The six nominees in this year’s Telstra Ballet Dancer Awards have been announced by The Australian Ballet and its sponsor Telstra. What’s more the total prize money has risen from $25,000 to $40,000, with the winner of The Telstra Rising Star Award taking home $25,000 (up from $20,000) and the winner of The Telstra People’s Choice Award pocketing $15,000 (up from $5,000).

Telstra Ballet Dancer of Year Awards nominees The nominees for the 2021 Telstra Ballet Dancer Awards. Photograph supplied

This year’s nominees are soloist Nathan Brook, soloist Imogen Chapman, coryphée Jasmin Durham, corps de ballet dancer Serena Graham, coryphée Corey Herbert, and corps de ballet dancer Cameron Holmes. The nominees were selected by The Australian Ballet artistic team, the company’s dancers, and previous winners.

Normally, The Telstra Ballet Dancer Awards are presented at the end of the year at the Sydney Opera House during the curtain call on the opening night of the final production of the season.

In 2020, this didn’t happen, of course, because of COVID restrictions. Instead, the 2020 Telstra Ballet Dancer Awards will be presented at the SOH on 6...