Photo by Darian Volkova
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' (Lilac Fairy Cavalier), 'The Nutcracker' (Arabian Dance, Waltz of the Flowers), 'Swan Lake' (Cadets, Mazurka), 'La Fille Mal Gardee' (Colas' Friends), 'Les Patineurs' (Brown Boys), McGregor's 'Dido and Aeneas' and Fenton's 'Song Without Words' and 'Seacastles'. Xander created roles in Wheeldon's 'DGV: danse a grand vitesse', Tuckett's 'The Seven Deadly Sins' and Fenton's 'Monument'. 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. His repertoire includes: Prince Siegfried (Swan Lake), Count Albrecht (Giselle), Prince Desiré (The Sleeping Beauty), Romeo (Romeo & Juliet), The Nutcracker Prince (The Nutcracker ch. Vainonen), Vronsky (Anna Karenina ch. Ratmansky), Jean de Brienne (Raymonda), Male Principal (Le Parc), Vaslav (The Fountain of Bakhchiserai), Andrés (Paquita), The Golden Slave (Scheherazade), The Poet (Chopiniana/Les Sylphides), John the Baptist (Salome ch. Faski), Ashton's Sylvia (Aminta) and Marguerite & Armand (Armand), Balanchine ballets including Apollo, Jewels (Emeralds & Diamonds), Serenade (Waltz, Elegy) and A Midsummer Night's Dream (Demetrius), Hans Van Manen's 'Adagio Hammerklavier' & 'Variations For Two Couples', Millepied's 'Without' & 'La nuit s'achève' and McGregor's 'Infra'. His repertoire as a guest artist also includes Gauthier's 'Ballet 101', 'Le Spectre de la Rose', and Ashton's 'The Dream' (Oberon).
Xander has toured with the Mariinsky Ballet to Canada, China, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Oman, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates, the UK, and the USA, and has been a guest artist with English National Ballet, The Kremlin Ballet, The Ballet Company of the Opera National Bucharest, The Stanislavsky Ballet and has also performed with 'Roberto Bolle and Friends'.
Xander was the recipient of the Taglioni Award in the category “Best Young Male Dancer” (Berlin, 2014), the recipient of the Léonide Massine Prize in the category “Emerging Talent on the International Scene" (Positano, Italy, 2014) and won the UK Critics' Circle National Dance Awards 'Outstanding Male Performance (Classical)' category for 'Apollo' 2014.
In May 2016 Xander made his debut with American Ballet Theatre at The Metropolitan Opera House in New York as an ABT Exchange Artist dancing the role of Aminta in Ashton's 'Sylvia' partnering ABT Principal Isabella Boylston.
In January 2017 The University of Hull bestowed on Xander an Honorary Degree "Doctor of the University, honoris cause". In January 2019 Xander was awarded an OBE in the Queen's New Years Honours list for Services to Dance and UK Russia Cultural Relations.
Xander is generously supported by The Mariinsky Theatre Trust UK.
A book about Xander entitled 'Xander Parish - Russian Prince' was
published by Dance Europe in the Autumn of 2014. For more
information or to order online, please follow this link-