My name is Kyriaki, I come from Cyprus and I arrived in Florence in 2015 to study dance at the Accademia Europea di Firenze. If I were to select one of the key moments for my formative training here in Italy, I can’t help but think about the evening that marked the end of my studies. A real and true event, the "AEF Evening of the Arts: Dance, Opera and Fashion", at Teatro della Compagnia, where I danced and presented choreography, while Haelan Felton, a colleague from EKU, at AEF to study Fashion, designed the costumes.
My last performance in this school was an opportunity to assess, to look back and see how far I had gone. Three and a half years ago, when I arrived in Florence, I was enthusiastic about this incredible opportunity. A feeling of joy, of course, but mixed with concern for a new beginning, along with not knowing where this path would lead me.
Finding myself at Teatro della Compagnia, on that magical night, dedicated to us students, has filled me with happiness. Happiness and pride. Because I felt I had made it and managed to finish a rewarding process. A process that has made me stronger, more mature and, more importantly, that has given me the confidence I need for the future. I don’t think I would have ever been so ready to face the next steps in my professional life, if I had not been surrounded by people who prepared me and helped me. A staff of professionals who were dedicated to me, and who believed in me, both from a personal point of view, as well as artistic, providing me with all the possible tools so as to allow me to have all the experiences I needed on this three and a half year journey. I learned a lot from them, both as a dancer and as a woman. I will take all of this with me.
That evening was also special because all my family was there with me and saw me dancing for the first time since I left my city and could see my first choreographed ballet. Before arriving here, my dear grandfather promised to visit me in Italy at the end of my studies, to celebrate the diploma. Unfortunately, he passed on a month after I left, but I know he was with me for all the years I spent at AEF. I know that somehow he was close to me even in my last school performance; that he saw me dance and that he’s proud that I made it.