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MALTATODAY 15 August 2021

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maltatoday | SUNDAY • 15 AUGUST 2021 2 THE Q&A CASSANDRA GALEA BY LAURA CALLEJA suggestions by email The dancer and performing arts teacher enjoys cooking, film, poetry and hanging out with her cats. Her greatest achievement was performing as principle lead in a rendition of 'La Bayadere' at the Mediterranean Conference Centre in Valletta. Galea is currently working on her blog 'This Lady Doth Protest Too Much', a commentary on her life, the arts as well as mental health. What's the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning? I load up an episode of The Office or Faulty Towers, something to make me smile while I get ready to face the day. What is the best advice you've ever received? "Whatever you do in life, make sure it makes you happy" – my late Aunt Maggie What do you never leave the house without? My headphones. Sometimes I need to tune the world out and invent a quick choreography in my head. Pick three words that describe yourself Passionate. Sensitive. Enigmatic. What do you consider to be your great- est achievement? When I danced the principle role of Gamzatti in the ballet La Bayadere. I trained 12 hours a day for that ballet, and is still one of the best shows I've ever performed. What is your guiltiest pleasure? 'Bridget Jones...' and a tub of Ben and Jerry's. What else? What is the most important lesson life has taught you? Don't let anything or anyone keep you from fulfilling your life's aspirations. Keep working hard on becoming what- ever it is you want to achieve. Nothing that is worth having comes easy, and the moment you feel like giving up, that's the moment you have to keep fighting. Property and cars aside what's the most expensive thing you've ever bought? Ballet shoes and therapy. What is one thing you wish you knew when you were younger? That thing that you're worried about? It will be fine, relax and enjoy your day. Who's your inspiration? Rosa Parks. The first lady of civil rights and the international icon of resistance to racial segregation. She refused to give up her seat on the bus for a white person, and thanks to her protests and suffrage, the laws were changed. Many women are suffering the same fate in this country due to other controversial issues. We could learn a lot from her. What has been your biggest challenge? Holding myself together during a period of my life when I lost everyone and everything. Looking back, it was a tiny fragment of perseverance and love for my art which kept me afloat. I owe everything I have to dance. If you weren't a dancer what would you be doing? If I weren't a dancer or a performing arts teacher, I would probably be a phi- losophy lecturer specializing in either Descartes or the history of philosophy. Alternatively, I would be performing musicals on the West End. Do you believe in God? I do not. But have you heard of the Flying Teapot? If you could have dinner with any per- son, dead or alive, who would it be? The obvious choice here is Keanu Reeves. What's your worst habit? Talking to myself at the supermarket. If I'm not too careful I even break into song. Masks have helped cover the fact. What are you like when you're drunk? Ah. The million-dollar question. I become the most refined version of myself in full blown Received Pronunciation. A few drinks after that all my thoughts are out in the open and I am in a constant state of existential. I have fun. Who would you have play you in a film? Rooney Mara. What is the trait you most deplore in others? People who listen to reply and not to understand. What music would you have played at your funeral? Free Bird by Lynyrd Skynyrd. What is your most treasured material possession? I don't give much value to material items, but my guitar is probably the only thing no amount of money could part me from. What is your earliest memory? One year and nine months old, landing in New York and pointing at the Statue of Liberty from the aeroplane window. When did you last cry, and why? Last week. I was watching a movie called 'Eighth Grade'. Who would you most like to meet? I already said Keanu Reeves, haven't I? I would love to meet Ricky Gervais, creator of the Office, aka 'what got me through life'. What's your favourite food? Such a hard question. When I'm in healthy ballerina mode it would have to be a nice smoked salmon salad. When I'm in beast mode nothing beats a burger followed by lashings of choco- late cake. Who's your favourite person on social media right now? Kendall Rae. Her true crime stories are lit. Nothing like listening to murder stories for hours on end to distract you from the horrors in your own life. If you could travel in time, where would you go? Elizabethan London, December 26, 1606, Globe theatre. The first time Shake- speare's King Lear was performed. What book are you reading right now? 'Misery' by Stephen King. If you could have any superpower, what would it be? The power to relive memories from the past. What's one thing you want to do before you die? The Pilgrimage of Santiago. What music are you listening to at the moment? I've had an inclination towards Radio- head as of late. In the shower or when you're working out, what do you sing/listen to? Honestly, anything from Led Zeppelin to the 8 Mile soundtrack. Alternatively, I pop on a psychology podcast or an episode from the IT Crowd.

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