Who was our founder Konstanze Vernon?

A visionary and a strategist – and a driving force in the Munich ballet scene

Konstanze Vernon was born in Berlin on 2 January 1939, the daughter of the well-known musicologist Friedrich Herzfeld. At the age of 17 she became the Berlin Ballet’s youngest soloist, under the direction of her teacher and patron Tatjana Gsovsky. In 1963, ballet director Heinz Rosen invited her to join the Bavarian State Opera Ballet as a principal.

From 1967 until his death, Konstanze Vernon was partnered with Heinz Bosl and together they became the dream couple of classical ballet in Munich.

When she retired from the stage in 1980, her second great career began. She and her husband Fred Hoffmann had already founded the Heinz-Bosl-Stiftung in 1976, with the aim of improving the standard of Munich’s dance training institutions. She succeeded in making the Munich Ballet Academy, of which she was the director, a world-class institution by expanding it into a renowned training centre.   

In 1988, she was appointed director of the Bavarian State Ballet, having successfully campaigned for ballet to be recognised as an art form equal in status to opera. The Bavarian State Ballet thus became an independent artistic institution with its own budget.

After ten years of investing in dance training, and still the director the Ballet Academy, she was now able to promote her former students within the Bavarian State Ballet. She shaped the Bavarian State Ballet for ten years and was succeeded by Ivan Liška in 1998. 

Still indefatigable, she continued to dedicate herself to the Ballet Academy. Her commitment to the art of ballet in Munich culminated in 2010 with the founding of Germany’s first and largest junior company, the Bavarian Junior Ballet Munich.

She had succeeded in bringing together Munich’s largest dance institutions in an extraordinary collaboration.

Konstanze Vernon remained chairperson of the board of the Heinz-Bosl-Stiftung and artistic director of the Bavarian Junior Ballet Munich until her death in 2013.