An insightful and touching interview into the life of world renowned ballet dancer- Bianka Fucsko!
How did you get into dancing and what age were you?
I was first introduced to dance at the age of 5. My mum thought it would be a good idea for me to do some sort of physical activity that got me out of the house on a saturday morning. It was either ballet or little athletics. She chose ballet.
What is/was the dance scene like in Australia?
The dance scene in Australia is relatively small. There isn’t a lot of funding that goes into the arts, particularly into ballet, but that’s the reality of the dance world. Australia has a number of really good dance schools, as well as a bunch of really talented dancers, however a lot of these dancers won’t find work unless they seek it, which often means moving to another country. It’s often sad to see dancers quit simply because they can’t find a job. In Australia, there are only three classical ballet companies (The Australian Ballet, The Queensland Ballet and The West Australian Ballet) as well as fourteen smaller scale contemporary dance companies. When you compare this with Europe, where you have over thirty dance companies in Germany alone… I guess you could say the competition is tough.
What type of training have you done?
I was trained primarily in classical ballet, but I’ve done a lot of different styles: modern, tap, jazz, musical theater, character dance and funk. As a professional dancer in this day and age, you have to be versatile. Nowadays, dancers have to sing, and singers; dance. There’s no way around it. Being proficient in one form of dance just doesn’t cut it anymore.
Who were some of your inspirations growing up?
Growing up, I used to watch videos of “etoiles”, the equivalent of “star dancers”, from companies like the Paris Opera and The Bolshoi Ballet. Namely Aurelie Dupont, Svetlana Zakararova, Evgenia Obraztsova, and Sylvie Guillem. It was always my dream to dance like them. I have been extremely privileged to have always been surrounded by teachers and mentors who continued to believe in me. It was through their support and inspiration that I have got to where I am today.
What brought you to the US?
After dancing in Europe for four and a half years I slowly began to tire of the dance scene over there. I was no longer feeling inspired. A change was needed. Working with the Finnish National Ballet was my last gig in Europe.
What bought me to the US was the acquisition of a new adventure. I was in search of a new kind of energy.
I have always been curious with the American dance scene. Watching videos of companies like The American Ballet Theater and New York City Ballet what intrigued me most, was seeing how the dancers seemed to move faster, quicker and were lighter… Now I get to be a part of this. I get to see if what I thought was true.
What would be your ultimate gig?
My dream of dancing in America has finally come true and I’m happy with that. I know that whatever happens from here on, will be good. It would be very cool to live and dance in San Francisco and/or Oregon one day. There are two really great ballet companies in both cities.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
The biggest career highlight for me was dancing in front of over 12,000 people in Finland as part of the “Ballet at Hartwall Arena” gig, which happened in May this year.
What would be your advice to aspiring dancers?
As cliché as it sounds, you can never give upon your dream. The road is far from easy, hardships are frequent, but if you believe enough in something then I think that’s what’s worth fighting for. You just have to keep on going. It’s really that simple. Good, hard and honest work pays off in the end. As I was growing up, throughout my training years, I was told countless times I would never be a classical dancer. Having the body was one thing, but apparently I would never have the correct feet, lines, knees and arms (basically everything else that was required of a ballet dancer) to even bother continuing. I was going nowhere with ballet it seemed. Of course I could have given up when I was asked to leave The Australian Ballet School at the age of fourteen, but I believed with hard work that I could change these things. And so I did. I never let what one person said to me, deter me, because I knew that somewhere, someone out there would appreciate the hard, honest work that they saw in me. I knew I would find someone who believed in me, and my dancing.