Bernice Coppieters
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Bernice Coppieters

Bernice Coppieters (born 18 November 1970) is a Belgian ballet dancer. In 1991, she joined Jean-Christophe Maillot's Ballets de Monte-Carlo where she has become the star. In recent years, Coppieters, Maillot's longtime muse,[1][2][3] has helped to stage his productions at major ballet theatres in Europe, Korea and the United States.[4]


Born in Dendermonde, Belgium, Coppieters studied from 1980 at the Royal Ballet School of Flanders in Antwerp, graduating in 1988 when she joined the Flanders ballet company for a short period. The same year, she won the Prix de Lausanne while continuing her education at the Juilliard School in New York City.[4]

"As a dancer you are an interpreter, you need to give your body like an object to a choreographer and say, 'Voilà, I am yours, do with me as you want.'"[5]

In 1991, she joined the Ballets de Monte-Carlo where she inspired Jean-Christophe Maillot to write roles for her in many of his most successful productions: Juliet in Romeo et Juliet, the title roles in Cinderella, La Belle, and Sheherazade, as well as leading parts in The Nutcracker Circus, Le Songe and Faust, all of which she danced with Gil Roman.[6]

Coppieters has also danced the lead in classical Russian ballets including The Prodigal Son, The Firebird, Afternoon of a Faun and Les Sylphides as well as in a number of Georges Balanchine's works including Agon, The Four Temperaments, La valse, Serenade, Violin Concerto, Who Cares? and Theme and Variations.[4][6] Among the contemporary choreographers she has helped to attract to Monte Carlo are Nacho Duato, William Forthsythe and Jiri Kylian. Marco Goecke created the solo Tué for her while she had the honour of dancing in Maurice Béjart's Boléro.[4]

In her forties,[7] Coppieters has helped with the staging of Maillot's productions at major ballet theatres abroad including the Royal Swedish Ballet, Essen Ballet, Vienna State Opera Ballet, Korea National Ballet and Atlanta Ballet.[4]



Bernice Coppieters has received the following awards and distinctions:[4][9]


  1. ^ Looseleaf, Victoria (11 January 2014). "Through the Snow, Glitter". Fjord Review. Retrieved 2014.
  2. ^ Cappelle, Laura (22 December 2013). "Diana Vishneva: On the Edge, Opéra de Monte-Carlo, Monaco - review". Financial Times. Retrieved 2014.
  3. ^ Looseleaf, Victoria (1 March 2014). "A fairy-tale life for 'Lac' choreographer Jean-Christophe Maillot". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2014.
  4. ^ a b c d e f "Coppieters Bernice". Les Ballets de Monte Carlo. Archived from the original on 23 March 2014. Retrieved 2014.
  5. ^ "The age of Beauty". The Monaco Times. 26 December 2010. Archived from the original on 24 March 2014. Retrieved 2014.
  6. ^ a b "Bernice Coppieers". Benois Theatre. Archived from the original on 9 November 2014. Retrieved 2014.
  7. ^ Mücková (2011)
  8. ^ Ordonnance Souveraine n° 5.560 du 18 novembre 2015
  9. ^ Mücková, Johana (3 August 2011). "Belgian prima ballerina turns instructor". The Prague Post. Archived from the original on 24 March 2014. Retrieved 2014.

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