KRZYSZTOF PASTOR is one of the most highly awarded ballet choreographers worldwide. He held the prestigious position of Resident Choreographer at the Dutch National Ballet from 2003 to 2017 and is currently Artistic Director of both the Polish National Ballet and Lithuanian National Ballet.
Pastor began his ballet training in his hometown of Gdańsk. After his training, he joined the Polish Dance Theatre in Poznań (1975), four years later, he moved to the Teatr Wielki of Łódź. In 1983 Pastor became a soloist with Le Ballet de l’Opéra of Lyon in France, dancing ballets by Gray Veredon, Hans van Manen, Kurt Jooss and others. From 1985 to 1995, he danced with the Dutch National Ballet, working with many well-known choreographers such as Carolyn Carlson, Nils Christie, Hans van Manen, Rudi van Dantzig, Nacho Duato, Eduard Lock, Peter Wright, Nina Wiener, and others. He danced major roles in both classical and neoclassical ballets, as well as modern dance works.
Pastor completed his first choreographic work in 1986 for an international gala performance in Łódź. After creating several ballets for the Dutch National Ballet’s workshop programmes, in 1992 he was asked to choreograph a ballet for the company’s main programme: the successful Shostakovich – Chamber Symphony.
After retiring from dance, Pastor joined the Washington Ballet in 1997 as its Choreographer in Residence, later becoming the Dutch National Ballet’s Associate Choreographer in the 1998/99 season.
Pastor has since gained considerable recognition as an international choreographer, creating nearly seventy ballets to date, including the highly acclaimed Do Not Go Gentle…, and In Light and Shadow; and the large-scale, full-length productions: Kurt Weill, Acid City, Don Giovanni, Tristan, and Dangerous Liaisons; as well as Symphonie fantastique for the Australian Ballet.
In 1995 Pastor’s duet “Detail IV” won the Gold Choreography Award of the Helsinki International Ballet Competition. In 2000 he was awarded the Medal of 200 Years of Polish Ballet, by the Ministry of Culture in Poland, and the Dancers Fund ’79 Choreography Prize in the Netherlands.
Alongside his work for the Dutch National Ballet, Pastor has created ballets for many companies in Lithuania, USA, Australia, New Zealand, Latvia, Poland, Germany, Israel, Belgium, Italy, Sweden, Russia, Hungary, Czech Republic, Scotland and Turkey. His works have featured in the programmes of renowned festivals: Holland Festival, Holland Dance Festival, and Edinburgh Festival, and also at international ballet competitions, to great critical and audience acclaim.
Pastor received special prizes from the Polish Minister of Culture and National Heritage, Polish Theatre Artists Union and Polish Society of Authors and Composers and was awarded the Officer’s Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta, the ‘Merit to Culture – Gloria Artis’ Gold Medal and Honorary Golden Star from Lithuanian Ministry of Culture.
Photo: Łukasz Murgrabia