Gregor Seyffert
Organization: The State Ballet School of Berlin

Position: Artistic Director

Affiliation with organization: 2018 – Present

Years active at YAGP: 2004 – Present


Gregor Seyffert is without a doubt one of the most
interesting and expressive dancers of his generation. An artist at the
zenith of his career—his appointment as Kammertänzer [dancer-laureate]
in October 1999 represents but a further highlight in a biography that
reads like a dancer’s wish list: in 1986, while still a student of Prof.
Martin Puttke at the Berlin State Ballet School, he won the Prix de
Lausanne d’Or, one of the most coveted prizes for young dance students.
After graduation, he proceeded directly to a solo engagement at the
Comic Opera in Berlin—a great exception even in GDR times, since the
prevailing rule for recent graduates strictly called for them to put in
their years of service in the corp de ballet before they could turn to
solo work. Here, Seyffert encountered the founder of the GDR
dance-theater, the choreographer Tom Schilling. The latter worked out
with him a multifarious repertoire of diverse roles, in which Seyffert
continues to this day to enthral his audience with expressive character
development and breathtaking technique. His youthfully playful
interpretation of Romeo, the humorous Match—a relationship duel on the
tennis court—or Sleeping Beauty, in which he sweeps over the stage like a
whirlwind as the evil, androgynous Carabosse: Seyffert’s multifaceted
powers of representation appear to know no bounds. And in abstract
roles, as well—in François Raffinot’s Au delà, for instance—he shines
with his refined, almost acrobatic-like technique, and an
extraordinarily powerful, expressive stage presence.

Outside the opera, Gregor Seyffert works closely together
with his father Dietmar, a choreographer and professor for choreography
at the Ernst Busch College Berlin. In 1990, the latter created for him
the 37-minute solo God’s Clown. The piece thematizes the trials and
tribulations of the dancer Vaslav Nijinsky, who spent the last 30 years
of his life sunk in the fogs of derangement, and shows his desperate
struggle against insanity. It lets Seyffert venture far beyond his
physical and psychological limits. And the duo
Seyffert/Seyffert—together with the company Gregor Seyffert &
Compangnie, founded in 1996—has continually had brilliant success with
this solo both in Germany and abroad. In 1996, they were invited to
represent Germany’s cultural contribution at the Olympic Games in
Atlanta. In 1997, Gregor Seyffert received the Prix Benois de la
Danse/Unesco—the Oscar of dance, which crowned him as the world’s best
dancer. In October 1999, Berlin Culture Senator Peter Radunski awarded
him the title of Kammertänzer—the highest honour that can be bestowed on
a dancer in Germany.

Gregor Seyffert’s expressiveness, his readiness to push
his physical and emotional boundaries, his ability to meld into the
role, and the extraordinary vividness with which he embodies his
characters are all essential components of his artistic quality, and
make him one of the most outstanding dancers of his generation.