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Get the Pointe: Dance.net Ballet Interview #49 - Featuring CompactDisco (karma: 1)
By smileywomanmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Tue Dec 17, 2013 12:28 PM
Edited by smileywoman (141214) on 2013-12-17 12:28:59 .
Edited by Sumayah (204191) on 2013-12-23 13:27:58 made feature

Get the Pointe: Dance.net Ballet Interview #49 - Featuring CompactDisco

Meet Janna who studies several forms of dance: Highland, Ballet, Jazz, Lyrical, and Modern.

DDN Name: CompactDisco
Real Name: Janna
Member Since: August 2008
Age: 17
Years Dancing: 11

Hi Janna! Welcome to Get the Pointe - DDN ballet Interview #49.

The Basics

Q: What are the styles of dance that you study?
A: Ballet, Highland and Modern presently.

Q: Why study more than one style? What do you like about each style?
A: I like the way that each style compliments the others. While Highland, Ballet and Modern are very different, they all help me become better. I like the performance aspect of Ballet, and being able to perform in a character. I like the exact-ness of Highland and I like how different Modern is from Highland and Ballet... It's nice to have a bit of a break.

Q: Do you prefer classical ballet or modern choreography?
A: I prefer classical.

Q: If someone asked you, "Why Dance?" what would your answer be?
A: Dance takes me to a place where I am completely separate from the outside world or whatever is bothering me in 'real life'. When I dance, I feel free... It's just me and the dance.


Q: How old were you when you began dance? Was ballet your first dance style?
A: Ballet was my first dance style when I started at 4.

Q: Did your parents make you start dancing? Was your mom a dancer, and did she push you to go further and do better?
A: My mom was a dancer, but not for long and she didn't force me to start dancing. It was my choice. She doesn't really push me, but she encourages me and supports me!

Class and Training

Q: Describe a typical day in your life.
A: Wake up, go to work or sleep in a bit, then either go to my own class or assist another class. I usually have 2 classes per night.

Q: How much time do you dance during the week? (ballet and other dance forms)
A: 10 hours per week, 11.5 some weeks in class. I try to practice at least an hour every day.

Q: Do you study Vaganova, Cecchetti or RAD?
A: RAD, but I have studied Cecchetti.

Q: How do you prepare for class? (i.e. stretching, conditioning, mental techniques, etc.)
A: At my studio we have stationary bikes, so I do ten minutes on the bike then stretch and do some core work sometimes I'll walk through a couple of exercises that I'm having a hard time with.

Q: How do you prepare your pointe shoes?
A: I steam them and squish them... Obviously I sew them. Otherwise I don't do much.

Q: What does it mean to you to get corrections in class? And what are the most common corrections you receive?
A: To me, corrections mean that the teacher cares about my training and wants me to get better. My most common corrections are straighten my supporting leg, turn my head, and go through my feet in jumps.

Q: What's your favorite? Adagio or Allegro and why?
A: I prefer Adagio because I like the control in the movements and I feel pretty.

Q: Do you have a signature step, or one that comes easy to you?
A: I really love piqu�© turns!

Q: After you've had a bad day, what motivates you to go to class? Does it lift your spirits?
A: Going to class helps me get into a better head space after a bad day. I can focus on something else... Dance. Sometimes it takes a bit of a push to get me there but I know that once I'm there it's worth it.

Q: Have you gone to a Summer Intensive (SI) before?
A: Yes I have! I love SIs!

Q: What sort of things do you do at home that help your dancing?
A: I do a lot of stretching and cardio work, and I practice as much as I can. I got a barre for Christmas and I use it as much as possible.

Q: What's in your dance bag?
A: All my Highland stuff (ghillies, practice skirt, garters), notebook, several pens, character shoes, satin shoes, leather shoes, two pairs of pointe shoes, toe tape, scissors, teaching skirt, beige Jazz shoes, watch, safety pins, Tiger Balm, a bottle of Aleve, and BioFreeze.

Q: What was the biggest obstacle that you encountered in ballet and how did you overcome it? How has it helped you become a better dancer?
A: My biggest obstacle was (and still is) separating my Ballet from my Highland technique. Pulling my seconds forward, especially. It has helped me become a better dancer by forcing me to keep the two styles separate and focus on what I'm doing.

Q: What dance goals are you currently working towards, and what future goals do you have?
A: Right now my goal is to get Distinction on both my grade 7 and Intermediate exams this year. In the future, I aim to complete my Solo Seal.

Q: Do you ever get pressured by your studio to look a certain way? Do you disagree with studios that do this?
A: Not by my studio, but there is definitely pressure. I do disagree with studios that do this. Dancers put enough pressure on themselves to look a certain way, and if they don't, why would you want them to start? I believe that dancing is easier when you're comfortable in your own body.

Q: How many pairs of pointe shoes do you have? What is your favorite brand and style of pointe shoes (and why are they your favorite?)
A: I have three pairs. My favorite brand is Grishko... Is it bad that I don't know what style they are? Yikes... I like them because my previous pair of pointes wrecked my feet, and after a year I was still getting blood blisters and they hadn't died so when I got a new pair that didn't do that I decided to stick with them. I don't even wear padding now!


Q: What was your first dance performance and what was your role in it? How old were you?
A: I was 4 and I was one of the 'Happiest Christmas Tree's.

Q: Do you have any pre-performance rituals?
A: I don't eat solids the day of any performance... Smoothies shakes and drinks only! I have to be warming up and getting ready at least one hour prior to the performance. The night before I have to have pasta and a week before I drink a cup of green tea before everything I eat.

Q: What is your biggest fear during a performance?
A: My biggest fear is always that I'm going to have a costume malfunction. It has happened before and I always triple check EVERYTHING now. I'm so paranoid about it!

Q: What has your best stage moment thus far?
A: My best stage moment was probably a character Ballet number I was I last year where I really let go and got sassy and in character... It was great and everything seemed to fall into place.

Q: When you are on stage, do you lose yourself in the role (enjoying your experience without worrying about technique) OR are you concentrating on the steps more and overly worried about technique OR do you just say to yourself forget about everything and dance from the 'heart'?
A: I try to lose myself in the role, but I am very focused on my technique while I'm performing.

Image hotlink - 'http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a376/smileywoman/GetPointe/CDISCO_BeBornInMe003.jpg'

Q: What variation would you love to do or inspires you the most?
A: I would LOVE to perform the Rose Adagio from Sleeping Beauty

Q: If you could perform in any ballet in any role, what would it be and why?
A: I would perform in Sleeping Beauty as Aurora... Just for the Rose Adagio.

Philosophical Questions

Q: What sacrifices have you made for ballet?
A: I have put off going to university for two years for my Ballet training and spend a lot of time and energy at the studio.

Q: What sacrifices has your family made so that you can dance?
A: A LOT of money, and especially my mom has done a lot of driving and taken a lot of time off of work to take me to dance events.

Q: Does dance affect your social life in any way? How? Do your friends understand?
A: I definitely don't have as much to hang out time with my friends, if any. I spend all of my evenings dancing. Most of my friends are dancers and understand... The others probably just think I'm crazy.

Q: What do you eventually want to do with ballet? Can you see yourself using it as a springboard to other related careers?
A: I eventually want to teach and open my own dance school.

Q: Have you ever thought about not doing ballet? What kept you going?
A: I have given it thought but I quit once and missed it a lot, and I don't know what I'd do if I wasn't dancing.

Q: If you could dance anywhere in the world (not only in a theatre) where would you dance?
A: The Royal Opera House

Q: If you could change anything about ballet, what would it be, and why?
A: I would take fondus completely out of the equation. Fondus... Yuck.

Q: What is one tip that you would love to share with other DDNers?
A: Work harder every class than you did in the last.

Q: What would surprise people about you?
A: I am a huge heavy metal fan!

Q: How does it feel to be featured in Get the Pointe?
A: I feel special! :)

2 Replies to Get the Pointe: Dance.net Ballet Interview #49 - Featuring CompactDisco

re: Get the Pointe: Dance.net Ballet Interview #49 - Featuring CompactDisco
By nycsylphmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Mon Dec 23, 2013 03:23 PM
CompactDisco -

Great interview!

You did a wonderful job with your answers. I love reading about young dancers that are this motivated in becoming better.
re: Get the Pointe: Dance.net Ballet Interview #49 - Featuring CompactDisco
By Bella1992
On Thu Apr 16, 2015 05:05 AM
smileywoman wrote:

Q: What would surprise people about you?
A: I am a huge heavy metal fan!

I don't think ill read in another interview!


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