Zuzana Šimáková

First Soloist, Czech National Ballet Prague

Born in Košice, Slovakia, after graduating from the local Dance Conservatory in 1998, she was engaged at the J. K. Tyl Theatre in Plzeň. In 2002 she joined the Czech National Ballet in Prague, where since 2012 she has been a soloist.

While in Plzeň, she danced the lead female role of Kitri in Don Quixote, Marguerite in La dame aux camélias, Myrtha in Giselle, the Doll and Nicole Coutet in Edith Piaf, Kate in Devilries, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte and the Witch in Time of Pain, concurrently performing in operettas and musicals (Hello Dolly, Kiss Me Kate, Funny Girl, Big Beat and Crazy for You). The most significant roles of her repertoire at the Czech National Ballet include Bianca in The Taming of the Shrew and Tatyana in Onegin (John Cranko), the titular role and the Fairy in Jean-Christophe Maillot’s choreography of Cinderella and the lead role of Kristýnka in Jan Kodet’s The Sorcerer’s Apprentice.

As for classical ballet, she has performed the Bride in the Wedding Couple in Giselle, the Pas de trois in Swan Lake, in the Grand pas de quatre within the mixed bill Ballet Mania, the role of Effie in La Sylphide and the Pas de six in Act III of Napoli.

She has manifested her sense for portraying character roles as Evil in Lucrezia Borgia and Sabrina in Faust by Libor Vaculík, as well as the Juggler and the Goldfish in Jan Kodet’s Goldilocks. In 2014 she performed the Marquise de Merteuil in Libor Vaculík’s ballet Valmont.

As for the modern repertoire, she has danced solo roles in choreographies by Petr Zuska: Ways 03, Among the Mountains, Les Bras de Mer, In the Mist, IBBUR, or A Prague Mystery, Requiem and BREL – VYSOTSKY – KRYL / Solo for Three; Jiří Kylián: Stamping Ground, Petite Mort and Sinfonietta; Nacho Duato: Jardí Cancat, Stijn Celis: Black and Blues, Conny Janssen: Álbum Familiar, Itzik Galili: Through Nana’s Eyes, Christopher Bruce: Dance at the Crossroads, William Forsythe: In The Middle Somewhat Elevated, etc.
In addition to dancing, she also creates her own choreographies, with the first being 6 Halves of a Human (within the mixed bill Czech Ballet Symphony I) in 2007, and regularly presents her works at the National Theatre in Prague within the Miniatures project. Moreover, she has choreographed the multimedia performance Emotion Collection, the operetta The Poacher’s Foster Daughter and the musical Muzikvariát at the J. K. Tyl Theatre in Plzeň. In 2014 she choreographed the gala opening of the National Theatre season in Prague.

Zuzana Šimáková has received a number of accolades, including a best choreography award (Brno, 2000), first prize at the choreography competition in Plzeň (2010), and was short-listed for the prestigious Czech Thalia Award for her portrayal of Mother / Fairy (Cinderella, 2012).