DAVID LEONARD HOLMES
April 8, 1936 - May 4, 2013
A Brilliant Man
David Holmes was born in Vancouver, Canada. Trained first as an engineer, then as an opera singer, and ultimately as a ballet dancer, David Holmes was a true renaissance man, as talented in the kitchen as he was on stage or in the classroom.
David’s professional dance career began with the Royal Winnipeg Ballet; within two years, he and his first wife Anna-Marie became the first North Americans to dance with the famed Russian Kirov Ballet. While in Russia, the Holmes couple was trained by legendary principal teachers Alexander Pushkin and Natalia Dudinskaya (who also taught Mikhail Baryshnikov and Rudolph Nureyev). The roles taught by these famous teachers would ultimately earn David a worldwide reputation for his virtuosity and interpretation of the great Russian classics. Guest appearances of both the classics and new works brought him regularly to cultural centers in over 30 countries. In addition to performing around the world, David was also featured in several notable dance films, including the international award-winning documentary Tour en L’air, and Ballet Adagio created by National Film Board of Canada.
David’s reputation as a performer was equaled by his reputation as a master teacher and businessman. David founded the Tennessee Festival Ballet that served Oak Ridge, Knoxville, Chattanooga, Nashville and Memphis with two tours annually, featuring the major classics. In 2007 he moved to the Sunshine Coast, where he devoted his attentions to raising his two youngest daughters with his second wife, Kathleen Holmes. In 2012 he and Kathy produced the highly successful “The Nutcracker” at the Heritage Playhouse, creating the first full-length local production of this Russian Classic for the Sunshine Coast. A brilliant artist, phenomenal chef, talented wordsmith and great lover of life, he will be deeply missed by so many around the world.
David is survived by his wife Kathleen his daughters Hunter, Halle and Lian-Marie, and his sister Betty-Mae Smith.
No service by request.