My original plan for the next two years was to study at the John Cranko school, and I have been really enjoying my first year here.
That being said, I am already 19 years old and I feel the need to find a job with a professional company for next year or the year afterwards, so since my last blog entry I have done six auditions, each in a different country. I have travelled to Zurich, Dresden, Vienna, Prague, Amsterdam and St Petersburg within the last few months.
Auditioning, especially open call auditions, can be very, very stressful and quite intimidating. You feel it from the moment you enter the studio; everyone looks you up and down, judging you solely from your physique at first. Then of course you see everyone in class, and if you're lucky you make it to the end.
While most of my auditions were great experiences but generally unsuccessful, I have yet to hear back from some companies regarding contracts and still have more auditions coming up.*
At the school, things are still going well and are starting to get quite busy, seeing as we have our year end show in the Stuttgart Opera House in July. I will be dancing George Balanchine's Allegro Brillante and Simple Symphony by Alastair Marriott, a piece originally choreographed for the Royal Ballet School in London, England. Both pieces are very difficult stamina-wise, so I'm tired but at the same time I feel like I'm in great shape, especially for audition season.
I'm continuing to enjoy the performances from the Stuttgart Ballet, and have also seen rehearsals from guest artists such as Olga Smirnova (my favourite ballerina) and Roberto Bolle here in Stuttgart.
All in all, I'm keeping busy, which is the best way to be.
* Two weeks later Zachary heard that he'd been accepted by Thomas Edur as part of the Estonian National Ballet. Gramilano wishes him well!
On the audition circuit: a photo album…
[Zach Rogers is a nineteen-year-old Canadian ballet dancer who got through to the finals at the Prix de Lausanne in 2013 and is currently studying at the John Cranko Schule in Stuttgart. Zach recounts his experience during his first year in Stuttgart.]
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.