New Ocean Ambassador, Fernando Montano, takes on the 2.6 Challenge

Date posted: 5 May 2020

Royal Ballet dancer, Fernando Montano, joins MCS as our newest Ocean Ambassador. Our Ocean Ambassadors are passionate about our marine environment and work alongside us to help the ocean be a better place for both wildlife and for people.

Dance for the Sea - Fernando Montano
© Fernando Montano

I am so honoured to join the Marine Conservation Society family, I’m a very big supporter of the superb work they do.

Fernando Montano,
Ocean Ambassador

Fernando is planning to fundraise for MCS as part of the 2.6 Challenge, by dancing non-stop for 6 hours on Friday 8th May. He will be streaming this live via his Instagram feed (@fernandomontan0).

Born and raised in the Colombian coastal city of Buenaventura, Fernando Montano has always had a great love for the sea: “Like so many others, I have become increasingly horrified by the ever-growing levels of pollution and especially the problem that our use of plastics is creating when it is dumped into our rivers and oceans.”

Bringing together his passions for the ocean and dance, Montano created his own photographic project, Dance for the Sea, in 2019. He was photographed underwater, swimming and performing whilst surrounded by installations made from recycled plastic. He also directed, choreographed and performed at a charity event for MCS last year at the Royal Academy for Music: Dance for the Sea.

At the age of 14, Montano won a scholarship to the National Ballet School of Cuba thanks to his family who made significant sacrifices to enable the experience. In Havana he won international competitions and went on to join the Cuban National Ballet. From Havana he went to Italy and then the UK where he joined the Royal Ballet in 2006, he remains at the Royal Ballet as a Soloist. Fernando has performed all over the world both on Royal Ballet Company tours, but also independently often in support of charity work.

He has twice won the Personality of the Year Award at the LUKAS Awards (2013, 2014), celebrating prominent Latin figures in the UK. In 2019, he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of the Arts by the University of Bath. His other awards include prizes at the International Ballet Contest, Havana, a Citation of Honor (New York) and an honour from the President of Colombia. He has modelled for Vivienne Westwood and choreographed and danced Alchemy for her Banqueting House catwalk show in 2008.

Fernando Montano joins Deborah Meaden, Chris Packham, Simon Reeve and Susie Rodgers, amongst others, as Ocean Ambassador for the Marine Conservation Society. He will bring together his passions for dance and the ocean to raise awareness of the plights our ocean is facing.

On being an Ocean Ambassador for MCS, Fernando says: “I am so honoured to join the Marine Conservation Society family, I’m a very big supporter of the superb work they do. I was born in the Colombian coastal city of Buenaventura so the sea has always been a very important part of my life. It is our responsibility and duty to protect them all and I look forward to helping the charity to do that by supporting their projects and events.”

Fernando is also planning a second show for the Marine Conservation Society, Fernando Montano & Friends Christmas Special, on 6th December at the Royal College of Music, London.

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