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Due to the ongoing effects of closure at the Royal Opera House, information about artists is only updated periodically during this time. We apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Liam Scarlett



Liam Scarlett in action.
Liam Scarlett and Laura Morera in rehearsal for Viscera, The Royal Ballet © ROH/Andrej Uspenski, 2012

English choreographer Liam Scarlett was The Royal Ballet’s Artist in Residence. His works for The Royal Ballet include Despite, Vayamos al Diablo, Consolations and Liebestraum (nominated for a Critics’ Circle Award), Asphodel Meadows (nominated for a South Bank Award and an Olivier Award, and winner of a Critics’ Circle National Dance Award), Sweet Violets, ‘Diana and Actaeon’ in Metamorphosis: Titian 2012, Hansel and Gretel, Jubilee pas de deux (in celebration of HM The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee), The Age of Anxiety, Summertime, Frankenstein (a co-production with San Francisco Ballet) and Symphonic Dances. In the 2017/18 Season he produced a new production of Swan Lake for The Royal Ballet. Liam Scarlett's position with The Royal Ballet ended in March 2020.

Scarlett was born in Ipswich and trained at the Linda Shipton School of Dancing before joining The Royal Ballet School, White Lodge. While at the School he won both the Kenneth MacMillan and Ursula Moreton Choreographic Awards, and was the first recipient of the De Valois Trust Fund Choreographers’ Award. He graduated into The Royal Ballet in 2005, promoted to First Artist in 2008. He retired as a dancer in 2012, that year becoming The Royal Ballet’s first Artist in Residence.

Scarlett’s work for other companies includes No Man’s Land (English National Ballet), Gargoyles and Funérailles (New York City Ballet), With a Chance of Rain (American Ballet Theatre), Vespertine, The Firebird and Carmen (Norweign National Ballet), A Misummer Night’s Dream (Royal New Zealand Ballet and Queensland Ballet), Viscera and Euphotic (Miami City Ballet), Hummingbird (San Francisco Ballet), Promenade Sentimentale (K-Ballet), Serpent (BalletBoyz: The Talent) and Hinterland and Indigo Children (Ballet Black). He was Artistic Associate at Queensland Ballet from 2016 to 2019.

News and features

How choreographer Liam Scarlett is reimagining Swan Lake

19 January 2018
How choreographer Liam Scarlett is reimagining <em>Swan Lake</em>

A fresh look at the great classic, The Royal Ballet's new production is the Company's first in 30 years.

What makes a good dance score?

11 April 2017
What makes a good dance score?

Graceful Tchaikovsky, vivacious Stravinsky, angular minimalist music - or something else? We explore what makes the best music for ballet and beyond.

How does The Royal Ballet School create such great choreographers?

24 February 2017
How does The Royal Ballet School create such great choreographers?

Several world-class choreographers began their training with The Royal Ballet School – how do they grow the dance-makers of the future?

Posts by Liam Scarlett

Liam Scarlett on Walter Sickert and Jack the Ripper

4 April 2012
Liam Scarlett on Walter Sickert and Jack the Ripper

The choreographer on the inspiration for his new short ballet, Sweet Violets.