L'ATELIER was inaugurated on the 10th of December, 1997 by HSH Prince Rainier III and HRH the Princess of Hannover, Patron of the Monte Carlo Ballet, for which it is the home and workplace. The Ballet's artistic, administrative and technical staff are now all together under one roof, housing a team of approximately 80 people under the direction of Jean-Christophe Maillot.
It is a place of work, research and experimentation, and this work and research is carried out by a team of people - artists, technicians and administrative staff - who all work together. This synergy, this fusion gives rise to a kind of "chemical reaction" which we call creative performance. Only then are we ready to move out of the Workshop and into the Opera House to begin the next stage of our adventure, the show itself.
More than just a building, the Workshop is one of the tools of our trade. We owe it to the architects Daniel Raymond and Sophie Nivaggioni with whom we conceived and designed every millimetre of space, taking into account the highly specific requirements of the dancers and other professionals involved in live performing. After much thought and a great deal of study, we finally managed to create this balanced, functional location which to me represents the image of the company itself: meticulous straight lines, spaciousness and transparency, serving as a permanent reminder to us all that L'ATELIER is not only a place for hard work and detailed technique but also an open space in which people and ideas can breathe and circulate, much like a research laboratory.
At the same time, L'ATELIER had to be a living space, a home. For dancers, the workplace is clearly their main place of residence. This is where they give their all to dance, a place where they live and lose all sense of time. In our profession, the days are long and five-day working weeks are rare. We demand precision, quality, performance and intelligence from our dancers. In exchange, it was our duty to provide them with the means to meet these high expectations, offering them the comfort and ease of spacious rest, relaxation and work areas... luxury indeed, but a luxury that is as well deserved as our expectations of them are high. It is well known that an "athlete's" environment is one of the key factors of his success.
Another essential and no less important factor was the urgent need to unite under one roof all the different departments involved in the Ballet and which until then had been spread out in various locations. Today, administrative, artistic, technical and production departments are all centralised on the same "territory", allowing us to truly operate as a team.
The addition of this new dance studio to the Opera House will allow the Monte Carlo Ballet to combine the two sides of the Principality of Monaco: the stage with its glitter, spotlights, panache and lavish ceremonies, and at the same time, a different kind of stage for which Monaco is renowned, that of hard work and determined effort, reflecting the great esteem shown by the Monegasque government for all those who contribute to its reputation and are its standard-bearers around the world."
Atelier des Ballets de Monte-Carlo
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