Helsinki International Ballet Competition, one of the greatest international ballet projects! 40 dancers were selected for the second round

A very high level ballet competition with a prestigious jury offers a one-week professional journey of artistic and technical excellence for young, talented dancers. Every participant and ballet enthusiast, along with the audience, has experienced the level of ballet at the Finnish National Opera and Ballet starting 31 May! The competition will take place until 6th of June

by Ballet Magazine
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Hosted by the Finnish National Opera and Ballet, the competition divides competitors into junior (ages 15–19) and senior (ages 20–25) divisions and consists of three rounds and a gala of classical and modern repertoire. Dancers must move forward through each round for the chance to win a cash prize or one of two distinguished awards: the Jane Erkko Grand Prix (with a cash prize of roughly $21,500) or the Doris Laine Prize (approximately $13,000). The competition also grants several choreography awards.

Madeleine Onne, the Artistic Director of the Finnish National Ballet is the President of the HIBC Jury. Jury members are: Nina Ananiashvili, prima ballerina, Artistic Director of the State Ballet of Georgia; Frank Andersen, producer of Bournonville ballets;Julio Bocca, teacher, coach; Jorma Elo, resident choreographer of Boston Ballet; Nicolas Le Riche, Artistic Director of the Royal Swedish Ballet; Brooklyn Mack, International Principal Guest Artist.  Read more about the jury. 

The organizer of HIBC is the Helsinki International Ballet Competition Association. The chair of the board is the lead principal dancer and choreographer Minna Tervamäki. Read more about the association.

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40 dancers were selected for the second rounds of the Helsinki International Ballet Competition

Many of this year’s dancers were selected after they submitted video auditions in March. (Those who won a Grand Prix or first, second or third prize at other select IBCs were accepted without an audition.)

For 2022 edition, 62 dancers from 16 countries competed in the first rounds on Tue 31 May and Wed 1 June. The international jury selected 40 dancers for the second rounds.

Ballet Magazine wishes good luck to each of these wonderful artists, and wish them all the best in their future!

“It is such a joy to see that despite two years of pandemic, as many dancers have tried to stay in shape in their homes, the standard of the competitors is very high. I am full of admiration for the dancers and their coaches and what they have accomplished. It takes a lot of passion and hard work to present what we have seen so far,” says the president of the jury Madeleine Onne, Artistic Director of the Finnish National Ballet.

The dancers qualified for the second rounds:


  1. Giulio Diligente, Italy
    4. Kallie Green, USA
    5. Vasco Yu Belo Prazeres Pereira, Portugal
    7. Ryo Hinoue, Japan
    8. Siena España, USA
    9. Matoi Kawamoto, Japan
    11. Leonardo D´Onofrio, Italy
    12. Anni Martinsen, Finland
    13. Oji Fujino, Japan
    15. Kailin Pham Kratz, USA
    16. Pinja Rissanen, Finland
    20. Natalie Steele, Canada
    21. Taylor O’Meara, USA
    22. Alexei Orohovsky, USA
    24. Clark Eselgroth, USA
    25. Katica Ruip, Hungary
    26. Riku Kawanishi, Japan
    29. Emma Tomlinson, Canada
    30. Alexis Workowski, USA
    32. Maya Schonbrun, USA
    33. Akihiro Yabuuchi, Japan


  1. Razmik Marukyan, Armenia
    36. Anna Roberta Lahesoo, Estonia
    37. Viola Länsivuori, Finland
    38. Yuka Masumoto, Japan
    39. Joshua Kiesel, USA
    40. Luciano Ghidoli, Italy
    41. Nanaho Nakajima, Japan
    43. Hui Wen Peng, Taiwan
    44. Shin Hyoung Han, South Korea
    46. Miho Okamura, Japan
    47. Dias Kurmangazy, Kazakhstan
    49. Thomas Brun, France
    50. Carmela Mayo, USA
    56. Seoyeun Kim, South Korea
    57. Aino Louhivaara, Finland
    58. Even Capitaine, France
    60. Leonardo Celegato, Italy
    61. Alice Otsuka, Japan
    64. Keita Fujishima, Japan

The first rounds consisted of classical ballet repertoire. In the second rounds on Thu 2 June and Fri 3 June the qualified competitors will perform contemporary dance pieces. The names of the competitors qualified for the final rounds will be announced after the second rounds. The jury results are published during the following night.


The first Helsinki International Ballet Competition was held in 1984. Read more about the history of HIBC.

The first Helsinki International Ballet Competition was held in 1984. After her career at the Finnish National Ballet, Finnish Professor Doris Laine was invited to join the juries of international ballet competitions in Jackson, Moscow and Varna, among other cities. With that experience and her exceptional international network she had the courage to create an attractive ballet hot spot in Helsinki, Finland.

The “Sisu” Energy

At first, Doris Laine was in disbelief about the idea of Helsinki International Ballet Competition. But the City of Helsinki, important cultural foundations and some companies believed in her mission, idea and energy. The Finnish Theatre Information Centre was the home office of the first HIBC. The competition was held at the Helsinki City Theatre just after Midsummer of 1984. The start was successful and profitable, thanks to the competitors, jury, audience, sponsors, the small professional organization, passionate and talented volunteers and Doris Laine´s competence of ballet, added with the determined energy which we call Finnish SISU.

The Heritage

The collaboration with Finnish National Opera and Ballet started in the middle of the 1990’s. Doris Laine moved to direct the Ballet of the Komische Oper in Berlin and was named Honorary Chairman of the HIBC. The director of the Finnish National Ballet, Jorma Uotinen, started as the new artistic director of HIBC. The competition was renewed by clarifying its role and giving greater importance to the choreography.

The artistic directors of the National Ballet, Dinna Björn, Kenneth Greve and Madeleine Onne, have developed HIBC even further. Today, HIBC is one of the most well known and well organized ballet competitions in the world.

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