Entertainment & Arts

Ballet star Daria Klimentova to retire

Daria Klimentova and Vadim Muntagirov
Image caption Klimentova and Muntagirov appeared on BBC Four programme The Agony and Ecstasy

Daria Klimentova, the English National Ballet's lead principal, is to retire from dancing after a 25-year career.

Her final performances will be in Romeo and Juliet at the Royal Albert Hall on 14, 19 and 22 June this year.

"It's a very sad moment for me but at the same time very exciting," Klimentova said.

"Daria brings her own special magic to everything she does," said Tamara Rojo, the ENB's artistic director.

"I wish Daria success and happiness in her future and I will miss her as a wonderful artist," added Rojo, who will also take the lead role of Juliet, playing four performances opposite Carlos Acosta during the 11-night run.

Derek Deane's production can be seen between 11 and 22 June.

Vadim Muntagirov, who formed a formidable partnership with Klimentova at the ENB, is returning to dance the role of Romeo opposite the retiring ballerina. He recently announced he was moving to the Royal Ballet.

The pair will perform at the matinee on 14 June, the evening performance on 19 June and the Sunday matinee on the 22nd.

Image copyright ENB
Image caption Klimentova and Muntagirov have played Romeo and Juliet before.

Other dancers who can be seen in the leading roles during the Albert Hall run include Alina Cojocaru and Friedemann Vogel, from the Stuttgart Ballet.

Klimentova said: "I have worked with some incredible people, who I will always remember. I have given my ballet life to English National Ballet, with all the ups and downs.

Scottish Ballet

"I will especially miss dancing with Vadim, I was waiting for him for 20 years but it was worth it, as he took me to a different world. I am now ready to move on and help all the talented dancers, just like I've been helped through my long career."

The Prague-born star has danced professionally for 25 years and spent 18 of those with the ENB.

She trained at the Prague State Conservatory, before becoming a soloist at the city's National Theatre Ballet company. She then moved to South Africa in 1992 to join the Cape Ballet Company.

A year later she took a principal role at the Scottish Ballet before moving on to the ENB in 1996.

Her many awards include the Critics' Circle National Dance award for outstanding female dancer in 2011.

Her favourite roles include Odile in Swan Lake and Manon with Vogel.

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