I had the opportunity recently to ask Kelsey Thomas some questions about her incredible journey as a ballerina. Kelsey is a phenomenal dancer, she graces the stage with poise and elegance, her passion and dedication for ballet is unparalleled. Below are her responses.
Q1: When did you start ballet?
I started dance when I was 4 years old
Q2: Where do you currently dance?
Art Ballet Academy
Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?
I started pointe when I was 8
Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?
I currently wear Grishko 2007 and I have been wearing this for the past several years.
Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?
My older cousin danced all her life and was a professional ballerina and I went to all of her shows.
Q6: What is your favourite variation?
I’m not sure what my favorite variation is because I love so many of them. I guess it depends if you’re talking about a slow variation or a fast one. But I always love Kitri’s 1st act variation.
Q7: What company would you love to work for?
If I had to pick one, it would probably be ABT because they have a really fun and interesting repertoire and their dancers are stunning.
Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?
My favorite moment in ballet is split between being in class and working really hard to achieve a particular goal and then one random day you did it. That’s just really exciting and encouraging. The other moment is right before you walk on stage and feeling the adrenaline coursing through your veins and all the fear and excitement running through you and then you take your first step on stage and it’s all alive and you feel calmer but ready to attack.
Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.
I have so many dancers that inspire me for different reasons. Some of the top ones just off the top of my head are Wendy Whelan, Maria Kochetkova, Marianela Nuñez, Alessandra Ferri, and Alina Somova
Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?
The best advice I’ve ever received from a teacher was from Mariya Kudyakova of Art Ballet Academy many many years ago. She was helping me prepare one of the gypsy dances from Don Quixote for competition and it required a lot of emotion and passion (at the time I was only 12) and she told me to do it again and “dance like you will never dance again in your life.” I’ve carried that in my heart ever since then and I use it to push me forward when I’m tired or feel like I can’t jump one more time or do one more grand battement or hold my adagio for one more second or when I feel like I can’t make it to the end of my variation.
Q11: Classical or romantic tutu?
Sometimes it’s hard to choose between classical or romantic because they both can be so pretty. But I think classical tutus have my heart.
Q12: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?
I have a really wide variety of interests other than dance, but for the sake of this post, I’ll narrow it down and just say that I love art. Art has been in my life for as long as I can remember. I love drawing and painting mostly but I also love photography and videography.