Johan Kobborg Replaced For Good At Head Of Romania’s National Ballet

An ugly, months-long saga that saw renowned dancer-choreographer Johan Kobborg – engaged as artistic director in 2014 to bring the ballet company at the Bucharest National Opera up to top international standards – demoted without warning to corps de ballet member, a theatened exodus of foreign dancers (whose Romanian colleagues yelled “Foreigners out! at them), Kobborg first brought back and then barred from the building, and the resignations of two opera house general managers (one after one day) and Romania’s culture minister, is now over. The house’s current (third) interim director, Beatrice Rancea, says that, regardless of what position her predecessors may have offered Kobborg, Romanian law does not permit a foreigner to hold the title of artistic director at the company and that Kobborg refused to stay on with a lesser title. His successor, now “artistic coordinator,” is Italian choreographer Renato Zanella – whose pay, Rancea pointed out, will not be as high as Kobborg’s was. (That was another point of conflict with Romanians in the company.) Another Italian, Marcello Mottadelli, has been appointed music director at the opera house. (in Romanian; Google Translate version here)