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Meet our Students: Jill D'haene
28th Apr 2021 10:35
Meet our Students: Jill D'haene
Third Year student Jill D'haene talks about her time at the School, from discovering ballet at a young age to finding her ballet family at English National Ballet School.

When did you start dancing?

I started dancing at the age of three and I have always said I wanted to become a ballerina. I asked my parents if I could start taking dance classes and my love for ballet grew over the years. I always danced at my local school in Belgium and had the opportunity to move to London by myself at the age of twelve to join The Royal Ballet School.

How has your time been at English National Ballet School so far?

My time at English National Ballet School has been amazing, these past years have flown by and I can’t believe I’m already in my final year at the school. I am very grateful to have been taught by so many incredible teachers who have been so inspiring and work with many amazing choreographers.

What does ballet mean to you?

Ballet is an art where we can express our emotions and portray our feelings through movement. It’s striving for perfection and improvement in the studio to then bringing this to the stage and share such wonderful experience of performing with the audience.  

Who inspires you?

There are many people I look up to, but I would say Marianela Núñez is one of my biggest inspirations because she is such a beautiful dancer and kind-hearted person.

What is your favourite ballet to either watch or perform? Who is your favourite choreographer?

Some of my favourite ballets to watch would be; ‘Manon’ by Sir Kenneth MacMillan,Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ by Christopher Wheeldon and Woolf Works’ by Wayne McGregor who is one of my favourite choreographers. ‘The Nutcracker’ is also an amazing ballet, it’s so magical being part of it and it will never get old.

What are your future aspirations?

I aspire to join a ballet company and hopefully spend lots of time learning different repertoire, working with many choreographers and performing on stage.

What is the best part of being a student at English National Ballet School?

At English National Ballet School, we are one big family and it is such a positive environment. We are not only growing to be better dancers but also better people, I have definitely made friends for life here.

  Photo credit: Photography by ASH