Welcome to episode #58 of the Balanced Ballerinas podcast everyone! I am your host, Georgia Canning – ballet teacher, studio owner, podcaster and founder of the Balanced Ballerinas community. You can join this wonderful community on Instagram at @balancedballerinas and Facebook (just search “Secret Balanced Ballerinas Facebook Group”) to join in the conversation and bask in our mutual love of all things ballet.

Now, in the last episode I did a call out for voicemails and was so glad to receive some beautiful messages which I’ll be sharing on the next episode. I love hearing from people within the BB community and it’s all the more special when its a voice memo. So if you’ve just finished class and need to debrief, send me a little voicemail? Want to share why you love ballet so much? I would love to hear your answer! Or do you want to request a guest or topic for the pod? It’s so simple, record on your smart phone a voice memo and email to [email protected] for a chance to be featured on the next episode.

Today you don’t get just one podcast host. You don’t even get two. Instead you have four podcast hosts all chatting about their love of ballet and MUSIC! Yes that’s right, the team from The Ballet Piano Podcast have crossed over (from London to Australia!) to be guests on the Balanced Ballerinas podcast today.

I came across their podcast towards the end of last year and completely fell in love with its content, vibe and wealth of information. It’s truly an amazing educational resource for anyone interested in ballet, but especially as a ballet teacher I found myself nodding along, learning and bringing more musicality knowledge into my classes. I have The Ballet Piano Podcast to thank for reminding me that students find this kind of thing really interesting and develops a more wholesome ballet education.

So to say that I was excited to talk to Akiko, Chris and Matt would be an understatement! Matthew Gregory has been a freelance pianist for the past twelve years and has worked for English National Ballet, Birmingham Royal Ballet, English National Ballet School, London Contemporary Dance School and The Royal Ballet School – just to name a few! Akiko and Chris Hobson have very similar credits and are both married and met through the profession (which is very adorable!). You can find Chris’s ballet class albums ‘Modern Ballet Studio Melodies’ on Spotify – they’re superb and I use them all the time! And Akiko also works full-time as a ballet piano accompanist and shares the most glamorous venture into this world during our conversation…

Now before we dive in, there was one part of the conversation that truly jumped out at me. The team noted that it was only when they started sitting down to record their episodes that they realised how similar their thoughts, feelings, issues and passions were when it came to playing for class. It’s funny isn’t it? We always think we’re alone in our thoughts or battling with the same challenges, when really we’re all experiencing very similar (if not, the exact same!) things. This is why conversation is so important. This is why I love podcasting. Why I love sitting down with people in the ballet world. Shared conversation and experiences make us feel less alone in this world.

Now, I have to quickly apologise. This was the first time I had ever interviewed multiple people at once for the pod. I found this to be quite challenging, let alone the additional layer of trying to conduct the interview via zoom. So bear with the occasional overlap in chatting because the content is so worth it.

Now as the team from Ballet Piano Podcast say, let’s lift the lid on dance accompaniment!

Grit & Grace,

Georgia