English National Ballet’s Emerging Dancer 2018 Competition – 5 Questions to 6 Finalists

The 2018 ENB Emerging Dancer finalists: Precious Adams, Fernando Carratalá Coloma, Giorgio Garrett, Daniel McCormick, Francesca Velicu and Connie Vowles.© Karolina Kuras. (Click image for larger version)

The 2018 ENB Emerging Dancer finalists: Precious Adams, Fernando Carratalá Coloma, Giorgio Garrett, Daniel McCormick, Francesca Velicu and Connie Vowles. © Karolina Kuras. (Click image for larger version)

Full Details of English National Ballet’s Emerging Dancer 2018
www.ballet.org.uk

English National Ballet’s Emerging Dancer Competition, and the companion People’s Choice Award and Corps de Ballet Award are unique in British ballet in throwing the spotlight on more junior dancers or “tomorrow’s stars” as ENB put it.

This year’s competition takes place at the Coliseum on the 11 June when 6 dancers, selected by their peers, perform live solos and duets before a panel of judges and an appreciative, not to say emotional, audience, before one is crowned the winner. It’s a terrific chance to concentrate on just the dancers and pick out the ones that are going to take the art forward and make us go “wow” in future.
 


 

We asked all 6 of the 2018 finalists the same 5 questions…

    Precious Adams
    Fernando Carratala Coloma
    Giorgio Garrett
    Daniel McCormick
    Francesca Velicu
    Connie Vowles

 

 

Precious Adams.<br />© Karolina Kuras.

Precious Adams.
© Karolina Kuras.

Precious Adams

Where and when did you realise you just had to be a dancer?

When I was about 10 years old I had some of my first experiences seeing high level dancers at the Joffrey Ballet and at a ballet summer intensive.
 

What are your top 3 dance moments? And what role do you most lust to do?

I have 4 at the moment. Competing at Prix De Lausanne, dancing Billy Forsythe choreography, dancing Pina Bausch’s Le Sacre du Printemps, and dancing on the Royal Opera House stage for the MacMillan National Celebration shows of Elite Syncopations and Song of the Earth. I have always wanted to do some of the more dramatic and romantic roles like Juliet and Manon.
 

Who are your dance heroes?

Misty Copeland, Billy Forsythe, my sister Portia Adams.
 

Precious Adams in <I>Elite Syncopations</I>.<br />© Bill Cooper. (Click image for larger version)

Precious Adams in Elite Syncopations.
© Bill Cooper. (Click image for larger version)

What do you do when you don’t do ballet?

Really normal things. I’m very much into philosophy at the moment so reading and studying things related to finding myself and my identity outside of ballet is important. I also like to just hang out and enjoy being young living in a great city!
 

What is your biggest dance wish?

I wish for dance to be something that is forever an interest and of importance in more and more people’s lives.
 

 

Fernando Carratalá Coloma.<br />© Karolina Kuras.

Fernando Carratalá Coloma.
© Karolina Kuras.

Fernando Carratala Coloma

Where and when did you realise you just had to be a dancer?

I realised when I was a kid. I’d been doing lots of different types of dancing and then I decided to try classical dance – since that day I knew that it was going to be my future. I remember that I felt so comfortable and I enjoyed dancing in a way I never had before.
 

What are your top 3 dance moments? And what role do you most lust to do?

My top moment was the first time I stepped on stage. I remember I did a flamenco piece and It was so fun. Another was my first rehearsal with my first company. I was so impressed because that was my dream and finally I’d got there. Then when I received my contract here – the feelings I felt in that moment I couldn’t describe. I would like to do every role that’s offered to me, but the ones I like the most are the roles which you can play with the character and give it your own personality.
 

Who are your dance heroes?

My dance heroes are Mikhail Baryshnikov and Rolando Sarabia. I was always watching videos of them.
 

Fernando Carratalá Coloma in <I>Song of the Earth</I>.<br />© Laurent Liotardo. (Click image for larger version)

Fernando Carratalá Coloma in Song of the Earth.
© Laurent Liotardo. (Click image for larger version)

What do you do when you don’t do ballet?

I like to be with my friends spending time together and eating a good paella.
 

What is your biggest dance wish?

My biggest dance wish is to have a really good career and enjoy it as much as I can. I just want to be happy doing what I like.
 

 

Giorgio Garrett.<br />© Karolina Kuras.

Giorgio Garrett.
© Karolina Kuras.

Giorgio Garrett

Where and when did you realise you just had to be a dancer?

I realised this when I decided to have a break from dancing after my time in National Ballet of Canada. I was expecting to move on from ballet but after a year out I realised that I couldn’t leave it that easily… it’s in me, it’s who I am. Without planning to return, I was doing a few jobs here and there and was fortunate to have some temporary work with English National Ballet. After that experience I joined the company with a fresh perspective. Since joining I have found my love for dance once again.
 

What are your top 3 dance moments? And what role do you most lust to do?

I loved being part of the process of Le Sacre du Printemps by Pina Bausch. Pina’s team really helped me get out of my shell. It was a great challenge. Also performing Gurn in La Sylphide. Frank Anderson guided me through Bournonville’s style and acting. One of my career highlights has got to be being part of William Forsythe’ s Playlist (Track 1, 2). It was created on us, five weeks of hard work but really rewarding. That man is such an inspiration to me, thank you Billy. Each of these experiences have helped me to grow more as a dancer and as a person.
I don’t have one particular role that I have a lust to do but I do have a soft spot for Lescaut in Manon. I like a complex character.
 

Who are your dance heroes?

I love so many dancers: Vadim Muntagirov, Sergei Polunin, Joe Caley, Baryshnikov.
 

Giorgio Garrett in <I>La Sylphide</I>.<br />© Laurent Liotardo. (Click image for larger version)

Giorgio Garrett in La Sylphide.
© Laurent Liotardo. (Click image for larger version)

What do you do when you don’t do ballet?

Most of my time outside of dance is spent making music, creating different beats and sounds. I love it. It’s all about that bass.
 

What is your biggest dance wish?

To have a healthy career and to inspire people through art.
 

 

Daniel McCormick.<br />© Karolina Kuras.

Daniel McCormick.
© Karolina Kuras.

Daniel McCormick

Where and when did you realise you just had to be a dancer?

When I was 4 I was waiting for my sister to finish her ballet class. While I was waiting I saw for the first time a teenage boy ride to the studio on a skateboard, put on a pair of tights, and stand at the barre ready for class – in that moment I knew I wanted to be a ballet dancer.
 

What are your top 3 dance moments? And what role do you most lust to do?

I would have to say performing Stepping Stones by Jiri Kylian, dancing Flames of Paris at War Memorial Opera House in SF and taking part in the premiere of Forsythe’s Playlist (Track 1,2). My dream is to dance De Grieux in Manon one day.
 

Who are your dance heroes?

Baryshnikov, Fernando Bujones, and Rolando Sarabia.
 

Daniel McCormick in the <I>Nutcracker</I>.<br />© Laurent Liotardo. (Click image for larger version)

Daniel McCormick in the Nutcracker.
© Laurent Liotardo. (Click image for larger version)

What do you do when you don’t do ballet?

I’m addicted to riding my longboard or my fixed gear bike. I love improvising to my favourite songs in my apartment. I love drawing and I love to eat until I think I’m about to explode.
 

What is your biggest dance wish?

I just wish to inspire a little boy just as I was inspired by that skateboarding male ballet dancer all those years ago to be yourself, find your art and means to express yourself and do whatever you want to do to live a happy, art-centred life the way you want to live it. I also hope to dance a lot of Kylian during my career.
 

 

Francesca Velicu.<br />© Karolina Kuras.

Francesca Velicu.
© Karolina Kuras.

Francesca Velicu

Where and when did you realise you just had to be a dancer?

I don’t think it was ever one specific moment. I’ve done ballet all my life…I would see a beautiful performance, meet a ballet dancer that inspired me or realise I’d achieved something new and it would confirm to me more and more that this is what I want to do.
 

What are your top 3 dance moments? And what role do you most lust to do?

My top 3 dance moments would be dancing the roles of Kitri at 17 years old, The Chosen One in Pina Bausch’s Le Sacre du Printemps and Clara in Nutcracker. My dream role is Manon or Juliet.
 

Who are your dance heroes?

The one dancer and person I aspire to most is Alina Cojocaru.
 

Francesca Velicu in Pina Bausch's <I>Le Sacre du printemps</I>.<br />© Laurent Liotardo. (Click image for larger version)

Francesca Velicu in Pina Bausch’s Le Sacre du printemps.
© Laurent Liotardo. (Click image for larger version)

What do you do when you don’t do ballet?

When I’m not doing ballet I like to paint, or go out to take photos in the city.
 

What is your biggest dance wish?

I just wish to continue discovering myself and achieve things that once I would only have dreamt of.
 

 

Connie Vowles.<br />© Karolina Kuras.

Connie Vowles.
© Karolina Kuras.

Connie Vowles

Where and when did you realise you just had to be a dancer?

I always went to see musicals when I was younger, and loved the idea of being in the spotlight. I was always dancing around my living room at home, in front of the TV when my dad was watching football. I think my parents had no choice but to do something about it!
 

What are your top 3 dance moments? And what role do you most lust to do?

I love returning to my hometown of Bristol when English National Ballet has their national tour. However, I think my favourite moments to date have been when I’ve felt so connected to the orchestra on stage. I’ve really enjoyed performing Akram Khan’s Giselle because the score is phenomenal! I also enjoyed dancing The Novice in Jerome Robbins’ The Cage I loved becoming completely immersed in it and having my family there to share the moment. In terms of the future, I’d love to dance to my favourite ballet scores such as Onegin, Cinderella, Monotones and Rhapsody.
 

Who are your dance heroes?

My parents will always be my heroes! I love watching videos of Lynn Seymour and Margot Fonteyn dance. I am also a fan of Francesca Hayward and Shiori Kase!
 

Connie Vowles in <I>La Sylphide</I>.<br />© Laurent Liotardo. (Click image for larger version)

Connie Vowles in La Sylphide.
© Laurent Liotardo. (Click image for larger version)

What do you do when you don’t do ballet?

Playing my vinyls, having a cup of tea, and waiting for Game of Thrones Season 8.

 

What is your biggest dance wish?

I think it’s best just to continue to work, grow, learn and observe – and trust that this is enough to take you on the right path for you.
 
 

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