Cupcakes & Conversation with Rudy Hawkes, Soloist, The Australian Ballet

a tray of four cupcakes

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Cupcakes & Conversation with Rudy Hawkes, Soloist, The Australian Ballet

dancer with arms crossed facing camera

Rudy Hawkes Photograph :James Braund

What motivates you at 8am on a Monday morning?

It’s actually 6.30am – to take my puppy, Gunther, out for a walk and a play. I really like this time of day, it’s a refreshing start before going to work.

Why ballet?

I’m a hyperactive person. Ever since I was a kid, ballet has been the only thing to completely tire me out.

Who would you most like to dance with & what would you dance ?

I’ve loved dancing with all of my partners but ever since seeing the movie Pulp Fiction I’ve always wanted to dance with Uma Thurman like she does with John Travolta in the dance contest.

dancer on stage wearing grey trousers

Rudy Hawkes Photograph : Branco Gaica

If you could dance anywhere in the world (not only in a theatre), where would you dance ?

I would really like to dance in space! No gravity – imagine that! Cool…

What is your daily routine at the moment ?

In order of events – dog walk, Pilates, class, rehearsal, dog walk, make up, barre, show, dog walk – with lots of food and coffee in between.

What do you eat during the course of a typical working day ?

I’m not fussy. But fruit, coffee and bacon are my weaknesses.

How do you prepare in the hours before a show ?

Shower, shave, make up, bit of Pilates, warm up barre – this is my routine always before a show.

What are you looking forward to dancing in 2011 ?

I’d love to dance Romeo in Romeo and Juliet to be choreographed by Graeme Murphy. And I just finished dancing the role of Pinkerton in Stanton Welch’s Madame Butterfly which was a highlight.

dancer in high jump on stage

Rudy Hawkes in The Nutcracker Photograph : Jeff Busby

You can ask six famous people to dinner – who would you invite ?

Tom Waits, Jim Jarmusch, John Lurie, Uma Thurman – so we could have our dance – Jay Gatsby (or author F.Scott Fitzgerald) and Salvador Dali.

What would surprise people about you ?

I have seven bicycles and an on-going addiction.

Who inspired you to dance ?

My mum – she instilled the love of art and dance in me at an early age and encouraged me to work as hard as I could.

How would someone else describe you ?

A reviewer once wrote I had ‘splendid pecs’ – I like that.

What is your best piece of advice ?

Smile when it’s raining.

Which role has tested you the most & how ?

Pinkerton from Madame Butterfly – this role tested my partnering strength with the ten minute pas de deux at the end of Act 1, as well as keeping in character and developing with the story.

What is the funniest thing that’s ever happened to you ?

I haven’t had anything funny happen to me on stage before –but I have embarrassed myself in front of a lot of people on the way to work when I fell off my bike stationary at a light in front of pedestrians and a busload of people.

If you designed your own stage costume, what would you create ?

Something that felt exactly like being naked without revealing anything.

one male ballet dancer holds another female dancer in his arms on stage

Rudy Hawkes and Kirsty Martin in Madame Butterfly 2011 Photograph : Jeff Busby

A phrase I use far too often is ..

“What’s the exercise?”

Who would play you in the film of your life ?

A silent short film using stop motion and a plasticine model to play the part of me.

What is your favourite quote?

I don’t remember quotes.

What’s on your iPod ?

Everything from classical to hip hop with no ‘top 40’ in between.

Who would you most like to dance for, and why?

I’ve always wanted to dance with The Australian Ballet so am very lucky. I feel like it’s an opportunity to represent my country around the world and at home.

What makes you a good dance partner ?

Listening, communicating and strength.

Do you have a secret skill which no one knows about ?

In the summertime I like to ride my BMX and attempt some sweet moves – often resulting in more embarrassing moments.

Describe yourself in just three words.

Positive, hyperactive, hungry.

If you could dance in front of anyone, who would it be and what makes them special to you?

My mum, because no matter what I do she always thinks it was wonderful.

In terms of your ballet career, where would you like to be this time next year ?

Fit, healthy, injury free and dancing good roles.

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3 Responses to Cupcakes & Conversation with Rudy Hawkes, Soloist, The Australian Ballet

  1. Dancing Branflake May 9, 2011 at 5:47 pm #

    1. Love his response “What’s the exercise?” Hilarious!
    2. I love that he loves his dog so much.
    3. Incredibly sweet about his mother.

    Awesome interview! You are the best!

  2. Susan May 10, 2011 at 4:55 am #

    I love this interview! I’ve known Rudy for about 17years and he hasnt changed a bit! Still a fun loving guy with a heart of gold.

  3. Ballet News May 10, 2011 at 2:25 pm #

    thank you @Dancing Branflake and @Susan. So glad you enjoyed reading Rudy’s interview and that it’s a true reflection of him.