Up Close With The Leading Ladies of Swan Lake by Ballet West UK
1/6 What do you like about your roles in this production of Swan Lake?
Natasha: Odette is a vulnerable character, full of emotional depth and sadness — it's a role that is special for me as it was my first ever principal role. Preparing for our tour in Malaysia has been very exciting as I’ve been able to revisit Odette and work on developing a deeper understanding and emotional connection with the character.
Uyu: I love dancing the role of the Black Swan in Swan Lake because I get to play a different character than my usual self. She’s evil and playing it was really fun! All the same, it’s a challenging role. But being the character really takes away the hard work.
2/6 As a child, did you imagine entering a full-time career in ballet?
Natasha: I’ve been passionate about classical ballet from a young age. I recall watching Swan Lake on television as a child: I was captivated first by the music and second by the story, and the combination of those elements made for some very special viewing.
Uyu: No! I actually wanted to be a nurse when I was younger. I had always loved dancing, but I never thought I would end up pursuing it professionally.
3/6 What do you think makes Swan Lake so loved by audiences around the world even today?
Natasha: The ballet deals with enduring themes such as love and betrayal, and in that regard, I hope that the audience will relate to Odette and her journey. Watching it as a child, the beauty of the piece was overwhelming and had a great impact on me.
Uyu: I just think that dance and arts can make people happy. Whether you are watching it or doing it, it can bring people joy and that is why I think it's so important.
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4/6 What’s the most significant moment of your careers so far?
Natasha: I’ve enjoyed many career highlights but the most significant has been to perform as a Principal Dancer with Ballet West. To achieve this title after many years of hard work and commitment has been my greatest achievement and something that continues to drive me as an artist.
Uyu: For me, signing a contract with a professional company was my most recent significant moment, I felt like all my hard work had paid off. But it’s only the beginning of my career and I’m excited to see what the future holds!
5/6 Uyu, tell us a bit about your visit to Malaysia prior to this Swan Lake production.
I had an amazing experience the last time I was in Malaysia for the Ballet West Asia Tour 2016. I worked with aspiring dancers in Penang who were so passionate, and it was inspiring for me to see! I also loved the food!
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6/6 Natasha, any words of advice to budding dancers today?
I admire dancers who are passionate, committed to their craft, and humble. A career in classical ballet can be both challenging and rewarding, so I encourage all aspiring ballerinas to remain focused on their greatest aspirations and gather as much information as possible about their chosen career.
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