Australian dancer Steven McRae is a Principal of The Royal Ballet London. McRae was born in Sydney and trained with Hilary Kaplan and at The Royal Ballet School. He won the 2002 Adeline Genée Gold Medal and the 2003 Prix de Lausanne. His roles with The Royal Ballet include all the classical repertory and leading roles in works by choreographers including Frederick Ashton, David Bintley, William Forsythe, Kenneth MacMillan, Alastair Marriott, Wayne McGregor, Liam Scarlett and Christopher Wheeldon. His role creations include Magician/Mad Hatter (Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland), Jack (Sweet Violets), Sandman (Hansel and Gretel), Florizel (The Winter’s Tale), Emble (The Age of Anxiety), Creature (Frankenstein) and roles in Three Songs – Two Voices, Children of Adam, Chroma, Acis and Galatea (Royal Opera), 24 Preludes, The Human Seasons, Tetractys, Connectome, Woolf Works and Multiverse.
What does a normal day look like for you?
I have 2 small children so my day starts anywhere from 5am. I start training at the Royal Opera House from around 10am. Daily ballet class is a chance to work on your technique and maintain and build the strength needed for performing. From midday, we begin rehearsals of the current productions and these continue till 6.30pm. If there is a performance, rehearsals end at 5.30pm in order to prepare for the show. Performances finish at 10.30pm.
What have been some high notes (highlights) in your journey?
I have been fortunate to perform with some of the greatest artists in the world in some of the greatest productions. There are too many wonderful experiences.
What have been some low notes (challenges) in your journey?
Injuries are never wonderful, however I have been able to grow and develop during those times!
When things get tough, which songs do you turn to for inspiration/motivation?
I love ‘The Killers.’ My wife and I have listened to them since we met and played a lot of their music at our wedding.
How does music keep you motivated?
Music is powerful! Music helps us relate emotions to events that changed us, inspired us and helped shape our lives. I know what kind of music helps me set a tone that is needed at that time….
What fitness tips can you share ?
It is important to find the right balance between pushing yourself but also listening to your body.
What advice can you give for those interested in being a professional dancer?
Be yourself. Don’t try replicate what someone else is or has done…. Celebrate what you have and make the most of what you can offer the world.
What’s currently playing on your Spotify?
Haha….. That could be anything from Mr Brightside by ‘The Killers’ to Where you are from Disney’s ‘Moana’ for my children of course.
To find out more about Steven McRae, click here.