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Born in Yongin, South Korea, Yein Yi trained at Sunhwa Art Middle School and Academie Princesse Grace, Monte Carlo and graduated from John Cranko School in Stuttgart. She joined Hong Kong Ballet as a Corps de Ballet member in 2020.
With HKB, she has danced in Nina Ananiashvili’s Don Quixote, Septime Webre’s ALICE (in wonderland), Romeo + Juliet and Ballet Classics for Children: Cinderella as well as George Balanchine’s Jewels. In 2015, Yi won second place at Valentina Kozlova International Ballet Competition and fourth place at Star of Canaan Dance International Ballet Competition.
1. Why do you dance?
Because that was (and still is) my dream.
2. Why did you start dancing?
I started ballet when I was about 9 years old. During that time, I used to have more male friends than girlfriends, so I had to play football and baseball to hang out with them, which I am really bad at. One of my girlfriends told me that she started to go to ballet school and that sounded really interesting for me. So I went to ballet class with her, and that’s how I started.
3. Most memorable/weird onstage moment and why?
When I was 14, I did my first 16 fouettés on stage. I was so nervous about it, but when I did that, it was such a great feeling.
4. What keeps you motivated on tough days?
My beautiful colleagues. Just watching other dancers working hard gives me good motivation to work harder and harder.
5. What place do you feel most yourself?
At home, when I am with my parents, I feel like I am still a child. But probably that‘s when I am myself the most.
6. If you could have one more talent, what would it be?
Singing. I love singing, but I am pretty bad at it.
7. What would you be if you were not a dancer?
If I wasn’t a dancer, I would probably be a university student like my other friends now.
8. What is your favorite movie/book?
My favorite movie is Begin Again.
9. What is the most interesting place you have ever visited or want to visit?
I want to visit Perth in Australia. One of my bucket list items is taking selfies with the quokka, and that’s where they live.
10. What is the coolest thing about being a dancer?
Sometimes people notice I am a dancer just by looking at me walk.