Hailing from Chiba, Japan, Yayoi Ban (Ezawa) trained at Rei Classical Ballet Institute, under Reiko Togashi, and Momoko Tani Ballet before joining the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School Professional Division in 2001. After completing two years in the Aspirant Program, she joined the Company as an Apprentice in 2005. Yayoi was promoted to Second Soloist in 2012.
Ban’s roles include Great Great Grandmother Irene in Twyla Tharp’s The Princess & The Goblin, Sugar Plum Fairy in Nutcracker, Violente Fairy in The Sleeping Beauty and as part of the RWB Company in The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude. She has also performed in Romeo & Juliet, Dracula, Swan Lake, Val Caniparoli’s A Cinderella Story and Jorden Morris’ Peter Pan, as well as contemporary works such as Mark Godden’s Angels in the Architecture and As Above, So Below, Itzik Galili’s Hikarizatto, Mauricio Wainrot’s The Messiah and Carmina Burana, and Balanchine’s Concerto Barocco.
In 2011, Ban performed Peter Quanz’s In Tandem at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, and in 2012 she performed in Yosuke Mino’s Kevät as part of Q Dance.
“Svengali's three-women entourage (Emily Grizzel, Yayoi Ezawa and Sophia Lee), dance with just the right amount of sensuous precision.” Robert Enright, CBC, 2011
Photo: Réjean Brandt Photography