A brief history of the Royal Conservatoire of The Hague
The Dance Department of the Royal Conservatoire of The Hague was established in 1956 by Sonia Gaskell, director of the Nederlands Ballet. The teaching methods were initially based on British ballet studies, with Valerie Adams, a leading teacher at the Sadler’s Wells School, as principal teacher. In 1973, a former soloist of Het Nationale Ballet, René Vincent took over the direction of the department, to be succeeded a decade later by Marian Sarstädt. During Jiří Kylián’s tenure as artistic director of the Nederlands Dans Theater (NDT), the two institutions established a close collaboration.
In 2002, the former soloist and deputy director of Het Nationale Ballet – and guest professor on the faculty of numerous editions of Valencia Endanza – Wim Broeckx was appointed director. In 2011-2012, Nancy Euverink, former student and dancer of Nederlands Dans Theater, took over as director. In 2014, Jan Linkens, also an alumnus and former dancer at Het Nationale Ballet, was appointed director of the dance programme, a position he continues to hold.
The Dance department of the Royal Conservatory maintains a close relationship with leading Dutch dance companies such as Het Nationale Ballet, Introdans, Scapino Ballet Rotterdam and, in particular, Nederlands Dans Theater. The Fondation pour l’Art Choreographique has designated the Royal Conservatoire in The Hague as one of the institutes where the winners of the Prix de Lausanne ballet competition can study free of charge for one year. The school is affiliated with the Assemblee International de l’Ecole Nationale de Ballet du Canada in Toronto (director Mavis Staines), an international dance meeting organised every four years for students and artistic directors of professional ballet schools from all over the world.