Dame Monica Mason said, “Wayne has devised a wonderfully mixed programme tonight” which included dancers from the Royal Ballet, Birmingham Royal Ballet, Northern Ballet and English National Ballet, as well as the cast of STOMP (making music from ballet shoes), Strictly Come Dancing’s Ian Waite and Natalie Lowe, Summer and Scarlet Strallen, soprano Susana Gaspar, musicians Jonathan Still, Henry Roche, Sewrgey Levitin and Adrian Bradbury, and a reading from Simon Callow (aptly of Noel Coward’s Senorita Nina – the girl who would never dance!).
Dame Monica Mason paid tribute to the young dancers involved adding that their inclusion was a fitting testament to “how much Wayne cares for young people”.
Sir Anthony Dowell CBE added his thanks to the dance teachers that had guided and inspired him in his long career.
Wayne was Artistic Director of the show and said “I have so many people to thank. Every one of the wonderful artists who are appearing this evening to make our programme a real Celebration of dance. The technicians and stage management of the Linbury Theatre for all their skills and support. And of course the Gala Committee for their terrific work in making this evening happen. Thank you all.”
Wayne Sleep and Luke Cresswell rehearse STOMP’s opening number for the Celebration Gala