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When cameras meet dancers: Stunning photos of Royal Ballet dancers taken around London

Jacob Jonas photographs The Royal Ballet's Francesca Hayward and Solomon Golding for a #camerasanddancers Instameet.

By Mel Spencer (Senior Editor (Social Media))

13 October 2016 at 12.10pm | 10 Comments

Jacob Jonas, the photographer behind the highly popular #camerasanddancers Instameets, has shared a selection of pictures from his most recent London shoot.

In a break from rehearsals for La fille mal gardée, Principal dancer Francesca Hayward and Company Artist Solomon Golding took to the streets of London to take part in an exclusive shoot with the photographer.

#worldballetday with #royalballet Principal dancer Francesca Hayward. #camerasanddancers

A photo posted by Jacob Jonas (@jacobjonasthecompany) on

Jonas photographed Hayward and Golding in in a number of locations around the capital. 'We explored the streets of London for an hour and found the locations we wanted to use,' says Jones. 'With new technologies playing such a big role in the arts, it is an interest of mine to create work that is separate from the studio or stage that tells a story on the street.'

Jonas posted five images of the dancers from the shoot on Instagram. He hopes his account, which showcases dancers in cities across the world, will bring more people to the art form.  ‘It is part of my goal to take dance and expose it to younger audiences using social platforms and content creation.’

Royal Ballet (@royaloperahouse) Principal Francesca Hayward photographed in London for #CamerasandDancers A photo posted by Jacob Jonas (@jacobjonasthecompany) on

 Hayward recently made her debut in the role of Lise in Frederick Ashton’s La fille mal gardée. She is due to perform in Wayne McGregor's Carbon Life as well a new work to celebrate ten years since the choreographer joined the Company as Resident Choreographer. In the coming months, Hayward will also dance the role of The Sugar Plum Fairy and Clara in The Nutcracker.

English dancer Golding joined company in 2013. This Season he is cast in a mixed programme of two new works by Charlotte Edmonds and Robert Binet.


Jacob Jonas The Company is a 21st century company with a focus on creating dance both for a live audience and for the camera. Find out more about their work and follow Jacob Jonas on Instagram.

 Read our run down of our 14 favourite dance Instagram accounts

This article has 10 comments

  1. Donna B responded on 9 April 2017 at 8:06pm Reply

    Lovely, thanks for sharing.

  2. I wish I'd rounded a corner in the city and stumbled upon one of these shoots. There's something really beautifully arresting about ballet in the street.

  3. Rachel Armitage responded on 14 April 2017 at 5:30am Reply

    I feel there is so much competition now between the Royal Ballet +ENB as to who is 'cooler'. I find these photography shoots pretentious and are you really saying these are the best backdrops London could offer?!? . Sorry, could do better.

    • Mel Spencer (Senior Editor (Social Media)) responded on 14 April 2017 at 1:37pm

      Hi Rachel,

      Thanks for your comment, and for the feedback on the pictures. These photos were taken as part of the cameras and dancers project launched by photographer Jacob Jonas. They weren't commissioned by The Royal Ballet, although we're very happy with the photos that have been captured of our dancers. They're certainly not an attempt to outdo any other ballet company; rather, they're a selection of striking images that we felt warranted further attention on our website.

      Hope that clears things up!

      Many thanks


  4. I think this fabulous. The Grace of the daneeds with the rough textures of the backgrounds it pulls it into the present also showing ballet reaches every type of location and space it's universal even the toughest and poorest places.
    I trained at RBS now have my own ballet school in Leicester and I applaud these images

  5. Kate Armitage responded on 14 April 2017 at 2:20pm Reply

    No relation to the earlier poster… Just as well as I could not disagree more! These are brilliant pictures, showing the strength and beauty of the dancers. I love the settings, it is the London that Londoners know. Well done.

  6. Deb Wylde responded on 14 April 2017 at 3:52pm Reply

    [This comment has been edited as per our community guidelines]

    I think think the photographs are stunning. One can see a photograph of a dancer wearing a pretty dress anywhere, whereas these are unique. They show that sometimes dancers aren't like perfect porcelain dolls. The backdrops complement the dancers' poses perfectly!

  7. Stevie responded on 14 April 2017 at 7:06pm Reply

    Long may the competition between companies remain as healthy as it is today. Dancers sharing the stage with other companies, companies sharing production costs on new ventures, etc, etc. The photographs are taken against 'real worldly' backdrops and with out any suggestion of contrivance, they appear as candid shots. There is contradiction in stating that these are pretentious and in the same sentence saying that they are not the best locations that London can offer. Anyway, thanks for sharing them and keep up the good work.

  8. Emily responded on 15 April 2017 at 12:00pm Reply

    These photographs are super - showing grace and strength.

  9. Graeme Williams responded on 17 June 2017 at 4:53pm Reply

    What has this to do with any other ballet company. They are photographs of dancers in unusual locations. In my view they work very well from "great" to "stunning" . Love Frankie's positions.

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