Calgary Ballerina Accepted to Juilliard

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By Chelsea Tan

Briana del Mundo set her sights high at the age of nine when she first visited The Juilliard School in New York.

“I was going to New York for Broadway Intensive, where I got to perform on Bbroadway with a set of dancers,” she says. “We visited Juilliard and I promised myself that I would go to that school when I grew up.”

She first started dancing at the age of four with companies such as the Alberta Ballet and the YYC Dance project, which gave her the chance to perform across America. At the age of nine she won a scholarship through a dance competition, and just two years ago she was chosen to backup dance for Justin Bieber at his concert in Winnipeg.

This fall del Mundo is set to start her first semester in Juilliard with a concentration in dance. She flew to San Francisco this February to audition and got the call for acceptance earlier this May. The audition process was challenging, she says.

“There was a ballet, modern, and solo round,” says del Mundo. “Then they have you learn a repertoire and see how you adapt to learning information. From there you do the interview. They cut people within each round and it went from 60-70 to nine people at the very end.”

del Mundo says she is looking forward to everything as she gets ready to leave for Juilliard. I can’t wait to meet people from around the world and share my art with them,” she says.“Juilliard brings in world-renowned guest choreographers to teach and I’m eager to learn from them. There’s so many opportunities for me to explore and discover who I am.”

It hasn’t been easy balancing school and training, but Del Mundo has found a system that works for her.

“I train everyday and dance from 5 to 9 p.m. and on weekends I train from 9 a.m until 3 or 6 p.m.”

del Mundo is set to graduate from Bishop Carroll High School this June.