I had the chance recently to ask Emily Mccracken some questions about her journey as a ballerina. She’s an incredible dancer who takes to the stage with phenomenal poise and elegance. Her dedication to ballet is outstanding. Below are her responses.
Q1: When did you start ballet?
I started dancing when I was 3
Q2: Where do you currently dance?
I am currently in my graduate year at The Australian Ballet school.
Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?
I’ve been en pointe since I was 12
Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?
I wear Bloch serenade shoes.
Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?
I got involved in ballet because my sister started ballet and I wanted to do it with her.
Q6: What is your favourite variation?
My favourite variation is Gamzatti.
Q7: What company would you love to work for?
I would love to be able to work for The Australian Ballet or The Royal Danish Ballet.
Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?
My favourite memory would be performing George Balanchine’s ‘Who Cares?’ because it was so exhilarating and fun.
Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.
Nikisha Fogo and Marianela Nunez are probably the most inspiring role models for me.
Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?
The best advice I received was when something goes wrong while your dancing, just move on and pretend it never happened, that way you don’t keep thinking about it
Q11: Advise you’d give a young version of yourself?
Advice I would have given my younger self would be to stop thinking that you have to have a particular body type to be a ballerina. If only I knew how diverse ballerinas bodies were now, I could have spared myself of those negative thoughts.
Q12: Best thing about being a ballerina?
The best thing about being a ballerina is the way you can tell stories and share emotion with the audience.
Q13: Hardest thing about being a ballerina?
The hardest thing about being a ballerina is having to always be ‘perfect’ when in actual fact you can’t be perfect all the time and there will be off days when some things just don’t work.
Q14: It seems like such hard work, did you ever have days growing up where you were like “ugh maybe I’ll just pick an easier career so I can be like a normal teenager”?
I’m a naturally driven person so I’ve always been focused on trying to find a career in this profession but during COVID-19 it’s been hard to find that motivation when you see dancers all over the world not being able to perform. But it won’t be for forever and once we can perform I think it’s going to be even more special for us dancers.
Q15: Classical or romantic tutu?
I love both romantic and classical tutus but I think I really love the way the romantic tutu floats around when you dance. It just creates this ethereal feeling that is so beautiful.
Q16: Have you ever suffered a serious injury?
I did have an injury. I had a very small tear in my right knee meniscus which the doctors said wouldn’t heal on it’s own, so I still have it. I was given a really good rehabilitation program that I do almost everyday which helps keep the pain away.
Q17: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?
In my spare time I love to hike and go on walks. I also like playing the piano, doing puzzles and choreographing.