Eighteen years after Emily Murray started dancing, she’s back at the Sudbury studio where her training began to help teach the next generation.
For two weeks this month, Murray will be at Dance Evolution teaching budding dancers of all ages, and she’s doing it with the experience that many dancers dream of having.
“It’s been an inspiration to me and hopefully the dancers I teach as well,” she said.
“I just think it’s so important to give back to the community where you come from and to really expose people in that community who may not be aware of the art forms that we have here and the talent here .”
Murray trained at Canada’s National Ballet School at the age of 13, before joining Ballet Kelowna in 2020.
“I’m just lucky to call Sudbury home and I’m so happy to be able to come back here and just teach and have amazing experiences,” she said.
Emily Caruso Parnell, head of ballet at Dance Evolution, said a guest teacher like Murray is a chance for young dancers to see where their hard work and determination can take them.
“It’s a bit of a magic combination, having both the physical talent and the ability to be able to dance professionally and also the work ethic it takes to be able to dance professionally,” Caruso Parnell said. .
“It’s great for students to see that there’s a career path out there, that there are options. So that gives them an idea of some possibilities.
For Caruso Parnell, Murray’s return is very special, as she helped start his training so many years ago.
“It’s really adorable to me,” she said.
“I’ve had many students who have embarked on careers in dance, teaching and arts administration in different ways, but Emily is quite special in that she is pursuing a performing career in ballet. classic, which is extremely difficult.”
As for Murray, she credits Caruso Parnell for the direction her dancing took her.
“When I was younger I didn’t think I would want to be a ballet dancer, that was never really my goal,” she said.
“I loved to dance, I loved to move.”
Caruso Parnell suggested the National Ballet School, but Murray said she had to be convinced.
“I initially didn’t want to go because I loved all forms of dance,” she said.
“But when I went there, that’s when I really realized that ballet was something that my heart had just connected to.”
During her two weeks at Dance Evolution this summer, Murray said she taught a wide range of talented students. And the students appreciated what she taught them.
“I feel like that’s really cool,” Kanessa, 16, said.
“It’s a really good experience to have the chance to learn from someone new and get someone else’s perspective.”
Each dancer took something different from the experience.
“For me, being a teacher here in this studio, it’s great to have new tips and tricks for my students from someone else’s perspective,” said Jacob, also 16.
Although Murray was only able to stay for two weeks this summer, she hopes to be back in the future and her plan is to continue dancing professionally for as long as she can.
“Being a dancer is an integral part of my identity,” she said.
“Every decision I’ve made since I was five has been towards dancing and my training and now my career and so it’s just kind of ingrained in my soul, being a dancer, and I’m so lucky that this is my career now.
As for Dance Evolution, the studio is gearing up for Season 15 with an early sign-up just a week away.