David Bintley succeeded Sir Peter Wright as Director of Birmingham Royal Ballet in 1995. By that time, Sir Peter had settled the Company (formerly Sadler’s Wells Royal Ballet) into its new home in the heart of England.
Bintley’s commitment to creating new work not only helped secure Birmingham as a hub of creative excellence but also affirmed Birmingham Royal Ballet’s position as one of the world’s leading ballet companies. He brought about some ground-breaking initiatives, such as the 2006 Ballet Hoo: Ballet Changed my Life project which saw the Company reach more than 200 young people from diverse backgrounds from across the West Midlands, in a two-year project televised by Channel 4. Another close to his heart was Freefall Dance Company, the company of highly gifted dancers with severe learning disabilities that has been part of the Birmingham Royal Ballet family since 2002 and for whom Bintley created his final work as Director of Birmingham Royal Ballet in summer 2019.
David Bintley comments,
I am both delighted and humbled by this honour and proud to accept it on behalf of the British Ballet community. I would particularly like to thank my friends and colleagues at Birmingham Royal Ballet, the company it was my privilege to direct for 24 years. It is largely due to their talents and hard work that I find myself in this position and this honour is as representative of their services to dance, as it is mine.
As well as holding the post of Artistic Director at Birmingham Royal Ballet for 24 years, he also held a four-year tenure as Artistic Director of The National Ballet of Japan from 2010 – 2014.
CEO Caroline Miller says,
We are proud to have worked with David in creating in Birmingham such a force for world dance. His vision, hard work and artistry have given us the strongest foundations upon which to build for future generations. Thank you, Sir David.
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.