Joe Powell-Main

Joe began dancing in Mid-Wales at the age of five. Between the ages of eight and ten, he trained with the Royal Ballet School and Elmhurst School for Dance on the Junior Associate and pre-vocational programmes. In 2009 Joe successfully auditioned for the Royal Ballet School, White Lodge Richmond Park. Joe trained at the school for three and a half years. Following a period of injuries, surgery and then being involved in a car accident, Joe acquired his disability.

As a student Joe performed with the Royal Ballet, Birmingham Royal Ballet, and English Youth Ballet. Joe also performed for HRH Princess Alexandra.

Joe returned to dance using a wheelchair through Latin and Ballroom. This led to him studying a performing arts course at Clarendon Sixth Form College and a degree in Dance and Performance at the Arden School of Theatre, which he graduated from in 2020 with first class honours. During his final year of studying his degree course at the Arden, Joe also worked as an apprentice on the pre-professional programme with Ballet Cymru. Whilst working as an apprentice with Ballet Cymru, Joe performed with the company on tour in Romeo and Juliet and worked with choreographers such as Jack Philp and Alex Hallas.

Upon graduation from the Arden and completion of his apprenticeship, Joe joined Ballet Cymru as a company dancer. Joe was the first company dancer with Ballet Cymru to be a wheelchair and crutch user. Whilst working with the company between 2020 and 2021, Joe also had the opportunity to teach on many of the company’s education schemes and associate programme. He also choreographed for students on course three of 2021 Wales Summer Dance.

Joe is the first dancer using a wheelchair to perform as a featured guest artist with the Royal Ballet. He first performed with the company alongside international recording star Birdy in a piece co-created with Kristen McNally for the Paralympics GB Homecoming ceremony at Wembley Arena in September 2021.

In 2022 Joe became a freelance dance artist and began developing his own choreographic voice.

In 2022 Joe worked as Guest Artist with the Royal Ballet in Sleepwalker a new creation choreographed by Kristen McNally and directed by Alexander Campbell, featuring him and First Artist of the company Isabel Lubach. The Sleepwalker was first performed at the Linbury Theatre as part of the company’s 2022 Spring Draft Works. A portion of the rehearsals and a full run of the piece was filmed for a short film which was featured on the Royal Opera House Stream for World Ballet Day 2022.

Joe is a patron of the Charity Timestep Community Dance, a charity based in Yorkshire that enriches lives through dance. In his role as a patron Joe helps promote the work of the charity through social media. Joe has also performed with some of the dancers from Timestep in their annual performances.

In 2023 Joe became a patron of BBODance. In this new role Joe will be working with the organisation to devise initiatives so that the examination syllabus can be more accessible to dancers with different needs. Joe will also be working with BBODance to continue to develop inclusion and accessibility in their events as well.

Alongside his performance and choreographic work Joe advocates for inclusion and accessibility both in the dance industry and everyday life.

Professional Stage Credits include: Fusion Stepchange Studios (2018), Performer at Move It (2019), Ballet Cymru Romeo and Juliet (2019), UK Tour of Giselle with Ballet Cymru (2021),Guest Dancer with the Royal Ballet in Collaboration with Birdy for Channel 4 Paralympic GB Homecoming Ceremony (2021), Poems and Tiger Eggs Narrated by Cerys Matthews with Ballet Cymru (2021), Murmurations Choreographed by Liam Riddick for Ballet Cymru (2021), Guest artist with Royal Ballet performing a leading role in The Sleepwalker by Alexander Campbell and Kristen McNally for Royal Ballet Spring Draft Works Programme (2022), Dance Artist with Sweetshop Revolution for I am 8 Research and Development (2022), Dancer for the One Young World Summit Manchester (2022), A Lead Role in Power of Performance: This Is Us for the Rugby League World Cup Festival Northern Tour (2022), Kai and a Goblin in Snow Queen Pilot Midlands Tour with Propel Dance (2023) and a Dancer in the I am 8 Welsh Pilot Tour with Sweetshop Revolution (2023).

Choreographic Credits include: La La Land and La Secrétaire for Stepchange Studios (2018), La Samba for Wales Summer Dance (2021), Co-creation alongside Kristen McNally of Paralympic Homecoming GB Ceremony Royal Ballet Performance (2021), Undone for One Young World Manchester Summit 2022 Opening Ceremony (2022), Kai’s Ice solo as part of Snow Queen Pilot Midlands Tour with Propel Dance (2023) and Tango Solo as part of the I am 8 Welsh Pilot Tour with Sweetshop Revolution (2023).

Film and TV credits include: Appearances on ITV Wales, ITV News, Channel 5 News, BBC Wales News, BBC
Newsbeat and Steph’s Packed Lunch on Channel 4. Dancer in Pas De Deux for Channel 4 Random Acts (2018),
Performer/Choreographer and Director of O’r Lludw created for National Dance Company of Wales Plethu/Weave Commission (2020), Performer/Choreographer and Director of Y Ddraig for HARP and Arts Council of Wales (2020) and a Leading role in the Sleepwalker Promotional Film for Alexander Campbell Productions (2022).

Teaching experience: Guest teacher at Timestep Studios (2018), Assisting for the Ballet Cymru Inclusive Class
(2019-2020), Guest teacher for the Ballet Cymru Pre-professional Programme (2020), Assistant for the Ballet
Cymru Inclusive Dance Camp (2020), Guest teacher for Tiny Toes Ballet (2020), Inclusive Ballet Teacher for
Capezio Live on Instagram (2020), Assistant for Ballet Cymru Duets Course (2021), Co-course leader for Ballet
Cymru Half-term Inclusive course (2021), Guest teacher/choreographer for Wales Summer Dance Course 3 (2021), Guest teacher for the Ballet Cymru Mid-Associate programme (2021), Wales Wide Workshop Leader for R&D of I am 8 with Sweetshop Revolution (2022), Guest Teacher for company class for R&D of I am 8 with Sweetshop Revolution (2022), Guest Teacher for company class with Southpaw Dance Company This Is Us Tour (2022), Practitioner for Applied Ballet All In with National Youth Ballet (2022), Workshop Assistant and Leader for I am 8 with Sweetshop Revolution (2023), Guest Teacher for company class for Sweetshop Revolution with I am 8 (2023) and Guest Teacher for company class with Propel Dance for The Snow Queen (2023).

Image: photographer – Sian Trenberth


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Joe Powell-Main
NYB Ambassador