SCOTTISH BALLET PRESS RELEASE
September 06, 1999
Kenn Burke has enjoyed a long and distinguished career with Scottish Ballet: firstly as a dancer with the Company: then as Artistic Director of Scottish Ballet 2 (the Company's first small-scale touring department) and, simultaneously, as Assistant Artistic Director to Galina Samsova.
Over the last eighteen months Kenn Burke has led the Company as Acting Artistic Director, responsible for two highly successful Winter Seasons (La Fille mal gardée and Cinderella); the recent Spring Season which saw Scottish Ballet stage one world premiere (Tim Rushton's Night Life), a European premiere (Lila York's Rapture) and a Scottish premiere (Kenneth MacMillan's Diversions). Most recently he led the Company on a highly-successful foreign tour to Spain with Peter Darrell's Giselle.
Kenn Burke also led the Company in their first London Season for over twenty years to the new Sadler's Wells Theatre, and has been responsible for the current revivals of Peter Darrell's Giselle and Tales of Hoffmann - which open the 30th Anniversary Autumn Season on 29th September. He will leave the Company at the end of the Autumn tour, on 16th October 1999.
Kenn Burke, Assistant Artistic Director, said:
"My years at Scottish Ballet have contained some of the most wonderful and memorable experiences of my life. The privilege of working with Peter Darrell and the many great artists who have performed with the Company over the years is something I will always treasure.
I wish Robert North and his team all the best for the future. They are taking over a Company whose determination, talent and enthusiasm is second to none in Scotland. I know they will rise to the challenges of the future as well as they have coped with those of the past.
I am enormously grateful to all the artists and staff of the Company who have supported me so wholeheartedly over the last eighteen months. Their professionalism and loyalty on stage and behind the scenes has meant a great deal to me."
Peg Beveridge, Chairman of the Scottish Ballet Board, said:
" Kenn Burke has provided strong leadership to the Company over the last eighteen months. The Board are most grateful to the way in which he has - and continues to - inspire and direct the Company's activities both on and off-stage. He deserves our thanks and congratulations for maintaining the Company's standards and handing over to Robert North a strong and highly-talented ensemble. The Board acknowledge how difficult this decision will have been for Kenn. We send him our warmest wishes on whatever path his career now follows."
Norman Quirk, Managing Director of Scottish Ballet, said:
"Kenn Burke will prove a hard act to follow: his association with the Company goes back to the early Peter Darrell years and he has been pivotal in maintaining the Darrell repertory and ensuring the high standards of dancing for which the Company is renowned. It has been a pleasure to work with him over the last nine months and I join with all of my colleagues in thanking him for his many years of dedication to Scottish Ballet and in wishing him well in the future."
Robert North, Artistic Director, said:
"I have the utmost admiration for Kenn and the extraordinary commitment and love he has given to the Company over many, many years and especially the way in which he has cared for and nurtured the dancers over recent months. I appreciate the enormity of the decision he has taken at this time and am, of course, sad that he will be leaving us so soon.
So many owe him such a great deal - personally and professionally - for the support that he has given to dancers, choreographers, designers and other members of the Company. Life at Scottish Ballet will seem very different without his presence. We all wish him good fortune and best wishes for the future."