I recently had the opportunity to ask Leah McFadden some questions about her incredible journey as a ballerina. Leah is a phenomenal dancer, she graces the stage with incredible poise and elegance. Her passion and dedication for ballet is unparalleled. Below are her responses.
Q1: When did you start ballet?
I started ballet at age 11 in 2009
Q2: Where do you currently dance?
Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?
Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?
Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?
I originally wanted to be a ballroom dancer, but my father told me I should start with some ballet classes. Once I started the classes, I never stopped.
Q6: What is your favourite variation?
It’s hard to pick just one variation. I would have to say Giselle act 1, Black Swan act 3, and the turning girl variation from “Who Cares”.
Q7: What company would you love to work for?
My dream company has always been the Royal Ballet. That’s a pretty far off dream though.
Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?
There are so many great memories. I’d have to say one of the best was performing at Lincoln Center with Miami City Ballet in 2016.
Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.
Aline Cojocaru since day 1. She stole my heart the first time I saw the Royal Ballet’s Giselle on DVD. Baryshnikov and Gelsey Kirkland of course. They were my introduction to ballet. Marianela Núñez. She is clean, pure technicality when she dance.
Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?
No matter if you feel like you don’t fit in because of your aesthetic or because you see someone naturally more gifted, stay confident in yourself always and know that you have your own uniqueness to bring to the dance world. There will always be someone out there looking for a dancer just like you.
Q11: Classical or romantic tutu?
Romantic. I love the older ballets.
Q12: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?
I like to spend as much time as I can with friends and family. I’m a bit of a movie fanatic. I also love trying new restaurants.