Momoko Hirata


Introduced by David Bintley
Born in Gunma, Japan, Momoko Hirata’s early training was with the Reiko Yamamoto Ballet School. She won the prestigious Prix de Lausanne in 2001 and joined Birmingham Royal Ballet from The Royal Ballet School in 2003. Momoko is a dancer of extraordinary technical ability married to an underlying strength totally belied by the slightness of her appearance, and the lightness of her dancing. In ballets that require a high level of virtuosity delivered with an apparent ease she is untouchable and roles like the Sugar Plum Fairy and Rose Fairy in The Nutcracker, the leading ballerina in Theme and Variations and the Harvest pas de deux in Giselle are but a few of the classical roles that she has danced with great distinction to date. It’s not just in purely classical work that her talents shine though, and her performances in more contemporary repertoire such as Balanchine’s Serenade, Agon and Apollo, Garry Stewart’s The Centre and its Opposite, Jessica Lang’s Lyric Pieces and my own E=mc², have been characterised by a deep stylistic awareness. More recently she has begun to add to her repertoire ballets as diverse as Aladdin, The Prince of the Pagodas, The Sleeping Beauty, Sylvia and Coppélia. In 2011 Momoko joined Barcelona Ballet where she experienced dancing a variety of new repertoire, but we are delighted that she has returned to us as our newest female Principal dancer.

Frederick Ashton: Enigma Variations (Lady Elgar), Dante Sonata, La Fille mal gardée, Scènes de ballet and The Two Pigeons
George Balanchine: Apollo (Polyhymnia), Agon, Serenade and Western Symphony
David Bintley: Aladdin (Princess Badr al-Budur), The Prince of the Pagodas (Princess Belle Sakura), Cinderella ('Spring'), Sylvia (title role), Carmina burana (Lover Girl), Hobson's Choice (Salvation Army), The Nutcracker Sweeties (Candy Kane), The Seasons ('Spring', 'Winter'), The Shakespeare Suite (Titania), Beauty and the Beast (Wild Girl), Sylvia (title role), E=mc² ('Celeritas²), Allegri diversi, Les Petits Riens, The Sons of Horus and David Bintley and Galina Samsova's production of Giselle ('Harvest pas de deux')
Kim Brandstrup: Pulcinella
Oliver Hindle: The Four Seasons ('Spring', 'Winter')
Kit Holder: Quatrain
Millicent Hodson and Kenneth Archer's reconstruction of The Rite of Spring ('Old Woman')
Jessica Lang: Lyric Pieces
Kenneth MacMillan: Elite Syncopations and Romeo and Juliet (Juliet's Friends)
Marius Petipa: Paquita (lead role)
Garry Stewart: The Centre and Its Opposite
Twyla Tharp: In the Upper Room and Nine Sinatra Songs ('Softly', 'Forget Domani')
Peter Wright's productions of The Nutcracker (Sugar Plum Fairy, Clara, Rose Fairy), The Sleeping Beauty (Princess Aurora, Enchanted Princess, Fairy of Temperament) and Coppélia (Swanilda), and Peter Wright and Galina Samsova's production of Swan Lake (Cygnets, Italian Princess, pas de trois)

Winner, Prix de Lausanne, 2001