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013: Lucy Balfour, Ballerina at Rambert on performance, competition and motherhood

Lucy Balfour is a leading dancer at the world renowned contemporary dance company Ballet Rambert. Lucy trained at the International Ballet Academy in Christchurch, then spent ten years with the Royal New Zealand Ballet, before joining Rambert. In this episode, Lucy talks about the competitiveness of becoming a ballerina, the singular focus on realising her dream, with no back up plan. She talks about the pressure of selection and performing, maintaining self-identity throughout balanced by the privilege of being a dancer.
Lucy is pregnant and gives an insight how Rambert have been supporting her to continue to rehearse and perform (Lucy performed on stage with Rambert up to 5 months pregnant) and now looks ahead with the question of whether she’ll return to dance once she becomes a mum.

Details of the Supporting Champions Conference 2019 are coming up soon Pre-register at www.supportingchampions.co.uk

1:20 We have 10 copies of the book How To Support A Champion to give away. To be in with a chance simply subscribe to www.supportingchampions.co.uk and also give us a review of the podcast on ITunes. You will need to send us a screen shot of your review and your address to enquiries@supportingchampions.co.uk. The first 10 to do so will receive a free book…good luck!
Details of the Supporting Champions Conference are

5:50 Lucy’s journey into dance
7:00 Decision ballet school or high school?
7:55 First ballet contract with The Royal New Zealand ballet company
9:28 Focus, rejection, perseverance and belief: developing resilience
11:15 No plan B
12:50 Dealing with rejection
14:19 Advice for the 16 year old Lucy Balfour
15:25 The day in a life for a dancer at the Rambert Dance Company
20:18 Coping with the ups and downs of the selection/audition process
21:20 Stay alert use rejection as a learning opportunity, learning from your peers without the pressure! Staying aware of your behaviour
22:25 Getting in the right place for a new performance: preparing physically and mentally, writing down corrections in a training diary and not being afraid to ask lots of questions
27:15 Late specialisation
29:48 Pregnancy and performance
33:00 Life after the birth
36:27 Dancing whilst pregnant
37:50 Facing the prospect of being a dancer and a mum
41:50 Viewing ballet through a different set of eyes which will help in the future, learning more about the craft of ballet
42:41 The length of a ballet career – it’s not about age, it’s about desire and physicality
43:42 Dancer’s Career Development – thinking ahead
45:00 Wanting to inspire others, an ambassador for dance mamas and helping others to realise their potential at an earlier age
47:17 Top tips for a career in the performing arts
49:02 Instagram – lucybalfour.dancer; Twitter – @rambertdance; rambert.org.uk

A big thank you to Lucy McCrudden of Dance Mama https://www.dancemama.org/ (a company dedicated to supporting parents of children in the performing arts) for introducing me to Lucy

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steveingham

Dr Steve Ingham is one of the UK’s leading figures in sport and one of the world’s leading performance scientists. He is steeped in high performance and has been integral to the development of Britain into an Olympic superpower. He has provided support to over 1000 athletes, of which over 200 have achieved World or Olympic medal success, including some of the world’s greatest athletes such as Jessica Ennis-Hill, Sir Steve Redgrave and Sir Matthew Pinsent. Steve has coached Kelly Sotherton's running for heptathlon and to 4x400m Olympic medal winning success. Steve has worked at the English Sports Council British Olympic Association, English Institute of Sport, where Steve was the Director of Science and Technical Development, leading a team of 200 scientists in support of Team GB and Paralympics GB. Ingham holds a BSc, PhD and is a Fellow of the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences. Steve is author of the best selling ‘How to Support a Champion: The art of applying science to the elite athlete’, discussing and inspiring the importance of learning and adapting to reach our maximum potential. Steve established Supporting Champions with the ambition of helping ambitious people to find a better way of creating high-performance. Steve hosts the Supporting Champions Podcast on sharing his pursuit of understanding and exploration in performance.

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