Former Royal Ballet stars and impresarios Ivan Putrov (Ukraine) and Alina Cojocaru (Romania) are putting on Dance for Ukraine, a benefit gala at the London Coliseum to raise funds for people in need in Ukraine. Proceeds from the event will go to Disaster Emergency Committee (DEC), Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal.
Produced by the dance charity Inspiration in Motion, the evening features artists from The Royal Ballet, Paris Opera Ballet and English National Ballet including Marianela Nuñez (Argentina), Mathieu Ganio (France), Federico Bonelli (Italy), Francesco Gabriele Frola (Italy), Fumi Kaneko (Japan), Isaac Hernández (Mexico), Alina Cojocaru (Romania), Natalia Osipova (Russia), Reece Clarke (UK), Katja Khaniukova (Ukraine), Emma Hawes (USA). The full line-up and repertoire will be announced shortly.
Obviously, the presence of the Russian dancer Natalia Osipova in an event in support of Ukraine is courageous and admirable.
All the participating dancers have donated their services, the English National Opera has waived its rental fee for the London Coliseum, and the ENO Orchestra, Chorus and friends have volunteered to support the evening musically.
Mere words can offer little in the face of such suffering and the loss of innocent human lives. Art, love and humanity have the power to inspire and even to heal. In this spirit we will unite on the 19th to dance and offer what help we can.
Alina Cojocaru and Ivan Putrov trained together in Kyiv as young students before studying at London’s Royal Ballet School and entering The Royal Ballet, becoming among the youngest principal dancers in the company’s history. Both artists wanted to show their love, admiration and support for friends and family by reaching out to their colleagues to dance to show support and raise funds for the victims of this terrifying conflict.
The Gala is about taking a stand for human values. Our unity strengthens the message. Everyone’s participation will help someone just like them who found themselves in dire circumstances due to violence of war. Dance, music and art move the world, not violence. Since we, the artists, possess the gift – we must use it.
Dance for Ukraine
Date: Saturday 19 March
Venue: The London Coliseum
Marianela Nuñez (Argentina – The Royal Ballet)
Mathieu Ganio (France – Paris Opera Ballet)
Federico Bonelli (Italy – The Royal Ballet)
Francesco Gabriele Frola (Italy – English National Ballet)
Fumi Kaneko (Japan – The Royal Ballet)
Isaac Hernández (Mexico – English National Ballet)
Alina Cojocaru (Romania)
Natalia Osipova (Russia – The Royal Ballet)
Reece Clarke (UK – The Royal Ballet)
Katja Khaniukova (Ukraine – English National Ballet)
Emma Hawes (USA – English National Ballet)
Musicians: The ENO Orchestra, Chorus and Friends
Conductor: Alexander Ingram
Ticket prices: £15 – £100
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.