Warrior Ballerina

Symeon Kyriakopoulos

Staff Credit

Dancer: Michelle Buckley

Choreography: Symeon Kyriakopoulos

Video recording and Editing: Humans Multimedia

Short description of your idea

Exodus (extract) challenges the stereotypical figure of the graceful-princess ballerina, transforming her into a warrior and raising questions about the role of the “feminine” and what lies underneath elegance. Using a combination of traditional ballet vocabulary, wu-shu and hand weapons from martial arts, Exodus uncovers the hidden power of the elegant balletic style, and depicts symbolically how sensitivity can extend into strength. The underlying idea of the piece is that every person has a masculine and feminine side (in Carl Jung’s terms, the “anima” is the feminine within a man and “animus” the masculine within a woman), and that completion can only be achieved when these two sides coexist in balance. Throughout history, both the position of women in society and the concept of femininity within men has been undervalued and suppressed; women are today the subject of violent abuse and both men and women suffer at both a personal and a collective level as a result. As an artist, I feel that it is important to challenge this naïve concept of power, that misinterprets the essence of masculine and feminine.

What drives your enthusiasm the most?

Female ballet dancers have seemed very exciting and almost outlandish! They always trigger my creativity. Along with that, music is a primary element in my life and works like an internal force that excites me pushes me to be creative. The idea of the warrior ballerina makes me feel very enthusiastic and excited. I cannot comprehend it logically but it is my life’s goal to see the ballerina dancing with a sword or staff. The idea of beauty and power ( ballet and martial arts) is what guides my journey and every moment of witnessing this merging is like a celebration of life. 

Do you have the words that inspire and push you?

Goddess Athena is what inspires me and pushes me.


Symeon Kyriakopoulos is a London based choreographer. He received his BSc (Hons) in

Psychology from the University of Hertfordshire and his BA (Hons) from Rambert School of Ballet & Contemporary Dance. Ballet and Wushu are the primary movement practices that inspire him and the main disciplines for The Crossword Ballet. Along with these movement styles, the works of Joseph Campbell, Carl Jung, and other modern analytical psychologist has shaped his perception on the psychological nature of the human psyche. He created in 2013 “The Crossword Ballet” as a ground for artistic exploration and expression of the individuation process and the hero’s journey.

This was made possible with the support from the Arts Council England and the Swiss Church in London.


Instagram: symeon_k_dance