Dutch National Trainee Program

Directed by Jean-Yves Esquerre, the Dutch National Trainee Program is an advanced pre-professional course for selected Dutch and international students. This unique European program offers two intensive levels: Junior and Senior Trainees.

Led by Artistic Coordinators Olivier Wecxsteen and Christiane Marchant with a faculty of international pedagogues, the Dutch National Trainee Program offers a variety of classes in academic ballet, pas-de-deux, women’s pointe work and men’s brio, classical and neo-classical repertoire, Forsythe technologies, Dawson style, as well as seminars on choreographers such as Bournonville, Balanchine, Neumeier, Duato, Béjart or Pite. This intensive program also provides body conditioning, Pilates and Gyrotonics classes and is supported by a team of medical doctors and sport therapists.

Besides its 10-month intensive training, the Dutch National Trainee Program offers in-house demonstrations and occasional performances in the Netherlands and abroad. Throughout the season, three-month and six-month internships are also offered to dancers in search of a platform enabling them to audition throughout Europe. It is the perfect stepping-stone to top international professional major and second companies.

Dutch National Trainee Program auditions are held internationally and this elite group of dancers has welcomed students from prestigious schools such as Paris Opera School, San Francisco Ballet School, English National Ballet School, La Scala de Milan School, the National Ballet School of Canada, Stuttgart Ballet School or Zürich Dance Academy as well as from the best international private schools.

Over the last few years, numerous Youth America Grand Prix and Prix de Lausanne competitors have joined the Dutch National Trainee Program whose alumni got contracts with companies such as The Royal Ballet, Mariinsky Ballet, Finnish Ballet, Zürich Ballet, Royal Danish Ballet, Scottish Ballet, Mikhailovsky Ballet, Royal Swedish Ballet, Stanislavsky Ballet, Atlanta Ballet, Bavarian Ballet, Béjart Ballet Lausanne as well as the Dutch National Ballet.