BORN TO DANCE

Artis­tic great­ness may very well be ge­netic, es­pe­cially if this Queens­land Ballet moth­er­daugh­ter com­bi­na­tion is any­thing to go by

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - SHOWS - JANE AR­MIT­STEAD

When you’re a lit­tle girl, you pa­rade around in your mum’s high heels, raid her lip­stick col­lec­tion and be­come her shadow.

You’re hop­ing one day the shoes will fit, the lip­stick looks as good on you and you grow up to be like her.

The bond be­tween a mother and daugh­ter is more pow­er­ful and com­pelling than some might think and the in­flu­ences are stronger than we re­alise.

But for oth­ers, the similarities are way too ob­vi­ous to ig­nore.

For Townsville-born dancer Janette Mul­li­gan and her daugh­ter Tara Schau­fuss, their bond is greater than blood, they’re bonded by a pas­sion for dance. Mul­li­gan, 57, has been the Queens­land Ballet’s Ballet Mis­tress since 2013 and Schau­fuss, 23, joined Queens­land Ballet as a com­pany dancer last year.

The pair will share the stage to­gether on the Gold Coast to­day when they per­form in the Queens­land Ballet’s pro­duc­tion of Cop­pelia.

On a work day, Mul­li­gan is Schau­fuss’ teacher, men­tor, re­hearsal direc­tor, col­league, and on oc­ca­sion, a fel­low per­former.

Out­side hours, they’re an or­di­nary mother-daugh­ter duo, who meet for cof­fee at their favourite jaunts.

But Mul­li­gan is far from an or­di­nary mum to her two daugh­ters Mona and Tara.

At 16, she left Townsville to join the Aus­tralian Ballet School in Mel­bourne, where she was dux of her year, be­fore se­cur­ing a dream po­si­tion as a se­nior prin­ci­pal of the English Na­tional Ballet, for­merly known as the Lon­don Fes­ti­val Ballet.

“I started my first ballet class in Townsville … there was a lit­tle girl up the road and her mum de­cided she was go­ing to do ballet classes, so I went along with her to keep her com­pany. A cou­ple of years later, she gave it up and I kept go­ing.” The now Bris­banebased Ballet Mis­tress was danc­ing pro­fes­sion­ally un­til two years ago.

Schau­fuss, who was born in

Tara Schau­fuss, daugh­ter of dancer Janette Mul­li­gan, the Queens­land Ballet mis­tress.

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