Sunday, 16 August 2009

Temps développé* : Rachel Ware

Rachel Ware, a 17 year old ballet student, is about to embark on the next phase of her vocational training, in Boston, USA. Rachel has entered the Great Britons competition run by British Airways in connection with their sponsorship of London 2012. The programme offers free flights to upcoming British talent in the run up to the Olympics. Being very close to her family, it is important to Rachel that she is able to fly home for Christmas and holidays, which is why she entered the competition.

I am following Rachel’s fortunes and caught up with her recently.

I began by asking Rachel about her time at White Lodge (the Royal Ballet lower school based in Richmond Park). “I thoroughly enjoyed my time at White Lodge. I was continually pushing myself harder to improve and achieve my personal goals. I was always watching the older years and challenging myself to achieve their level. The days were long and intense but would always fly by so quickly, you never had a spare moment to get bored!

When I look back at my time at White Lodge, the greatest memories that always come into my head are of the ballets at The Royal Opera House that I have been fortunate enough to take part in. Firstly in Year 7 there was The Sleeping Beauty in which we were Garland dancers wearing lovely pink and green corseted dresses. Then in Year 8 came Swan Lake, we were baby cygnets who got the opportunity to perform on stage with many famous principal ballerinas such as Darcey Bussell, Tamara Rojo and Sarah Lamb to name but a few. In Year 9 I was fortunate enough to be a party child in The Nutcracker which was probably my most magical Christmas so far.

Another special memory I have is when in Year 9 I was lucky enough to be selected along with four other girls in my year, to take part in a BBC documentary with Darcey Bussell called ‘The Magic of Swan Lake’.

My five years at White Lodge passed so quickly but I am forever grateful for the wonderful training I had there, not only from the highly committed ballet staff but also from the supportive academic staff as well.”

What did you enjoy about performing at the Open Days outside on the lawn ?

I really enjoyed them as it was something very different. We once performed on the tennis courts at White Lodge but mostly on a purpose built dance floor on the lawn. The Open Days were so special with parents all pulling together and helping out on the numerous different stalls, such as the memorabilia stall, ballet stall, card stall and the ever popular cake stall! As I was a Junior Associate I was lucky enough to take part dancing in the open days for seven years running.

How did you feel studying in such an historic building ?

We were very fortunate to be studying at White Lodge. It was always very inspiring training in the same studios that many famous ballerinas have trained in. White Lodge from a distance in the Park looks like a magical dolls house.

What was your first pointe class like ?

My first pointe class in Year 7 was very exciting although quite painful at times!

What did you like about being based in Richmond Park ?

I loved White Lodge being in the middle of Richmond Park as every day when I drove into school I got to see the deer and the wonderful setting that surrounded the school. It definitely made me feel very lucky and privileged to be a part of something so special.

Did you get the opportunity to visit Richmond and the surrounding area ?

Being a day pupil I got to visit Richmond and the surrounding areas frequently. The boarders could go into town at the weekend.

What did you dance at the Richmond Fair on The Green ?

Performing at Richmond Fair on the Green was great fun for us all, especially in Year 9 when some of us were chickens from La Fille Mal Gardee wearing a big padded body with feathers, yellow tights and a red face piece! Somehow my mum still managed to spot which one I was!

Who inspired you at White Lodge ?

My inspiration at White Lodge was Darcey Bussell.

What do you remember about your audition to White Lodge ?

I remember my audition for White Lodge as though it were yesterday. I had a large number 2 pinned on the front of my leotard and I remember us dancing in the Margot Fonteyn Studio Theatre. There was a large panel with lots of the ballet staff on. I was very nervous and anxious but found the class very fun and enjoyed every minute of it!

Any advice for aspiring ballet dancers ?

Ballet can be such hard work and not always rewarding but if you want it enough and work hard enough then there is every chance you will succeed.

*Temps développé – Time developed, developing movement.


  1. What a facinating idea for a blog! Thank you for sharing these beautiful photos of such a talented ballerina.

    Thank so much for your kind words about my blog, too!

    See you around bloggyville!

  2. as usual a great blog about dancing loved it . thanks .

  3. Such a lovely blog! About a world I sadly know so little of. I know I shall return here often. Thank you so much for your visit and your sweet comment. And thank you for leading me here!
    You are most welcome at our place anytime!
    Best to you!

  4. I always wanted to be a clasic dancer, join the Ballet but I never try. I think now at the age of 30 it's too late. Anyway I am a journalist and I like your interview with Raquel.

    If you want you can visit my blog, there is an English translation. For my proget at Uni, yes I have done a Master in International journalism, I interviewed an escort.

    ps. really interesting blog


  5. Hi Elise,

    Thank you so much for visiting my blog and for your lovely comments.

    My mother and I love the Nutcracker Ballet and try to see it every Christmas.

    I enjoyed reading your interview with Rachel here. What an inspiring little girl! I will back again soon to visit your wonderful blog!

    Michelle :)

  6. beautiful pictures and wonderful interview! reading your blog makes me miss dance! (i stopped when i got to college and miss it dearly)!

  7. Interesting blog! Nice job. I guess were in the same page, I'm also a writer by profession, I've been working for 8 years. I write scripts for TV and now I just started writing in Print. By the way thanks for visiting my blog. I'm glad I brighten up your day. I'll be following your blog from now on.

    Hope to hear from you again... :)

  8. such beautiful elegance!
    thanks for the comment sweetie!

  9. thanks for your comment! Im looking forward to following along with you.

  10. Thank you so much for coming by my blog and leaving such warm comments. I would have never know your wonderful and exciting blog existed. Thank you for dropping by. Please visit again.

  11. Another interesting interview. What amazing photos!S

  12. Hi Elise!

    What a lovely blog YOU have!!!

    Thank you for your visit to mine, and for your very sweet comment also. :o)

    This was such a lovely interview...What a talented girl she is! I think a ballerina is about as close to a fairy as you can get, with their graceful beauty and movements... and of course those flowing glittering costumes!

    My sister and I went to see the Nutcracker at Lincoln Center a couple of years ago, and it was just so beautiful! I couldn't soak enough of it in!!!!

    How lovely it must be to speak with these amazing dancers!

    Paulette :o)

  13. Thank you so much for stopping by. It gave me a reason to come here and open my eyes to ballet. Very interesting interviews. It reminds me of the ice-skating world that I am more familiar with. I am sure the hard work and dedication are the same. Very lovely blog.
    Thank you for sharing,

  14. Hello Elise, Thank you for stopping by my page and leaving such kind comments. I'm glad I can make someone's day more interesting with my cards.

    I see here that you have some wonderful articles about these ballerinas! They are so lovely, the details about them, looking into their lives. I enjoy all the pictures too, very cultured and artsy. I use to live in NYC, got a chance to go to the Ballets, The Operas and Lincoln Center too :) Miss that period in my life... was so fun.

    Your site has inspired me to make a ballerina card. :) I will come back and make a comment once I am done with it, best ~Jeni

  15. Thanks! Interesting site! Beautiful!

  16. Thanks for your kinds words about my art. YOur site is great very interesting!

  17. Thank you for your sweet comment on my blog. It made my day :)

  18. Thank you for taking the time to not only read my blog but for leaving such a lovely comment.I studied ballet myself for many years.

    Such a graceful art.

  19. Hi Elise, just wanted to thank you very much for dropping by the Magic Lantern and leaving such a marvellously kind note. I can see your passion for dancing is unbounded ! "All the world's a stage..."

  20. Firstly: Thank U for Ur lovely comment...

    Ur blog is brilliant. :-)I'll visit at another time too... :-)


  21. Thanks for the lovely comment. I love your blog as well..great interview!

  22. Thanks for your comment on my blog!! x

  23. Elise, what a beautiful blog you have. :) As a former child ballerina (does 5 years count? :), I adore your pics.

    Thanks for your sweet comment and for stopping by my blog!

  24. Thank you for your lovely comment - how did you come across my blog?

    So glad I found yours as I once dreamed of being in a ballet world. This girl looks like she has a smart head on her. I wish her well. Isn't it odd how the park is a stone's throw away - and I never knew there was a ballet school?

  25. Such a beautiful loving job you give to the world.
    This young ballet dancer holds such wonderful poses. I can see why she became one of the winners.
    So lovely to read your message and my blog, thank you so much for sharing your blog with me. I am going to read more.
    My very first dream was to be a dancer and use to hear the tap class on a Saturday morning. I never told my mum, she had no money and I didn't wish to hurt her feelings knowing she couldn't afford to take me. So I grew up an artist instead, which I am so pleased with and do not feel sad for not being a dancer now, my art fills my whole mind, body and soul. I sure remember my first dream and these dancers are so beautiful, they share so much! To follow your dreams is a gift!

  26. I took ballet as a child but unfortunately stopped.

  27. Thank you for visiting my blog, your comment made my day!

  28. Thank you very much for your visit and beautiful words.

    You, write a great art, ballet is a beautiful art
    Fantastic photos of the younger Rachel.

  29. What an interesting blog you have. Thank you for the inside story on a young classic dancer pursuing her passion.

  30. Lovely interview. Ballerinas are so beautiful.

    BTW thank you for stopping by my little blog. I apologize for not saying so until now. :)

  31. Ann's Rants - thank you and welcome to my website

    phonelady - thank you for your comments !

    Pamela Terry & Edward - thank you - welcome and I hope you continue find things of interest here

    Clelia - never too late to try adult ballet classes if you can find them ? Welcome !

    Michelle - thank you for your lovely comments and welcome. Hope the website continues to inspire you

    la petite fashionista - you are not alone - welcome and thank you for your comments

    Charry - welcome and thanks for following. Glad you are enjoying it !

    rocksblogg - thank you for your comment !

    littlesack - welcome andthanks for following

    Aunt Pitty Pat's fun - thanks for your lovely comments and welcome

    Sarah - thank you as ever

    Paulette - thanks and welcome. Everyone loves The Nutcracker !

    Pease Porridge - welcome and thanks for your comments. The Royal Ballet perform Les Patineurs this Christmas - a ballet about ice-skating. If you can't make the performance I hope to have reviews here.

    Jeni C Slack - welcome and thanks for your comments. Good luck with the card - do let me know what happens !

    Kim - welcome and thanks

    Ticklish Mermaids - welcome & thanks very much

    Lucky in Love - welcome !

    Cocaine Princess - welcome, many people here also studied ballet at some point, or should that be pointe !

    Owen - welcome and thanks

    Janettaylor - thank you for your lovely comments and welcome

    Caramel Diva - welcome and thanks

    Sweetchie85 - welcome and thanks

    Shopn'chomp - 5 years does count ! Well done. Welcome and thanks. You find many others here who did the same

    Clarity - And not just any ballet school - the best in the world arguably. I hope you'll visit the visitor resource centre there - more details are on this website (you do have to book in advance but it's free). Welcome and thank you for your comments too !

    Julie-ann - I agree with you - to follow your dreams is such a rare gift. Thank you and welcome

    Amanda K - You are not alone ! Welcome and thanks

    Nena - welcome and thank you

    Maria Del Carmen - welcome & thanks for your comments

    Annie - Welcome to you and thank you

    Jenny Lee - welcome and thank you very much for your comments

  32. What a fabulous young dancer and awesome photos. Many thanks for sharing them.

    I love ballet and tried to take lessons when my daughter took them in the 1980's. What a joke I was, I could not remember the combinations!

    Let it be back to the beautiful ones!

    smiles, cyndi

  33. Wow! Her lines are beautiful. I so wish I could bend that way. LOL!

  34. Thanks for commenting on my blog! It really made my day.

    The photographs of the ballerina really are beautiful, perhaps more so because of their simplicity and the graceful lines of her body. Really awesome.


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