Christopher Lam is no stranger to dance. Before he joined Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo, known as The Trocks, Lam trained and danced with, among others, our own Australian Ballet. In 2009, The Trocks celebrates its 35th birthday, performing in Melbourne as part of a world tour to commemorate this milestone. Before opening night, Anna Lozynski interviewed Christopher about being a ballerina with The Trocks.

Christopher LamWhat can the audience expect from the Company’s tour to Melbourne?
The audience can expect quite a varied show comprising of traditional ballets with a Trocks’ humorous twist, as well as some perhaps more serious pieces which showcase the technical skills of our ballerinas.

Which part of the show is most enjoyable to perform?
For me, the most enjoyable part of the show would be the second act where the whole company gathers in the wings to watch the pas de deux and solos.

What attracted you to accept a role with Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo?
The chance to travel, and have some fun performing familiar classics in beautiful theatres around the world.

What do you now know that you wish you had discovered at the beginning of your career?
I wish that I had learnt earlier in my career to trust my own instincts more.

What have you learned during your time with the Company?
I've learnt that it is not easy being a girl in a ballet company, even something as simple as standing on one leg in the corp de ballet takes a certain amount of skill. And that's nothing compared to the pain that can be felt in the toes!

What is the most memorable costume you have had to wear on stage performing with the Trocks?
We are very fortunate to have a whole collection of wonderfully theatrical costumes. However, the most memorable costume would be the tutu for "Odalisques", as the light catches this stunning costume in the most special way.

The Company has been touring extensively since you joined the troupe. Tell us about one event which stands out in your mind while you have been on tour?
Strangely enough, a Mexican roadside diner that served meat boiling away in large metal tubs on the side of the road. I love a nice pork chop with some guacamole.

Do you have a pre-performance ritual?
There is usually little time before a show as we are rehearsing until the last minute. I try to prepare my body for the performance by doing some stretches before the curtain goes up and collecting myself quietly whilst "getting into paint" (A Trock expression for putting on make-up).

One of the company mottos is to ‘Keep on Trockin’. How do you put this into practice?
By going out on stage show after show putting our heart and soul into every moment of it!

The Trocks are performing in Melbourne, Brisbane, Sydney and Perth. Their Australian Tour opens at the Victorian Arts Centre October 27, 2009. Further information»

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