The Hungarian Ballet Grand Prix, one of the most important international cultural events of the year to be held in the summer of 2023 as announced on Wednesday at the Hungarian State Opera House. The event will debut next year as part of the Veszprém-Balaton 2023 European Capital of Culture programme and be hosted by ActiCity. The event is organised by the Hungarian National Ballet Institute and the Hungarian State Opera Foundation for Ballet Students, under the patronage of the Hungarian State Opera.
The Hungarian Ballet Grand Prix international ballet competition for children and youth will be held for the first time in Hungary from 26 June to 1 July 2023 at Acticity in Veszprém. The event is part of the Veszprém-Balaton 2023 European Capital of Culture programme and is organised by the Hungarian National Ballet Institute and the Hungarian State Opera Foundation for Ballet Students with the professional support of the Hungarian State Opera.
The long-term goal of the Hungarian Ballet Grand Prix is to nurture talent and to promote ballet education and the art of ballet in Hungary. Competitors will compete in professional and amateur categories, in classical and modern ballet, and the high quality of the competition will be ensured by a jury of 8 internationally renowned dance artists, masters and dedicated supporters, in addition to the partners.
“I met Director Solymosi in 2017 and have been following his vision ever since. The Ballet Grand Prix has been a priority of his directorial bid for a decade, which we began redesigning in the winter of 2021. Next year, Europe will be looking to Veszprém, and we will fill the city with ballet,” said Annamária Steiner-Isky, Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Hungarian State Opera’s Foundation for Ballet Students and initiator of the Hungarian Ballet Grand Prix concept.
“Creating an international ballet competition has been a dream of mine for more than 10 years, so it has been in all my applications for ballet director. I am very grateful that within the framework of the Veszprém-Balaton 2023 ECoC programme we finally have the opportunity to organise the first Hungarian Ballet Grand Prix. A competition like this is important not only for the education of young talents and professional encounters, but also for the international recognition of a country’s cultural life”, said Tamás Solymosi, Director of the Hungarian National Ballet and Ballet Institute, at the press conference.
“Both the Hungarian National Ballet Institute and the Opera House Children’s Choir ensure the high quality artistic development of more than 200 children. In the future, we would like to pay even more attention to the training of our future ballet dancers and choir singers, which is why I consider it very important to support the Hungarian Ballet Grand Prix now being launched. We are also planning to create our own eight-year school, the Opera Campus, to meet special needs of children studying in our institutions – another great need to support future talents,” said Szilveszter Ókovács, Director General of the Hungarian State Opera.
The first international ballet competition in Hungary will focus on young people aged 7-18, with pre-competitive, junior and youth categories in five age groups.
In total, candidates will have to compete in three rounds. The contestants will have to submit a video presentation of a pre-set variation, while in the second round they will have to present their individual, duet and group numbers in person. In the third round, the most talented finalists will present to the audience a completely new performance, which they will have learned during the event. The winners of the Hungarian Ballet Grand Prix will be announced on the final day of the event at a grand gala performance.
The winner of the competition, aged 15-18, will receive Youth Grand Prix recognition and a cash prize, as well as the opportunity to perform at next year’s gala as an invited performer. The winner of the 10 to 14 age group will be awarded the Junior Grand Prix.
“The Veszprém-Balaton 2023 European Capital of Culture programme aims to strengthen Veszprém and the Bakony-Balaton region as a highly visible European cultural area in the medium and long term. The involvement of young people in the world of arts is one of the best tools to achieve this, so it was a logical decision to accept and support the Veszprém Ballet Grand Prix competition, which is aimed at creating a tradition: the classical and contemporary dance competition of young people will bring the region and the city of Veszprém into the international dance arts bloodstream in the long term”, said Alíz Markovits, CEO of VEB2023 ECoC.
Alíz Markovits added: “Veszprém has a grand tradition of movement arts and dance. Next year of the ECoC title, we will organise the 24th edition of the Dance Festival, and in the spirit of this great festival the Hungarian Ballet Grand Prix will join the ActiCity, the home of this international ballet competition.
At the end of the event, the CEO invited everyone to visit Veszprém on 21-22th January for the opening ceremony of the European Capital of Culture and then to enjoy the thousands of events of the ECoC throughout the year.
The detailed competition programme of the Hungarian Ballet Grand Prix will be published by the organisers at the beginning of 2023 on www.hbgp.hu also worth visiting for information concerning the competition, finals and gala performance in Veszprém.
Source: Press release/Hungarian National Ballet Institute