Laura Hidalgo on becoming Nikiya for La Bayadère

Principal Artist Laura Hidalgo talks about getting into the role of Nikiya – the temple dancer and Solor's one true love – for the world premiere season of Greg Horsman's La Bayadère.


What is it like dancing the role of Nikiya?

When I was a young girl, La Bayadére was the first full length ballet I saw. I remember it so vividly – the rich colours of the set, the elaborate costumes, and the beautiful, floating music. The contrast in the second act with the Shades has especially stuck in my mind; it’s eerily quiet and haunting. Getting to dance the role of Nikiya and being part of this incredible production is a dream, and would make 9-year-old Laura very happy! The role is challenging and extremely technical, and I enjoy bringing the character to life in my own way.


What has helped with developing this character?

We were very lucky to have Maina Gielgud AO work with us during rehearsals. Maina’s coaching and advice on the little details of the character were invaluable. She really helped me put the emotion and feeling into the movement.


Have you enjoyed having new movement choreographed by Greg Horsman?

It’s been so nice working with Greg. As our Ballet Master, Greg knows us better than anyone and we already have a great rapport with him. I’ve also liked watching him in the role of Choreographer – he has such a genuine love for his work, and respect for his team and the dancers.


Which is your favourite part to perform?

The first act is definitely my favourite. Nikiya is such a raw, passionate character and Act 1 is where you can really connect with her and tell her story. It can be a little intense, but I’ve liked making that feel real and giving it life. It’s going to be an amazing show!