Rudy Hawkes and Juliet Burnett in Beyond Bach. Photo Jeff
A word to dance teachers
Ballet teachers are often the first contact a child has with the dance profession, and set children's and parents' impression of the world of ballet. It goes without saying that ballet teachers have a deep love for dance and an overriding interest in sharing this with others. We can help you do this through our performances, our DVDs, and our access programs such as Teachers' days.
Ballet teachers inspire students with images of great dancing, igniting the spark that makes them work to achieve their dreams. Teachers need regular inspiration themselves: to see the full beauty of ballet in its theatrical setting, the achievements of outstanding artists, and the ever-expanding diversity of choreographic invention. Our programs offer you the chance to replenish yourself with the excitement and inspiration of ballet.
As ballet teachers, it is essential to keep in touch with technical and artistic developments. We owe the rapidly expanding technical facility of our dancers to you, as your knowledge and experience set the groundwork for all future achievement. Dance medicine and advanced training approaches are having a profound effect on ballet technique, and it is essential that you can assess the goal of your teaching.
We also owe our dancers' artistic achievement to you. By inspiring talented students with the beauty of the classical form and the unlimited expressive potential of dance, you open their minds to future possibilities. By seeing the many directions our choreographers are pursuing, you can present a full picture of our dynamic art form.
Probably the most important role ballet teachers play is in reinforcing the enjoyment of dance, helping children grow into informed, open-minded and appreciative audiences. You lead the way through your own experience and enjoyment of our performances, showing that ballet enriches your life. We thank you for your invaluable contribution to dance and to The Australian Ballet.
Amy Harris. Photo James Braund
Q&A with Senior Artist Amy Harris
Ask any artist in the company about their most influential dance teacher and they will talk warmly and appreciatively about the person who guided them to a career in dance. We asked Senior Artist Amy Harris a few questions about her past dance teachers.
1. Who was you most influential dance teacher?
Tough question! I've had many wonderful and influential teachers thoughtout my journey as a dancer. I had two extremely amazing and nurturing teachers in Ballarat, Miss Carole and Miss Kathy who introduced me to the world of ballet and prepared me the best they could to follow my dream and become a professional Ballerina. Also in The Australian Ballet School I had Michela Kirkaldie in my 2nd year and I thank her for so much. I believe she is a big part of why I am in the position I am today.
2. What is the best piece of advice a dance teacher has given you?
"Never let anyone take that fire in your belly away."
3. If one of your dance teachers had to describe you as a dancer, what words would they use?
Passionate, dedicated and totally different on stage to off stage!!
4. Have your past dance teachers watched you perform with The Australian Ballet?
Yes. One performance that stands out was in my 3rd year at the Australian Ballet School when I danced the Sleeping Beauty Pas de Deux on the State Theatre stage. It was such a special night as it was my first time on the State Theatre stage and it was my graduating performance. My past dance teachers were in the audience along with my family and friends. It is a moment at the start of my career that I will never forget!