After 40 years with the Royal Ballet, Genesia Rosato is to retire.
I've had a wonderful career and loved every minute of it!
she said this afternoon. She's had a lot to love.
Genesia joined the company in 1976, invited by Kenneth MacMillan, and became a soloist in 1982. She became a Principal Character Artist in 1993 and has dominated the stage ever since with her unforgettable three-dimensional portrayals of Queens and Carabosses, Lady Capulets and Nurses. Often by her side, or nearby, on stage was her colleague, friend and fellow Principal Character Artist, Gary Avis:
The Royal Ballet should stand tall and proud with the legacy, commitment and dedication that Genesia leaves behind, now she has decided to retire from the company. She is one of the finest artistes the Royal Ballet has ever had.
She leaves to us all a lasting impression of what was expected of you from those monumental choreographers she worked with. The pure talent and versatility she gave every role since 1976 will be forever etched in our memories. The years she gave to the Royal Ballet and the Royal Opera House establishment are invaluable.
Certainly, sentiments that the company and those on the other side of the curtain will agree with, but he adds:
As a friend and colleague for many happy, happy years, I salute her decision, but it saddens me to think I will never share that or any stage with her again.
Genesia created the role of Princess Louise in Mayerling for MacMillan, and Frederick Ashton created parts for her in Rhapsody and Varii Capricci. Luckily, many of her performances have been preserved forever in the Royal Ballet's essential videos that every ballet lover has on their shelves.
Genesia's partner, the photographer David West, says,
Genesia remains the most sensitive and passionate performer of her age, the lengths to which she prepares and her devotion to performance is in this modern day and age unequalled, together we will enjoy her retirement.
After today's announcement Genesia said, typically,
I thought I'd just slip away. I am overwhelmed by all the comments I've received.
Genesia has, and has always had, qualities that make her stand out from the crowd, not just as an invaluable member of one of the world's greatest ballet companies but as an exceptional and greatly loved human being.
She will be missed.
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano') about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman's Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia' column for Dancing Times magazine.