SOME WISE WORDS FROM WORLD CLASS DANCER SOLEDAD BASALDUA AS SHE ANSWERS OUR QUESTIONS
People who are not dancers really don’t have any idea of what a dancer’s life is really like. Can you give us an idea of what you go through every day as a professional dancer. We’ll try not to miss anything. Tell us what time you get up in the morning and how you feel. Are you tired, do your muscles hurt, etc.?
I normally get up around 7/8 am, feeling quite refreshed. It does sometimes depend if I’ve had something like class or work the previous night, where I would maybe wake up with my muscles fatigued. Dancers life can be very intense sometimes, we always have to look after ourselves.
What is your diet like? What does a dancer’s body need as far as everyday nutrition goes?
Diet is definitely one of the most important things. My diet consists mainly on protein based foods and greens. I eat a lot of fish and cooked vegetables so my body can digest it quick. I also take supplements to keep my vitamins and nutrients up and muscles refueled.
Tell us what you normally have for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Do you count calories, carbs or protein amounts?
I normally have my protein shake in the morning with flax seeds, chia seeds and berries or oatmeal with fruit. Lunch would consist of a salad with fish or turkey; and for dinner I normally would do a variety of vegetables or something light before bed time. I don’t really count amounts any more, I know what my body needs on specific days so I just go with how I feel!
Do dancers injure themselves frequently? How about you? Can you talk about injuries in the dance world?
We tend to put our bodies through things that a normal person wouldn’t do, so injuries sometimes happen more often than usual. I had a very bad injury a few years ago and had to stop dancing for a good few months; the pain in my knees was so bad that I thought I would never be able to dance again. After many weeks of physio therapy and a chiropractor I started slowly recovering , but it was a very scary thing!
How do you prepare for an audition?
If I know who the choreographer is for the job, then I will watch several videos of their work to get familiar with their style. Definitely warming up my muscles too and stretching so I’m ready to go!
Are auditions highly competitive? Can you tell us what it’s like to be in a room where everyone wants to get the same part?
They can be, but you never know what they are looking for, that’s the thing! So you have to make sure you always do your personal best, learn from it and hope for the best!
How do you prepare for a dance part once you’ve gotten the part?
We would normally have rehearsals, but I always make sure I go through every detail on my own too - to make sure I can get it as perfect as I can and get the movements in my body to be like second-nature.
Are you nervous before you go on stage? Tell us how you feel and what you are going through right before you go on:
Always. I believe the minute you lose that, then you have to dedicate yourself to something else, nerves are always a good thing before a show. The adrenaline rises and your heart goes to a million right before you step on stage, but once you are up there everything is worth it and then you are just living your life!
Typically, how long do you have to rehearse before a show opens? How many hours a day and how many days or weeks? Tell us about rehearsal -is that a fun part of the process?
It depends on the show! Sometimes you have one day of rehearsal , sometimes you have 2 weeks! But most rehearsals wont be less than 3-4 hours a day. It is definitely a fun part, you get to learn, meet people, and watch everything come to life!
We have to admit that we missed your show at the legendary Sayers Club in LA but we heard it was fantastic. Can you tell us a little about that?
By far one of the most amazing things I’ve done lately! So many people came to watch it and the feedback has been surreal! I presented all my new songs and my choreographer Mike Bautista exceeded himself with the choreography. I was actually on set for another project at the time too, so I had to rehearse after I would finish filming. It was exhausting but we put everything together in 3 days and I’m beyond happy with the result! Definitely more to come soon!