Interview with Joffrey Ballet Dancer, Fabrice Calmels

January 30, 2013
California Literary Review
Toba Singer


How is it that your career brought you from Paris to Chicago?

What brought me was my height, quite simply. I was originally from the Paris Opera school. I grew fast. At 16 years, I was growing at a rate of 1.5 inches per month. I was not doing badly, but I was worried because the corps de ballet is a certain height, and I was beyond that height already, so I thought, “What do I do now?” Claude Bessy suggested that I try going to the United States, and so I spent a short time in the ABT school, and also the Rock School and their affiliate, Pennsylvania Ballet, and worked there with Stephanie Wolf and Boris Spassoff. I learned English, and began to understand the American dance style and lifestyle. The Rock School had enough money to pay for my visa and paperwork. I danced in Pennsylvania Ballet’s Nutcracker and Dracula, and was able to get in some classes at School of American Ballet, which were invaluable for increasing my speed, because that is something tall dancers usually lack. I was accepted into the apprentice program at Boston Ballet, Boston Ballet II.


For the full interview click here.