Defiant Ballet Dancer
Positive, Uncompromising, Balanced

Defiant Ballet Dancer

We sat with Ahmad as he prepared for his first ballet class of the day at Amsterdam’s Chassé Dance Studios.

Before leaving my country, I taught dance to children and danced on a TV show. It was great, but it was against the beliefs of some people – many people tried to stop me, even my Dad. He was so embarrassed that he burnt my dance clothes to try and stop me. Some people hate my dancing, some people love it, that’s how things go I guess.

That’s why I got my nickname, ‘The Eagle’, partly because of the way I spread my wings on stage, partly because of the way I fight with honour and positivity - even my father calls me it now. There’s a fact I love about eagles – when they die they fly into the sky as high as possible, to die with honour. 

I stay positive because I know that when I start my day with Ballet, everything else will be beautiful. Now, being affiliated with the Dutch National Ballet, I live the life I used to dream about as a boy.

The first moment I danced, I found myself. Once you find yourself, you should fight for it. Because I dance, I survive.

In life, like dancing, I have to be honest with myself and express my feelings, if it’s not authentic I can’t perform. I have to feel it. That’s when I feel free, complete, like the blood is flowing through my performance. Maybe one day I can bring this feeling back to my people.

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