Artiklar från 2008 – till idag

Artiklar från 2008 – till idag

Tommy Franzén, Lizzie Gough and Teneisha Bonner. Photo Ed Miller/Sadler's Wells

Tommy Franzén, Lizzie Gough & Teneisha Bonner. Photo Ed Miller/Sadler's Wells Theatre

Tommy Franzén, Rewarded for Versatility Without Bounds!

LONDON: At the National Dance Awards, Swedish dynamo, Tommy Franzén, fought off tough competition from lead dancers in major contemporary companies to win the Dancers Pro Award for Outstanding Modern Performance.

Best known for his performance in ZooNation’s Some Like it Hip Hop, he was also nominated for his work in Russell Maliphant’s Rodin Project and commended for his work in Kim Brandstrup’s Goldberg Variations at the Royal Opera House. His versatility is seemingly without bounds!

It was a great day for hip-hop. Teneisha Bonner, Tommy’s co-star won the Outstanding Modern Performance female category and Kate Prince, choreographer for Some Like it Hip Hop was nominated for Best Modern Choreographer.

Also up for this award was another Swede, Alexander Ekman. He was nominated for Cacti, the riotously funny work created for NDT2 and presented in their Sadler’s Wells season.

It was a great year for dance with 40-50 names up for nominations in each category and a stellar line-up of stars representing all dance styles. It was a great day out, both for the winners and also for those of us who just went along for the fun.

Tommy Franzén at the Prize ceremony. Photographer Maggie Foyer

Tommy Franzén at the Prize ceremony. Photographer Maggie Foyer

When Tommy Franzén won Outstanding Modern Performer at the National Dance Awards 2013, it was a first for hip-hop and a first for Sweden. Two previous nominations had this time brought him to the winner’s podium and the applause proved it a popular choice.

The performances that won him this accolade were in very diverse roles: Simeon Sun in ZooNation’s Some Like it Hip Hop and his part in Russell Maliphant’s Rodin Project.

In 2010, he was also runner-up in BBC TV series, So You Think You Can Dance, a series watched by millions. ‘It was amazing fun, so surreal - one of those once in a lifetime experiences’. It proved a major boost to his career raising his profile and putting him on the map.

Also on the list of nominees for the National Dance Awards was Kate Prince choreographer of Some Like it Hip Hop. Tommy had worked with her previously, notably at the handover ceremony at the close of the Beijing Olympics.
However he felt that it was the TV exposure that gave her the confidence to cast him in the lead role and to hand over responsibility for a significant part of the choreography - and Some Like it Hip Hop proved a runaway success.

On the street dance scene dominated by tall hunky black guys, pint-size Tommy is something of an anomaly. As Simeon Sun, he wears a woolly sweater and glasses but his geekish looks are miraculously transformed as he leaps and spins into action winning adoring fans in a trice.

The critics who decide on the nominations for the Dance Awards have often been accused of concentrating on the Royal Opera House to the detriment of the wider dance scene.

Indeed it was when Tommy appeared in Kim Brandstrup’s Goldberg that he first came to the critics’ notice.  He came to this prestigious job by a circuitous route. He’d auditioned for a show at the Linbury, the studio theatre at the Opera House. He didn’t get that one but he was asked to return to audition for Kim Brandstrup who chose him for a future project.

He filled the gap by dancing an opera, The Faerie Queen, also choreographed by Brandstrup and it was during rehearsals that he was asked if he would do Goldberg. This award winning production brought together classical, contemporary and street dance in an intriguing mix and presented Tommy with the opportunity to work alongside ballet stars, Tamara Rojo and Steven McRae.

Tommy Franzén. Photo Mindstudio.co.uk

Tommy Franzén. Photo Mindstudio.co.uk

Tommy, born in Lund, had a slow start to his dance career.  ‘I began taking hip hop classes, just once a week for a few years. I got into the musical, Joseph, when I was 14 and then went from one musical to the next.’  

He was awarded a three year scholarship and came to London to train at the Urdang Academy. ‘This was my first introduction to formal ballet. Fortunately there were a whole group of us boys who had never done ballet before so we had a sort of ballet/ gymnastics training to give us the basics.’

Here his training also included jazz, tap and singing. Tommy admitted ‘I’d love to be an amazing singer – but I didn’t quite have the knack’. However this certainly hasn’t held back his career.

In his second year at the Urdang he took a three month break from studies to work with the Swedish group Bounce who were touring the UK including performances at Sadler’s Wells.

‘From then on I started building a network of choreographers and it helped in getting onto agency books. In the commercial world you really need an agent.’

Probably because Tommy came to theatre through street dance rather than a hothouse conservatoire, he is more media savvy than most dancers. His website is both entertaining and user friendly and his social media skills are pretty impressive.

Tommy Franzén. Photo Mindstudio.co.uk

Tommy Franzén. Photo Mindstudio.co.uk

I asked Tommy why he felt the need to train outside of Sweden. ‘Well, there aren’t that many dance colleges in Sweden; I’d worked with a lot of people who had studied there and I was scared of being trained in a way that I would become like everyone else. I obviously had a different background and I naturally moved differently.

Looking back, the training probably wouldn’t have changed me but I just wanted to be different. So my plan was to come to London, return to Sweden and stand out!’ In the event Tommy stayed in London becoming a very individual performer who always stood out from the crowd.

Next month he will be one of the judges for the prestigious ‘Emerging Dancer’ awards held each year by the English National Ballet to indentify rising stars in their ranks. Yonah Acosta was last year’s winner.

Tommy will be on a panel of six that includes director Tamara Rojo and former ballerina Darcey Bussell. ‘It’s my first time judging a dance competition that is not hip hop – and with such an amazing panel.’

I asked if the ‘serious’ contemporary dance was a diversion or something that he would like to pursue.  ‘I’d like to do a bit of both really. It’s like two avenues that I want to enjoy – the contemporary and the hip hop. For me it’s a great combination and if I can keep it that way I’ll be happy.

Tommy Franzén in Some Like it Hip Hop. Photo Sadler's Wells Theatre

Tommy Franzén in Some Like it Hip Hop. Photo Ed Miller/SWT

As hip hop moves into narrative theatre rather than simply entertainment it is attracting huge audiences. Some Like it Hip Hop will return to the Peacock Theatre for a further 9 weeks and The Rodin Project still has further dates. But hip hop is tough on the body and he accepts that it is the side of dance he will probably have to give up first.  

Tommy said he was keen to work in Sweden again. After the success of Benke Rydman’s Svansjön (Swan Lake) perhaps Stockholm’s Dansenshus should have Some Like it Hip Hop in their sights?

Maggie Foyer
11 Feb 2013

  • RBS1
    Royal Ballet School Affiliate Training and Assessment Programme
    ‘The unique programme will drive forward the standard and accessibility of recreational dance training, providing an alternative to the current model of training offered by recreational dance organisa...

  • Helsinkigala1
    En efterlängtad öppning av Dansens hus i Helsingfors
    Finlands efterlängtade Dansens hus – Tanssin talo – har öppnat sina dörrar på ett magiskt datum 2.2.2022. Om ett hus för dansen hade dansfolket drömt om i årtionden, och nu var glädjen stor att detta ...

  • PDL22 1
    Årets Prix de Lausanne i Montreux med samtliga deltagare på plats
    Förra årets tävling tvingades hållas online på grund av pandemin. Med genomförda vaccinationer och covidpass gick lyckligtvis årets Prix av stapeln med deltagarna på plats. Covidpass var obligatoriskt...

  • Here not here 1
    Verket har många olika delar, med olika rörelsescheman, improvisationer, men det är vi dansare som sätter materialet.
    Det handlar om att gråta i solskenet och dansa i mörkret Det handlar om att vara Här Inte Här

  • Kungsbacka1
    Dans på högsta nivå
    Sommaren 2019 hölls en stor gala i Kungsbacka med klassisk balett. Det kan numera bara upplevas på Kungliga Operan, såvida inget utländskt danskompani av okänd kvalitet dyker upp. Äntligen är det dags...

  • Nurejevs Svansjön1
    Nurejevs Svansjön på Stockholmsoperan – en version aldrig tidigare spelad i Sverige
    Inför Kungliga Balettens premiär på Svansjön i koreografi av Rudolf Nurejev gästades Operans Balettklubb av iscensättaren Charles Jude och dansaren Calum Lowden.Charles Jude är före detta Etoile på Pa...

  • Lana Maxxa
    Till julen gör de sina första huvudroller i Nötknäpparen
    Att få dansa huvudrollen i en helaftonsbalett är drömmen för de flesta dansare. Men få förunnat. På Svenska Balettskolan i Göteborg har eleverna en helt egen uppsättning av baletten Nötknäpparen där d...

  • Transit1
    Transit av Tero Saarinen – mångfasetterad visuell fest ­
    Tero Saarinen Company presenterade sig i Saarinens nyaste koreografi Transit med en större mängd dansare än vad vanligt är i hans verk. Det hade beställts av Skånes dansteater och sågs nu i Helsingfor...

  • Bella figura
    Kylián, Ek and Forsythe at the Royal Swedish Ballet
    The Royal Opera House in Stockholm is thankfully back to capacity audiences and enjoying a popular programme of modern classics. Under director, Nicolas Le Riche, the company sees changes in the reper...

  • Daria Ivanova
    Ett nytt Mariane Orlando stipendium utdelat
    Operans Balettklubbs pris till årets dansare har genom enhälligt beslut tilldelats premiärdansaren vid Kungliga Baletten Daria Ivanova.

  • SAAGA 1
    Göteborgsoperan öppnar upp med dubbla världspremiärer
    GöteborgsOperan öppnade delvis i augusti och den 30 oktober var det dubbla världspremiärer utan begränsning på antalet besökare. Föreställningen Unfold med de två dansverken Continuim och SAABA skapad...

  • Linnar Looris
    Meet Linnar Looris Artistic Director of The Estonian National Opera
    Dansportalen has got an interview with Linnar Looris – Artistic Director since autumn 2019 for the The Estonian National Ballet.

  • Gala Korsaren
    Kungliga Operan rivstartar säsongen med balettgala.
    Äntligen, är vi många som säger. Den 17:e september slås portarna upp, dansen kan börja och det är inte vilken dans som helst. Ett unikt program med åtta verk, varav flera sällan sedda, utgör höstens ...

  • Nimrud
    Liselott Berg, om sina 42 år som fanbärare för dansen i Göteborg – hittills!
    Att det blev Göteborg var en slump. Men där blev hon kvar. 42 år senare brinner och jobbar hon lika engagerat för dansen på Sveriges framsida. Idag som biträdande och administrativ chef för GöteborgsO...

  • Swingle Stepping, Morgann Runacre-Temple, Year 11 students - 
    Whirling flying bodies with the Royal Ballet School
    Coordinating a performance for a ballet school of several hundred pupils to stringent Covid social distancing is a Herculean task but amazingly the Royal Ballet School pulled it off.

  • Vinnare Prix du Nord 2021
    Prix du Nord – ett viktigt steg för framtidens dansare
    Norra Europas största tävling för klassisk balett och modern dans lever vidare under ett nytt namn – Prix du Nord – och en ny inramning. Denna händelse är en lika viktig kulturinsats som lyckan är sto...

  • Sonatra1
    Joseph Sturdy about Sonatra: I was interested to look at the classical technique, to awaken it and enjoy it
    When Joseph Sturdy was asked to choreograph a work for the Royal Swedish Ballet, he accepted the challenge with alacrity.‘I admired how Nicolas [Le Riche, Artistic Director] was trying to keep his dan...

  • Dansmuseet
    Dansmuseets utställning om Ballets Suédois är förlängd
    Dansmuseets intendent Erik Mattsson har tillbringat många timmar i museets arkiv med att läsa dagböcker, gå igenom alla fotografier och vända på varenda papperslapp som kunde vara av intresse för den ...

  • Pär Isberg
    Pär Isbergs magiska låda, musiken och teatern
    Dansportalen gläntar på ridån för Pär Isberg, premiärdansare och koreograf med gedigen meritlista. Utbildad vid Operans balettelevskola, senare Kungliga Svenska Balettskolan. I dansen såg han en frihe...

  • pure_coincidence_c_admill_kuyler
    Young dancers impress in new choreography: Junior Ballett Zürich in Impulse
    Junior Ballett Zürich , founded in 2001 is now an established adjunct to the main company appearing regularly in major productions and with many of the young dancers joining the company ranks.The lives...

  • tag_tueren_2015©zenna_web_D33B0866
     »I think the Prix de Lausanne gives a great opportunity for young dancers to get into the international dance field«
    In Montreux I met with Jason Beechey director of the Palucca University of Dance Dresden, one of the prestigious schools that are associated with the Prix. Jason has also been a member of the Artistic...

  • Samira Bethke Kitri PDL21
    Prix de Lausanne 2021 blev en annorlunda tävling
    På grund av den pågående pandemin hölls tävlingen i år digitalt. De nio jury medlemmarna som bedömde dansarna var samlade i Lausanne där de såg de tävlandes bidrag på storbildsvideo. Clairemarie Osta ...

  • Törnrosa Aurora 
    I pandemins spår – kommer dansare, sångare med flera tvingas byta yrke? Dansportalen undersöker
    I en artikel i DN den 17 november säger Birgitta Svendén, chef för Kungliga Operan i Stockholm: ”fler och fler lämnar sina yrken och söker nytt jobb. Vi ser redan nu ett kompetenstapp och om vi inte k...

  • Auguste Marmus
    Auguste Marmus förverkligar sin dröm i St Petersburg
    Uppvuxen i Majorna i Göteborg och tidigare elev vid Svenska Balettskolan i Göteborg gör Auguste Marmus just nu sitt APL-år vid Vaganova-skolan i St Petersburg. Att han getts denna möjlighet handlar om...

  • God Jul & Gott Nytt År 🎄 Merry Christmas & Happy New Year
    A Holiday Greeting from Dansportalen!

  • Jekyll & Hyde
    Världspremiären av baletten Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde vid Nationalbaletten med glänsande manlig energi och dans
    Höstens andra balettpremiär i Operahuset i Helsingfors hann ha sin premiär och dansas av alla tre rollbesättningarna före dörrarna åter stängdes på grund av pandemin. Tre föreställningar skulle ha åte...

  • Laura Persson SVB
    Kulturstipendium till ung talang vid Svenska Balettskolan
    Laura Persson, 15 år, har tilldelats ett stipendium ur Västsvenska Kulturfonden. Stipendiet skulle hon få mottaga vid en festlig ceremoni den 28 november.

  • Transit SDT Carl Thorborg
    Nya verket Transit är en ursinnigt utförd ritual, en kamp för överlevnad och förändring
    Jag fick tillfälle att se premiären av Skånes Dansteaters Transit på Malmö Operan den 17 oktober. I en lokal som rymmer ca 1500 åskådare var det tillåtit att endast ha en publik på högst 50 personer.F...

  • Dansmuseet
    Ballets Suédois 1920–1925 på Dansmuseet
    Dansmuseet i Stockholm uppmärksammar hundraårsdagen av Svenska balettens i Paris premiärföreställning den 25 oktober 1920 med en jubileumsutställning under mottot ”OM NI INTE GILLAR DET KAN NI DRA ÅT ...

  • Saluts démos 2015
    Everything is in our bodies, says Madame Elisabeth Platel, director for Paris Opera Ballet School
    Leaving the plane at Charles de Gaulle-airport you are met by large photos of dancers, musicians and other cultural motives along the walls in the airport. A fantastic way to welcome visitors.My goal ...





Grundad 1995. Est. 1995

Powered by