Ion Agirretxe Biography
Born in San Sebastian-Donostia, Spain, his first contact with dance was through traditional Basque dance, which he started doing aged four. At ten, he started his ballet classes.
From 1999 to 2004, he studied under Mentxu Medel. In 2005, thanks to a scholarship from the Governmental Deputation of Guipuzkoa, he started training at Madrid’s Real Conservatorio Profesional de Danza Marienma. His professional career started in France, with the Europa Danse company (2006 and 2007), with which he toured France, Germany, Spain and Switzerland, among other countries. In 2007, he joined the Goyo Montero dance group, dancing in the premièr of Montero’s El Día de la Creación. With that group he won first prize in Madrid’s Maratón de Danza for Alrededor No Hay Nada—Montero’s own extension of El Día de la Creación.
In 2008, Agirretxe joined the Lo Mov in Zaragoza as an inaugural member under Víctor Jiménez as director and choreographer. In April of that year, he joined Spain’s Corella Ballet Castilla and León under the direction of Ángel Corella.
In 2012, he joined the Royal Ballet of Flanders under the direction of Assis Carreiro.
In September 2016, he entered the Compañía Nacional de Danza under the direction of José Carlos Martínez. Two years later, in August 2018, Ion was promoted as soloist dancer.
Versatility is one of his chief strong points as a dancer. He has a wide and varied repertoire, including classical, neoclassical and contemporary roles.
Standing out among his classical repertoire are works such as Don Quijote (in the versions by Marius Petipa-Alexander Gorsky, José Carlos Martínez and Alexey Fadeyechev), Swan Lake (in versions by Marius Petipa-Lev Ivanov and Ángel Corella), The Sleeping Beauty (in versions by Ángel Corella and Marcia Haydée), The Nutcracker (in versions by José Carlos Martínez and Demis Volpi), Romeo and Juliette (Slava Samodurov’s version) and La Bayadera (in versions by Marius Petipa and Natalia Makarova).
The neoclassical and contemporary repertoires he has performed include works by choreographers such as George Balanchine (Allegro Brillante, Who Cares?) William Forsythe (Artifact and Enemy in the Figure), Christopher Wheeldon (VIII, DGV, Polyphonia), Johan Inger (Carmen), Maurice Bejart (Bolero), John Cranko (Onegin), Hans Van Manen (Solo and Four Schumann Pieces), Nacho Duato (Duende, Sinfonía India, Na Floresta, Por vos Muero), Léonide Massine (Parade), Jiri Kylián, (Six Dances, Un Ballo, Forgotten Land) and Roland Petit (La Rose Malade), among others.
Throughout his career, Ion has taken part in creations by great choreographers such as Thierry Malandain, Jacopo Godani, Ashley Page, Edward Clug, Ana Maria Stekelman, Altea Nuñez, Demis Volpi, Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and Slava Samodurov.
He has appeared as guest dancer in numerous ballet galas. In 2012, he was guest dancer in Los Vascos y la Danza (Basques and Dance), a gala in which he performed alongside such renowned dancers as Alicia Amatriain and Lucia Lacarra, and for which he was singled out by Dance Europe magazine as dancer to look out for.
He has also made numerous guest appearances in charity galas, including the San Sebastian International Dance Day galas in the years 2008, 2013 and 2015. Together with his partenaire Cristina Casa, he was subsequently invited by Gruber Ballet Opéra to dance with soloists at the Ópera de París, in Carcassonne (France). The partners have also recently appeared as guest dancers at the 2015 Etoile Ballet Gala in Latvia.
In April 2013, Ion won the Revelation Prize (Premio Revelación) from the Association of Professional Dancers of Guipúzcoa (Basque Country). In 2018, he won, together with his wife Cristina Casa, the Galardón de Amigos de Honor de la Casa de la Danza de Logroño (Accolade as Friends of Honour of the Logroño House of Dance).