Richmond Ballet News

MIM Insights: The Student Dancer

December 1st, 2019


When Ephraim was in 4th grade, he danced as part of the Minds In Motion program. He’s been dancing ever since.

We asked Ephraim what insights he had as a participant in the Minds In Motion program.  Here’s what he had to say:

What school were you at for 4th grade? What was the theme?

In 4th grade I went to Hopkins Road Elementary School.  The theme that year was epic of Gilgamesh.

Had you ever danced before?

I had only danced on the dance team at my school.

MIM captured your interest pretty quickly. Can you explain why?

I remember the exact moment I captured my interest. It was when they showed a video the snow king from The Nutcracker and I remember I wanted to jump and fly like the him.

Photo by David A. Beloff

During  4th grade, a source close to you said you had a dance bucket list:

  • make it into Team XL
  • make it into Team XXL (Now the MIM Ambassadors)
  • dance in The Nutcracker

How are you doing on that list?

I have accomplished everything on this list!



Do you have a new dance bucket list?


  • Have a healthy and long career.
  • Be in the company here at Richmond Ballet.
  • Last, make everyone who sees me dance be filled with joy.

Have there been any challenges/struggles pursuing dance, especially classical ballet?

Yes. The main struggle has been overcoming injuries and staying healthy. Also trying not to be better than other people but rather be better today than I was yesterday.

You’ve gotten pretty tall: are there extra steps you have to take as a tall dancer to avoid injury?

Yes. Before dance class I have to get dressed a little bit earlier so that I can stretch. I notice that if I don’t usually my knees or my hips hurt a little bit.

You mentioned your dancing bringing joy to others. What dances/roles have brought you the most joy while you were dancing them?

Photo by Sarah Ferguson

Most recently Sailors from The Enchanted Toy Shop. I loved doing that dance so much and the audience was always  intrigued  the whole time. Also, I always love doing anything Nutcracker-related: from Teal boy in the party scene to a rat. It’s always a joy and a pleasure to dance in The Nutcracker.

Any words of advice/encouragement for 4th-grader encountering MIM for the first time?

ENJOY THE MOMENTS. I cannot stress this enough, it is such a blessing to have, so soak it all in. Also don’t be scared/frightened by the company they are some of the nicest people you’ll ever meet.

Photo by David A. Beloff

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