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Darcey Bussell

Presenter

Biography

Darcey Bussell in action.
Darcey Bussell in The Prince of the Pagodas, The Royal Ballet © Bill Cooper

Presenter Darcey Bussell is a former Principal of The Royal Ballet and one of the most famous British dancers of her generation. During her nearly twenty years as a Principal of the Company she won renown for her unique combination of a tall, athletic physique with soft lyricism. Her extensive broadcast work includes appearing as a judge on ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ and presenting The Royal Ballet’s cinema simulcasts, broadcast worldwide.

Bussell trained at The Royal Ballet School and joined the Company in 1988. She was promoted to Principal in 1989 after the premiere of Kenneth MacMillan’s The Prince of the Pagodas, in which Bussell created the lead role of Princess Rose. She retired from the Company in June 2007 with a performance of MacMillan’s Song of the Earth, broadcast live on BBC2. She came out of retirement to dance the Spirit of the Flame at the 2012 London Olympics closing ceremony, leading a troupe of 200 dancers.

Her books include Darcey Bussell: A Life in Pictures, the ‘Magic Ballerina’ children’s series and her autobiography. Among the many charities Bussell supports, she is President of the Royal Academy of Dance, Patron of the Sydney Dance Company and President of Birmingham Royal Ballet’s fund-raising appeal. She was appointed an OBE in 1995 and CBE in 2006.

Videos

News and features

Watch: Members of the cast and creative teams on <em>The Nutcracker</em>

Watch: Members of the cast and creative teams on The Nutcracker

16 December 2015

Backstage films from the live relay of the Christmas classic including Darcey Bussell's visit to The Royal Ballet School and Drosselmeyer's special effect secrets.

<em>The Nutcracker</em> relayed live to cinemas on 16 December 2015

The Nutcracker relayed live to cinemas on 16 December 2015

11 December 2015

Christmas magic comes to a cinema near you with Peter Wright's classic production.

ROH TV and radio broadcasts announced for Christmas 2015

ROH TV and radio broadcasts announced for Christmas 2015

9 December 2015

The Christmas line-up features celebrated Royal Opera and Royal Ballet performances, including Carlos Acosta's Carmen and Jonas Kaufmann in Andrea Chénier.

Photos