Roy Assaf

Roy Assaf was born in 1982 in the rural community of Sde Moshe in southern Israel.  Though he did not train formally, Assaf has been dancing and creating since he remembers himself.

At the age of sixteen, he joined a dance group, led and trained by Regba Gilboa. Two years later, Assaf was drafted into a Paratrooper unit of the Israel Defence Forces and served there until completing his national service.

In 2003 he started working with Emanuel Gat and danced alongside him until 2009. In 2005, Roy Assaf created his first work, We Came for the Wings, Stayed Because We Couldn’t Fly, as part of the Shades In Dance competition in Tel Aviv. The work won the Judges Choice and Audience Favorite awards. From 2006 through 2009, Assaf worked as assistant choreographer of Emanuel Gat, developing new works and re-staging existing repertoire throughout the world.

In 2010, he was appointed Artistic Associate at the NND company in Groningen, creating for them Rock. In 2011 he created and danced in Six Years Later which was awarded first prize in choreography at the 5th International Choreography Competition in Copenhagen. The following year, he created and danced in The Hill, which was won first prize in the 27th International Competition For Choreographers Hanover. The production prize given by the Staatstheater Tanz Braunschweig at this competition eventually culminated in the commission of Girls & Boys, premiered in the company’s November 2014 season. More recently, Roy’s invitation to participate in 7th edition of [re]connaissance danse contemporaine with The Hill resulted in being awarded first prize of both the jury and audience.

Assaf continued to explore the theme of gender with two distinct full length works Girls (2014) and Boys (2015), both supported by the Intima Dance Festival hosted by Tmuna Theatre in Tel Aviv.

In September 2014 he created II Acts for the Blind for L.A. Dance Project under the direction of Benjamin Millepied, which premiered in the Biennale de Lyon, followed in February 2015 by Ballader, a collaboration with the Swedish pianist and composer Roland Peter Pöntinen, for the Royal Swedish Ballet.

2016 saw the creation of Adam, a work for 12 dancers, for the Batsheva Dance Company and Profundis, a work for 9 dancers, for National Dance Company Wales.
In early 2017 Assaf remade II Acts for the Blind into a full evening with his own company in Israel. In September he will create a new piece for GöteborgsOperan using the Rite of Spring by Igor Stravinsky and in 2018 he will re-visit his work Girls & Boys with Batsheva – The young ensemble. At SALLY choreographic work from Roy Assaf can be seen in Skyline.