In August was held the very first Exotic Pole Retreat here in Slovenia, in Bled. And I was fortunate enough to meet all the exotic pole stars like Daria Chebotova, Nina Kozub, Natalya Ryzhikh, but the one that enchanted me most was Alyona Amber. Not because she took first place in Semi-Pro Classique and also got the prize as Semi-Pro Overall winner at her first Pole Theatre UK competition. And not because she was proclaimed as the best European dancer in 2016 (by Goldcheaper). Her personality explains why I felt under her spells. And I hope you’ll get to know her and feel her a bit better after reading this interview with her. Photography by Yury Bote.
Dear Alyona, thank you for accepting my invitation to this interview.
I quickly noticed that your exotic pole dance performance is a bit different from the rest of the dancers. In what way would you describe you’re different from the others? And what was the reason you won the first place?
Thank You! I think that it’s dance itself that left a huge impact on my Pole Exotic performances. I am trying to take part in dance lessons of different styles in order to keep developing. It is very important for me to create the choreography that is not vulgar while still keeping the taste of Exotic style – having the fluidity of movement, it’s flow and beautiful lines.
First place – is thanks to director of our studio Jana Vinokurova who also gives amazing and effective stretching classes. She is an amazing person and works really hard in order to squeeze the best possible performance out of us. She figures out the theme, character and helps with music selection. So the secret is revealed! [laughs]
What is your sport’s background? Were you in gymnastics?
I was doing a contemporary dance before. Education of dance teacher. I started to dance at quite late age – at 16 – I started in local show group at my birth town Rēzekne. I continued with dance studies, then worked at nightclubs, after that worked the t circus and at last I ended up with my favorite: Pole Dance.
How much training you do in sport/acrobatic pole dance versus exotic pole dance?
When I am training I mostly do dancing – it is easier for me to give 6 hours for dance on the pole than doing tricks. I am quite lazy in power pole dance field [laughs]. I’m working and giving classes almost every day – I have 1 free day during the week (sometimes 2).
You’re also a teacher and trainer… what do you primary want to teach your pole students?
If we are talking about pole dance then my preference is to teach how to use a technique as an advantage at the same time paying attention to a correct and beautiful form of the body. I usually make my students to do both sides [laughs]. In Exotic, most important for me is that my students open up. For me dance is not only mechanical movements, it comes from heart and thoughts – you can discover it in yourself or let it into yourself. I am always happy to see that my girls put emotions into dance, into every movement – at that exact moment dance is alive.
Also, your playlists and music you dance to are something special. What inspires you in music? What kind of music makes your body play with moves?
Music is always a choice of mood. Spotify usually is my savior. My morning starts with music and app usually finds something really fitting. If I want to find something special, then I can spend hours and hours surfing the web in search for my goosebumps piece. Goosebumps have never failed me.
You practice freestyle a lot? Or are you more a mental type of person and you like to make more choreography?
When I was doing contemporary and show dance I really liked to improvise and even could not make a short combination of 4 counts [laughs]. Work as a pole dance instructor introduced a bit of discipline in quite a lot of aspects of my life, including the ability to create set pieces of choreography for classes. But nearly all combinations are born from improvisation.
Which are your favorite exotic pole moves?
I really love high heels, therefore, my favorite moves are with legs.
If you could be an animal, which one would you be?
Do you have any plans for the future? Where can we meet you and take some lessons with you?
You can see one of my next performances at 7th of October on pole dance festival “Pole Emotion” – it will take place in Riga (Latvia) – I’ll take part in “SHOW-EMOTION (exotic): professional” category.
And I’ll visit “Vertical Fit Pole Dance” studio in Sao Paulo and Rio (Brasil) with my workshops at the second part of October.
And lastly … could you give us top ten of your favorite songs? … so we can be inspired also?
It’s not like they’re my top ten but at the current moment most memorable ones.
And here’s a link to Alyona Amber’s playlist. Check it out!
Meet Alyona Amber:
YT: Alyona Amber