Lachlan Monaghan performing in David Bintley’s Aladdin. Photo: Bill Cooper.
When Lachlan Monaghan was named winner of the Sydney Eisteddfod Ballet Scholarship in 2009, thousands cheered. This was because along with his sensational performance, he had broken the spell that had been preventing males from claiming top honours in this prestigious event since 1998.
Since then he has continued to go from strength to strength with Birmingham Royal Ballet and is now reaching new heights in his ballet career. After first joining the company in 2012, Lachlan was promoted to First Artist four short years later in 2016 and recently made his debut performance in a Principal role, taking on Franz in Sir Peter Wright’s Coppelia.
Jonathan Gray, esteemed editor of The Dancing Times made a special trip to the Bristol Hippodrome to see Lachlan performing with his talented partner Maureya Lebowitz in roles of Swanilda and Franz and later praised the pair’s performance.
He described Lachlan’s portal of Franz as ‘cheeky and sure of himself… Fickle and foolhardy, yet happy-go-lucky’, also noting his ‘confident dash when dancing, performing his solos with flair, covering the stage with big, generous jumps’. When asked what it was like to receive such a positive review Lachlan explained he felt very humbled.
“Franz in Coppelia was my first Principal role in a full length ballet so it was a very special time. To then read Jonathan’s review was so rewarding. After the hard work and time it takes preparing for a full-length classical ballet, it was an amazing feeling to get such positive feedback. I hope the audience felt the same as him - if I can go home having made an impact on an audience then I feel I’ve done my job” he said.
In addition to Coppelia, Lachlan has also recently completed a tour of David Bintley’s Aladdin, where he was lucky enough to play the title roles of Aladdin himself.
“It was a brilliant experience playing such a cheeky character!”
“I also recently performed as ‘The Young Man’ in Michael Corder’s Le Baiser de la fée, which was also very special to me. I love a role that pushes me to the limit in terms of stamina, technique and character and both of these roles did that”.
“In December I am very much looking forward to my debut as The Prince in The Nutcracker. It surely is a role on every male dancers wish list, the epitome of classical roles, and I feel so lucky to be performing it this year”.
From day one Lachlan made a huge impact on the Sydney Eisteddfod stage and even in the early stages of his career he kept in touch with Sydney Eisteddfod helping celebrate its 80th Anniversary by featuring as guest artist at the Ballet Final.
“Sydney Eisteddfod taught me so many things but especially being comfortable in performance and dancing on different stages. Dealing with nerves and the pressures and expectations of an audience are a very real part of being a professional in any art form, but being able to experience that at a young age was invaluable and taught me so many things that I’ve carried forward into my professional career” he said.
“Opportunities such as Sydney Eisteddfod are hugely important! A healthy competition environment that supports, nurtures and praises young talent is essential in helping young people realise their potential and to reach their goals of becoming artists on the world stage.”
Sydney Eisteddfod takes pride in Lachlan’s achievement and wishes him every success in his ongoing career with this leading British company.