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Sabina Allemann  –  prima ballerina
" these technologically advanced times we do tend to forget to feed our souls, forget to stop and take the time to realize the beauty around us. "
How were you motivated to choose your particular field?
  When I was six years old, my parents decided that I should have a hobby. My parents were both interested in the arts, in particular classical music and opera. My father sang and played the piano, but I for some reason had no desire to learn to play an instrument or take singing lessons. By chance one day my mother took me and my best friend to see a performance of "Swan Lake" danced by the National Ballet of Canada. I was so inspired by the combination of movement and music that I asked my mother if I could study ballet. I began lessons at age 7 and; by the time I was 9, I was on my way to Toronto (from Vancouver) as a full-time student in The National Ballet School- a professional ballet school including academics from fifth to twelfth grade.

As difficult as it was to be so far away from home at such a young age, I never faltered in my desire to become a professional ballerina. I always seemed to maintain an inner strength and belief in myself even when the going got tough. Sixteen years after seeing my first ballet I found myself dancing the lead role in the National Ballet of Canada's "Swan Lake" - the ballet that inspired me to dance. So you see, dreams can come true!
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What can you share about your creative process?
    Dance is truly a total body experience. It exercises the mind as much as the body. Therefore the creative process for the dancer has many elements. When working with a choreographer the dancer is required to be a tool. Some choreographers want you to bring something of yourself to the movement while others prefer you to be rather neutral. Either way the process is always stimulating and educational. This process differs somewhat when learning a dramatic role.

These ballets are some of my favorite to dance since I can totally immerse myself in a character. In this situation the characterization actually gives the steps meaning. Depending on who you are you will dance the steps accordingly, i.e., a sixteen-year-old's movements will be very different to a sixty-year-old's even if they are the same steps. This, for me, is something very challenging as an artist, to really make the audience believe in me and my character.

Apart from the dramatic aspects of dance there is also just the pure joy of movement to music — something that I think is inherent in all (or most!) human beings. It's a bit like a runner's high. One gets an incredible adrenaline rush from being on stage in front of thousands of people giving yourself completely physically, spiritually and emotionally.

What ideas do you have for a future human community on Mars?
  The one thing that will be extremely important for the future community on Mars will be to support the arts. I believe that in such an environment art will be as necessary as food and sleep to survive. Throughout the ages man has used art as an outlet for self expression, healing and inspiration. Be it painting, dancing, writing, singing or whatever form, the arts have always been at the base of the human spirit. Only now, in these technologically advanced times do we tend forget to feed our souls, forget to stop and take the time to realize the beauty around us. Life on mars will not be quite so beautiful as earth, but through art we will be able to create our own beauty.  
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