DANCELIFE INTERVIEWS SALTIMBANCO CASTCirque Du Soleil production of Saltimbanco is coming to Australian and DanceLife caught up with Canadian performer in the show Fanny Laneuville-Castonguay to tell us about her Cirque Du Soleil experience.
1. Cirque Du Soleil is known for its out of this world concepts and extremely talented and strong cast members. How did you get involved with the company?
I was competing in the Canadian championship of gymnastics and a talent scout of Cirque du Soleil approached me to see if I would be interested in joining the company. He said when I was going to be older I could be a good potential talent. I said, how old do I have to be? Because I’m very small, they thought I was much younger. From there, the first contact was made. I finished competing and sent all my info to the headquarters in Montreal. I was invited then invited for a formation to join Saltimbanco.
2. Talk us through the rehearsal period for Saltimbanco. What was the most challenging part of the rehearsals?
When you start, rehearsals are physically challenging. It can take months before being able to perform some specific tricks, bruises become part of your daily routine! Now that I have been doing the show for many years, rehearsals are mostly to tweak little details, to make sure I’m performing everything perfectly. I am also learning new tricks during our rehearsals. We usually have 2-3 training sessions per week, and between 6-9 shows. Our work is very challenging, not only physically, but also psychologically.
3. What qualities are a performer do you believe make you well suited to this production?
Hard work, hard work, hard work. If you want to achieve your goals, and be part of many acts, you simply have to work and leave it all out there.
4. As this is a touring show you are continually travelling around the world. What are your key steps for keeping yourself fit and healthy?
As mentioned, we have many training/rehearsal sessions every week. Sometimes , we perform up to 10 times in a single week. That keeps you quite fit ! Except that, good food, lots of sleep and positive attitude.
5. What can Australian audiences expect to see from Saltimbanco?
An explosion of colours and joy on the stage. I love sharing the excitement I have while I’m performing. My character is a little kid, jumping and running around all the time!! She is constantly looking for attention. I laugh a lot on stage wearing my costume !
6. What advice can you give anyone who is wanting to have a career with Cirque Du Soleil?
Believe in yourself and don’t content yourself, always push your limits further and further. When I started, they told me I wouldn’t be able to do some specific tricks, and now I’m doing them every night.
Saltimbanco opens in Brisbane on 8 July before traveling to Newcastle, Sydney and Wollongong. More info is at their website.