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The Budapest Ballet Grand Prix is over. The BBGP Gala took place on 24 November at Müpa Budapest. The closing event was sold out, with a short choreography by the tiny talents of the Hungarian Dance University (HDU) to open the grand Gala evening, and the best of the BBGP and the world-famous Győr Ballet performed alongside the gala.

The Gala began with a vote of thanks, without the strong support of the BBGP, especially the President of the Republic, Mrs. Katalin Novák, who took the patronage of the BBGP, as well as its patrons and the ambassadors of the great countries. Afterwards, the Organising Committee expressed its gratitude to Dr. Balázs Hankó, Secretary of State, and to the Ministry of Culture and Innovation.

Photos by Andrea P. Merlo

The host of the evening, Noémi Morvai, then extended a special greeting to the eponym of the competition, the Lord Mayor of Budapest, Gergely Karácsony, and thanked the 150-year-old capital for its cooperation.

Of course, special thanks were also extended to BBGP’s main sponsor, MOL – New Europe Foundation, as well as to the event’s main sponsors, MHB Bank and Szerencsejáték Zrt.

The acceptance speech was followed by the opening speeches, first of all by Márta Fodorné Molnár, Rector of HDU and Chairwoman of the Budapest Ballet Grand Prix Organising Committee. The Rector welcomed the audience, the competitors and of course the members of the esteemed jury in Hungarian and then in English, before opening the event.

The opening speech by Márta Fodorné Molnár was followed by a welcome speech by Dr Balázs Hankó, State Secretary, who also delivered his speech in two languages. The Secretary of State expressed his pleasure that such a high quality event could be organised and said it was a great pride to see so many Hungarian competitors in the final and on the podium.

Before the presentation of the jury, Noémi Morvai invited Tamás Nagy, BBGP Competition Director and President of the Hungarian Dance University (HDU) Arts Council, to welcome the audience. The former distinguished ballet dancer gave a speech full of gratitude, mentioning and highlighting many of them. First of all, the team of the organizers, the Hungarian Dance University who “worked a lot and excellently for the event.” Tamás Nagy emphatically thanked the National Dance Theatre, its Managing Director Peter Ertl and Müpa Budapest, its CEO Csaba Káel for the excellent conditions that welcomed the huge field. He then called the seven-member jury to the stage.

The Gala programme continued with the awards ceremony, where the sponsors, together with the jury, presented the prizes announced earlier, after the final.

After the awards ceremony, the Gala began, where the best of the competition presented their skills. The programme opened with the world famous Győri Ballet. The ballet artists opened the show with a special performance Bolero, choreographed by András Lukács which was a resounding success.

In front of many distinguished foreign guests and young people from all over the world and their masters, it was a great experience to witness the power of Hungarian ballet art, bringing generations of young people to the stage.

And so the 1st Budapest Ballet Grand Prix came to an end but the organisers look forward to welcoming the world’s talented dancers and the public back in a year’s time,

18-22 November 2024, at the 2nd Budapest Ballet Grand Prix.