Agnes Rosendahl

Ballet Copenhagen

My name is Agnes Rosendahl, I’m a 16-years old girl from Stockholm but at the moment living in Copenhagen. Here in Denmark I study as a first-year apprentice with the Royal Danish Ballet. The apprentice program is an education for ballet students in ages 16 to 19, to prepare them for a professional carrier as ballet dancers with the company. We combine our daily training with academically studies at Falkonergårdens Gymnasium. I started doing ballet on a high level just a few years ago, before that it was just a hobby which I practised ones a week. Now I’m doing it full time and it has resulted in this move from Stockholm, my family, friends and dog, to make my dream come true in Copenhagen.

What drives you? 

People say it’s called passion. I actually don’t really know what to call it. Maybe it’s more like an obsession? I think you have to be a bit obsessed to keep going. And then it gets to the point when it’s all a routine and you can’t imagen an everyday-life without it. It’s so demanding, both mentally and physically, that you have to have that inner fire which pushes you to go forward every day, even when you are dead tired and in pain. But of course, it has to be worth it. That kick you get when you are on stage, feeling the spotlights, the music, the audience attention, is just amazing. You get so awarded for all your hard work in that moment and that is when I feel that this is why I am living. Also, the curiosity of not knowing how far you actually can get. Being able to strive higher and achieve more knowledge and skill is very important for me.

What’s next in training? 

Next week we have half-year evaluation, when all the teachers and directors of the school watches our training and then consider the fact if we are good enough to stay, if the third-year apprentices can get a contract, or if we have to leave the school. We have the real exam in May, but this is like a little check before Christmas. Usually they don’t throw people out in the middle of the year… Coming up we also have performances this spring, but for me as a first-year apprentice, the focus lays on technical training to build strength, and not so much to perform.

What makes you happy?

I get happy when I can see and feel that I am improving as a dancer and when I get good feed-back from teachers and coaches, so my hard work pays off. But as I am a dog person I also just love spending time with my black labrador, he really makes me happy, even though I might have a hard day. Spending time with my family and people I care about also means a lot to me.

How do you create balance in your life? 

I try to listen to my body, to see when it’s time to stop and go home for dinner, but it’s sometimes hard when you have a lot of ambition and is a little impatient, like me. You have to let your body rest and make the process go slowly but steadily. To sleep well, eat well and not push yourself over the limit is very important. Instead of going out with friends, I might decide to stay home and sleep a Friday night, because I feel my body is in need of it to be able to train again the next day. Priority is the key, really. But then it’s also necessary to have a life containing more than ballet. That’s why my family is so important to me. With them I can just relax, be myself and not think about ballet at all.

What’s one piece of kit you could not live without?

Chocolate. I know it´s not completely ideal, but I absolutely love chocolate and can’t imagen an evening without it. But it has to be dark, or it’s too sweet. Since I don’t eat other sweets this is what I eat during the weekend;)

What are your goals for the future? 

To get as far as possible. I want a long, healthy and happy life without regrets. Better to go for it, big time, then to think back later, wishing I would have given more. Full power. From start.

Who inspires you and why?

There is so many people I look up to. Both teachers, coaches, people I study with, members of the Royal Danish Ballet, former dancers and of course the great international ballerinas, like Evgenia Obratzova, Marianela Nūnez, Sylvie Guillem and so on. I think what really inspires me about these people is their mind-set and determination of reaching their goal and the fact that they have been smart enough to reach it. I just feel deep respect for them and their work.

This is Trainers Of Tomorrow