The Benesh Notating Mum

For those those of you that have been following my blog from its beginning you might have been wondering why this blog has been rather dormant lately. Well that is because 10 months ago I became a mum to an adorable baby daughter.


Photo – Anna Trévien

So my working life went on pause for a little while.

But this didn’t last too long when my daughter was just three months old I started working on notation scores that I needed to write up and clean up from home.  Then when when my daughter was only just six months we travelled together to the beautiful town of Copenhagen in Denmark to remount the ballet Alice’s adventures in Wonderland by Christopher Wheeldon for the Royal Danish Ballet. As you might imagine I was quite apprehensive travelling with a baby (sorting out all the sleeping, feeding, bathing equipment) getting back in the studio and demonstrating movement, re-learning the choreography, organising care for the baby while i’m working, etc… and wondering “can I still do this?”

I can now say it was an intense period of my life with long days and sleepless nights but also one of the most positive and most rewarding experiences I’ve had. Several factors made this possible:

  1. having an army of helpers for the baby (husband, mother, cousins, godparents,..),
  2. working with a great team of stagers (Jackie Barrett, Jason Fowler, Lindsay Fisher) on a ballet I’m very familiar with and that I enjoy teaching
  3. the Danish company being so understanding, helpful and friendly at all times
  4. finally having great little baby girl. most of the time she would sleep during rehearsals but not always and on several occasions I took rehearsals with her crawling around my feet or in my arms.

Photo – Annik Coatalen


Photo – Annik Coatalen


I can truly say the time we had in Denmark was a turning point for my daughter’s development socially and physically. Socially she loved seeing and playing with all the smily faces when we where in the theatre, learnt that meal times are a social occasion and was exposed to so many languages (Danish, Icelandic, Korean, Italian, Dutch,..) from a young age I can only see that as beneficial. Physically when we arrived in Denmark she would be mostly just lying on her back, she learned to roll in the ballet studio (great open space with no obstacles!) and by the time we left (8month 4weeks) she was standing up by herself, clapping her hands and could even walk a short distance holding onto to our hands. But the best of it was the daddy/baby bonding that was created during that time that is invaluable.


Photo – Annik Coatalen

More importantly the Royal Danish Ballet have just finished a very successful run of performances. They have really made this production their own, embraced all the challenges it brings and it makes me very happy to have played my part on the journey



Photo – Tara Bhavnani

I also did a short spell in the studio back in London at the Royal Opera House to help the ballet mistress Samantha Raine set the snowflakes from the Nutcracker

Next, I’m heading of to Munich in Germany to set the same ballet of Alice’s adventures in Wonderland at the end of January. They will be premiering this production on the 3rd of April 2017.

And then I’m back full time with The Royal Ballet from end of February to help set Jewels, Diamond section from George Balanchine and then the revival of Strapless of Christopher Wheeldon. All of this has only been possible with the help and support of my director Kevin O’Hareimg_8715

Diamonds: corps dancers

Diamonds: corps dancers led by Melissa Hamilton and Yuhui Choe
The Royal Ballet dance Balanchine’s ‘Jewels’, December 2013.
see, photo – Dave Morgan
By kind permission of the Royal Opera House


With all that has happened I am about to start a short series of post of news of what various Benesh notator have been doing in 2016. I hope that you will find this interesting as well as the variety of what this profession can be.


Anna Trévien, January 2017




4 thoughts on “The Benesh Notating Mum

  1. Anna. You are amazing. I loved reading this article/blog. Also seeing the lovely photos. Some thanks to your dear Mama! I’m not sure how you are doing all that you are doing! But it’s a great achievement and a fab example of
    sharing work and being a Mummy.
    Love to you all. ( make sure you keep copies of these moments to share with Amélie in years to come. She will be so proud of you. )
    By the way, I just saw fab rehearsals of Jewels ( all 3 ) in Florida in Dec. Sarasota Ballet.


  2. Dear Anna –
    congratulations to Your double task as a choreographer and a mother! I hope there will be some more persons with such a courage, as well with many people to help.
    In my early years I had a ballet school and a little daughter, too. I enjoyed it very much. Then I got four sons. I gave up my school, but the whole family exept the husband ( who paid the bills) danced for years at the school of a collegue.


  3. Pingback: World ballet day 2017 | Benesh in Action

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