Today 4dancers welcomes Amie Brotherton who is going to share her experience performing in the London Olympics this year. It’s an honor that most dancers will never experience in their lifetime, so we thought it would be interesting to see what she had to say about the event…
Olympic Performer. Diary of events.
November of 2011 I applied to audition to be involved in the Olympics Opening Ceremonies. As a dancer and dance teacher I relished the opportunity to be involved and hopefully perform so I filled in all the information about myself, my experiences and my specific skills. I received an email from the ceremonies asking me to come to an audition, so off I headed to East London.
After that, I received another email inviting me back to a second which was a role-specific audition.
16 January I received an email to say I’d been successful along with an invitation to take part in the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympics. I was completely thrilled!!
15 April The first rehearsal we were met by none other than Danny Boyle himself. He sat us down and explained his whole vision, showing us a video of what he wanted the ceremony to look like and a scale model of the stadium.
We spent 4 weeks working very hard in the studio on the contents of our segment. Always shattered but on a high when I got home, each new part we learnt I’d practice at home be to sure I would keep ahead, remembering everything for the next week!
20 May We met in an outside space where there were a lot more cast members and we were all put together in bigger groups. We continued to learn new parts and integrate them with other groups and stood from week to week in any weather from blazing 25*C sunshine, to 11*C rain and wind.
21 June Stadium day! We had been given strict instructions about security and as we came out of Stratford station and walked towards the park, excitement was mounting. We went through security and were faced with the huge and beautiful stadium in front of us, the aquatic centre on our left and the water polo centre on our right. We walked across the bridge and it all looked very impressive. Everything was huge!
We began rehearsing 3-4 times a week, each rehearsal bringing new surprises, whether it was an addition to the set, special effects, or trying on our make up and costumes! The press made numerous attempts to find out what’s going on – including flying helicopters over us trying to take photos, and infiltrating our radio communicators.
20 – 26 July Now we were putting on dress rehearsals for crowds of around 40,000. This was our first true taste of having a large audience. Feedback from the crowd was immense and gave us an indication of what it could be like on opening night. All the audiences were amazing, and they did #savethesurprise for us–enabling us to keep the secret from the world as to just what they could expect on the 27th of July.
27 July I entered the Olympic Park for what would be the last time….I was excited, emotional and raring to go! Today the atmosphere was different, and the venue was packed full of athletes, performers and members of the public.
At 6pm we started to get very excited and had hair and makeup done for the last time. When I got dressed, I realised I had a wardrobe malfunction–my already very tight skirt had been taken in by about another 3 inches!! Members of the costume team on each side had to very swiftly make me some slits up the side of the skirt and give me a pair of hot-pants to hide my modesty! Not a great start…but I was too hyped up to worry very much!
At 8.12pm we watched the red arrows storm across the sky and started to listen to the ceremony on our FM radios. Shortly we would start our walk over to the Stadium. We were all buzzing, taking loads of photos of each other and waving to the cars as we walked over the bridge! The atmosphere was electric and we were being filmed by TV crews the whole walk. We were standing outside the stadium just as ‘Bond and the Queen’ parachuted in before being whisked into the holding areas under the seating. It was here that we all started to go crazy and as soon as we heard the Sugarbabes start singing Push The Button we knew this was our time!
Being on stage was amazing, I was dancing in the section with the family in the house where the boy and girl meet and fall in love. The live audience was incredible and everyone put in 110%. It was over before it had even began and went so fast I didn’t know what had happened!
As we stood at the end and took our bow, tears streamed down my face. I also knew that my parents were directly opposite where I was standing which made it even better. We exited through the seats to a wave of hi-fives from the crowd and amazing feedback.
OK readers…have you ever performed somewhere that was so incredible that it just blew you away? If so, please share!