Interview by Iratxe de Arantzibia
Due to her parents’ job, Sonia Rodríguez was born in Toronto, Canada, but grew up in Madrid. Here she took her first ballet lessons with Pedro de la Cruz, and finished her training at
L’ Académie Princesse Grace in Monaco. At the time she was looking for a ballet company, Canada reappeared in her life, and Sonia Rodríguez finished the round trip to her birthplace. Having joined The National Ballet of Canada in 1990 and being promoted to Principal Dancer in 2000, Mrs. Rodríguez has become an enchanting ballerina who is able to dance classical or neoclassical repertoire, and to create new roles with choreographers. She joined Canada’s Walk of Fame in 2012, and was awarded ‘The 100 Spaniards’ in 2014 and Spain’s Officer’s Cross of the Civil Merit, because half of her heart is Canadian and the other half, Spanish. Now, Sonia Rodríguez, 44, is a beloved wife and mother of two children called Gabriel and Dillon, while she enjoys further success at The National Ballet of Canada, and in her career as a writer of children’s books. In this interview granted to DANCE FOR YOU, Sonia Rodríguez gives an overview of her astounding career in The National Ballet of Canada.
© Photo by Karolina Kuras
At age 44, how do you feel at this point of your career?
I feel most of all grateful to still have the opportunity and the ability to come every day into the studio and do what I love to do. During my 27 years as a professional dancer, I have had many ups and downs, times of pure joy and times of doubt. I find myself as a mature artist who has a good understanding of my strengths and weaknesses, and with a renewed confidence and passion for my art form.
Sonia Rodriguez in Onegin © Bruce Zinger
This is your 28th season at The National Ballet of Canada, what challenges do you face on stage right now?
Believe it or not I am still performing new things all the time. This year I have “A streetcar named desire”, by John Neumeier, to look forward to, and a new production of “Pinocchio” by William Tucker in which I get to speak on stage more than dance.
How would you define The National Ballet of Canada as a ballet company?
Sonia Rodriguez in Nijinsky © Bruce Zinger