The Company

Patron Her Majesty the Queen
HRH The Prince of Wales
The Lady Sarah Chatto

Dame Ninette de Valois OM, CH, DBE
Founder Choreographer Sir Frederick Ashton OM, CH, CBE
Founder Music Director Constant Lambert
Prima Ballerina Assoluta Dame Margot Fonteyn DBE
Director Laureate Sir Peter Wright CBE
Music Director Laureate Barry Wordsworth

Birmingham Royal Ballet is a company limited by guarantee. Registered office: Thorp Street, Birmingham B5 4AU. Registered in England and Wales no. 3320538. Charity Registered no. 1061012. VAT Registration no. 232 5263 33

Our postal address is: Birmingham Royal Ballet, Thorp Street, Birmingham B5 4AU

Mission Statement

To be one of the world’s best classical ballet companies, respected for its excellence, artistic innovation and social responsibility, that connects with its audiences and communities in its home city of Birmingham, throughout the UK and across the world.

Birmingham Royal Ballet shares the ambition of the city of Birmingham to be recognised internationally as a successful, innovative and culturally diverse city by becoming a focus for excellence in dance development and performance.

We can achieve this by:

  • Pursuing a passion for dance, and ballet in particular, that impacts on people of all ages, through professional engagement, regular participation or sheer value-for-money enjoyment of the company's work
  • Recognising Birmingham Royal Ballet's current world class skills and building long term practice to develop the future skills needed to sustain and develop the industry and the company's work
  • Recognising the power of art to transform people's lives and using the company's elite skills to be a valued partner in social change
  • Pursuing pathways to communities new to ballet by deepening our understanding of and breaking down historic barriers to attendance and engagement

Birmingham Royal Ballet's Philosophy

The company will work hard to earn the respect of the people of Birmingham and its peers for taking creative risks and using its position as Britain's most creative and versatile touring classical ballet company to inspire and delight audiences with work that is relevant, exciting and technically excellent.


Ninette de Valois founds a company at Sadler's Wells Theatre. It is known as the Vic-Wells Ballet as it performs both at Sadler's Wells Theatre and the Old Vic Theatre in London.

Sadler's Wells Theatre is bombed during the war and consequently the company begins to tour widely throughout the country. At this point the name of the company is changed to the Sadler's Wells Ballet.

The Company is invited to become the resident company of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. De Valois therefore decides to found a second company called Sadler's Wells Theatre Ballet at Sadler's Wells Theatre.

Sadler's Wells Theatre Ballet undertakes a highly successful tour of the USA.

Sadler's Wells Theatre Ballet temporarily loses its link with Sadler's Wells Theatre and bases itself with its sister company at the Royal Opera House.

A Royal Charter is bestowed on both Companies and their joint school. The Sadler's Wells Ballet becomes The Royal Ballet and Sadler's Wells Theatre Ballet becomes the Touring Company of The Royal Ballet.

The Touring Company returns to base itself at Sadler's Wells Theatre, while continuing to tour the country.

The Touring Company changes its name to Sadler's Wells Royal Ballet, with Peter Wright as Director.

Birmingham Hippodrome and Birmingham City Council invites Sadler's Wells Royal Ballet to re-locate to Birmingham.

Sadler's Wells Royal Ballet moves to a new home in Birmingham and changes its name to Birmingham Royal Ballet.

Peter Wright retires. David Bintley becomes Artistic Director.

Christopher Barron succeeds Derek Purnell as Chief Executive.

SirDavid Bintley's new production of Cinderella is broadcast as the BBC's Christmas ballet.

After year-long building works, Birmingham Royal Ballet's refurbished Birmingham home officially opens for business in January.
Jan Teo succeeds Christopher Barron as Chief Executive.
Birmingham Royal Ballet celebrates 25 years in the City.

Caroline Miller succeeds Jan Teo as Chief Executive.


David Bintley marks the end of his tenure as Director in June with performances of his acclaimed production Hobson's Choice.


January: Carlos Acosta succeeds David Bintley as Director.