Monday 22 July 2019

A Question of Culture: Jane Magan

Jane Magan
Jane Magan

Favourite dancer?

Leslie Caron. I love her style, grace, expressive personality and how she went from ballerina to musicals to film – and is still going. Not to mention having danced with Gene Kelly, Fred Astaire, Baryshnikov and Nureyev.

Funniest thing that's happened on stage?

My duet partner and I had to find our way on stage in a blackout to get to our starting position, which was a hug centre stage. We walked straight into each other and banged heads and just couldn't stop laughing for the rest of the piece, which was supposed to be quite melancholy and lyrical.

Best stage production you've ever seen?

I've seen Wicked seven times, so I think it's fair to say that I've been impressed by it. I'm a little obsessed! The production values, staging, music, and lyrics all combine perfectly to bring the audience into a magical world and to tell a convincing story that, if you look beyond the spectacle, is about two strong women changing people's perception of them, standing up for what they believe in, and of a beautiful friendship where both are influenced by the best bits of each other.

Best concert/gig you've ever seen?

Adele at the Olympia in Dublin. She is one of the few artists who sound even better live and has such a wonderful, charming presence that makes it feel really intimate and personal.

Favourite book?

Just Kids by Patti Smith. I couldn't put it down and was completely drawn into her fascinating life. Her writing is clear, open, warm and she describes and explains things in a way that you can completely relate to.

Favourite film?

Cinema Paradiso. It was one of a handful of videos we had when I trained in Russia and that we watched again and again. A beautiful story with incredible music, it always brings me to tears but leaves me feeling uplifted nonetheless.

Last film I saw and loved?

Crazy Stupid Love. I won't deny I enjoy a good rom-com and I found this one really clever and entertaining. It has Ryan Gosling – enough said!

Last film I saw and hated?

One Day. I loved the book and it just didn't translate well enough on screen. The casting just didn't work for me.

Favourite TV show?

Homeland always has me on the edge of my seat, although season three is a slow burner so far.

Declan Cashin

Jane Magan is dancing in Ballet Ireland's autumn season, running until December 21, with performances across Ireland. See

Irish Independent

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