As a First Soloist at English National Ballet, Julia Conway has forged an impressive career since her time at LVBS. We sat down with her to talk about her fondest memories and what advice she has for our current students...
What was your time at school like?
I look back at my time at LVBS with such warmth in my heart. Memories of both dance and academic classes full of creativity. The small classes allowed for an incredibly strong bond to form between classmates. Also to mention a personalised approach between teachers and students. I remember days full of learning, laughter and freedom to be ourselves.
"We dance because we love it. Don’t let yourself loose sight of that."
What is your favourite memory of being at school?
It’s hard to choose a favourite memory...there are so many moments that bring a smile to my face. For example mornings classes with Anna in Year 7, singing Christmas Carols to our families and, of course, the performances of Nutcracker with WLSD at Christmas time.
Have you kept in touch with the students you trained with?
Yes one of my best friends to this day, Katia, is a LVBS graduate. As well as Katia I keep in touch with many of my classmates. They are all wonderful people. I have found that moments with friends at school are some of my greatest memories.
Tell us a bit about your training to date….Where did you train after LVBS. What was your training highlight?
After my time at LVBS, I moved to Florida where my sister was attending high school. I trained with Magaly Suarez a wonderful Cuban teacher. She taught me to be fearless onstage. I then joined Royal Ballet Upper School and worked with Anita Young and Daria Klimentova before joining ENB.
Where do you dance now? Have you danced anything exciting recently?
I’m a First Soloist at English National Ballet. I’ve now been in the company for 6 years. The last thing I performed was one of the stepsisters in Christopher Wheeldon’s Cinderella in the Round. I had so much fun getting into the character and using acting skills.
What is your favourite ballet or dance work to either watch or perform?
I love so many different ballets. My favourites to watch are anything by Jerome Robbins. I hope to one day get to dance one of his ballets. Of what I have performed, my favourites have been Raymonda in Tamara Rojo’s Raymonda and Pina Bausch’s Rite of Spring. In both of these I felt that I lost myself onstage and was completely immersed in the story.
What advice would you give for our current students?
Enjoy these moments! Take all the value that is being offered to you and have fun. We dance because we love it. Don’t let yourself loose sight of that.