- Wayne Sleep
OBE(born July 17, 1948), Plymouth, Devon, England; is an English dancer, director and choreographer. He was a Principal Dancer with the Royal Balletand has appeared as a Guest Artist with several other ballet companies.
He moved with his family to
Hartlepoolc 1951 and spent ten years there. He was educated at Hyde Park Junior School, and began dancing lessons in Hartlepool in 1955 with Muriel Carr, before gaining a Leverhulme Scholarshipto the Royal Ballet Schoolin 1961 and joining the Royal Balletin 1966.
At only 5'2", Sleep is famous for being the shortest male dancer ever admitted into the Royal Ballet School. Had he not left his
auditionfor the school early and missed his final physical examination, he would not have gained a place. Because of his diminutive stature many directors were reluctant to cast him in traditional male lead roles. As a result many roles were created for him by noted choreographers including Ashton, MacMillan, de Valois, Layton, Nureyev, and Neumeier. Sleep is often chosen for character roles due to his unusual physique. In 1982, Andrew Lloyd Webberadapted his "Variations" album as the second half of stage show "Song and Dance" for Sleep. Sleep created the role of Mr. Mistoffelees in Lloyd Webber's musical "Cats" in London's West End, at the New London Theatre, on May 11 1981.
In 1973, Sleep established a
world recordby doing an entrechat douze- a jump with six beats - this record still stands to this day.
As well as dancing, Sleep also acts and his credits include
Tiggerin " Winnie the Pooh" and Villiersin "Soldiers". He also appeared, as himself, in "The Goodies" episode " Football Crazy".
choreographycredits include " David and Goliath".
Sleep is remembered for dancing with
Princess Dianaat the Royal Gala Performance, in Covent Gardenin 1985.
In 2003, Wayne appeared in the
reality TVseries, " I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!". In the 2005/06 pantomime season, Sleep appeared in "Beauty and the Beast" at the Theatre Royal, Windsor. Sleep recently completed a tour of "Magic of the Musicals" with Marti Webband Robert Meadmore, as well as appearing as a judge on BBC One's " Strictly Dance Fever".
Wayne Sleep has worked with the
British Shakespeare Companyon three successful occasions, playing Puck in " A Midsummer Night's Dream" twice (most recently on a national tour in 2006), as well as Feste in " Twelfth Night".
Sleep runs workshops all over the country that children of over the age of six can attend. He has recently appeared as Uncle Willy in a performance of
High Societyand is currently appearing as Emcee in 'Cabaret' which is touring around England.
Sleep also appeared in the 2008 series of Ant and Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway, as a team member in the feature Ant v. Dec. On the first show Ant's team lost the challenge which meant Ant had to chose one of the team members to be eliminated and chose Wayne.
* [http://www.waynesleep.org/ Wayne Sleep's Official Website]
* [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=elMQ33hQVj4 TV show clip]
* [http://www.fandango.com/waynesleep/filmography/p+66222] Wayne Sleep Filmography
* [http://www.reallyuseful.com/rug/shows/song/cast/WayneSleep.htm] Wayne Sleep at Andrew Lloyd Webber's Really Useful Group
* [http://listing-index.ebay.com/actors/Wayne_Sleep.html] Listing Index
* [http://www.newsshopper.co.uk/leisure/leisurenews/display.var.1417277.0.sleep_on_the_job_in_high_society.php] Sleep on the job in High Society
* [http://www.answers.com/topic/wayne-sleep] Wayne Sleep at Answers.com
* [http://www.shieldsgazette.com/regional-news?articleid=2137008] Wayne's still stepping out
* [http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2007/06/03/nballet03.xml] No British dancer to fill Darcey's pointe shoes
Wayne has also been a judge in Andrew Llyod Webber's "How do you solve a problem like Maria.On top of that he has done workshops in places such as Birmingham for young aspiring dancers.
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