Principal Coach & Ballet Mistress
Fiona Tonkin began her career in Wellington where she joined the Royal New Zealand Ballet in 1979. Her association with The Australian Ballet began in 1980 when Marilyn Jones invited her to join the company. By 1987 she had become a Principal Artist, renowned for her interpretative artistry, classicism and technical versatility. On her retirement in 1993, she had danced almost every major female role in the company's repertoire. Career highlights with The Australian Ballet include her performances at the Royal Opera House, the Kirov Theatre and the Metropolitan Opera House and opening the company's, 1992 London Coliseum season as Giselle. She appeared as a Guest Artist with the Kirov Ballet in Swan Lake, on Rudolf Nureyev's Farewell Tour, and danced lead roles in the ABC TV broadcasts of La Fille mal gardée and Romeo and Juliet. Fiona received Green Room Awards in 1988 and 1989. Fiona returned to New Zealand in 1994 where she completed a Bachelor of Arts at Canterbury University while guest teaching in New Zealand and Australia. In 1999 she completed The Australian Ballet School's Professional Dance Teachers Course and was awarded the Australian Multicultural Foundation Scholarship. In 2000 Artistic Director Matz Skoog appointed her Rehearsal Director of the Royal New Zealand Ballet. She continued to work with Skoog in London as Assistant Artistic Director of the English National Ballet in 2002. Fiona has worked with many choreographers including Stanton Welch, Mark Morris, Christopher Hampson and Mark Baldwin. Fiona returned to The Australian Ballet in 2003 at the invitation of David McAllister.