Within the hodgepodge of nationalities – many Asians, Americans, some Europeans – of which Nederlands Dans Theater (NDT) consists, Fay van Baar stands out with her blonde hair, blue eyes, small posture, and her open face. Since August 2019, she has been a part of NDT 1, the elite group of the top company from The Hague. Four years before that, she was allowed to become a member of NDT 2, the group for younger dancers.
It may sound obvious, a top dancer from The Hague dancing at the company from The Hague that’s one of the best in the world. However, this did not happen as a matter of course. Many stumble on their way to the NDT stage. The road taken by Fay, who now is 24 years of age, has also been long and not always easy. Seeing her in restaurant De Luca in the Haagse Passage, you wouldn’t immediately think that she is a dancer. She’s wearing a wide coat and doesn’t wear any make-up. Sipping from a cup of fresh ginger tea, she talks about her remarkable career.
Fay van Baar: “Since I was in elementary school group 7, I was taking classes at the Royal Conservatoire. For high school, I studied at havo level at the School voor Jong Talent, which is part of the Conservatoire. While other teenagers were living with host families, far from their parents, I could simply cycle home after classes. I did experience culture shock, though. They suddenly gave me notebooks and tests. I wasn’t used to that at the Vrije School. Suddenly, I had to meet all kinds of requirements, and at the end of each year, they would tell you it was all over because you weren’t good enough. I would have daily ballet classes and only barebones classes of all other creative subjects. I missed the drawing, craftwork, and music classes of the Vrije School. No, not the eurythmy classes, those were boring. It wasn’t really dance but rather a method of expression. They made us form letters with our bodies.”