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Greek National Opera Ballet’s Lynn Seymour quits post June 8, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Ballet Dance Opera.
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Classical dancer Lynn Seymour served as artistic director at the Greek National Opera Ballet

Lynn Seymour, the world-renowned Canadian classical dancer who served as artistic director at the Greek National Opera Ballet for the past year, has resigned from her post.

Commenting on her decision, Seymour noted that her “artistic objectives could not be reached under specific working conditions,” while adding that changes she had proposed “could not be implemented in the near future.” The Greek National Opera Ballet, which has accepted Seymour’s resignation, said that ties between the two sides remained amicable.

A legendary dancer in classical ballet and more recently an instructor, Seymour was offered the post of artistic director at the National Opera Ballet by Stefanos Lazaridis, shortly after he had assumed its management with the aim of reviving the entire approach to state ballet performances in this country. Throughout the National Opera Ballet’s hierarchy, however, Seymour apparently began to encounter an unproductive work environment stifled by public sector-type complacency.

Making no attempt to conceal her frustration, and hinting that resignation was not too far off, Seymour, in an interview with Greek daily Kathimerini published last January, had remarked: “Greek bureaucracy is continuously creating obstacles for me. Such regulations have no place in the arts.” “You cannot direct an artistic group as if it’s a post office, a provincial one, too,” she added.

Reports said that Seymour had returned to her home in the United Kingdom. As for the National Opera Ballet, its artistic agenda for next season has already been mapped out, sources said. Seymour’s successor, the sources added, will be announced very soon.

Seymour, the inspiration for many choreographers, particularly Kenneth MacMillan, emerged from the ranks of the UK’s Royal Ballet in the late 1950s and early 60s, when the company became one of the world’s greatest.

Ballet critic Zoe Anderson, in her book “The Royal Ballet: 75 Years” (published by Faber and Faber, 2006) described Seymour as a “classical dancer of extraordinary individuality, musical and powerfully expressive.”

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