Prague is so beautiful, the gothic buildings make me want to change my name to Rapunzel, climb a tower and await my prince just like many a classical ballet!
The city is oh so romantic with gorgeous castles and churches, lush green parks and stunning bridges over the Vltava river.
My weekend in Prague was centred around meeting the Czech National Ballet‘s principal dancer Andrea Kramešová.
We arranged to meet at Prague’s famous Cafe Slavia – historically known for it’s artistic and political dissident gatherings. It was easy to spot Andrea, her perfect upright ballet posture giving her away immediately, along with her hair naturally tied up and of course her feet turned out in her trainers. But it was her big smile and friendliness that was so instantly engaging and it’s always lovely to meet dancers off duty.
From the cafe we walked along the river to the Czech National Ballet studios, housed in a building that was originally an old monastery. We entered through a huge arch and walked along an old cobbled path with dance studios either side.
Andrea gave me a tour, revealing a divine studio high up in the old eaves under dark wooden beams, where you can imagine an intimate pilates class taking place full of dancers eager to stretch out their tired bodies.
We arranged the interview in a long mirrored studio that overlooked the courtyard and was filled with sparkling old chandeliers. A large painting of the company’s first ballet master Václav Reisinger adorns the wall above the barre.
And with the sun streaming in Andrea shared her story of becoming a ballerina, her journey from Prague to dancing in Oklahoma with the Tulsa Ballet and with the Royal Swedish Ballet before returning to her home in Prague to join her native Czech National Ballet, where she’s danced all the classics from Swan Lake, Giselle, Sleeping Beauty to her favourite role of Juliet in Romeo & Juliet.
Life of a dancer is often short and precarious and it was inspiring to hear Andrea’s experience and her advice for young aspiring dancers to “never give up”.
I was so touched that Andrea gave so much of her precious time before she zipped off to walk her beloved dog and heading to an evening of rehearsals.
Look out for our interview with Andrea, coming soon!
And if you’re in Prague, I definitely recommend the new Hotel Boho where we stayed for the weekend in the junior suite. Only 4 months old, it’s the most stylish and elegant hotel right in the middle of the old town. The rooms are superb, the bar dark and luxurious and it has the best spa room! 5⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️! Go see Robert, he’ll definitely take care of your every need!