Tag: Arabesque

Q&A With Australian Ballerina Paige Rochester

I had the opportunity recently to ask Paige Rochester some questions about her journey as a ballerina. Paige is an amazing dancer, she graces the stage with poise and elegance, her dedication and love for ballet is incredible. Below are her responses.

Q1: When did you start ballet?

I started dancing at the age of 3.  I was learning Ballet, Jazz and contemporary.

Q2: Where do you currently dance?

I currently dance with The Queensland Ballet, in Brisbane Queensland.

Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?

I have been dancing en Pointe for 9 years.

Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?

I Currently Bloch pointe shoes in the style heritage.

Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?

I always wanted to dance, so I asked my parents to take me.

Q6: What is your favourite variation?

One of my favourite Variations is Esmeralda. I love this variation because it has many challenging aspects and there is plenty of personality.

Q7: What company would you love to work for?

I love dancing where I am currently but another one of my favourite company’s is American Ballet Theatre.

Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?

I have many memorable memories from so many ballets. I always have great memories whenever I get to perform in the Nutcracker dancing –  Snowflakes, rats, Spanish, flowers.

Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.

An Artist who really inspires me is Jurgita Dronina. Also a soloist with Queensland Ballet, Neneka Yoshida.

Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?

It’s all done with smoke and mirrors. Trust in myself.

Q11: Classical or romantic tutu?

I love both styles of tutus. They are quite different to each other, which is very special and crucial in many Ballets.  But I do love how the romantic tutu floats in the air, when I jump.

Q12: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?

In my free time I love to cook and create food. Also I love exploring with my friends. Getting out and about

Q&A With American Ballerina Ella Norlen

I recently had the opportunity to ask Ella Norlen some questions about her inspirational journey as a ballerina. Ella is an amazing dancer, she graces the stage with incredible poise and grace, her love and dedication for ballet is unparalleled. Below are her responses.

Q1: When did you start ballet?

I started ballet when I was 2 1/2.

Q2: Where do you currently dance?

Currently, I dance at the Maryland Youth Ballet in Silver Spring, Maryland.

Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?

I have been on pointe for about four years now. I started pointe when I was 11.

Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?

At the moment, I am switching from russians to gaynors. I started on pointe with suffolks, for about a year and a half, and then switched to russians for the next 2 1/2. I started wearing gaynors this week!

Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?

When I was 2 1/2, my mom took me to see a ballet. After the show, a dance teacher was having a spontaneous class for all the little kids. I joined in, and after the teacher had finished, she told my mom to give me ballet lessons.

Q6: What is your favourite variation?

I love so many variations! I would have to say that Princess Florine or Kitri act 3 are my favorites. Odelisque is fun too.

Q7: What company would you love to work for?

I would like to work for PNB, the Paris Opera or ABT, or really any other famous company.

Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?

My favorite memory is probably from this past years nutcracker. I got to perform Chinese with one of my really good friends, and it was incredibly fun.

Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.

My main role model is definitely Gillian Murphey. My mom cut out a photo of her from a performance she did of cupid when I was little and I still have it tacked on my cork board.

Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?

My teachers always tell me to cool down, because sometimes I get excited and put too much effort into things. It’s important to be able to chill out when you’re pushing yourself too hard.

Q11: Classical or romantic tutu?

I would say classical, because they’re so pretty to look at, and are fun to have on. Romantic tutus are pretty, but classical tutus are cooler.

Q12: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?

When I’m not dancing, I’m usually at school. Besides schoolwork, I love reading and drawing. Watching ballets is also something I like to do.

Q&A With American Ballerina Lauren Collett

I recently had the opportunity to ask Lauren Collett some questions about her journey as a ballerina. She is an phenomenal dancer, she graces the stage with incredible poise, grace and elegance. Her passion and love for ballet is unmatched. Below are her responses.

Q1: When did you start ballet?

5 years old

Q2: Where do you currently dance?

The School of American Ballet

Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?

7 years

Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?

Freed of London

Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?

My mom signed me up for dance classes and I originally liked tap and jazz better but when I was about 7 I realized I wanted to be a ballet dancer

Q6: What is your favourite variation?

Stars and Striped liberty bell

Q7: What company would you love to work for?

New York City Ballet😍

Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?

Being Clara in the nutcracker

Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.

Suzanne Farrell and Gelsey Kirkland

Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?

Live in the moment and always have artistry when you dance because that’s what makes ballet so beautiful

Q11: Classical or romantic tutu?

Both

Q12: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?

Have a good time with my friends and try to not think about ballet haha

Q&A With American Ballerina Anda Erdenebileg

I had the chance recently to ask Anda Erdenbeileg some questions about her journey as a ballerina. Anda is an amazing dancer, she graces the stage with poise and elegance, her passion and dedication to ballet is phenomenal, below are her responses.

Q1: When did you start ballet?

I started ballet when I was 5 years old

Q2: Where do you currently dance?

Classical Ballet Academy in Colorado

Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?

8 years

Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?

Gaynors and Grishko

Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?

Well my parents put me in a lot of classes like swimming, drawing, ice skating, golf and dance and I just liked it the most

Q6: What is your favourite variation?

Probably Esmeralda

Q7: What company would you love to work for?

Probably San Francisco Ballet or Royal Ballet

Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?

Yes when I performed peasant pas in Giselle

Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.

Natalia Osipova, Misa Kuranaga, Svetlana Zakharova

Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?

Be as objective as possible about your strengths and weaknesses.

Q11: Classical or romantic tutu?

Classical

Q12: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?

I like to do something outdoors like hiking or riding my bike

Q&A With Australian Ballerina Bella Cort

I recently had the chance to ask Bella Cort some questions about her journey as a ballerina. Bella is an excellent dancer, she graces the stage with poise and grace, her passion and love for ballet is unparalleled. Below are her responses.

Q1: When did you start ballet?

Started ballet when I was 4, but commuted to pre-professional training at age 14.

Q2: Where do you currently dance?

Currently dance in England.

Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?

Been en pointe for 6 years.

Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?

Currently wearing Merlet Divas.

Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?

My mum always said that I was always dancing around as a child, so putting me in to ballet classes just made sense.

Q6: What is your favourite variation?

Favourite? Too many to choose from, but Giselle is definitely a classic.

Q7: What company would you love to work for?

Absolute dream of mine has always been to dance for the Paris Opera Ballet.

Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?

Performing a pas de deux with a live Opera singer. The atmosphere on stage was simply magical!

Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.

Maria Kotchetkova has always been an inspiration of mine. From how she dances to what she wears, and the ideals she talks about. Everything about her inspires me. Others include Sylvie Guillem, Evgenia Obratsova and Aurelie Dupont.

Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?

“Don’t overthink it”

Q11: Classical or romantic tutu?

Romantic tutu.

Q12: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?

I’m a big health fanatic, so cooking and discovering new recipes is a big passion of mind. Also spend a fair bit of my time doing art.

 

Q&A With Polish Ballerina Ewelina Keller

I recently had the opportunity to ask Ewelina Keller some questions about her journey as a ballerina. Ewelina is an amazing dancer, she graces the stage with phenomenal poise and grace, her passion and love for ballet is unmatched. Below are her responses.

Q1: When did you start ballet?

I started ballet when I was 10 but before that I was a rhythmic gymnast.

Q2: Where do you currently dance?

This year I graduated Polish National Ballet School in Gdańsk and from August I start my first season in Opera Comica pentru Copii in Bucharest.

Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?

I have been en pointe for 7 years.

Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?

I wear Gaynor Minden point shoes

Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?

My grandparents thought that career as a ballet dancer is better (more stable) than rhythmic gymnast so they sent me to audition for the Polish National Ballet School.

Q6: What is your favourite variation?

That’s hard question! I like many variations but my absolutely favourite are Manon and Black Swan

Q7: What company would you love to work for?

Now I can’t wait to start my first season with Opera Comica pentru Copii! But someday I really want to dance with John Neumeier ballet.

Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?

My first performance

Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.

My ballet role model always was my ballet teacher and also ballerinas as Sylvie Guillem, Natalia Osipova and Marianela Núñez

Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?

My teacher always said to me that I should feel in point shoes like in slippers. I should feel absolutely comfortable and sure in them.

Q11: Classical or romantic tutu?

Classical tutu

Q12: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?

In my free time I love reading books and listening to music

 

Q&A With American Ballerina Sofia Yarbrough

I had the opportunity recently to ask Sofia Yarbrough some questions about her journey as a ballerina. Sofia is an incredible dancer, she graces the stage with grace and poise, her passion and dedication to ballet is phenomenal. Below are her responses.

Q1: When did you start ballet?

I started dance a bit late, I took my first ballet class at age 10.

Q2: Where do you currently dance?

I currently dance at Ballet Center of Fort Worth in Fort Worth Texas. I also have trained at Kirov Academy of Ballet and I’m about enter my freshman year at Butler University where I will be studying ballet.

Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?

I started pointe at age 12.

Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?

I currently wear Suffolk Stellar pointe shoes.

Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?

I first started taking ballet because there was a fine arts school in my town that I really wanted to go to. At age 10 I loved to act and sing and though this school would be perfect for me. The only problem was, the students were required to audition in theater, music, and dance. After learning this, my mom immediately enrolled me in ballet. When I learned of my acceptance to this school my mom said I could stop taking ballet, but I didn’t want to. I stopped acting and singing and focused all of my time on ballet.

Q6: What is your favourite variation?

The answer to this question is constantly changing for me, currently my favorite variation is Nikiya’s death from La Bayadere.

Q7: What company would you love to work for?

My dream company is Dutch National in Amsterdam.

Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?

My favorite moment in ballet is that feeling right after you perform. You feel energized and this huge rush of adrenaline, there is no other feeling like it in the world.

Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.

Svetlana Zakharova, Natalia Osipova, and Olga Smirnova are my role models.

Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?

When you are trying to draw inspiration for a character, draw from real life experiences for inspiration.

Q11: Classical or romantic tutu?

I love romantic tutus.

Q12: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?

In my time off I love to travel and experience new things, environments, and food.

Q&A With American Ballerina Sydney S

I recently had the chance to ask Sydney S some questions about her incredible journey as a ballerina. Sydney is an amazing dancer, she graces the stage with incredible poise and elegance, her passion and love for ballet is infectious. Below are her responses.

Q1: When did you start ballet?

When I was 2 started getting serious when I was 7.

Q2: Where do you currently dance?

Company member at Lexington Ballet

Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?

Been on pointe since I was 11

Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?

Grishko 2007

Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?

My mom put me in it

Q6: What is your favourite variation?

Stars and stripes Balanchine

Q7: What company would you love to work for?

I currently dance with Lexington ballet and love it here

Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?

Last season at Lexington ballet performing my first pas da deux in jungle book as the village girl

Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.

Tiler Peck

Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?

Early is on time on time is late and late is acceptable

Q11: Classical or romantic tutu?

Classical tutu

Q12: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?

Go to the beach

Q&A With American Ballerina Basia Rhoden

I had the chance recently to ask Basia Rhoden some questions about her journey as a ballerina. Basia is an amazing dancer, she graces the stage wtih poise and elegance, her passion and dedication for ballet is unmatched. Below are her responses.

Q1: When did you start ballet?

I began dancing, along with gymnastics and other sports, at age 2.5. I began focusing primarily in ballet training at age 9.

Q2: Where do you currently dance?

Master Ballet Academy

Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?

Around 4 years.

Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?

Grishko nova

Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?

My pediatrician recommended dance and gymnastics as physical therapy for minor leg misalignment, instead of leg braces

Q6: What is your favourite variation?

Ugh, so many to choose from, it is so hard to pick just one. For me personally, I’d say Odile variation, because it is fun and challenging to work on the expressive port de bra.

Q7: What company would you love to work for?

There are so many amazing companies, each with admirable traits. I couldn’t possibly narrow it down.

Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?

A memorable moment in my ballet career so far happened pretty recently. Performing on the Lincoln Center stage for YAGP Finals (and it being my first time in New York City) was a dream come true. And I was honored to be placed as the female senior bronze medalist. So grateful for that time.

Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.

I constantly find inspiration in professional dancers, mentors, and my own peers. Specifically, a few role models who I look up to are Svetlana Zakharova, Maria Kochetkova, and Polina Semionova.

Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?

Hard work and self confidence are important in a successful performance, but also remember to be gracious and to show humility. (But if we’re referring to technique, my never ending corrections are to put my shoulders back and turn out my legs more).

Q11: Classical or romantic tutu?

Classical (I call it a pancake tutu, lol!)

Q12: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?

I love watching movies, playing card or dice games, and overall spending time with my family.

 

Q&A With American ballerina Hannah Semler

I recently had the chance to ask Hannah Semler some questions about her wonderful journey as a ballerina. Hannah is an amazing dancer, she graces the stage wtih poise and grace, her passion and dedication for ballet is incredible. Below are her responses.

Q1: When did you start ballet?

I started dancing at the age of 3 in beginning movement classes.

Q2: Where do you currently dance?

I dance at a studio in Indianapolis

Q3: How long have you been en pointe for?

I have been en pointe for 5 years now!

Q4: What pointe shoes do you currently wear?

I just switched pointe shoes as I am currently wearing Bloch Elegance. They are split sole and I love them! I have nothing bad to say about them and they have really helped me strengthen my feet.

Q5: How did you first get involved in ballet?

I began dancing at a local YMCA. I took ballet and Hip Hop. Ballet was my way of calming down when I was little. I was so focused and automatically fell in love with it. 14 years later I’m still doing it and love it just as much and maybe even more!

Q6: What is your favourite variation?

This is a hard question! I can’t just pick one variation as my favorite because I like multiple for many different reasons! I love Diana and Acteon because of the power Diana possesses and the strength she gives off in her character. I also love the Grande Pas Classique because of the challenging aspects of it and the beauty of the music. I also love the Act 1 Aurora Variation from Sleeping Beauty. It is so beautiful and elegant.

Q7: What company would you love to work for?

I began to realize that I wanted to become a professional dancer around the age of 15. I am always striving to improve my dancing and artistry, and being able to dance as a profession is an absolute dream of mine. My dream company would have to be either Cincinnati Ballet, Joffrey Ballet or Houston Ballet.

Q8: Do you have a favourite memory/moment in ballet?

My favorite memory or moment from ballet would have to be when I got to perform as the FireBird in my companies Winter Showcase. This role was a very challenging yet rewarding role. It was all new choreography and different movements. I felt that from this experience it taught me the importance of being a well rounded dancer and not being afraid of trying new things. The role of “The Firebird” really pushed me past my limits and I will be forever grateful for the opportunity to have been able to perform that role.

Q9: Who are your ballet roles models? Dancers that inspire you.

My ballet role models are Natalia Osipova, Isabella Boylston and Tyler Donatelli! Natalia Osipova has an amazing stage presence that I can not keep my eyes off of. I really look up to her not only because she is an amazing dancer, but her ability to portray so many different character seamlessly. Her jumps are also amazing too! Isabella Boylston is absolutely beautiful! Her grace and technique are impeccable! I am also a huge fan of the Cindys! Tyler Donatelli is a very inspiring person. Her story of how she got to Houston Ballet is something that I really look up to. She is such a hard working dancer and her turns are also amazing too!

Q10: Best advice you’ve ever received from a teacher?

The best advice I have ever received from a teacher would have to be you have to just believe in yourself and be yourself. It is something I constantly have to remind myself of. It is very important to be yourself and try your hardest. As artist we have to use what we were given in order to be the best versions of ourselves, and I think that is really important to just be yourself because the first part of believing in yourself is accepting and loving yourself for who you really are.

Q11: Classical or romantic tutu?

I love both kinds of tutus, but classical tutus are definitely my favorites!

Q12: What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?

When I am not dancing I love to excercize! My favorite thing to do is go one walks with my dogs and just enjoy that fresh air outside! I also love baking and cooking for my friends and family!