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Melissa Hamilton

First Soloist of The Royal Ballet

Biography

Melissa Hamilton in action.
Melissa Hamilton as the title role in Manon, The Royal Ballet © ROH, 2014. Photograph by Alice Pennefather

Melissa Hamilton is a First Soloist of The Royal Ballet. She joined the Company in 2007 as an Artist and was promoted to First Artist in 2009, Soloist in 2010 and First Soloist in 2013. She created a role in Wayne McGregor's Infra in 2008 and has since created several roles for McGregor, including in Limen, Carbon Life and Acis and Galatea. Other roles include Manon, Juliet, Mary Vetsera (Mayerling), Raven Girl, the Sugar Plum Fairy (The Nutcracker), Queen of the Dryads (Don Quixote), Olga (Onegin), the Lilac Fairy and Princess Florine (The Sleeping Beauty), Terpsichore (Apollo) and roles in Symphonic Variations, 'Rubies' (Jewels), Fool’s Paradise, Requiem, Tryst, Las hermanas, Agon, Gloria, DGV: Danse à grande vitesse, Serenade and The Concert.

Hamilton was born in Belfast and grew up in Dromore, County Down. She began dancing aged four and trained at the Jennifer Bullick School of Ballet. Aged 16 she trained at the Elmhurst School of Dance, Birmingham, for two years and then privately with Masha Mukhamedov in Athens. She won the 2007 Youth American Grand Prix and that year entered The Royal Ballet.

Hamilton was awarded the Critics’ Circle Outstanding Female Classical Performance in 2009 and won Gold Medal in the Eighth International Seoul Ballet Competition in 2011. In 2013 she was part of a group from The Royal Ballet that took part in special gala performances in Derry as part of its celebrations as UK City of Culture, and that year as made an Allianz Arts and Cultural Brand Ambassador for Northern Ireland

Videos

News and features

International ballet stars to perform at Ann Maguire Gala on 22 March 2015

International ballet stars to perform at Ann Maguire Gala on 22 March 2015

26 January 2015

Evening of world class dance to honour the life of Ann Maguire and celebrate her legacy.

Royal Opera House stars gather to launch Live Cinema Season 2014/15

Royal Opera House stars gather to launch Live Cinema Season 2014/15

16 October 2014

Dancer Melissa Hamilton, soprano Elizabeth Watts, Kevin O’Hare and others celebrate the start of the new Season.

Watch: Behind the scenes with The Royal Ballet in Taiwan

Watch: Behind the scenes with The Royal Ballet in Taiwan

8 October 2014

First Soloist Melissa Hamilton introduces newly-released backstage films from the Company’s tour earlier this year.

Watch: Melissa Hamilton and Francesca Hayward on performing Manon for the first time

Watch: Melissa Hamilton and Francesca Hayward on performing Manon for the first time

3 October 2014

The Royal Ballet's latest Manons on their first appearance in one of ballet's most dramatic roles.

Getting Inside Manon's Head: Great dancers on one of ballet's most enigmatic roles

Getting Inside Manon's Head: Great dancers on one of ballet's most enigmatic roles

25 September 2014

Antoinette Sibley, Alessandra Ferri, Viviana Durante, Darcey Bussell and Melissa Hamilton speak to us in the ballet’s 40th anniversary year.

Watch: Ballet shot in super slow-motion

Watch: Ballet shot in super slow-motion

5 September 2014

Filming Royal Ballet dancers at 1,500 frames-per-second offers a unique glimpse of the tiny nuances of technique.

Photos

Melissa Hamilton as the title role in Manon, The Royal Ballet

Eric Underwood and Melissa Hamilton in Tryst, The Royal Ballet

Leticia Stock, Reece Clarke, Melissa Hamilton and Mayara Magri in Symphonic Variations

Melissa Hamilton as Manon and Matthew Golding as Des Grieux in Manon

Leticia Stock, Vadim Muntagirov, Melissa Hamilton and Emma Maguire in rehearsal for Symphonic Variations, The Royal Ballet

Melissa Hamilton in Raven Girl

Melissa Hamilton and Gary Avis

Royal Ballet Soloist Melissa Hamilton

Melissa Hamilton as Mary Vetsera in Mayerling.

Melissa Hamilton as Mary Vetsera and Rupert Pennefather as Crown Prince Rudolf in Mayerling.

Melissa Hamilton and Thiago Soares rehearsing Las Hermanas

Edward Watson and Melissa Hamilton in Fool's Paradise.

Melissa Hamilton in Metamorphosis: Titian 2012.

Melissa Hamilton as Mary Vetsera in Mayerling

Melissa Hamilton as Manon and Matthew Golding as Des Grieux in Manon

Melissa Hamilton and Ryoichi Hirano in rehearsals for Raven Girl

Melissa Hamilton in Tryst, The Royal Ballet

Dawid Trzensimiech, Marcelino Sambé, Melissa Hamilton, Tristan Dyer and Valentino Zucchetti and Artists of The Royal Ballet in Rubies (Jewels), The Royal Ballet

Melissa Hamilton and artists of The Royal Ballet in 'Trespass' (Metamorphosis: Titian 2012)

Royal Ballet Soloist Melissa Hamilton

Melissa Hamilton as The Sugar Plum Fairy and Sergei Polunin as The Prince in The Nutcracker.

Melissa Hamilton as Mary Vetsera in Mayerling.

Melissa Hamilton as Mary Vetsera and Rupert Pennefather as Crown Prince Rudolf in Mayerling.

Melissa Hamilton as Mary Vetsera and Rupert Pennefather as Crown Prince Rudolf in Mayerling.

Melissa Hamilton as The Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker.

Edward Watson and Melissa Hamilton in Fool's Paradise.

Eric Underwood and Melissa Hamilton in Infra

Melissa Hamilton as Queen of the Dryads and artists of The Royal Ballet in Don Quixote, The Royal Ballet

Melissa Hamilton in Tryst, The Royal Ballet

Melissa Hamilton as Manon in Manon

Melissa Hamilton as Manon and Gary Avis as Monsieur GM in Manon

Kevin O'Hare and Melissa Hamilton at the 2014/15 cinema launch

Melissa Hamilton as Juliet and Edward Watson as Romeo in Romeo and Juliet

Ryoichi Hirano and Melissa Hamilton in rehearsals for Raven Girl

Brian Maloney and Melissa Hamilton in Chroma

Melissa Hamilton as Mary Vetsera in Mayerling.