Introducing Sera Bryce
Sera Bryce had some of her early dance experiences at the School of CCDT before moving toward an intensive focus on classical ballet. After many years of dedicated ballet training, Sera also discovered joy in modern and contemporary dance, which she continues to cultivate during her first season as an apprentice with CCDT's company.
While navigating these transient and unpredictable times, Sera shares how she has found both comfort and motivation in the togetherness created by dancing, explored new interests, and all the while continues to look forward with optimism and inspiration for the future.
Describe your history with CCDT.
I remember going to the School of CCDT at the age of 5 for a few ballet classes. I honestly don’t remember much but what I do remember is being in a class with Kaiya Lee, another dancer who is currently in the company! I trained at SCCDT until I was 7 and then started to audition for ballet schools.
This is now my first year fully at CCDT; I joined the company as an apprentice for the 2020-2021 season. So far I have been loving every moment of being at CCDT, it's an amazing environment in which to grow as a dancer! All the staff are amazing and very supportive, especially through these tough times during the pandemic.
What was it like training and dancing from home during the lockdown earlier this year and through the summer? What helped you to stay positive and motivated during the tough times? How does it feel now to be back at the studio?
Personally I found it extremely difficult to stay motivated during the lockdown, but I found different ways to stay positive. One thing that I did often was just improv to some of my favourite songs. It feels amazing to be back in the studio and feel everyone's energy. Dancing by yourself is relaxing but can get a bit lonely, so being around people again and dancing all together honestly makes me so happy.
How else did you pass the time during our time apart? Did you develop any new hobbies or skills during your time in lockdown?
During the lockdown I got to really discover more about myself. For practically my whole life everything has revolved around dance and training to be a professional dancer. At the young age of ten I moved away from home to go to a ballet school in Quebec and I boarded there for five years, so I was always focused on dance and never got to explore new things.
I recently discovered a love for dogs. When my dog passed away during the pandemic, I felt a strong urge to help dogs in need. Since I'm underage to volunteer at a shelter I decided to help my neighbours with their dogs. I would take them on walks, play with them, etc. Overall the lockdown helped me grow as a person.
This season is going to be very different as we experiment with alternative ways to work together and safely present dance to our audiences. What are you most enjoying and/or looking forward to?
I'm extremely excited to learn as much as I can and to learn new pieces. Because my dance training comes mostly from classical ballet, I'm also looking forward to dancing and learning choreographies that are not necessarily classical ballet.
Click to watch Sera, centre position in the second trio, dancing in a company modern technique class in early September with CCDT.
What's a fun fact about you most people don't know?
A fun fact about me is that I love to sing and according to the few people that have heard me, I'm really good (I don't think so) ^_^
What skills do you think your training, performing, and overall experience with CCDT have given you that are transferable to other aspects of your life?
I think training in dance gives you more life skills than a normal school could give you. It gives you discipline and motivation to work toward a goal. You also get amazing team skills because you are constantly working with others to either create dances or make choreography look good. When you're on stage you have to work as a team.
Who is someone who regularly inspires you as a dancer/artist/creator/human being?
There are two people who inspire me as a dancer. I call them my dance parents (because in reality they raised me as well). Martine Lusignan and John Ottmann are the people who inspire me to be a better dancer but also a better person. They were my coaches from ages 7-15, and also family friends through those 8 wonderful years. Their daughter Morgane (who I call Momo) inspires me with school and honestly just everything in general. At the age of 13 Morgane is more mature than most 17-year-olds I know, and she inspires me to be just like her.
What are you obsessed with these days?
I'm honestly obsessed with food! Food is my one true love.
What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about auditioning for CCDT?
I would tell them that CCDT is an amazing school and company and if you want to be a part of this amazing environment, then audition. In the end, just do what you love to do.
Share an inspirational quote that you live by.
"Great things never come from comfort zones." - Natalie Singh (Sera's mother)
Photos by Francesca Chudnoff