The dancers of the Royal Ballet are considered to be among the very best in the world.But when choreographer David Dawson’s latest work at Covent Garden drew poor reviews, those dancers found themselves at the centre of an extraordinary written attack.An online commenter purporting to be Dawson’s choreographic assistant, Tim Couchman, said the failure of the production was down to the Royal Ballet stars with their “inflated” egos, refusal to practise and non-stop moaning behind the scenes. So bad was their behaviour, the comment read, that they should be “shrunken with shame”. A top-class professional [does not] bicker and moan about things theythink are impossible before they’ve even tried them He went on: “To me, personally, a top-class professional is someone who endeavours to present the art as authentically as possible. They are open to understanding the techniques required to achieve an artist’s particular style and vision, whether they like them or not…”A top-class professional makes the effort to learn the physicality, and musicality, properly and precisely. They observe, listen and practice, and they practice repeatedly until they master that which is strange and difficult [sic]. “They retain the information, come to rehearsals prepared, they focus hard, and deliver the work consistently, without deflecting corrections and coaching advice. They do not bicker and moan about things they think are impossible before they’ve even tried them.”He signed off: “And a top-class professional (not to mention true artist) would never ever be satisfied with scraping though at the last minute, shrunken with shame, knowing they didn’t really do their best.”Only when ALL cast members behave as top-class professionals, can a work of art hope to reveal it’s fragile truth. But when time is tight, when egos are inflated, when hearts are closed and minds are unfocused, all that can happen is the promulgation of lies. And the art is lost, and we will never know.” Tim Couchman, assistant choreographerCredit:Telegraph Choreographer David DawsonCredit:Angela Sterling Dawson is acclaimed in Europe and was the first British choreographer to create a new work for the Mariinsky Ballet. He trained at the Royal Ballet School, as did Couchman, who helps to stage Dawson’s productions around the world.The production in question, The Human Seasons, takes its name from the Keats poem of the same name. It was first staged by Dawson in 2013 and is currently part of a triple bill. The other two works, from different choreographers, were well-received.The principal dancers and soloists taking part include some of the Royal Ballet’s star names: Marianela Nunez, Claire Calvert and Eric Underwood.