Education and Classes, Features & Spotlights

Meet an Apprentice: Leon Peace

November 26, 2019

“I’ve worked my whole life for this, and I’m extremely grateful to be here.”

Leon Peace has joined CBJ as an Apprentice Dancer after several years of training at the Central School of Ballet in London, England. In this interview, Leon shares his dance background, performance highlights, and excitement about dancing with CBJ for his first professional season.  

What can you share about your dance background and training?

I’ve been dancing since the young age of three. I was rather hyperactive as a child and was put in a summer school to burn some steam. We had a dance lesson at the end of the day, and I instantly fell in love with it and demanded to be put into dance class. I trained in jazz in France until the age of 11, at which point I moved back to the UK. It was then that I started ballet. I trained with Junior Masters Performing Arts whilst dancing with London’s Children’s Ballet and West End Kids to ensure I was well-rounded enough in all genres of dance. At the age of 16, I started training at the Central School of Ballet in London, and from there, got a company position with Canada’s Ballet Jörgen!

What have been some highlights of your dance career so far?

I performed in many pantomimes when I was younger, sharing the stage with David Hasselhoff and Craig Revel Horwood. A major career highlight was performing some amazing pieces by Jasmin Vardimon and Christopher Marney whilst on tour with Ballet Central. 

What does it mean to you to be apprenticing with Canada’s Ballet Jörgen?

As I have just graduated, I am so grateful to be working with my first professional company. I’ve worked my whole life for this, and I’m extremely grateful to be here. I am also very grateful to have older dancers in the company help me with things I am less experienced with. The opportunity to tour Canada and the United States is an added bonus!

This 2019-2020 season I have the privilege of being a part of the creation of the never- before-done Anne of Green Gables – The BalletWorking on this ballet these first few months has been quite the experience, and it is very exciting to see such a fondly loved story from childhood coming to life in the ballet world. This season I will also be working on The Nutcracker with the company. It has been almost two years since I danced in my last Nutcracker back home in BC, so I have been itching to get back to it. I can’t wait to perform Canada’s Ballet Jörgen’s interpretation of this Christmas classic.

“I’m looking forward to learning and growing as a dancer and person as I embark on my first-ever professional season of my career.”

What does it mean to you to be apprenticing with Canada’s Ballet Jörgen?

As I have just graduated, I am so grateful to be working with my first professional company. I’ve worked my whole life for this, and I’m extremely grateful to be here. I am also very grateful to have older dancers in the company help me with things I am less experienced with. The opportunity to tour Canada and the United States is an added bonus!

What are you looking forward to about this performance season? 

I’m looking forward to learning and growing as a dancer and person as I embark on my first-ever professional season of my career. Not only do I get to debut in my first professional job as a dancer, but I get to debut in a show that is completely new to the world. I can’t wait for others to be inspired to dance Anne of Green Gables – The Ballet™ in the future. Being one of the first people to dance it is truly amazing. 

You can catch Leon on tour with the Nutcracker: A Canadian Tradition and CBJ’s newest production, Anne of Green Gables – The Ballet™. Click here for a list of tour dates.  

Written by Victoria Campbell Windle, CBJ Communications Contributor.