Principal Character Artist of the Royal Ballet
Dance Open: 2016
Described as one of the greatest dance actors in the history of British dance, Gary Avis is Ballet Master and Principal Character Artist at The Royal Ballet Company with an international career spanning three decades.
Born in Ipswich, he joined The Royal Ballet in 1989 and has played leading roles in dozens of productions. His repertory includes Drosselmeyer (The Nutcracker,) Von Rothbart (Swan Lake), Tybalt, Lord Capulet (Romeo and Juliet), Monsieur G.M., Gaoler (Manon) Step-Sister (Cinderella), Duchess (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland) and many more. He has created roles and received universal critical acclaim for his work with choreographers including MacMillan, Tharp, Tetley, Morris, Hynd, Bruce, Wheeldon, Tuckett, Bintley, Page and Marriott.
He co-founded K Ballet, Japan, and has performed with English National Ballet. In 2011 he received an Honorary Doctorate from University Campus Suffolk and was awarded the Critics Circle National Dance Award for Outstanding Male Performance Classical. He partnered Darcey Bussell in her farewell performance with the Royal Ballet broadcast live from the Royal Opera House in 2007, he was a special guest and Darcey's partner in Viva la Diva Arena Tour UK, on Strictly Come Dancing and at the London 2012 Olympics Closing Ceremony. In 2015, he partnered the world renowned ballerina Alessandra Ferri in the critically acclaimed World Premiere of Wayne McGregor's Woolf Works at The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.