Lizzie Croucher began her training in ballet, tap and modern dance and performed with London Children's Ballet. She later joined the Centre for Advanced Training at Laban and went on to gain a BA (Hons) in Contemporary Dance from the conservatoire. She has worked with artists from companies such as New Adventures (Lee Smikle) and Henri Oguike Dance Company (Sarah Linstra) and a diverse range of choreographers including Kerry Nicholls, Gary Lambert, Charlotte Derbyshire and Lizzi-Kew Ross.
When or how did you catch the dance bug?
- I have always been dancing – I took ballet classes from a very young age, so I guess I’ve always loved dance in some shape or form. But I suppose I really caught hold of it as my main passion when I was 16 – after a fair bit of persuasion from my dance teacher, I joined Laban’s Centre for Advanced Training, and quickly fell in love with technique, working creatively and being around others who share the same curiosity for dance. I went on to complete my degree at Laban, so I guess the environment and atmosphere there really helped too!
What was the first piece of live dance you watched?
- Aside from making my mum take me to watch local ballet companies when I was young, the first piece of live dance I watched was Wayne McGregor’s Entity in 2008 – I had taken contemporary dance classes before this, but watching my first live contemporary dance performance was where I started taking a real interest in dance as a career – and it certainly set the bar high for my technical goals as a dancer!
How do you make sure that the performance goes right?
- Staying focussed in rehearsals is one thing that really contributes to solidifying the movement and steps, so in performance I tend to not be worried about forgetting the moves and am more focused on how to enjoy being on stage.
How do you deal with your nerves before going on stage?
- To me, it’s equally important to spend a little time alone as it is to spend time with those you’re performing with before going on stage. I tend to spend at least 5 minutes with my headphones in, taking a little time to myself and settling my mind before I join with the others and get some group spirit going before performing together.
Can you identify a particularly memorable performing experience or one you'd rather forget?
- Apart from the usual wardrobe malfunctions, I wouldn’t say I have any particularly unpleasant performance experiences (fingers crossed for tour!) I would say my performance highlight so far would be taking part in some impromptu busking along the Southbank with a Jazz quartet with a whole group of my friends before performing at the Queen Elizabeth Hall – so much fun and an unforgettable experience!
What do you find interesting about teaching dance to others?
- I personally love to teach young children because of their lack of inhibitions and insecurities – they just love to dance and have fun.
What do you keep in your dance bag?
- I think the biggest essential for me is my golf ball – sounds strange, but a golf ball is great to roll out any tight muscles.
What kind of snacks do you eat to keep you going through the day?
- Up until I began with EDge I actually rarely ate fruit! But now it’s my main snack – especially mango. Perfect for a little energy boost during rehearsal breaks.
How do you unwind after a day of dancing?
- It depends on how tired I am! On a tired day, going home and baking or cooking is my perfect evening. Other times, going out and seeing friends outside of EDge is great for me to unwind and see people I don’t usually see during the day.
If you were not a dancer what do you think you might be doing?
- My other degree option was Art – so either way, I’d be in a creative career pool!
What is on your favourite play list/track/album?
- I am a huge fan of music – quite a big variety of music! But I would say my all-time favourite artist would be Laura Marling. My favourite playlist, though, would be a huge mix of stuff.
I'm surprisingly bad at...
I'm surprisingly good at...
- Making extensive to-do lists