The Company

Russian Ballet

The anchoring of dance in Monaco: Russian Ballet 

1909 marks the beginning of a strong presence of choreographic art in Monaco. Serge de Diaghilev presents his Russian Ballet in Paris for the first time. They set up in Monte-Carlo which became their creative workshop for the next two decades. From the Principality, Diaghilev reformed the ballet of his time in all its forms. Upon his death in 1929, the company was dissolved. Several personalities and choreographers revived it under various names but it disappeared completely in 1951.

The birth

The birth of the current Monte-Carlo Ballet Company

In 1985, the Ballets de Monte-Carlo Company was born thanks to the wish of H.R.H. the Princess of Hanover, who wanted to enrol in this dance tradition in Monaco. The new company was directed by Ghislaine Thesmar and Pierre Lacotte, then by Jean-Yves Esquerre.

The expansion

The rapid expansion of the Company

With his experience as a dancer with Rosella Hightower and John Neumeier, and as choreographer-director of the Centre Chorégraphique National de Tours, Jean-Christophe Maillot has turned the company around. He created more than 40 ballets for her, including several which enter the repertoire of large international companies. The Ballets de Monte-Carlo are now in demand throughout the world thanks to the iconic works of Jean-Christophe Maillot such as Vers un pays sage (1995), Roméo et Juliette (1996), Cendrillon (1999), La Belle (2001), Le Songe (2005), Altro Canto (2006), Faust (2007), LAC (2011), CHORE (2013), Casse-Noisette Compagnie (2013), La Mégère apprivoisée (2017), Abstract/Life (2018), Core meu (2019), Coppél-i.A. (2019)...

Furthermore, Jean-Christophe Maillot also enriches the company’s repertoire by inviting the major choreographers of our time but also enabling emerging choreographers to work with this exceptional structure, which are the 50 dancers of the Ballets de Monte-Carlo. Among these guest choreographers are Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, Shen Wei, Alonzo King, Emio Greco, Chris Haring, Marco Goecke, Lucinda Childs, William Forsythe, Jiri Kylian, Karole Armitage, Maurice Béjart and even Marie Chouinard.

In 2000, Jean-Christophe Maillot created the Monaco Dance Forum, international showcase that presents an eclectic fusion of performances, exhibitions, workshops and conferences. The company regularly participates in this festival, as does the Princess Grace Academy.

The future

The future of Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo 

In 2011, under the chairmanship of H.R.H. the Princess of Hanover, a new structure directed by Jean-Christophe Maillot reunited these three institutions: The Ballets de Monte-Carlo currently concentrate on the excellence of an international company, the assets of a diverse festival and the potential for a school of a high level. Creation, training and production are currently united in Monaco to serve the art of choreography in a way that is unprecedented in the world of dance.