Welcome to our home! Otherwise known as “the House”; the nickname often given to National Opera Houses.
My name is Abigail Mattox. You can think of me as your hostess.
I’ve been a dancer with the Estonian National Ballet since 2016. Also, I danced in the Jr. company at the Finnish National Ballet, and before that, the New English Ballet Theater. My story is a long one, which maybe one day we’ll get into, but for now, let me tell you why I want to open the doors to life in the theater.
We all know how small talk goes. “Hi what’s your name?”, “Where are you from?”, then the famous question, “What do you do for a living?” Every time I say I’m a professional ballerina, I see this spark of curiosity. I’m always surprised by people’s intrigue. 99% of the time the next questions are, “what do you eat?” And “what does your everyday life look like?” Really? You want to know the basics of my daily life?
It started to make me realize just how unique the life of a performer is. We work in a building with hundreds of artists, not just dancers, but musicians, technicians, singers, make-up artists, costume designers, set designers. We work strange hours, and it’s tough physically, mentally, and emotionally. But we get paid to be artists/athletes; to put on cool make-up and gorgeous costumes and dance to live orchestras. It is an incredible life. I can hardly express the feeling of being backstage when the warmth of lights hits your skin while the orchestra breaks the hush of the audience with its opening notes. It’s something else.
Here, at the Estonian National Ballet, we work six days a week, and it’s easy to say that I’m definitely at the theater more than anywhere else. I guess that’s why when you join the company, they give you a key chain that says, “Minu Teine Kodu”, which translated means, “Our Second Home”. They weren’t joking, haha. Through this blog you will get to meet many of the dancers that I now consider family, and you will get to see into our theater a bit. However, it’s good to keep in mind that this blog is about theaters in general. I am simply using the Estonian National Ballet as a template. So, when I say, “Welcome” I’m not just saying welcome to the Estonian National Ballet, but welcome to ballet, welcome to the lives of dancers and artists from all over the world, welcome to our second home!
To have a quick tour, click here: Quick Tour