Celebrating the Royal Academy of Dance at 100

The RAD has been inspiring the world to dance for almost a century, and on 31 December 2020 will officially turn 100.

To celebrate this landmark in our history, we are planning a year-long programme of events and initiatives throughout 2020, leading up to that moment and focused on sharing our past, our present and our future with our global dance community.

For the first time we are unveiling highlights of the exciting year ahead and the one message that we want you to take away is that we want everyone, young and old to get involved in the celebrations.

100 Events in 100 Places

Never short on ambition, we’re planning to host 100 events in 100 places around the world. If you’d like to get involved and plan your own event, contact us for more information.

Here at RAD Australia we have planned our own programme of events to raise the profile of the RAD and to find new ways of engaging with different audiences.  Download our RAD Australia Centenary events calendar for your wall but in the meantime see below for details.

Boys DANCE 20 and Challenge
3 – 4 January – AC Arts, Adelaide, SA             

Our annual Project B boys only summer workshop will be supersized for the centenary to include a boys dance challenge. A unique boys only competition adjudicated by Gerard Charles RAD Artistic Director.

Shaping Bodies, Shaping Minds  
18 – 19 January – VCASS – Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School, Melbourne, VIC

A two day conference bringing together performers, teachers, practitioners and scholars from the fields of dance, education, history, science and cultural engagement for an exciting and thought-provoking programme. Includes an opening cocktail party on Friday 17 January.

RAD100 Pop Up
1 March – Federation Square, Melbourne, VIC
A Pop Up dance event showcasing RAD programs, students and teachers from the Victoria region. Free come and try classes available.

RAD100 at the Victorian Dance Festival
3-5 April – Batman Royale, Melbourne, VIC
Project B Superhero class for 3-7 year olds returns to VDF. We welcome back the 2019 Silver Swans licensees who trained at the event last year to come back with their Swans to take class for free. We hope to have 100 Swans so come along and join in the fun! More info coming soon.

RAD100 Pop Up
5 April – Rundle Mall Gawler Place, Adelaide, SA
A pop up event featuring schools from South Australia and highlights from our current initiatives including Project B and Silver Swans. Free come and try classes available.

Cocktail Event celebrating RAD100 and the 25 Anniversary of the Jacqueline Morland Awards
5 April – St John’s Anglican College Performing Arts Centre, Forest Lake, Brisbane, QLD
This will be a celebration event for the 100 Anniversary of the Academy and also the 25 Anniversary of Jacqueline Morland awards.  A Cocktail event will follow the 25th Anniversary awards with an opportunity to meet the judges. Book now.

RAD100 Gala
18 April – National Theatre, St Kilda, VIC
A supersized centenary edition of our annual Student Showcase for Victoria and Tasmania with special guests. More info coming soon

RAD100 Pop Up at The Orange Show
9-10 May – Orange Showgrounds, Orange, NSW
A pop up event featuring schools from Regional Western New South Wales with come and try classes for the general public and highlights from our current initiatives including Project B and Silver Swans. More info coming soon.

Pas de Deux Partnering Masterclass
17 May – RAD Darlinghurst Studio, Sydney, NSW
Join us for an advanced student partnering masterclass with support from Artists of The Australian Ballet. Bring a partner and develop skills in lifts, turns and other partnering basics.
Book here.

RAD100 Gala
23 May – Canberra Theatre Centre, Canberra, ACT
A supersized centenary edition of our annual Gala in the region showcasing the talent of ACT students. More info coming soon.

WA Festival of Dance Gala; Celebrating 100 years
1 June – Curtin Theatre, Fremantle, WA
The culmination of 4 days of the Festival of Dance the Gala evening in 2020 will include performances by scholarship recipients, a performance dedicated to celebrating the centenary as well as guest artists. Originally from Perth, David McAllister AM Artistic Director of The Australian Ballet and RAD Vice President, will adjudicate on the Gala evening in particular for the David McAllister Cup – an ensemble prize in his honour. The first time in a number of years he has been able to adjudicate his own award. More info coming soon.

From Genée to Fonteyn – An evening with the Genée alumni hosted by David McAllister AM
6 September – Melbourne Arts Centre, Melbourne, VIC
A cocktail evening with previous Australian medallists from the Genée/Fonteyn International Ballet Competition. A unique behind the scenes look at the competition over the years with perspectives from judges, choreographers, dancers, medallists and teachers. Special guests include Amber Scott and Montana Rubin currently dancing with The Australian Ballet and Simone Goldsmith and Kirsty Martin formerly dancers with The Australian Ballet. More special guests to be announced next year. Book now here.

RAD100 Gala
18 October – St John’s Anglican College Performing Arts Centre, Forest Lake, QLD
Centenary Gala showcasing schools in the Queensland region. More info coming soon

More events will be added in more states as the year progresses. Stay tuned for regular updates!

RAD Australia Centenary Partners

Global plans

RAD Centenary Dance Teacher Awards

We are delighted to announce the RAD Centenary Dance Teacher Awards.   The Awards provide an opportunity in the RAD’s centenary year to recognise RAD registered teachers  from across the world through nomination of achievement and contribution to dance teaching in one or more of the following categories:

  1. Early Career Dance Teacher Award
  2. Community Engagement Dance Teacher Award
  3. Outstanding Mentor Teacher Award
  4. RAD Advocacy Dance Teacher Award

Further information will be available from January 2020, when nominations open.

Dance is in our DNA

2020 will see a series of thematic videos released showcasing the diverse work of the Academy and its membership around the world. Video content will be crowd-sourced from the RAD’s global dance community: from RAD teachers, students and examiners to exam candidates and Silver Swans, showing the impact of dance and what it means to so many people. RAD members should login for details on how to get involved. Everyone else should look out for details in the coming months.

Dance Gazette guest editors

Throughout 2020, three guest editors will take the helm of Dance Gazette, and will be invited to present the RAD and its work through the lens of another industry, providing an alternative perspective. We also hope that this will widen the reach and readership of the magazine, enabling us to forge new and lasting partnerships and collaborations. We’ll be revealing our exciting line-up of guest editors nearer the time.

New headquarters

Our new global home in Battersea will be completed in 2020, marking an exciting new chapter in the RAD’s future as a world class leader in dance education and training. The new building will boast seven full-sized dance studios with sprung floors and high specification sound equipment, a performance theatre and an enhanced library and archive, plus a new retail space and large café for members and visitors.

Examiners’ Seminar

The Examiners’ Seminar in 2020 will return to the Park Inn Hotel, London Heathrow and has been organised from 6-10 September 2020 to dovetail with the inaugural Margot Fonteyn International Ballet Competition. The seminar will be led by Chief Examiner, Jennifer Hale, and Panel of Examiners Consultant, Paula Hunt. Whilst there will be moments of reflection and celebration of examining over the years, the worldwide panel of almost 230 examiners will have an opportunity to look ahead to their future work.

The Genée is renamed the Margot Fonteyn International Ballet Competition

In what would have been the 100th birthday year of Dame Margot Fonteyn, the Genée is being renamed in honour of our longest-serving president and world famous Prima Ballerina Assoluta. From 2020, the Genée International Ballet Competition will become the Margot Fonteyn International Ballet Competition. Also, for the first time the centenary competition will be held at the Royal Opera House, in London’s Covent Garden, where Fonteyn herself performed many times. The semi-finals take place on 2 and 3 September at the Linbury Theatre, with the final on 5 September, on the main stage of the Opera House.

Our current President, Dame Darcey Bussell, will be chair of the international jury for the 2020 competition. For information on how to book tickets click here.

A commemorative book

We are publishing a new book, Royal Academy of Dance: Celebrating 100 Years. This commemorative volume, released in December 2019, charts the history of the RAD, providing an overview of the Academy’s accomplishments up until the present, along with a sense of its plans for the future. Containing stunning archival and contemporary photographs, this is a fabulous celebration of exams, training, events and competitions, and the many personalities associated with the RAD over the years. Pre-purchase your copy here

On Point: Royal Academy of Dance at 100

We are working with the V&A to curate a free display celebrating 100 years of the RAD’s significant contribution to the development of British ballet.

The display will present costumes, designs, photographs and more to explore the RAD’s story, from its foundation to its influence on ballet and dance internationally. It highlights the role of successive presidents, including Nureyev’s first performance in Britain in partnership with Dame Margot Fonteyn.

The opening of the display will coincide with the V&A’s annual Performance Festival (25 April – 3 May), which will celebrate dance in all its forms with a wide range of special events taking place throughout the museum. The programme includes a special RAD Weekender from Friday 1 – Sunday 3 May 2020. The full programme of live performance, screenings, workshops, talks and tours will be announced soon.

The display will open in May 2020 and run until February 2021. Entry is free.

Between the Lines: The Art of Choreology – Benesh International Congress

Benesh International will be hosting the 2020 Benesh Congress in London from 22-24 May.

The congress takes place every four years and is a rare opportunity for Benesh professionals, students and those interested in Benesh Movement Notation from all over the world to connect and discuss the latest developments within the Benesh community. A vibrant and varied schedule is planned, combining lectures, workshops and carousel sessions, as well as time to meet and network with the global Benesh community. It will be a unique occasion to reflect on the rich history of Benesh and debate exciting future plans.

The call for contributions has now closed but tickets to attend the congress are available to purchase.


Conference 2020 (London) Mapping Dance and Dance Teaching: Past(s), Present and Future(s)

As part of the Royal Academy of Dance centenary, and in celebration of the Faculty of Education’s 21st anniversary the Faculty of Education of the Royal Academy of Dance will be hosting an international conference Mapping Dance and Dance Teaching: Past(s), Present and Future(s). In September 2020, the Royal Academy of Dance will be welcoming to London dance professionals, practitioners, educators, researchers, dance teachers, historians, musicologists and scholars to discuss, debate and contemplate past, present and future potentialities of dance and dance teaching. Find out more here

Join Our Celebrations

If you would like to know more about our centenary plans, or would like to be a part of them as a participant, sponsor or volunteer please contact Nichola Hall National Marketing and Communications Manager on marketing@rad.org.au. We’d also love to hear more about your own plans to mark the milestone.