I still have a clear memory of my first trial ballet class at Tsuen Wan Studio which totally changed my whole life. Now that my dream of becoming a professional dancer actually came true, the whole journey from my first ballet class to the stressful audition for entering the Paris Opera Ballet has been like a fairytale, with many magical moments.
“Ballet?” I have always wondered how my parents had the excellent idea and the courage to take me to such an uncommon activity for boys. Despite my strong unwillingness to try ballet, Miss Ko, the secretary of Tsuen Wan Studio, gave me a magical push into the studio and actually into the whole ballet world. I eventually found ballet dancing fascinating probably because of its close relation with music and Miss Wu’s entertaining and lively teaching approach.
From that day on, ballet has become my strong passion and an important part of my life. Different teachers of the Jean M. Wong School of Ballet assured my constant and rapid improvement. The ballet school’s International Summer Dance School (ISDS) and its annual performance Stars of Tomorrow during summer became my long awaited events of the year. I used to cry heavily during the stage parties after the shows as I felt sad to say goodbye to the wonderful guest teachers and to the summers full of ballet!
As time went by, my desire to become a professional dancer in an international company grew stronger. To achieve this goal, I was convinced that I needed a professional and full-time training. Hence, I started searching for different ballet schools on the internet. With Miss Wong’s generous help, I was given the opportunity to audition for the Paris Opera Ballet School. To my big surprise, I was accepted! I couldn’t believe it.
My ballet training in France started. It was extremely difficult to get integrated into a purely French environment. Here came another miracle: Lady Nobuko Albery introduced Mark and Odile Ellison to me as a host family. They are among the most generous, kind and caring people I have ever met and they gave me a warm welcome into their family. I could consequently focus even more on my ballet training.
Among the most unforgettable moments, my very supportive aunt, Ann, passed away at the beginning of my second year of training…… Ann had always been living with me since I was born. When I had late ballet classes in the evening, she used to come to North Point Studio after work from her office in Causeway Bay to go home with me by taxi. I know that she continued to guide me in my career and I hope that I could make her feel proud in heaven.
The passing away of Ann, several injuries, different failures and other difficulties were actually real-life lessons and molded me to become an even stronger person. The final year of my training in Paris was a decisive and pivotal one since all the students would fight for the chance to be accepted into the Paris Opera Ballet.
One month before the crucial audition, my sister came to Paris to support me, even though she as already on vacation and instead could have returned to Hong Kong straight away once her vacation started. Miss Chen also showed her strong support by monitoring my physical condition and giving me great health advice.
The night before the audition, I was very lucky to be able to fall asleep despite the very hot weather and the nervousness. On the contrary, it was my supporters including my sister, my parents, Miss Wong, Miss Chen and my close friends who were awake all night. I might have passed on all my stress and worries to them! Thanks to all your support, I made it: I was selected to be part of the Paris Opera Ballet!
Here comes my deepest and sincerest gratitude to all of you. Without any single one of you, all these miracles would not have happened to me. That shy little boy has reached his goal and became a professional dancer. Dreams do come true and magic does exist, as long as you believe it.