Welcome Back English National Ballet!
It is hard for me to believe that this past week I began my second year with English National Ballet. It is even harder for me to believe that this is also my seventh year as a professional dancer! Where does the time go?!?
We all successfully made it through the first week back to work after our summer holidays. I found that the schedule built up gradually, which my out-of-shape, holiday body certainly appreciated. On Monday and Tuesday I actually only had class. Monday was officially just for the new joiners, and Tuesday was the first day for everyone else. Last year I was one of only four dancers who were new to the company, but this year there are a lot of new dancers (in my experience it is not uncommon for companies to change quite a bit from one year to the next though, so I don't say this as a negative thing in any way). All the new dancers seem very kind and very hardworking. I have been enjoying the new energy that everyone is bringing into class and rehearsals! I look forward to getting to know them all better over the year.
After class on Tuesday we had meetings for Equity (the UK union for performers and artists) and for Dancers' Career Development. Dancers' Career Development, also known as DCD, is a wonderful organization that was created to help dancers make the transition into a new career after their professional dancing career is over. They offer many helpful services to dancers at any stage of their career.
Later that day I also had to get my shoe measurements taken and while I was there I made sure to grab a few pairs of shoes.
I'm certainly going to need all of these new shoes once Swan Lake rehearsals get into full swing!
The rest of the week we started to get into a more normal rehearsal schedule. The company's first performances of this year will be Swan Lake and Coppelia. Since we performed Coppelia at the end of last year, putting together Swan Lake is what we are focusing on now. Swan Lake is very difficult on the body. I think from corps to principals, everyone's body suffers in different ways during Swan Lake. For the corps swans, the second act dancing and long standing is very taxing on the body -- especially when we will have to perform every night during weeks of shows. The company Physical Therapist came in to give us some exercise and tips in order to help prevent injuries.
I hope you've enjoyed seeing a little glimpse into my first week back to work. I'm hoping to write on a more regular basis this year, so feel free to subscribe and keep an eye out for more blogs soon!