Today is World Ballet Day, the one day of the year that balletomanes and ballet newbies alike are urged to press pause on their everyday activities and watch ballet!
American writer and dance critic Edwin Denby (1903–1983) is attributed to the quote: “You don’t have to know about ballet to enjoy it, all you have to do is look at it” and I support this sentiment. Simply witnessing ballet dancers do what they do best is enough to inspire admiration for ballet’s athleticism, aesthetics, artistry and amazing history and culture.
♥ Happy World Ballet Day ♥
Dancer, dance teacher and artist Olivia Holland fills Georgina Butler in on how relocating to New Zealand has helped her to rediscover her passion for dance.
Olivia Holland is a graduate of the Royal Ballet School White Lodge and Elmhurst School for Dance whose professional dancing career has included contracts with Royal Ballet of Flanders (November 2011–June 2012) and Northern Ballet (July 2012–July 2015).
Ever since she started touring with Birmingham Royal Ballet while she was a student at Elmhurst, Olivia has been painting pictures inspired by her life as a dancer. These exquisite artworks are influenced by the performers she has worked with, the ballets she has danced in and the countries and theatres she has visited. A keen photographer, she has also recorded her experiences backstage in captivating snapshots.
Since Olivia last graced this site for an interview in June 2014 her entrepreneurial spirit and sense of adventure has taken her to the island nation of New Zealand, also known as the ‘Paradise of the Pacific’. Surrounded by stunning natural beauty, motivated to continue painting and newly devoted to the art of teaching, Olivia is falling in love with dancing — and the life it has given her — all over again.
[© Olivia Holland]
Dancer, artist and entrepreneur Olivia Holland has a natter with Georgina Butler…
Northern Ballet dancer Olivia Holland is excited by the experiences she has had so far in her career and constantly inspired by the ballet bubble in which she is blessed to work.
Dancers must have a keen eye for detail, an appreciation of beauty, an understanding of body lines and an ability to convey emotion — and these qualities are also proving to be invaluable for Olivia’s second vocation as an artist.
Eager to share her love of ballet and admiration for her colleagues, the 21-year-old offers a unique insight into life as a touring dancer through her greeting cards and prints. Hours spent in classes, rehearsing and performing offer Olivia plenty of opportunities to indulge in the joy of movement herself and observe her fellow dancers. These precious memories and fleeting moments in time are then captured in her delicate drawings and watercolour paintings.
Always intrigued by the creative pursuits of others, I caught up with Olivia to learn more about her dance training, the professional highlights she has enjoyed to date and her arty ambitions.