his signature works have been praised by critics and audiences worldwide. He was resident choreographer with Dutch National Ballet from 2004 to 2006. Since 2015 he has held the position of Artistic Associate with the company.

Dawson created his first large-scale work while he was still a dancer with Dutch National Ballet: A Million Kisses to My Skin (2000). He received a Benois de la Danse award for The Grey Area (2002), also created for Dutch National Ballet. At the invitation of the Mariinsky Ballet, he created Reverence (2005). He was the first British choreographer to create a work for this company, and received the Golden Mask Award. He won the Choo San Goh Award for The Gentle Chapters (2006) created for Dutch National Ballet.

For Dutch National Ballet, he has created 00:00 (2004) and Morning Ground (2004), Timelapse/(Mnemosyne) (2011), Day4 (2012), and Overture (2013), for which he was nominated for a ‘Zwaan’ award for the best dance production. He created Empire Noir (2015), Citizen Nowhere (2017). The Dutch premiere of Dawson's Tristan + Isolde could be seen with Dutch National Ballet in 2018 and the world premiere of Requiem followed in February 2019. 

Dawson was resident choreographer with Semperoper Ballett and the Royal Ballet of Flanders between 2007 until 2012. Significant works created for the Semperoper Ballett include Four Last Songs (2020), The Four Seasons (2018), On the Nature of Daylight (2007), and full-length ballets Giselle (2008), and Tristan + Isolde (2015). He created A Sweet Spell of Oblivion (2007) and The Third Light (2010) for Royal Ballet of Flanders. He returned to London to create his re-imagining of Faun(e) (2008) for English National Ballet, and The Human Seasons (2013) for The Royal Ballet. He created his full-length Swan Lake (2016) for Scottish Ballet, Anima Animus (2018) for San Francisco Ballet, and Affairs of the Heart (2020) for Bayerisches Staatsballett.

His ballets have been performed in more than 25 countries and are included in the repertoire of a great many leading companies, including Boston Ballet, Royal Swedish Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Pennsylvania Ballet, Staatsballett Berlin, Ballet du Capitole Toulouse, Hungarian National Ballet, Norwegian National Ballet, West Australian Ballet, National Ballet of Japan, Staatsballett Karlsruhe, Ballet National de Marseilles, Aalto Ballet Theatre Essen, Singapore Dance Theatre, Royal New Zealand Ballet, Finnish National Ballet and Wiener Staatsballett.

Dawson has been invited as a Jury member of the Prix Benois de la Danse in Moscow and Dance Open International Ballet Festival in St Petersburg, and was was named Artistic Patron to Junior Ballet Antwerp in 2019.

Awards and nominations:

2019 Saxon Dance Prize nominee for best production for The Four Seasons

2019 Nomination for The Isadora Duncan Award for Achievement in choreography for Anima Animus

2016 Sunday Herald Culture Awards nominee for best production for Swan Lake

2014 UK Critics’ Circle National Dance Award Nominee as Best Classical Choreographer for The Human Seasons

2013 Golden Swan Award Nominee for Most Impressive Dance Production in The Netherlands for the creation of Overture

2010 Benois de la Danse Choreography Award Nominee as Best Choreographer for the creation of Faun(e)

2010 UK Critics’ Circle National Dance Award Nominee as Best Classical Choreographer for the creation of Faun(e)

2006 Golden Mask Award Winner as Best Choreographer for the creation of Reverence

2005 Choo San Goh Choreography Award Winner for the creation of The Gentle Chapters

Photo: Oliver Look