Biography

Director of the National Dance Company of Spain (2011-2019)

Star Dancer of the París Opera House

National Dance Award 1999

In Spain he is better known by his full name, José Carlos Martínez
José began his ballet studies in Cartagena with Pilar Molina. Between 1984 and 1987 he studied at the Center de Danse international Rosella Hightower. In that last year he won the Prix de Lausanne (Lausanne Prize) and entered the Paris Opera. In 1988 he was personally chosen by Rudolf Nureyev to be part of the “Dance Corps” of the Paris Opera Ballet.
In 1990 he was named Solo Dancer and First Dancer two years later.
Also in 1992 he won the Gold Medal at the Varna International Competition, being the first and only Spaniard to achieve this distinction.
In 1997 he was named Star Dancer of the Paris Opera Ballet, the highest category in the hierarchy of the Ballet.

Throughout his career he received other important awards:
1991 Prix de l ‘AROP (Audience Award)
1992 Prix Carpeaux (Young promise of the year)
Italian Critics Award (Dance & Dance) for Best Couple of the Year, together with Agnés Letestu.
Prix ​​Léonide Massine-Positano, for his interpretation of the “Three-Cornered Hat”
1999 NATIONAL DANCE AWARD (Spain)
2000 Gold Medal of the city of Cartagena
2005 “Elegance et Talent France / Chine” Award and Performing Arts Award for the best dancer (Valencia)
2009 “Benois de la Danza” Award for “Les Enfants du Paradis”

The French Ministry of Culture appoints him COMMANDER OF THE ORDER OF ARTS AND LETTERS
The Japanese magazine “Shinshokan Dance Magazine” recognizes him as one of the best dancers in the world.
Within the repertoire of José Carlos Martínez, great classical ballets such as “Swan Lake”, “Giselle”, “Don Quixote”, “La Bayadère”, “Sleeping Beauty”, “Raymonda”, “Nutcracker”, “La Sylph ”,“ Romeo and Juliet ”… and neoclassical and modern ballet by Ashton (Rhapsody, Scenes de Ballet), Balanchine ((Le Palais de cristal, Sylvia, Theme and Variations, The Four Temperaments, Agon, Diamonds, Capriccio, Tchaïkovski- pas de deux), MacMillan (The Story of Manon, The Song of the Earth), Graham (Temptations of the Moon), Grigorovich (Ivan the Terrible), Tudor (Jardin aux Lilas), Lifar (Suite en Blanc), Lander ( Etudes), Taylor (Aureole), among others.

He has worked with most of the great choreographers of the 20th century: Maurice Béjart (Bolero, XI Sinfonia, Webern Opus 5, Le Concours), John Neumeier (The Dream of a Midsummer Night, Waslav, Magnificat, The Lady of the Camellias) , Mats Ek (Giselle, Appartement, A sort of…), William Forsythe (In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated, Woundwork1), Jiri Kylian (Stepping Stones, Pina Bauch (Orfeo and Euridice), Cranko (Oneguine), Roland Petit (Carmen , Our Lady of Paris),… Some of them have created ballets for him; Passacaille (Roland Petit – 1994), Coppelia (Patrice Bart – 1996), Sylvia (Neumeier – 1997), Pas / Parts (William Forsythe – 1999), Le Rire de la Lyre (José Montalvo – 1999), Appartement (Mats Ek –2000), Nosferatu (Jean Claude Gallotta-2001), Shéhérazade (Blanca Li – 2001).

José has also danced in other companies as a guest artist such as the National Ballet of China, the Bolshoi in Moscow, the English National Ballet, the Scala Ballet in Milan, the Florence Ballet, the Rome Opera, the Het National Amsterdam Ballet, the Berlin Staatsoper, the Nice Opera, the Tokyo Ballet, the Bordeaux Ballet, the Cuban National Ballet, the Kirov of Saint Petersburg … and has gone around the world dancing in “Galas de Estrellas” in Montreal , Tokyo, Rome, London, Los Angeles, Lisbon, Dallas, Cannes, Seoul, Havana, Moscow, Madrid, Saint Petersburg, Vienna, New York …

As a choreographer he has premiered: “My Favorite” (2002), “Delibes-Suite” (2003), “Scaramouche” (for the students of the Paris Opera school), “Paréntesis 1” (2005), “Soli- Ter “and” My Favorite “(2006),” The Smell of Absence “(2007),” Les Enfants du Paradis “for the Paris Opera Ballet (2008),” Ouverture en Deux mouvements “(2009), “Marco Polo, the Last Mission” for the Shanghai Ballet (2010) and “Sonatas” (2012) for the National Dance Company. In 2015 he put on his version of “Don Quijote” which premiered in December at the Teatro de la Zarzuela to great critical and public success. In 2018 he released his version of “Nutcracker”. In March 2020 he premiered his version of “Corsair” with the Rome Opera Ballet.

José Carlos Martínez has been the Artistic Director of the National Dance Company from 2011 to 2019.

The choreographer was in charge of creating the two danced pieces of the Vienna New Year’s Concert, reaping great critical success.

His latest projects have taken him to Ljubljana, where he has created “Corsair”, and to Croatia, where he will create his version of “Giselle” with the Zagreb Opera Ballet.