I had the chance recently to ask Maria Oka some questions about her journey as a ballerina. Maria is a phenomenal dancer, she takes to the stage with amazing grace and poise. Her passion and love for ballet infectious. Below are her responses.
Q1: When did you start ballet?
Started dancing when i was 3. Professionally age 17.
Q2: Where do you currently dance?
Ajkun Ballet Theater
Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?
Approximately 13 years
Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?
Q5:How did you first get involved in ballet?
My mother took me to ballet school since I have loved dancing so much.
Q6: What is your favourite variation?
Paquita, Grand pas de deux female Va and Aurora act2
Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?
Being on stage with shining lights, wearing sparkly costume and dancing in front of audiences are the best moment ever in my life.
Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.
Misty Copeland, Wendy Whelan and Svetlana Zakarova
Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?
“you’re an actress”
When I was sad about my performance, my teacher told me that no one cares or knows about my mistakes or if I’m sad. I just have to push through and work harder in rehearsal. That made me a lot stronger.
Q11: Classical or romantic tutu?
Q12: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?
I watch any kind of dancing videos. It’s inspiring to watch different styles of dancing especially like Hip-hop.