J’aime Crandall graduated from the Kirov Academy in Washington D.C and joined the Universal Ballet in Seoul, Korea, in 2000 where she performed works by Petipa, Balanchine, Brian Yoo and Vinogradov. In 2003, Crandall joined the Dutch National Ballet. In 2008, J’aime Crandall joined the Royal Danish Ballet and in February 2011 she was promoted to soloist and in December 2011 promoted to Principal Dancer.
1. Where are you from?
I am originally from Arizona.
2. What was your favorite role to dance?
I loved my role in Études.
3. What is your favorite part of the dancing experience? Least favorite?
I love the process of dancing. You discover new things about dance and about yourself. I also love performing. There is something about the feeling one gets when you realize that all your hard work has paid off. My least favorite part of the experience is sore calves.
4. Who are some great choreographers that you have worked with?
I was lucky to have worked with both Jirí Kylián and Jorma Elo.
5. What is your pre-performance routine?
I take a nap, eat something, then, I go to the theatre. I do my hair and makeup and I do a barre. I stretch for a bit, and then I get dressed.
6. What is your favorite non-dance hobby?
I like going to the movies. I love getting massages after a long day, too.
7. What is in your dance bag?
Normal things like pointe shoes and extra clothing. And a flexistretcher, of course.
8. Where is your favorite place to travel?
Either Thailand or Brazil.
9. What has been your most embarrassing moment on stage?
It happened pretty recently, actually. I was dancing the role of Mercedes in Don Quixote, and I was supposed to enter from a specific corner of the stage. I had not rehearsed this specific part of on the stage, and I was not told which corner to enter from. The conductor was supposed to signal the orchestra to start the music when he saw me enter from the corner. Because I entered from a different corner, the conductor did not see me, and he never gave the signal for the music to start. I had to run to the other corner, and the conductor finally saw me and signaled for the orchestra to start. That moment got me a little flustered.
10. Do you have a favorite FLX exercise?
I love using the FLX Ball to do all of my foot and metatarsal exercises to increase arch flexibility and ankle strength!
11. What is some advice you can give young dancers who want to become professionals?
Work hard, but don’t forget to also have fun and enjoy what you’re doing!