This month’s issue of Dancing Times takes a look at the many different aspects of a dancer’s life, from tackling a major role in a classic of the repertoire for the first time, to taking dance to some of the world’s most deprived communities. In advance of their debuts as Princess Aurora in The Sleeping Beauty, Francesca Hayward and Yasmine Naghdi describe to Zoë Anderson how they are preparing to dance the role later this month, whilst their Royal Ballet colleague, Lauren Cuthbertson, gives a more experienced view of the ballet. Laura Dodge travels to Manchester to meet young dancers at Northern Ballet School on the brink of a professional career; and to highlight Flamenco Festival London, Graham Watts finds out how Manuel Liñán is challenging gender stereotypes.
In addition, former Rambert dancer Dane Hurst describes his participation in a dance project with people living in a Brazilian favela on page 37, and Nicola Rayner talks to Len Goodman about life after Strictly Come Dancing on page 32. Last, but not least, in his Talking Point column dance critic Luke Jennings writes on how classical ballet must try harder to be more inclusive of black female dancers.
Zoë Anderson speaks to three Royal Ballet Auroras – Lauren Cuthbertson, Francesca Hayward and Yasmine Naghdi – about the thrills and the challenges of one of ballet’s major roles
Graham Watts meets Manuel Liñán, a Spanish dancer challenging gender stereotypes
Gerald Dowler interviews Royal Ballet character principals Elizabeth McGorian and Gary Avis
Nicola Rayner catches up with Strictly Come Dancing’s Len Goodman