Meet Luca Abdel-Nour
How did you start ballet ?
I started with my sister who had been dancing for a long time, things like hip-hop. So I started hip-hop too. Then I slowly made the transition to contemporary dance and jazz and so on.
It wasn’t until I did the Stage Darc in France that I started ballet after being convinced by several ballet teachers, like Christopher Huggins.
My mother had been telling me for a long time that I should try ballet but at that point I thought ballet was for girls. I now understand that this was a prejudice I had as a young boy, as there is no real exposure to ballet for boys in Egypt.
In your opinion, does your victory have a role to play with young Egyptians? Does it act as a symbol?
I really hope that my experience at the Prix de Lausanne will inspire young Egyptians to believe in themselves and to follow their dreams because you never know where those can take you.
If someone had told me five years ago, when I was just starting to take ballet seriously, that I would be a Prize Winner of the Prix de Lausanne, and that I would be working in one of the best companies in the world, I wouldn’t have believed it.
I think it’s because I had never seen an Egyptian do it before. I really want to show young Egyptian and Arab dancers that it is possible to achieve their dreams, no matter what their background is. And this can apply to all fields, not just dance.
How did you feel about the press coverage of your victory?
At first, it was really overwhelming. I was shocked to win a Prize. I was also shocked to receive a lot of media attention, especially from the Egyptian media.
Unfortunately, some of the Egyptian public opinion of a boy dancing ballet was not always positive. Luckily, there were also other sources that were supportive.
So I decided to focus on my own path and not let the negativity affect me.
Is there anything you are particularly proud of about your career?
To tell you the truth, I am only at the beginning of my career.
However, I am proud that I believed in myself, that I was able to adapt to living an independent life at a very young age despite the difficulties, sometimes homesickness and missing my family.
I am also proud of my performance at the Prix de Lausanne. I worked very hard to achieve this, together with my teachers at the Zurich Dance Academy.
I think what I am most proud of is that I have made my passion my profession today.
Does your apprenticeship with the Junior Company of the Dutch National Ballet meet your expectations?
Since the last two years at the Zurich Dance Academy, I dreamt of joining the Junior Company of the Dutch National Ballet. And finally, I’m here, and it still feels like a dream.
The training is incredible and I love the atmosphere of the company.
I also love taking classes with the main company, it’s fun and above all challenging. I get to learn from dancers who have a lot more experience than me. I find that this incredible experience really exceeds my expectations.