John Neumeier was already an internationally recognized choreographer and Director of the Hamburg Ballet when, in 1996, he agreed to create a new work for the students of Canada’s National Ballet School. Through its exploration of youthful innocence and sense of adventure, Yondering, set to music and lyrics by 19th-century American songwriter Stephen Foster, was an ideal vehicle for young dancers soon to embark on their professional careers.
Though initially created on NBS students, Yondering has since been performed by many other schools including Neumeier’s own company school in Hamburg, the San Francisco Ballet School, The Royal Ballet School, and the Paris Opera Ballet School. Artistic Director Mavis Staines highly values the educational benefit to NBS students of working directly on the creation of new choreography. Since Yondering, she has commissioned many new works for the School.