I had the chance recently to ask Amanda Fields some questions about her journey as a ballerina. Amanda is an excellent dancer, she graces the stage with amazing grace and poise. Her passion and love for ballet infectious. Below are her responses.
Q1: When did you start ballet?
When I was 4.
Q2: Where do you currently dance?
I’m currently dancing at JKO.
Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?
I started when I was 11 so 5 years. When I was 9 and 10 we had these ridiculous pre-pointe shoes which were basically pointe shoes without a shank. I’m sure I did plenty of things I wasn’t supposed to in those.
Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?
I am in Grishko Triumphs right now but I’m constantly on the hunt for the next best thing. Name a pointe shoe and I’ve probably tried it.
Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?
My Mother was a modern dancer who always studied ballet. She enrolled me in a once a week class at a local studio and the ballet bug got me almost immediately.
Q6: What is your favourite variation?
I love the second act Dulcinea variation from Don Quixote. If only I could just dance the second act and avoid all the crazy split jumps. I think Giselle’s first act variation might be my all time favorite. The port de bras towards her mother are so touching. All the steps emphasize the character.
Q7: What company would you love to work for?
There are so many! I’ve grown up watching ABT so being in that company has always been a dream. But there are also so many amazing dancers dancing at Houston, Boston, Washington and Pacific Northwest.
Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?
Dancing Balanchine’s Serenade was an incredible experience. I was 12 at my home studio and Amar Ramasar came to set the piece. He’s now a principal with NYCB. I had never experienced being in a Corps de ballet and still dancing with such fluidity.
Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.
Devon Teuscher is someone I have always admired. I watched her come up through the ranks in ABT. Her poise on stage is incomparable. She can make the smallest movements speak volumes. Misa Kuranaga is also inspiring. I’ve never seen her move from her fifth. No bourrees necessary. I hope someday to dance with that level of discipline. And Marianela Nunez is just everything a ballerina should be.
Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?
I train with Elizabeth Troxler who is now choreographing all around NYC but started teaching ballet using the RAD syllabus. She has always told me to do the things you can and then the things you can’t will come. I may not be able to do 5 turns on pointe now but I can do a strong releve, get into a good position and spot. By doing the things I can now, maybe one day I’ll turn like Gillian Murphy.
Q11: Classical or romantic tutu?
Classical tutu. Ballet dancers work hard to build leg muscles. We should get to show them off.
Q12: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?
Roll out, stretch, cross train. I’m a bun head to the core. But I also love spending time with family and friends. Finding new places to eat in New York is also fun.