Why did you start dancing?
My mother thought it would be great for me, and my parents needed to find something for me to do after school.
Which dancer inspired you most as a child?
I remember watching Cynthia Harvey and Misha’s Don Q a LOT!!!
Which dancer do you most admire?
Alessandra Ferri. Her quality and artistry. Her physique. She is just the definition of a ballerina.
What’s your favourite role?
Giselle has to be it.
What role have you never played but would like to?
What’s your favourite ballet to watch?
Mmm, Manon I think I could watch over and over… Romeo and Juliet. La Bayadère.
Who is your favourite choreographer?
I have many but anything by MacMillan is a jewel.
Who is your favourite writer?
Who is your favourite director?
In a ballet company? I’m happy with my Julio Bocca!! In a film? Mmm a few… Woody Allen does stuff that I love.
Who is your favourite actor?
Who is your favourite singer?
I’m listening a lot of Adele this days. I love Eric Clapton though…
What is your favourite book?
11 Minutes by Paulo Coelho.
What is your favourite film?
Which is your favourite city?
It has to be New York City.
What do you like most about yourself?
My sense of humour.
What do you dislike about yourself?
What was your proudest moment?
Seeing my sister become a mom.
When and where were you happiest?
I think I’m the happiest I’ve ever been nowadays.
What or who is the greatest love of your life?
My family and my boyfriend.
What is your greatest fear?
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
I’m very happy of who I am as a dancer and as a person… I think to feel happy is a great achievement, no matter what you do or where you are.
What is your most treasured possession?
What is your greatest extravagance?
A few Chanel purses.
What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
On what occasion do you lie?
I try not to…. I’m not a good liar.
If you hadn’t been a dancer what would you have liked to be?
What is your most marked characteristic?
I try to be in a good mood no matter what.
What quality do you most value in a friend?
Loyalty, kindness and a good ear.
What quality do you most value in a colleague?
Respect. Hard work.
Which historical figure do you most admire?
Which living person do you most admire?
My niece, who is 15 months old. She is just a big smile. Innocent. No responsibilities and no clue of what’s going on in the world… Nothing like being a kid.
What do you most dislike?
Lack of respect. Dishonesty.
What talent would you most like to have?
I wish I could sing!
What’s your idea of perfect happiness?
Being surrounded by people you love.
How would you like to die?
In my sleep.
What is your motto?
Breath, Listen to the Music and Enjoy Yourself.
Maria Riccetto – a biography
Maria Riccetto was born in Montevideo, Uruguay, and began studying ballet at the Uruguay National Ballet School in 1990. She was hired as a professional dancer in 1995 by the national ballet company, S.O.D.R.E, dancing pieces by Rodolfo Lastra, Ivan Tenorio, Jaime Pintos, and others. In 1998, Riccetto was named “Revelation of the Year” by Uruguayan dance critic Washington Roldan, and received the Elena Smirnova Prize from Enrique Honorio Destaville, an Argentine ballet reviewer. Later that year she attended the North Carolina School of the Arts on a full scholarship. There she performed in Grand Pas Romantique – choreographed and staged by Fernando Bujones – and Intermezzo, choreographed by Eliot Feld. She also danced the roles of the Sugar Plum Fairy and the Snow Queen in The Nutcracker. In 1999, when the production was performed at the Hungarian National Academy, Riccetto was invited to Budapest to reprise her role as the Sugar Plum Fairy, dancing with Gabor Szigeti, a soloist with the Hungarian National Ballet. She was as a guest artist at the 25th Anniversary Gala for the Uruguay National Ballet School and was invited by that country’s First Lady to dance in Montevideo and Punta Del Este.
In August 1999, Riccetto joined American Ballet Theatre’s corps de ballet and three years later she was promoted to soloist. Riccetto was the “dance double” for Mila Kunis in the 2010 film Black Swan, a psychological thriller about ballet dancers in New York City.
After 13 years of dancing in the American Ballet Theatre, in 2012 Ricceto came back to Uruguay to dance in the national ballet company, S.O.D.R.E., directed by Argentinian former dancer Julio Bocca.
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Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano’) about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman’s Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia’ column for Dancing Times magazine.