My name is Ilyana, and I'm 6 years old. I'm from Jakarta, Indonesia and I go to Marlupi Dance Academy.


Photographer: @Aksomoz

Can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.

I started going to ballet class at 2 years old after watching an inspiring performance by Indonesia Dance Company. I fell in love with the dancing, the music and the costumes.

I started participating in ballet solo competitions last year, and this year I've joined the part-time program at the academy, so I have dance classes every day.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?

It's not always easy. Sometimes it's hard, but I know if I keep trying, everything will be possible. We always have to work so hard, and sometimes it's frustrating when I can't get things right, but my teacher always reminds us to enjoy the process.

What personal limitations if any did you go through in your young career?

I find it difficult to memorize combinations! I'm also originally very shy and get nervous around a lot of people. So it's challenging when I have to perform in front of a crowd, but I keep pushing myself to overcome it.

Has anybody ever tried to limit you on what you could do? If so how did you fight it?

No, my family and teachers are all very supportive.

How do you conquer negative talk?

I try not to worry about them. I just do my best and focus on my work.

What is your favorite quote?

"Hard work always pays off. " - Dustin Lynch

So, what’s next? Any big plans?

I'm preparing for my ballet exam.

For now, I'm just excited to learn new moves in class and hopefully I'll get to perform more variations this year.

Jun 5, 2021

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