I had the chance recently to ask Samantha Murphy some questions about her journey as a ballerina. Samantha is a fantastic dancer, she takes to the stage with great poise and elegance, her passion for ballet is fantastic. Below are her responses.
Q1: When did you start ballet?
I started ballet around 3 years old but didn’t start seriously training till around 10
Q2: Where do you currently dance?
I am a current student at Slo Movement Arts Center
Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?
I have been en pointe for 3 years
Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?
Currently, I wear Bloch Sonata pointe shoes but I am looking into trying Freed of London
Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?
I first got involved into ballet because my mom was a figure skater and always wanted her daughter to be a ballerina, so she enrolled me at a young age. Then once I started getting older I fell in love and haven’t looked back since
Q6: What is your favourite variation?
My favorite variation is Lilac Fairy from Sleeping Beauty
Q7: What company would you love to work for?
My dream company to work for is ABT
Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?
My favorite memory from my ballet journey was getting my first solo roll in a ballet my old studio used to put on. I had wanted that roll for years and I’ll never forget the feeling I had when I saw my name on the cast list for that part
Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.
My ballet role models are Skylar Brandt, Scout Forsythe, Dusty Button, and Isabella Boylston. They inspire me every day and I can’t wait to be like them when I’m older!
Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?
The best advice I’ve ever received from a teacher is to always challenge yourself, even when it’s difficult. To never feel comfortable, because once you stay in your comfort zone, you’ll never grow. Taking those extra leaps of faith is what sets certain dancers apart from others. Another piece of advice is finding ways to make yourself stand out. Little things that you can do at an audition or open call that can catch someone’s eye. Those moments are what the people holding the audition will remember.
Q11: Advise you’d give a young version of yourself?
Advice I would give my younger self is to not let other people hold you back. I never wanted to take those leaps of faith because none of my friends were or I wouldn’t go to that audition because my friends weren’t going. I would tell myself to focus on my own path and my own future because doing that now has made a world of a difference in my training
Q12: Best thing about being a ballerina?
To me, the best thing about being a ballerina is having an escape from the world. Being able to be in that studio all night and forget about all the troubles surrounding your life, and just being able to do what you love. Also, there is always something to work on and grow. There’s never a “okay that’s perfect now I don’t have to work on that” moment. The opportunity for growth is all around you, and you’ll never get bored of it
Q13: Hardest thing about being a ballerina?
For me, the hardest thing about being a ballerina is the constant judgement on myself. I will find myself picking apart everything about me and being way too hard on myself. Now, I’ve gotten better and telling myself that I did a good job, but I still definitely struggle with it. There are also certain sacrifices that have to be made such as a really involved social life. However, when you get to do what you love every day, it’s all worth it
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”?
YES! I’ve definitely had my fair share of days where I felt like it was all too much and I just wanted to quit and take up an easy sport. Especially during quarantine where all I could do was dance alone in my house, I was really struggling to find motivation to keep going. But every time I would try to take a break, I would miss it to much and I was back at it in no time
Q15: Classical or romantic tutu?
Q16: Have you ever suffered a serious injury?
Yes, I have struggled with achilles tendinitis since I was young but it’s gotten much better.
Q17: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?
In my free time I like to spend time with friends, paint, journal, go to the beach, and just relax!