Nadia Potts wins Lifetime Achievement Award

By Cindy Brett

It’s unanimous! The Dance Ontario Awards Committee recently announced its decision to celebrate Nadia Potts with the 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award, agreeing with nominator Kenny Pearl, who wrote: “It is the perfect time to honour a person who has spent a lifetime giving so generously to dance and dancers.” Potts has just retired from a nearly fifty-year career of dancing and teaching.

Having studied with Betty Oliphant at a young age, Potts was among the first generation of National Ballet School-trained students, and one of the first to become a principal dancer with The National Ballet of Canada (NBoC). In her twenty-year career at NBoC (1966-1986) Potts earned an international reputation and was partnered by many world-class dancers, including Mikhail Baryshnikov in his debut performance with the company in 1975. She also maintained an active teaching career, and after retiring as one of Canada’s top ballerinas, she took on the position of associate chair and program director of Ryerson University’s Dance Program. 

Nadia Potts in Swan Lake by Erik Bruhn / Photo courtesy of The National Ballet of Canada


Potts recently commented: “It is a privilege to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award from Dance Ontario, particularly as it comes at the end of a very exciting and fulfilling career in dance. A big thank you to Dance Ontario and to all the colleagues and students I have had the pleasure to work with.” Celebrations for Potts will take place January 14, 2014, following Dance Ontario’s annual Dance Weekend event. 

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