Born: Jesi, Italy

Trained: Princess Grace Academy, Monaco

Joined Scottish Ballet: 2017

When did you start dancing?
I started dancing at the age of four. It was my mum who brought me to my first ballet class at my local ballet school. I guess it was love at first sight and she realised immediately how much I was enjoying it so encouraged me to join regular classes.

Do you remember a moment when you realised that you wanted to be a professional dancer?
I don’t think there was a precise moment that made me realise I wanted to become a dancer. The fact that I was so in love with and passionate about dancing made me automatically want to follow this path in a professional way.

My first ballet teacher definitely had a great impact on my decision. She always saw something special in me, a kind of passion that not many girls had. She is the one who always believed in me and helped me to pursue this career by giving me a lot of support and motivation.

Describe something about your dancing that has changed since joining Scottish Ballet. What caused this change?
What I feel has changed the most during these first months at Scottish Ballet is my attitude towards the way I’m working, whether it’s just in a simple exercise or in a rehearsal. Being a ballet dancer demands a lot of effort and dedication; from the way you work to the way you take care of your body, it is a pure lifestyle and I think this new life in Scotland has brought a lot of changes in my way of dancing as well. I feel less stressed than when I was in school and am definitely enjoying all stages of the rehearsal process much more. I am always trying to challenge myself.

The transition from being a student to a professional dancer is in itself a big change, and I am very happy that thanks to my incredible colleagues this transition hasn't been too difficult. I get a lot of energy and positivity from each dancer in the company which gives me the courage to work harder and continue pushing myself.

What’s your pre-show ritual?
I have a few rituals before going on stage. I need to be calm myself down first, which means I usually start to get my hair and makeup done about two and a half hours before the show starts. I love to listen to some calm and quite music which help me find a kind of internal peace to help my concentration. One thing that I really have to do before each show i’s my usual warm-up. I like to take around one hour depending which role I'm playing to do my exercises, plus a little barre.

Are there any dancers or artists that inspire you?
There are a few dancers that inspire me everyday but in general I love looking around and getting as much as I can from each person. I believe that everyone has something special and unique. I love looking at every artist to discover their abilities and strengths and try to apply those strengths to my dancing, whether it’s about technique or artistry.

It is so interesting to see how the ballet world can have so many different artists, each with their own unique voice.

What are a few words that would describe your personality in the studio?
I'd like to describe myself as a focused person. I really try to concentrate always and my give best even if some days are harder than others.

What’s your favourite thing about Scotland?
My favourite thing about Scotland is the nature. It’s something I have never seen before, there are so many beautiful landscapes. Driving around Glasgow I have seen so many incredible places that I would love to visit. I also love the water!

What has been a highlight of your time with Scottish Ballet?
Without a doubt my highlight here at Scottish Ballet has been dancing the role of the Fiancée in our Autumn production The Fairy’s Kiss.

A favourite and more emotional moment for me was my first time performing the role in Glasgow the 7th of October. I dedicated that performance to my dad who unfortunately passed away exactly 1 year ago on that day. Dancing on the anniversary of his has been the most emotional thing I could ever do to make him proud. I will always remember this in my heart.

See Nicole rehearsing The Fairy's Kiss with Barnaby Rook Bishop in a live broadcast from The Royal Opera House ahead of Kenneth MacMillan: A National Celebration.