London Russian Ballet School

42 Clapham Manor Street,
London, SW4 6DZ

020 7498 0498
http://www.londonrussianballetschool.com/

Beginner Ballerina Profile: Lisa of RainStorm

This week’s profile is of Lisa, who runs a blog called RainStorm. Enjoy this profile of this recent ballerina who started around the same exact time I did!

girls

Lisa is in the black leotard.

When did you start doing ballet as an adult?

April 2012

Did you ever take lessons as a kid?

Yup – a bit later than others. I took it up aged 9 or 10 I think. I had a great ballet teacher and worked really hard, even though it didn’t come naturally to me (I am tall and not at all flexible). I kept going to lessons until I left for university aged 18. I would have carried on dancing, but it wasn’t on offer so I took up karate instead! (The two are surprisingly similar.)

Why did you decide to take ballet as an adult?

I missed it! Every now and then I would say how much I missed it and my partner just said, “Well, why don’t you go to a class then?” I eventually ran out of excuses and followed his advice!

Where do you take classes?

I was taking classes in Reading (at TPAI) with Michelle, who got me back up to speed and is generally pretty fabulous.  But when I have time I supplement my training with classes in London, at both DanceWorks and DanceAttic. I’ve just moved house so I’m going to have to find the right classes for me.

What is your favorite part about ballet?

I think that when the music starts, my brain switches into an alternative reality which is calm and focused. It is the perfect de-stresser for an easily stressed girl! Also, I love the sense of achievement when you finally master something tricky.

What is your least favorite part?

Jumping! It’s so tiring – especially when the teacher says “one more time” – you know she’s lying but you still put all your energy in and then have to do it three more times!

Who/What is your ballet inspiration? 

All the other adult dancers that I have met along the way. Some are so dedicated. I have recently started going to watch ballet too.

What motivates you to keep dancing?

I just want to. It’s so nice to have a form of exercise that I really want to do.

Do you take any other dance classes?

No, although I have been involved in dance in other ways, such as working with children.

What are your hobbies outside of ballet? 

Now there’s a question 🙂 I’m a fireworks engineer; I love sailing and surfing; I roller skate and regularly take part in organised skates around London; I recently tried (and loved) stand up paddle boarding; on quiet days I enjoy reading, crocheting and swimming.

What advice would you like to give to those who want to start ballet or have just started? 

Seek out a beginners lesson – there are lots of great adult classes around so it is worth choosing one that is pitched at the right level.

At the beginning of each lesson, choose one thing to focus on (e.g. turnout/posture/arm shape) – I find that this helps me to improve quicker.

And for girls, I really would recommend wearing a leotard! It’s scary to start with but I find it much more supportive and easier to check my posture. You can wear a t-shirt or vest over the top, but it really is worth it.

Anything else you’d like to add? 

I wish I had more time for it. Currently I barely make one class a week. Once I’m moved and settled I really hope to make at least two classes each week.

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I’m in the black leotard. I don’t have any decent ones of just me doing ballet – these were taken by my lovely man during a “ballet tweep-up” organised by the lovely Becca of @becca_tweet.