Guillaume Diop, just 23 years old, is the first black star dancer in 300 years of existence of the Opera de Paris

First black prima ballerina

A landmark appointment. The Paris Opera named Frenchman Guillaume Diop star dancer on Saturday March 11, following a performance of Giselle in Seoul (South Korea). This promotion is a considerable step forward for this institution, which has appointed its first black prima ballerina after more than 300 years of existence. His appointment was announced on the stage of the LG Arts Center in Seoul, where the dancer, given an ovation, had just performed the role of Albrecht for the second time in the romantic ballet by Jean Coralli and Jules Perrot.

Copyright Guillaume Diop – instagram

The young hope of the company

Freshly promoted to “subject” in November 2022, he thus reaches the ultimate title without going through the “first dancer” box, as required by the rules of the house. A rare phenomenon, even if similar cases have already taken place: Mathieu Ganio, in 2004, or Manuel Legris, in 1986, also directly achieved starred status. Having become the young hope of the company for more than a year, Guillaume Diop, born in 2000, is one of the five black and mixed-race authors of the manifesto “From the racial question to the Opera”, written in 2020 in the wake of the movement #BlackLivesMatter. The radiant talent of Guillaume Diop, who for two years has successfully added up the great roles of the classical repertoire by replacing injured performers at short notice and masterfully, is therefore quickly and well rewarded.
His appearance, Sunday, December 11, 2022, in Swan Lake, a peak of virtuosity and interpretation, on the bill at the Opéra Bastille in Paris, once again testified to his technique but also to his penetrating instinct to make his own. various characters.

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