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Project information

Stina Quagebeur's Nora - a new ballet

ENB will partner with our own dancer and emerging choreographer Stina Quagebeur to create her debut for the main stage. Nora embodies our commitment to revitalising ballet, enriching it with fresh voices and opening up creative paths, ensuring it remains relevant for future generations.

January 2019 - April 2019

Charity information: English National Ballet

English National Ballet logo
  • Need


    The world of ballet choreography is disproportionately dominated by male artists, especially among those at the start of their career. This limits the diversity of the art form, leading to a creative world overly shaped by one viewpoint and missing the female perspective. The risk is not only to stifle the creative promise of exciting female choreographers, but also the failure to inspire the next generation of dancers and audiences to see ballet as a relevant art form that represents them.


    In commissioning Stina Quagebeur, ENB will actively shine the spotlight on female talent, as part of our She Persisted triple bill. Using our platform as an award-winning, world-class company we will produce a high-quality ballet from a fresh new creative viewpoint. By adding an original, exciting piece to our repertoire, we will inspire audiences and our digital content, events and engagement projects will create a legacy of inspiration beyond the theatre.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Enrich British ballet repertoire with new work from emerging female voices


    » Commission Stina Quagebeur to create a new work for them main stage.
    » Support her during the creative and rehearsal process, with mentoring and access to expertise, to create a high-quality piece

    What success will look like

    Use critical responses to gauge the quality and success of the work, alongside audience reaction.

    Aim 2

    Provide a high-profile platform to actively promote emerging female artists


    » Stage Nora during our triple bill She Persisted at Sadler’s Wells in April 2019, a highly respected billing during our season
    » Programme the work alongside two pieces by renowned choreographers, Pina Bausch and Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, giving a prominent setting to the new work
    » Use an evocative marketing campaign to promote the production to the widest audience, including raising Stina's profile though press presence

    What success will look like

    Stage 13 performances, and measure the exposure including press coverage, industry reaction and audience interactions (such as through social media)

    Aim 3

    Inspire future audiences and young artists, through accessible and innovative performances.


    » Ensure affordable theatre tickets and provide subsidised tickets for our engagement programmes, reaching young people, artists and choreographers
    » Deepen audience insight, through workshops, digital content and masterclasses, demystifying the creative process
    » Embed Nora into ENB's repertoire, creating opportunity for future performances around the UK and internationally

    What success will look like

    Aim to reach 12,000 people in the theatre, with a third as first-time visitors, and through our engagement and insight projects reach a further 400 people.

  • Impact


    Emerging female choreographers will be given greater recognition and opportunity, and a new generation of choreographers will be inspired to follow their dream career. Already, She Persisted is built on the success of She Said, our first triple bill in 2016 focusing on female artists. Supporting and promoting their talent will be further ingrained within ENB and in our repertoire, reflected in our future work.


    Every new production involves a degree of artistic and box office risk, especially when giving a platform to a relatively unknown emerging artist. To mitigate this, we will focus on delivering a piece of the highest quality, giving Stina expert support thoughout the development of the piece. Our inspiring marketing strategy will engage with audiences, ensuring strong ticket sales. Our established partnership with Sadler's Wells will ensure we maximise exposure to a receptive audience.


    Donors will be invited into the creative process, through studio visits and Q&A opportunities with Stina, alongside regular reports via email. During the production they will be invited to a dedicated supporter evening, and a full report including critical and audience reaction will be circulated.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £210,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £50,000 Artist Fees and Training Fees for choreographer, music and creative team, including expenses
      £130,000 Production costs Costumes, wigs, shoes, props, scenery
      £9,000 Engagement activities Costs of subsiding tickets for participants in our engagement projects and holding audience insight
      £21,000 Marketing and Digital content Costs of producing marketing materials, and creation of videos and blogs
  • Background


    Nora will be rehearsed in our studios at Markova House, Kensington, and performances will take place at Sadler’s Wells, a venue renowned for hosting cutting edge dance. As its first Associate Company, we have a long history performing on their atmospheric stage, attracting a high proportion of first time audiences.


    With her first professional work, Stina Quagebeur will take a monumental leap as a choreographer, raising her profile in the industry and beyond. Through giving a high-profile platform to an emerging artist we can inspire other young female choreographers, as well as giving our dancers a rounded creative experience. Audiences will be inspired by an intellectually and emotionally stimulating piece, both in theatres and in our engagement programmes, promoting an underrepresented viewpoint.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    English National Ballet is a world-class ballet company, renowned for creative excellence, innovative collaborations and engaging ways of honouring and enhancing traditional ballet. We have previously used our position to highlight the work of female artists and it remains a key focus of our Artistic Director Tamara Rojo CBE.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Tamara Rojo CBE, ENB Artistic Director

    Leading the artistic vision of ENB, Tamara spearheaded the Company’s focus on challenging the underrepresentation of female choreographers.

    Stina Quagebeur

    Dancer at ENB, Stina has also been developing her career as a choreographer, presenting work in competitions and projects over the last few years.

Stina Quagebeur, Tamara Rojo and Crystal Costa talk about Nora.

“I had the idea for female choreographers four years ago before the current debate started. My original motive was simple: I had never done a piece by a female choreographer. In the theatre the dynamic of the piece is always from a male perspective.”

Tamara Rojo, of She Said in 2015