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CELEBRATE ISSUE #1

DECEMBER 2019


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#1

WELCOME

Contributors Editor & Words Cassandra Houghton Photography All Queensland Ballet photography by David Kelly except; The Nutcracker by Julia Balla (pg 12,13); & Season 2020 by Jez Smith (pg 9,18) Art Direction & Design Dave Byrne / Bigfish

Welcome to the first edition of Pas. magazine.

Contact Queensland Ballet (07) 3013 6666 mail@queenslandballet.com.au Beesley St Studios 34 Beesley St, West End, QLD 4101

— There are so many reasons we wanted to create our own publication, but first and foremost it was a desire to share the many untold stories that ballet gifts us. Not just those expressed so gracefully on stage during our performances, but the plentiful tales that live in our studios and workshops, that travel with us on the road and in the air, and those born

Subscribe For a fortnightly glimpse into the world of Queensland Ballet, including what’s on, behind-the-scenes photos, news and videos, subscribe to At The Barre: queenslandballet.com.au/subscribe

out of meaningful relationships within our community. Ballet is a gift. You’ll read that quite a lot, in Pas., because

/pa/

we all feel it. It’s a magical artform that offers bountiful ways

A step or series of

and histories. Since we know ballet has a lot to give, we have

steps in ballet.

the ultimate responsibility to explore all that our generous

to inspire and engage people of all ages, abilities, tastes

artform can unlock for us. In expression, in aspiration, in education, in health, in day-to-day life, and above all, in bringing joy to as many people as possible.

QUEENSLAND BALLET

IN THIS ISSUE

We think Pas. will explore the four pillars of our endeavour: Artistic, Academy, Community, Cultural Spaces; but I predict that it will take on a life of its own now that we have raised the curtain on story-sharing. For lovers of our mainstage productions, Pas. will offer insights into our beautiful dancers, creatives, artistic team,

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INTERVIEW

BACKSTAGE

Queensland holds the charm for ballerina Lina Kim —

Backstage: Romeo & Juliet —

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NEWS

Offstage —

COLLABORATE

All the world’s a stage for Music Director and Principal Conductor Nigel Gaynor —

12 Cover Company Artist Libby-Rose Niederer

the backstage glamour and non-glamour! Pas. will also follow the adventures that accompany the opening of our new Academy home at Kelvin Grove State College, the redevelopment of our heritage-listed Thomas Dixon Centre, the inevitable ups and downs of touring and the fascinating insights into humanity as we dive deeper, handin-hand with researchers, looking into how ballet inspires positive health for so many of us. From the four-year old who comes along to our Petit Pointers class to the carer of a Dance for Parkinson’s participant, Pas. will talk to us through different voices, faces and angles, and I am delighted they have finally found their way to you. Our theme for the first edition is celebrate, and I think it’s a fitting one. In 2020, QB celebrates its 60th anniversary, and our new season is packed with beauty, including the dramatic Dracula and the enchanting The Sleeping Beauty. In January,

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The laidback luxury vibes of our tour stop Port Douglas —

our Academy opens its doors to welcome its 2020 cohort and later in the year, our Jette Parker Young Artists take off on their European tour. These are just some of the highlights of what’s to come and I hope Charles Lisner is proud of the Company he founded in 1960, a Company that continues to reach beyond what is possible. I hope you enjoy this first edition of Pas. as much as we have enjoyed putting it together for you. Your QB family wishes you and your loved ones a very happy holiday season!

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BALLET FACTS

Everything you ever wanted to know about The Nutcracker —

rehearsals, the making of our sets and costumes - as well as all

INTERVIEW

In the wings with Mia Heathcote —

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Dilshani Weerasinghe Executive Director


Photo Company Artist Pol Andrés Thió

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ISSUE #1 DECEMBER 2019

ISSUE #1


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INTERVIEW All the Right Moves Lina Kim Soloist

Queensland’s culture and lifestyle are an enchanting mix for Queensland Ballet Soloist Lina Kim

— When Queensland Ballet Soloist Lina Kim tagged

Ballet in London; Gillian Murphy, Principal at American

South Korea, she had no idea she was at a precipice.

Ballet Theatre; and Queensland Ballet’s own Principals

She was, after all, only four years old.

Yanela Piñera, Laura Hidalgo and Lucy Green. She enjoys

“I followed my best friend because she had a ballet class – just tagged along for fun, and she actually ended

QUEENSLAND BALLET

Fans include Marianela Nuñez, Principal at The Royal

along to her friend’s dance class in her home country

the link her business gives her to international dancers. “I always struggled to find dancewear that fitted me

up quitting not long after because she couldn’t do the

in my way and flattered my body shape and now there’s

splits,” she laughs.

a lot more available, but 10 to 15 years ago it was quite

“But I could, so she gave up and I stuck with it.” The 29-year old has been living her dream with

limited,” she recalls. “So I literally just bought a sewing machine and

Queensland Ballet for almost 10 years, after moving to

thought ‘why not, I’ll give it a go’, and it took me

Brisbane with her family in 1998. She has performed in

19 hours straight.

productions such as A Midsummer Night’s Dream,

“But I was having so much fun, for that 19 hours

The Sleeping Beauty, Giselle, Cinderella and

I was captivated. And then I wore it and loved it and

La Bayadére.

everyone said ‘oh, can you make me one’, and that’s

“I’ve never thought about anything else – it’s definitely a dream job,” Lina says, popping out in between morning classes for a chat.

how it started.” Australia might not be Lina’s birthplace, but for her, it feels firmly like home. After international tours,

“It’s hard to pick just one moment that I love the

including to London and China, it’s Brisbane – and

most, but it’s definitely the whole sort of lifelong

Queensland Ballet – that holds all the charm. The 2013

commitment and the drive that I enjoy.

Queensland Korean of the Year awardee recently moved

“I also love classical music, so anything that sort of flickers at the strings of my heart – it’s just beautiful.” It’s an expressive artform, ballet, with more acting

to Carina with her husband, former ballet dancer Guy Wheatstone, and a brand-new puppy. “I really love Brisbane. Even though I was born and

skill required than audiences might imagine. The

raised in Korea, Brisbane is my home, and even though

dramatic roles, and becoming a character that tells a

I love travelling I always come back because I can’t

story, are two of the aspects Lina enjoys the most.

picture myself living anywhere else,” she says.

“It’s quite special dancing dramatic roles or telling a story because it becomes about being someone or somewhere that you normally wouldn’t, and being a

“We’re very lucky to have the work/lifestyle balance here – that’s what I enjoy about working at QB. “I love the repertoire, and the culture, and the

normal person living through the characters and getting

support network. So for me to have that, and to have my

your heart broken onstage is quite nice – you know,

family here who can visit me and watch my shows every

cathartic in a way,” she says.

season, it’s quite special. I think I’m very fortunate.

“The other thing I love about this artform is that I can really push my limit and move my body, whereas I guess at a ‘normal’ or non-physical job it’s something you have to make time for…here I can reach my physical limits while enjoying it and also making a living out of it.” Being a QB ballerina is a full-time job, albeit an

A lot of dancers don’t have that opportunity.” And her advice for aspiring young dancers? “Learn to work smart and hard, but most importantly, just enjoy the whole process,” she says. “If you let others feel your joy, it will separate you from the crowd – stand your ground and shine as you are.”

unconventional one, so it’s a surprise to discover Lina has a side business. She launched LINA Dancewear from her living room in 2013 and finds the alternate creative outlet Photos Soloist Lina Kim

of designing and sewing clothes almost as satisfying as dancing. 95 per cent of the dancewear, she makes herself.

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— Lina will be performing in Queensland Ballet’s The Nutcracker at the QPAC Lyric Theatre, December 13-21.


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ISSUE #1 DECEMBER 2019

I’VE NEVER THOUGHT ABOUT ANYTHING ELSE —IT’S DEFINITELY A DREAM JOB 5


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QUEENSLAND BALLET

BACKSTAGE

Photos Senior Soloist Mia Heathcote and Soloist Patricio Revé

Sir Kenneth MacMillan’s Romeo & Juliet — QPAC’s Lyric Theatre stage was transformed into the streets of Verona in August and September with elegant costumes, majestic sets and daring choreography that matched the dramatic heights of this classic love story. Romeo & Juliet was our most exquisite ballet event of 2019, and one that filled us with joy. There was also a touch of the bittersweet, as we farewelled Company Artist, Tamara Hanton.

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ISSUE #1 DECEMBER 2019

Photos Top: Company Artists Tamara Hanton (centre) and Laura Tosar (right) Left: Company Artist Pol Andrés Thió Top right: Company Artists Serena Green and Tamara Hanton Lower right: Senior Soloist Alexander Idaszak and Soloist Patricio Revé

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Nigel Gaynor

COLLABORATE

All the world’s a stage for Music Director and Principal Conductor Nigel Gaynor

Nigel Gaynor Music Director and Principal Conductor

QUEENSLAND BALLET

— It’s not often you find a conductor that is skilled in 15th

“I’d always had the idea that I would love to be a

century medieval and renaissance instruments such as

conductor, so after learning the craft of piano-playing

the crumhorn, sackbut and cornetto, but it’s all part and

for ballet I began getting lessons – actually with some of

parcel for Queensland Ballet’s Nigel Gaynor.

the very high profile, superb people like Jack Lanchbery

The Music Director and Principal Conductor, who will soon celebrate a four-year anniversary with Queensland Ballet, has yet to find a dance production that requires

(a Royal Ballet Music Director who worked with Dame Margot Fonteyn and Rudolf Nureyev),” he says. “That time with them inspired me…in a studio there

use of the obscure instruments, despite having worked

were dancers sweating blood and tears, and if the music

across the globe for his craft.

is not right, or if there’s not an empathy or knowledge of

“Instruments…I’ve played rather a lot. I was very interested to learn,” Nigel laughs.

what’s going on, then the conductor can absolutely ruin the show. “This was an added incentive – I thought,

“I started teaching myself the piano from three with lessons from five and from 10, I was also studying the pipe

‘this is what I want to do’.” Other highlights of those years include trips to Greece,

organ. Along the way at school, because of the school

Russia, Italy, and an unexpected meeting with the Queen

orchestra and band, I learned viola, tuba, euphonium

(“I cannot remember a thing she said but when you shake

and trombone.

the hand of the Queen – it’s gloved, mind you, this tiny

“I also learned the clarinet and the flute roughly, just to have an understanding of how they work, and then

hand – it was amazing!”). Then it was a spell as Music Director with the Royal

another friend of mine at school was a harpsichordist and

New Zealand Ballet, and it was here he reconnected with

he had a house full of amazing renaissance and medieval

Li Cunxin AO, Queensland Ballet’s Artistic Director. It was

instruments…It was good fun.”

a moment that would change his career.

It was his talent for the piano, however, that led

“Li asked me to guest conduct Romeo & Juliet for

to a sparkling 28-year career in ballet that began as

Queensland Ballet, in 2015.” The following year, Nigel

unconventionally as his skillset. Nigel was part-way

was appointed to the position of QB’s Music Director and

through a music degree at the Sydney Conservatorium of

Principal Conductor. And after such an international

Music when he was headhunted by The Australian Ballet.

career, what does he love about Queensland Ballet?

He deferred his course to join them, eventually

“Everything. It’s that cliched thing where we all work

completing a Masters degree when he was based in Leeds,

for a common goal and we’re all really interested in the

England, and concedes he had the right mixture of skills

Company and committed to excellence. It’s quite an

for a ballet company pianist.

outstanding team that Li has put together,” he says.

“It’s very easy for people to rush the tempo – ballet work really sorts out rhythmic flaws in people,” he says. “You’ve got to be able to play at exactly the right speed for a measured period of time.”

“Plus, we have excellent orchestras in Queensland and an amazing climate and just stunning dancers…it’s an outrageous standard of dancers for any national company to have, so for a state company to have it – the whole thing

It’s a talent he’s had time to nurture over the last

is amazing. It’s a dream.”

almost-three decades, first as a pianist and now as a conductor. He joined The Australian Ballet in 1982, and in Illustration Nigel Gaynor by Niqui Toldi

1998 he moved to England for 16 years to work at Northern Ballet, English National Ballet, and The Royal Ballet.

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— Nigel will be conducting the Queensland Symphony Orchestra in Queensland Ballet’s The Nutcracker at the QPAC Lyric Theatre, December 13-21.


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OFFSTAGE Giving Day 2019 — On October 17, Queensland Ballet held its inaugural Giving Day. More than $2.1 million was raised from an unbelievably generous community of 1365 donors, as well as our sponsors! This ambitious campaign saw donations secured from our generous match-donors quadrupled for 24 hours; so every $25 became $100. These donations will see our new Queensland Ballet Academy facility at Kelvin Grove State College fitted out with everything the young dancers require, including ballet barres, pianos, and wellness programs, such as physiotherapy.

queenslandballet.com.au/support

Our Artistic Director, Li Cunxin, receives Queen’s Birthday honour

— QB Academy Director Christian Tátchev announced the partnership with Prix de Lausanne in October, 2019 in the lead up to Queensland Ballet Academy’s world-class new facilities opening in January 2020 at Kelvin Grove State College. The partnership places the Academy in a prestigious network of top professional dance training organisations

— In June, Li was named an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in the Queen’s Birthday honours for distinguished service to the performing arts, particularly to ballet, as a dancer and artistic director. He attended a ceremony at Government House in October. The Company is proud of Li and echoes the sentiment this award embodies: that he is such an inspiration to those around him, and his life

around the world.

Two new sites in 2020 — The redevelopment of Queensland Ballet’s home, the Thomas Dixon Centre, is well underway with the first sod turned in August. When complete, this exciting facility will include a studio theatre, an open-air roof terrace, and a ‘Bunker Bar’ taking the place of five World War II-era air raid shelters. Meanwhile, Queensland Ballet Academy’s new state-of-the-art training facility will open its doors in January, 2020 at Kelvin Grove State College, delivering world-leading practice in professional ballet training, underpinned by agile, future-focused learning pathways with student-centred wellbeing at its heart.

and career has touched lives around the world.

Community: Limitless Leaps — Supported by an Arts Queensland Artists in Residence program and in partnership with AllPlay Dance, Deakin University Child Study Centre and Churchill State School, Queensland Ballet is excited to have recently completed a unique, inclusive in-school 10-week dance program. Limitless Leaps focused on inclusivity regardless of ability and provided thirteen children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Intellectual Disability (ID) the opportunity to participate in an all-abilities dance program alongside 13 of their peers in Years 5 and 6.

Your best move

2020 Season Launch

— Did you know Queensland Ballet runs weekly public dance classes at our Beesley St Studios

— In September, QB launched a 2020 Season brimming with treasures, old and new, as a

in West End, Brisbane? With a focus on fun, all our classes are designed to increase fitness (hello summer!), flexibility and coordination in

way of celebrating where the Company has come from and where its bold ambitions are taking it. “The Company was founded 60

a friendly and relaxed environment for anyone aged from 16 years to mature adults. Choose from ballet, Broadway jazz, contemporary,

years ago by the great Charles Lisner OBE, who had a vision to develop both the artform of ballet and an audience for it here in

Pilates, and barre and tone; casual classes, 10-class packages, and 30-day memberships are available. QB also runs a special Dance for

Queensland,” said Queensland Ballet Artistic Director Li Cunxin AO. “This is a very special season for us as we’re able to honour all those

Parkinson’s program, and an Early Years Dance program for those aged two–five.

who have come before us and enabled QB to be the global ballet company it is today.”

queenslandballet.com.au/classes

Season tickets on sale now at queenslandballet.com.au

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ISSUE #1 DECEMBER 2019

Queensland Ballet Academy goes global with Prix de Lausanne partnership


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SPOTLIGHT ON:

Port Douglas Laidback luxury vibes are only part of this tiny coastal town’s charm

QUEENSLAND BALLET

Queensland Ballet’s Education Teaching Artists will be on the road across regional Queensland and Northern Territory in June and July 2020, delivering workshops in school and community settings to young dancers, school and studio teachers, and seniors. One of our stops is the tropical town of Port Douglas, nestled along the North Queensland coastline. With a reputation for drawing A-list celebrities to its shores, and proximity to World Heritage Wonders Cape Tribulation and the Great Barrier Reef, it’s an ideal base for exploring the region. Here’s what we love about Port Douglas:

Breathtaking Queensland scenery Regional Workshops For more information on our Regional School & Community Workshops touring regional Queensland and Northern Territory in 2020, go to queenslandballet.com.au/community

— Mossman Gorge, with its crystal-clear freshwater

Looking for a beach swim? Take a dip at the

and giant granite boulders, makes for a sublime

palm-fringed Four Mile Beach which spans the

swimming experience. The gorge sits inside the

coastline of Port Douglas (there are swimming nets

World Heritage-listed Daintree Rainforest -

to keep out the stingers during the wet season).

the oldest, continuously surviving rainforest on

There are also plenty of tourism providers that

earth, and feels a world away from the hustle and

offer day trips out to the Great Barrier Reef where

bustle of regular city life.

you can snorkel and scuba-dive and swim.

Deeper into the Daintree, the forest offers more ancient, nature-themed experiences. Book a tour or hire a 4WD and head north for crocodile-spotting river cruises, zipline tours through the canopies, and jungle night-walks to see the fascinating array of creatures that call the lavish landscape home.

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Mossman Gorge & Great Barrier Reef Photo: Shutterstock & @mycolourfulworld_


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ISSUE #1 DECEMBER 2019

Lap of luxury

— There’s a reason Port Douglas is sometimes referred to as a mix between Noosa and Byron Bay, and it’s (partly) to do with the stunning spas and

— If you’re a seafood lover, you’re in for a treat. Set

Dining out

beside the pristine waters of the Great Barrier Reef,

resorts. Deep tissue massages, hot stone therapies,

many of the town’s restaurants feature freshly-caught

salt body scrubs, facials and reflexology are offered

barramundi, mud crab, coral trout, prawns, and

at spas dotted in and around the tropical town

shellfish. In the mood for something else quintessentially

while the luxury accommodation comprises villas,

Australian? Contemporary choices include kangaroo

architecturally designed resorts, grand hotels and

loin, crocodile, or macadamia-encrusted meats and

an assortment of beach houses and Airbnb homes.

vegetables, paired, of course, with Australian wines. There’s also a scattering of Mexican, Italian and other international cuisines should they take your fancy, as well

Sheraton Grand Mirage Photo @mycolourfulworld_

as buzzing brunch and coffee options along the town’s

Harrisons Restaurant Photo @harrisonspd

main strip on Macrossan Street.

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QUEENSLAND BALLET

BALLET FACTS

EVERYTHING YOU’VE EVER WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT THE NUTCRACKER Photo Company Artist Jack Lister (soldier)

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The Nutcracker

FACT

The first versions of The Nutcracker story originated in the old folk tales and legends of Bohemia and Poland. —

It began, as all good productions begin, with an old, dark story that has been adapted throughout time. At the stroke of midnight on Christmas Eve, little Clara finds herself embarking on the magical adventure of a lifetime when her gift, a Nutcracker, comes to life! Clara is whisked away to the enchanting Kingdom of Sweets where the Sugar Plum Fairy presides over joyous dances and celebrations. Featuring Ben Stevenson’s dream-like choreography and Tchaikovsky’s enduring score, Queensland Ballet’s The Nutcracker is showing at the QPAC Lyric Theatre from December 13-21.

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FACT

Alexandre Dumas Pére

FACT

Its premiere on December 18,

Hoffmann’s story, The Nutcracker and the Mouse King, in 1815, and it was this version that was simplified into a two-act ballet. —

1892 was deemed to be a failure – critics and audiences

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declared the action to be flimsy, and they were disappointed. —

FACT

FACT

worker, Petipa began work

première over 120 years

eighteen months before the

ago, The Nutcracker has

production of the ballet, making

travelled far from

innumerable notes about every

St Petersburg. The original

aspect of the production –

choreography by Lev Ivanov is

choreography, characters, props

now no longer performed, but

and costumes. He planned every

the attraction of Tchaikovsky’s

stage of the action, including the

score and the suitability

sequence of the dances.

of the story for Christmas

Imperial Theatres, Ivan Vsevolozhsky, in 1891, and

FACT

by the director of Moscow’s

choreographed by Marius Petipa. The music was by Tchaikovsky and it premiered a week before Christmas, 1892. —

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05

The ballet was commissioned

FACT

Since its less than auspicious

An extraordinarily methodical

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FACT

entertainment has inspired many choreographers to make their own version of this enchanting ballet. —

The Vic-Wells Ballet presented the first complete version of The Nutcracker outside Russia at the Sadler’s Wells

Unfortunately, Petipa fell ill in

Theatre on 30 January 1934.

1892, just at the time rehearsals

Robert Helpmann, newly

for The Nutcracker were due

arrived from Australia, was

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to begin, and Lev Ivanov was

cast in the Chinese Dance,

required to take over the

and among the anonymous

row Queensland Ballet will

production.

snowflakes was a little girl

present The Nutcracker, and we

called Margot Fonteyn.

are delighted Queenslanders

are embracing this as a festive

2019 is the seventh year in a

tradition.

Tickets available at queenslandballet.com.au

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ISSUE #1 DECEMBER 2019

wrote an adaption of E.T.A


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INTERVIEW In the Wings Words by Mia Heathcote Senior Soloist

Becoming Juliet in Queensland Ballet’s recent exquisite Romeo & Juliet production was a romantic, transportive experience for Senior Soloist Mia Heathcote

QUEENSLAND BALLET

— Remaining in a dream-like state, I struggle to bring

After numerous weeks of preparation, it’s finally

my tired, aching body to a vertical status. I feel the lactic

time to do what this was all meant for in the first place…

acid build up, pumping through my legs from yesterday’s

to perform! I feel an overwhelming sense of adrenaline,

exertion. The thought of my morning coffee and the

a healthy amount of fear of the unknown, but mostly just

persistent desire to keep working in the studio helps me

sheer excitement to delve into the life of the character

to accelerate. But first, my morning ritual… Meditation.

I am about to portray.

I want to be in the best possible mind-set to

I hear the voices of my colleagues wish each other

take on the day and then to later take on upcoming

“chookas!”. The buzz in the air is electric. Before

performances. It’s a practice, it is not always easy to sit

curtain up, I am in my zone, focused, seeing only what

with a quiet mind at the most thought-racing time of the

is necessary and blocking out the rest. I practise a few

day, but if there’s something I’ve learned, it is that

steps just enough to build my confidence, being careful

NOW is all we ever have.

not to obsess. I then walk around backstage as if

Then, on the contrary, it’s rush hour, I am a little scattered when it comes to time management, but once

I were her, Juliet. My first step onto the stage is where things

I make it to work I’m ready to focus. I take some time to

completely transform, I no longer see the world through

prepare my body and iron out any niggles before our

my own eyes but through an innocent starry-eyed young

daily ballet class. I enjoy class as it’s where I can improve

girl who has not a notion of her fate. The nerves dissipate

my technique without any added pressure and focus on

as I feel at home here.

the little things that make a significant difference. I am excited and sometimes a little nervous for what

The story takes me on an incredible, elating, and impassioned journey. Romeo and I become a single

the day will bring. Every day is different, some better

entity and I’m lost within their world. The music carries

than others of course. I am happy to see my friends,

my every step and whilst I embody the pain of her

the people I work the closest with and who inspire me

misfortune, it is strangely therapeutic to my real-life

on a daily basis.

existence as it feels like an emotional release. I am loving,

Throughout the day we push our bodies, brains and artistic expression to the limit. Blood, sweat and

living and feeling every moment. As the curtain comes down, I’m enveloped with a

yes, occasionally there are tears, but only because

sense of relief and pure gratitude, I’ve done it, we’ve all

this unique career means more to us than most could

done it! I am proud of what we have achieved here, and

imagine. Thoughts float throughout my mind, and

I was lucky enough to live my dream.

without doubt the minds of my colleagues, such as,

Slowly, I bring myself back down to earth. I become

‘I could have done better’, or ‘I hope I can make it

me again. It’s time to rest and rejuvenate before

through this’, then sometimes it’s ‘that was blissful to

journeying back into fair Verona to reach that feeling

dance’ or ‘what if the stager doesn’t like me?’ and ‘it

that only a live performance can give you.

would be my dream to dance that role’, and then there is always, without fail, ‘OUCH!’ But more often than not, I try to let my internal Photo Senior Soloist Mia Heathcote

thoughts sound more like this: ‘just breathe and have gratitude’.

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— Mia will be performing in Queensland Ballet’s The Nutcracker at the QPAC Lyric Theatre, December 13-21, 2019


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ISSUE #1 DECEMBER 2019

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QUEENSLAND BALLET

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Photos Left: Principal Artist Lucy Green Top: Company Artist David Power and Principal Artist Lucy Green Bottom: Company Artist Pol Andrés Thió

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CELEBRATING MOVEMENT

ISSUE #1 DECEMBER 2019

Season 2020 Shoot AUGUST 2019

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FINAL WORD

Bright lights beckon QUEENSLAND BALLET

Dancer apprenticeship program makes strides across the seas

— There’s a moment in Loughlan Prior’s The Appearance

consistently getting higher, and I’m so pleased to be able

of Colour where a single dancer gazes upwards, cloaked

to confidently promote from within our Jette Parker

in a multicoloured spotlight, surrounded by pitch

Young Artist Program,” he said.

black. It’s a scene that captivated the audience at its recent season at the Brisbane Powerhouse, as part of Queensland Ballet’s Bespoke, and will no doubt enthral dance-lovers again when the Jette Parker Young Artists (JPYA) tour the show in the UK and Norway next year. And it’s quite an accomplishment – an international

“It continues to produce well-trained dancers with excellent technique and ability.” That the program is made possible by philanthropic contributions is also a fascinating feat. Oak Foundation comprises a group of philanthropic organisations based in countries around the world

tour, for the small group of dancers who make up the

and has gifted more than 2700 grants to not-for-profit

JPYA program within Queensland Ballet (QB).

organisations, including the JPYA Program at London’s

Named in honour of Jette Parker of Oak Foundation,

Royal Opera House (ROH) for young opera singers,

whose visionary support first enabled the initiative in

and QB’s Program for young dancers. Oak’s generous

2014, the JPYA program is an annual apprenticeship

support is contingent upon QB securing annual

program which fosters the talents of gifted young

match-funding from other donors; the Company is

dancers at the start of their professional careers. After

fortunate to have this continued support.

completing a rigorous audition process, a small group of

Any interested parties as well as contributors to

dancers join Queensland Ballet to refine their technique,

QB’s Program are invited to accompany the JPYAs on

access performance opportunities and enjoy elite

an exclusive Supporters Tour to London next year to

mentoring. They perform alongside Principals, as part

celebrate the dancers’ performances at the ROH as

of the Company ensemble, and with guest artists from

part of an International Youth Festival. Truly a sneak

around the world, including, this year, Australian and

peak into the ballet and arts worlds, the trip includes

New Zealand choreographer, Loughlan Prior.

experiences inside the ROH, Royal Ballet, English

It’s a dream start for any young dancer on the cusp of a professional career. Queensland Ballet recently released its 2020 list of dancers and it includes 23 former JPYAs across Soloist, First Company Artist, and

National Ballet and the Tate Modern, as well as tickets to special performances and private functions. It’s just one distinct way the arts connects people, on and off the stage.

Company Artist ranks, accounting for a staggering 48 per cent of the Company. Artistic Director Li Cunxin AO is clearly impressed Photo JPYA Hayley Thompson

with the program’s outcomes. “I’m very proud to see our Company standard

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— If you would like to get involved with the Supporters UK Tour, or for any information on the JPYA program, contact the QB Foundations Team foundation@queenslandballet.com.au or (07) 3013 6662


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ISSUE #1 DECEMBER 2019

Tickets on sale now

Principal Artist Lucy Green

Creative Direction Designfront

19

Photography Jez Smith


Photo by David Kelly Company Artist Mali Comlekci

Queensland queenslandballet.com.au

Profile for Queensland Ballet

Queensland Ballet - Pas Magazine  

Queensland Ballet's quarterly magazine featuring behind-the-scenes news, backstage glamour, interviews, photography and in-depth stories.

Queensland Ballet - Pas Magazine  

Queensland Ballet's quarterly magazine featuring behind-the-scenes news, backstage glamour, interviews, photography and in-depth stories.

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