Too Big for Ballet

Actress Gaia Weiss who was told she had the wrong body to be a professional ballerina relives her childhood dream of dancing ballet in the latest music video by Fabio D’Andrea. French actress and model Gaia Weiss gives a striking performance dancing ballet in the latest music video by composer and pianist Fabio D’Andrea.

The music video, “Statues”, which Fabio has directed himself, shows the svelte and elegant Gaia dancing alongside four powerful male statues that come to life and dance with her in a dreamlike sequence, emulating Fabio’s evocative and calming piano music. 

Says Gaia:

I started dancing at the age of four. I dreamed of becoming a professional ballerina but unfortunately I was told that I didn’t have the right body for it, and I could never dream of becoming a prima ballerina. 

Body shaming has been rife in the ballet world for many years, but many dancers are now speaking out about the shame they have felt. Even for dancers that have enviable figures, many are told they do not have the right size or look to make it on the stages of the world’s most prestigious opera houses. Recently Kathryn Morgan, a former soloist with the New York City Ballet, has spoken out about how, aged 21, roles were taken away from her due to her changing body shape. 

Not deterred, Gaia’s passion for performing on stage led her to pursue a career in acting instead:

Theatre and ballet are both platforms through which you can really express yourself. All my years of ballet taught me the discipline that you should have in your life as a performer. In ballet, if I didn’t stretch every morning my body wouldn’t follow. Actors use our bodies to express emotions on screen or stage to embody a character, so my experience as a ballerina definitely helps. It’s easy to get lazy as an actor, so I’m glad that previous experience has made me a rigorous person. 

Star of the blockbuster film “The Legends of Hercules”, Gaia also had a role in the hit TV show Vikings, which she abruptly left after a few seasons. Weiss herself has never explained why she decided to leave Vikings.

Since departing from the show, she has played the role of Marianne in Netflix’s alternative historical drama La Révolution and has also appeared in Medici: Masters of Florence as Ippolita Sforza, alongside Richard Madden, Brian Cox and Dustin Hoffman. She also starred alongside bond girl Ana de Armas and Scott Eastwood in the film Overdrive.

Choreographing “Statues” is Christopher Marney, the previous Creative Director of the Central School of Ballet who has recently joined the Joffrey Academy of Dance in Chicago as the prestigious Head of Studio Company. 

Marney previously choreographed the Westend stage biopic “McQueen”, based on the life of fashion designer Alexander McQueen, and the four main dancers from the show were chosen by Christopher and Fabio to feature in this music video alongside Gaia.

Fabio’s previous music video “Love Should Not Hurt”, starring Mel B, told the story of a lady trying to escape from a physically abusive relationship. Created to support the charity Women’s Aid and to bring awareness for victims of domestic violence, the music video helped many other women speak out about their experiences of suffering abuse at the hands of their partners. 

Part of his forthcoming visual album “24”, the music video “Statues” is a collection of 24 music videos Fabio is directing which form the first ever Classical Visual Album – a set of 24 original piano pieces, one in every musical key, and each one having its own unique music video featuring guest stars.

Actors who have filmed for Fabio’s other music videos include Natalie Dormer, Russell Tovey, Emma Rigby, Douglas Booth and Ellie Bamber. 

Says Fabio: 

Many composers in the past, from Bach to Rachmaninoff,  have written 24 preludes for the piano, one piece in each key, and “24” is my modern take on this concept. 

My intention however is to make contemporary classical piano music accessible to all, especially those who wouldn’t normally listen to it as they see it as elitist. 

“Statues” is available to watch on YouTube and the music is available to purchase from iTunes and all other online music retailers.

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