The Royal Ballet’s Laura Morera finds strength
in self-acceptance. By Laura Cappelle
Online Bonus! For more with Laura Morera,
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You’ve been a muse to Liam Scarlett. What’s
your relationship like?
I owe him a rebirth. He completely gets me as a dancer.
In a place where I’ve sometimes felt I was too different,
he made me fit. His work took me back to all the train-
ing at The Royal Ballet School’s White Lodge: quick
footwork, the use of the pointe shoe, the bending.
What’s the toughest part of being a dancer?
When you find something about yourself that you can’t
change. Until you accept it and start using it for the
best and not against yourself, you can be miserable.
Is there anything about your body you would
There are things that others wanted to change about
my body, and for years there were things that I hated
about it. I learned to understand that I shouldn’t hate it,
because there really is nothing wrong. If I had a different this or that, I’d be a different person.
Even as a principal, you dance a number of solo-
ist roles. How do you handle that?
I love those roles. I don’t have an issue with it. With the
lead Harlot in Romeo and Juliet, for instance, it’s my
way of interacting with the company. Because you’re
with the corps, you get to know people, you see what
the young dancers have to offer. If those roles stop you
from doing work of your own rank, however, it can be
What’s your biggest indulgence?
Going to healing retreats in Thailand, on Ko Samui
island. I’ve gone on four or five. There’s an energy about
the place, a bit like “Lost”—without the scary bit! They
helped take off the layers that I’d built around me.
What’s your most prized possession?
My dad’s wedding ring, which I now wear around
my neck, with a little heart that we designed after his
What advice would you have for young danc-
ers on handling their relationship with their
Really believe in what you have, go and ask, but don’t
play games. At the end of the day, what you want is to
be onstage. Try to be nice to the director, but also be
Morera as Mercedes
in Don Quixote