I had the chance recently to ask Alex Smalley some questions about her journey as a ballerina. Alex is a phenomenal dancer, she graces the stage with incredible poise and elegance. Her love for ballet is incredible. Below are her responses.
Q1: When did you start ballet?
I started ballet when I was 5 and have loved it ever since!
Q2: Where do you currently dance?
I am a Senior student at Ballet Theatre Australia in Melbourne
Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?
I started pointe at 10, so six years now
Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?
I have custom Bloch pointe shoes that are a mix of the the Bloch Balance European and the Bloch Euro-stretch
Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?
My older sister does ballet too. I used to watch her dance when I was really young and decided it was what I wanted too
Q6: What is your favourite variation?
The Crystal Fountain fairy variation from Sleeping Beauty
Q7: What company would you love to work for?
My Dream companies are the Bolshoi and the Australian Ballet
Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?
One of my favourite ballet memories is performing a Paquita variation in front of a Russian Ballet Company
Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.
Maria Khoreva and Diana Vishneva are two of my favourite ballet dancers
Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?
Q11: Advise you’d give a young version of yourself?
Stop caring so much about how others see you, focus on yourself
Q12: Best thing about being a ballerina?
Definitely being able to express myself without words
Q13: Hardest thing about being a ballerina?
Mental, physical and emotional fatigue
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”?
Many times. I actually quit ballet when I was 6 and again when I was 10. I really found my love for it again when I was 11
Q15: Classical or romantic tutu?
For me romantic. I feel less like a toilet brush ahaha
Q16: Have you ever suffered a serious injury?
I have. Recently, actually. I had a benign tumour removed from my knee in late January and the tumour caused some nerve damage. I was in a wheelchair and then a metal brace for several months. I’m still doing rehab at the moment but I’m able to do classes and jumps 🙂
Q17: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?
I like sewing, songwriting and other crafty things. I can’t sing though (I sound like a dying cockatoo)