6 February 2013 at 5.51pm | Comment on this article
Principal Mara Galeazzi and First Artist Jonathan Watkins are to leave The Royal Ballet, retiring and pursuing a career as a choreographer respectively.
Mara will retire from The Royal Ballet in July 2013, at the end of the current season. Mara, who had her first child last April, will move to Oman to be with her husband. She will focus on new projects, teaching dance and her work for her charity foundation Dancing for The Children, which raises funds for sick children in Africa. Mara’s farewell performance at the Royal Opera House will be as Mary Vetsera in Mayerling on 13 June. Her final performance with The Royal Ballet will be in Monaco where she will perform the title role in Manon on 29 June.
Jonathan will leave the Company on Saturday 23 February to embark on a freelance career as a choreographer/director. Jonathan joined The Royal Ballet in 2003. His interest in choreography began as a student at The Royal Ballet School and continued as a member of the Company. He has choreographed for First Drafts and Draft Works and created As One for the Main Stage of the Royal Opera House. Jonathan also choreographed one of the ballets that made up Metamorphosis: Titian 2012 (Diana and Actaeon) with William Tuckett and Liam Scarlett. His many outside commissions to date include two short films for Channel 4 and the role of movement director for Alan Bennett's latest play People at the National Theatre. Jonathan has numerous projects lined up including choreographing new works in Russia and America, a full-length adaptation in the UK and a collection of theatre and film projects.