Born in Harbin, China, Yang Ruiqi trained at Shanghai Dance School and studied at John Cranko School in Stuttgart with a full Prix de Lausanne scholarship in 2010. After graduating in 2012, she joined Stuttgart Ballet as an Apprentice and was promoted to the Corps de Ballet in 2013. She came to Hong Kong Ballet as a Coryphée in 2016 and became Soloist in 2020.
With HKB, Yang has performed the title role of Alice in Septime Webre’s ALICE (in Wonderland), the principal and featured roles of Peasant Pas de Deux and Moyna in Webre and Charla Genn’s Giselle, Spanish Doll and French Doll in Terence Kohler's The Nutcracker, Mercedes and Kitri’s Friend in Nina Ananiashvili’s Don Quixote, Odalesques in Anna-Marie Holmes' Le Corsaire, Fei Nui in Septime’s Romeo + Juliet, Olympe in Val Caniparoli's Lady of the Camellias, Wendy Darling and First Twin in Webre’s Peter Pan, Jordan Baker in Webre’s The Great Gatsby and lead roles in George Balanchine’s Jewels. She has also performed in John Meehan’s Swan Lake, Ronald Hynd's Coppélia, Webre’s Ballet Classics for Children: Cinderella, Jiří Kylián's Petite Mort and Sechs Tänze, Jorma Elo's Shape of Glow, Wayne McGregor’s Chroma, Trey McIntyre’s A Day in the Life, Justin Peck’s Year of the Rabbit, Stephen Shropshire’s Handelwerk, Nguyen Ngoc Anh’s Beyond The Line (excerpts) and Tang Min (after Jules Perrot)’s Pas de Quatre. With Stuttgart Ballet, Yang performed main roles like Olga in John Cranko’s Onegin, Sapphire and Eloquence Fairy in Marcia Haydee’s The Sleeping Beauty and the Devil in Demis Volpi’s The Soldier’s Tale. Additionally, Yang had featured roles in George Balanchine’s Allegro Brilliante, John Cranko’s Romeo and Juliet, William Forsythe’s Second Detail, Marco Goecke’s On Velvet and Reid Anderson and Valentina Savina’s Giselle, among others. Her choreographic works include A Rebel at Heart (2017).
Yang was a finalist at Prix de Lausanne in Switzerland in 2009 and 2010 and at the 2008 Taoli Cup Dance Competition.
1. What does ballet mean to you?
It's part of my life.
2. Why did you start dancing?
When I was young, I was overweight, so I started to dance..
3. What was the first ballet you ever performed?
The first performance I did with Hong Kong Ballet was Lady of the Camellias, and the role was Olympe.
4. What is the most challenging ballet you have danced, and what made it so challenging?
Every performance is a challenge, because every single time you're on stage, you’re giving 100% to the audience. That’s the quality of a professional dancer.
5. Most memorable/weird onstage moment and why?
My most memorable on-stage moment was during our 2018 Europe tour. When we were performing in Germany, I tore my calf muscle onstage.
6. What keeps you motivated on tough days?
It's life; life must go on. There's nothing in the world that will not pass. It might be painful to get through when you're in the moment, but when you have pushed through it and you look back, you can see your growth.
7. What is your personal style?
As long as it suits you, it's beautiful.
Girls should have confidence in themselves, as confidence makes people beautiful.
8. Where is the most interesting place you have ever visited or want to visit?
It's who you're with that makes the trip meaningful. So being with the right people, no matter where I go, will be meaningful.