Backstage with Carys!

May I welcome Carys Applebee to our blog!  Hope you enjoy the interview:

1. What has the Ballet Central tour been like so far?Image

It has been really good fun.  Being on tour, seeing different theatres, being backstage and helping the technical crew has been great! The supportive atmosphere is just amazing – even the early starts and late finishes are worth it!

2. What have been your favourite moments?

The opening night dancing Insinuare, the piece by Leanne King and Sara Matthews, has definitely been a highlight.  The performance went so well and being backstage and being part of the excitement was fantastic!

3. What pieces have you been learning?

I have been learning as many pieces as I can because I want to have as many opportunities to perform as possible.

4. What is your favourite piece and why?

My favourite piece is Chris Marney’s anon. – the rehearsal process has been so rewarding.  His piece is a narrative so we were able to explore and develop our skills as actors as well as dancers, which I really enjoyed. I also appreciated how he really took time to work with us individually, giving all casts opportunities to practice and push our boundaries. 

I also love doing Insinuare – the rehearsal process was collaborative meaning that we as dancers were able to input our own ideas into the piece, a fantastic experience and insight into the world of choreography.  This was great for me as I really enjoy choreographing myself. I have recently had the opportunity to choreograph a duet for a project called ‘Design for Dance’ where dancers from Central School of Ballet collaborate with design students at Central St Martins to create and perform a new piece. Working with different dancers, I really started to understand the hard work behind each piece of choreography. 

5. What has it been like working with different choreographers?

It has been interesting to see how the choreographers have different ways of working. The contrast between working on a narrative piece like Chris Marney’s anon., working creatively on Insinuare and then putting on the pointe shoes for the technically demanding Florestan Pas de Trois, can only be experienced at Ballet Central

6. When did you start dancing?

I started when I was 3 years old in Dorset and then I moved to Chichester where I started taking class with Teresita Marsden who was such an inspiration.  As I got older, I became more determined to dance and did the CAT scheme at The Place and Pre-Senior programme at Central.  It was during that time that I decided to audition for Central as I really loved the classes I was doing.

7. Who inspired you to dance?

I think I have been very lucky with the teachers I have had who have all been so inspiring in many different ways.  Also reading articles about dancers who have overcome adversity to follow their dreams – I know it sounds a little clichéd but it helps me when I am having a bad day to think of those people and know that I can do the same.

8. What’s the best advice you can give to future dancers?

Be open-minded! When I was younger I was determined to do ballet and only ballet, so when I first had the opportunity to do some contemporary I used to try any excuse to skip the classes – I feel ashamed to admit this now! Doing the Pre-Senior programme at Central really opened my eyes to the many facets of contemporary dance and now it is my favourite type of dance! I feel I can really express myself in ways that ballet sometimes cannot.

9. Any plans for the future?

I am very excited to be starting as an apprentice with Springs Dance Company.  It will give me a lot of opportunities to perform as well as to explore choreography which I am really keen to continue. I’m really looking forward to it!

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