Veteran ballet dancer Mingyi Liang shares the path that brought him from China to Edmonton’s Citie Ballet!
Why did you start dancing?
My mom took me to a ballet class when I was 6 years old, but I didn’t like it at first. I felt it took time away from when I could have been watching cartoons and playing video games! But my mom just kept dragging me to the ballet class every weekend until I finally felt that dance was fun – which was when I turned 15 and participated in the second Beijing International Invitational and met some amazing dancers from other countries.
What motivated you to audition for Citie Ballet?
Most ballet companies in China were only doing classical ballet at the time, but I wanted to try something different. I had the opportunity to join in one of the biggest ballet competitions in the world, the “Prix de Lausanne” and from that competition, I was accepted into Canada’s National Ballet School. After two years there, my ballet and contemporary teacher suggested I audition for Citie Ballet. I was interested because it was a new professional ballet company in Edmonton that was creating new pieces in neo-classical ballet, modern and contemporary dance. It is now my sixth season with Citie Ballet.
What do you get up to on weekends?
I always go grocery shopping and just relax my body at home.
What snack do you bring to get you through a long rehearsal day?
I like to have one or two dark chocolate bars and a blueberry flavoured Gatorade for long rehearsal days. Otherwise I enjoy a steak!