Revered dancers retire from West Australian Ballet

Revered dancers retire from West Australian Ballet

In the midst of West Australian Ballet’s biggest ever creation and celebration of the Company’s 70th anniversary, three of the State Ballet Company’s much-loved dancers took their final bows at the close of Swan Lake. Principal Matthew Lehmann and Demi-Soloists Christian Luck and Claire Voss leapt off stage for the final time on 11 December.

“It’s a special moment in every dancers career, to celebrate their swan song…” said Aurélien Scannella, Artistic Director of West Australian Ballet. “Matt, Christian and Claire are three of our most dedicated and celebrated dancers. I congratulate them on each of their incredible careers, they will be missed.”

Lehmann joined West Australian Ballet in 2005, ahead of a tenure at Alberta Ballet in Canada, he returned to Perth 2010 and was made Principal by Scannella in 2013 after the season of John Cranko’s Onegin.

He has danced countless lead roles including as Young Dracula in Dracula, Drosselmeyer in The Nutcracker, Captain Hook in Peter Pan, Albrecht in Giselle and as both Sebastian and William Greenwood/the Eagle in the current season of Swan Lake along with starring contemporary roles in David Dawson’s On the Nature of Daylight, Nils Christe’s Before Nightfall and Gary Lang’s Milnjiya, Milky Way – River of Stars. Lehmann has also been lauded for his many choreographic works, including Behind those beautiful eyes which took the stage at Ballet at the Quarry 2021.

“Matt has left a large legacy, leading many of West Australian Ballet’s world-class productions with gravitas, and has inspired countless dancers of the next generation.”

“From the charming Drosselmeyer to the emotive Dracula and so many other lead roles, Matt has set the tone at West Australian Ballet with his world-class partnering, his technicality, and his expression. It will be bittersweet to see his final performance, and we thank him for sharing his gift with Western Australia for so long.”

Christian Luck leaves the State Ballet Company as the longest serving dancer after joining the Company in 2004 after graduating from The Australian Ballet School. Luck has starred in roles such as Marcello in La Boheme, the Prince in Snow White and the 7 Dwarfs and as Dr Coppelius in Coppelia.

“Christian’s dedication to West Australian Ballet for over 18 years is so impressive, we are a grateful for the thousands of hours he has put towards this Company, and to leave as our longest serving dancer is a wonderful achievement.”

Claire Voss joined West Australian Ballet in 2016 after time with Dortmund Ballet, Zurich Ballet and Finnish National Ballet. Voss will be remembered by her emotive performances as Myrtha in Giselle and as the Sylph in La Sylphide.

“Since joining West Australian Ballet in 2016, Claire has epitomised the dedication and hard-work that our Company stands for. She undertook each role with aplomb.”

As Swan Lake closes and the curtain comes down on the careers of Lehmann, Luck and Voss, West Australian Ballet thank each for their tremendous service and look forward to each, being valued and active members of the ballet family in the future.

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