Xander Parish has been supported by the Mariinsky Theatre Trust at the Mariinsky Ballet since 2010. From that that time his career developed consistently until his promotion in July 2017 to the role of Principal Dancer. He was awarded an OBE in the 2019 New Year’s Honours List for services to dance and UK/Russia cultural relations.
Xander was born in East Yorkshire, England, and began dancing at the Skelton Hooper School of Dance in Hull at the age of 8. He joined the Royal Ballet Lower School, White Lodge in 1998 and continued his training at the Royal Ballet Upper School from 2002-2005. While at the Upper School, Xander won the Ursula Moreton Choreographic Award (2003), The Young British Dancer of the Year Award (2nd prize 2004) and a Silver Medal at the Genee International Ballet Competition (Athens, 2004).
Xander joined The Royal Ballet Company in August 2005 along with his sister Demelza. They were the first brother and sister to be members of The Royal Ballet together. Here Xander’s repertoire included: The Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker, Swan Lake (La Fille mal gardée, Les Patineurs. He also choreographed for The Royal Ballet’s Draftworks program. In 2009, Xander was invited to join The Mariinsky Ballet by its ballet director Yuri Fateyev and joined the company in January 2010 aged 23 as its first and only British dancer.