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Tales from the Ballet: Coppélia

Tales from the Ballet: Coppélia

Coppélia is one of my all-time favourite ballets. I would highly recommend going to see it when you have the chance. It is the perfect ballet for children of all ages – it’s so much fun!

For me, Coppelia conjures such vivid memories! During my career with The Australian Ballet, I was lucky enough to dance many of the different roles.  

As a young ballerina, I danced as one of the dolls or a girlfriend of the lead Swanilda. I loved sneaking into the dolls house, as one of the girlfriends, alongside my dancing friends. The set was so amazing, it really felt like a fairytale coming to life.

We all looked up to the Principal Dancer who played the role of Swanilda and loved playing along with the tricks she would play on Dr. Coppelius.

During one performance of the ballet, an older, very experienced and very cranky Senior Artist played Dr. Coppelius. We loved playing tricks on him! These tricks would often result in a backstage reprimand and always end in fits of laughter.

Felicia Palanca The Australian Ballet Coppélia

Later in my career I was fortunate enough to play Swanilda across Australia and sneaking into the Dolls house was still my favourite part of the Ballet!

Coppelia is fun and energetic but it's hard work as a dancer in the principal role. Dancing for the entire three acts, with a solo in each and the final Pas De Deux with Franz (Swanilda’s love interest) requires perfect technique.  

The Ballet has lots of fun tricks which is great so the dancers can show off a little and entertain the audience even more.

Coppélia’s infectious energy, fantastic music, beautiful costumes, and dazzling sets will appeal to even the toughest little critic. It’s definitely one I will love taking my own children to and one that always makes me smile when I think about my time as a Dancer.

~ Felicia xx

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