World-renowned ballet dancer Guillem to retire at end of 2015

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- World-renowned ballet dancer Sylvie Guillem said Thursday she will retire at the end of 2015 in a statement announced via an arts foundation organizing her performance in Japan later this month.

"I will stop dancing in the end of 2015," the 49-year-old French dancer said in the statement released through the Japan Performing Arts Foundation, noting her farewell performance is also scheduled in Japan.

"This is all I can tell you now," she said.

According to the foundation, shows planned in December 2015 in Tokyo and elsewhere are likely to be Guillem's last performances.

Guillem joined the Paris Opera Ballet in 1981 and gained the top-rank title of etoile faster than anyone previously. She has performed internationally after leaving the ballet troupe, while pursuing her own style incorporating elements of contemporary dance.

Following the devastating earthquake and tsunami in northeastern Japan in March 2011, Guillem gave charity performances to support the disaster victims.

She will perform in Tokyo and Osaka later this month.

August 15, 2014(Mainichi Japan)