Hailing from the Northeast England, Xander started dancing in Hull. As talented young artist, he joined the Royal Ballet School from which he graduated with honours in 2005. Xander then joined naturally the Royal Ballet of Covent Garden, happy to share the stage with his sister Demelza, dancer as well.
In 2010, Xander was offered a contract with the world-famous Mariinsky Theatre Ballet, making him the first British dancer to join the company. In July 2017, Xander was promoted to Principal Dancer after the opening night of Swan Lake during the Mariinsky Ballet’s London season at Covent Garden.
In August 2022, Xander made the difficult but inevitable decision to leave Russia and join the Norwegian National Ballet. He became the artistic director of “Reunited in Dance”, a project with the “Segerstrom Center” in California bringing together dancers who have left Russia and the war-torn Ukraine, a symbolic project.
Xander has been invited to perform with many companies during his career, including the Stanislavsky Ballet, English National Ballet and ABT. He launched his own online platform, offering courses and training from leading dancers, named “balletclass.com”.
Among the many awards he has received, the Positano Premia La Danza Leonide Massine Emerging Dancer on the International Scene Award (2014), the Best Young Male Dancer at the 1st Taglioni European Ballet Awards (2014), and Outstanding Male Performance (classical) for Apollo at the UK’s Critics’ Circle National Dance Awards (2014).
In 2017, Xander was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by the University of Hull. In 2019 he was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours list, for services to Dance and United Kingdom-Russia Cultural Relations.