Amy McEntee started ballet lessons aged five at the Helen Chambers ballet school in Glasgow. She went on to train with the Dance School of Scotland, Scottish Ballet’s Junior Associate programme, and after leaving school studied dance at the prestigious Central School of Ballet in London. Returning to Scotland, she joined Scottish Ballet in 2017 and is now a First Artist. She can currently be seen performing in the company’s latest production, David Dawson’s re-telling of Swan Lake.

What’s the last film you saw in a cinema?

The Iron Claw. It’s a film based on the lives of the Von Erich wrestling family and it’s absolutely devastating. Didn’t expect to leave the cinema crying at a Zac Efron film …

What music are you currently listening to a lot?

I’ve been listening to Masakatsu Takagi. His Marginalia albums are so beautiful and relaxing.

What was the first gig you attended?

I think it was Two Door Cinema Club at the Barrowland in 2011. I must have been about 14 and going through a landfill indie phase. Me and my friend Eva. We got there so early to make it to the front and thought we were super cool being at the Barrowland. Still one of my favourite venues in Glasgow.

What musical instrument do you wish you could play and why?

I’d love to be able to play the piano. The pianists who accompany us for our morning ballet classes and rehearsals are so talented (especially my cousin, Lucy!). I always feel lucky to get to listen to live music every day.

What’s the last book you read?

The Dispossessed by Ursula K le Guin. It’s a sci-fi novel about two societies with different political systems. It made me think a lot about utopias and alternatives to capitalism.

What has been your most formative cultural experience?

Going to see Scottish Ballet perform in Glasgow growing up is one of the main reasons I’m a dancer now. I think the first ballet I ever saw was Highland Fling, which I ended up performing not long after I joined the company which was a cool, full circle moment. When I was older and living in London for ballet school, I lived near Sadlers’ Wells and would get cheap student tickets for whatever was on when I was walking past. I saw some amazing shows that gave me a different perspective on what dance could be as an art form and a craft.

What’s your go-to YouTube video?

Limmy Twitch highlights.

What book haven’t you managed to get around to yet but will when you have the time?

Lanark by Alasdair Gray.

What was the most memorable recent theatre show you saw, where was it and what was so good about it?

I loved As Far As Impossible last year at the Edinburgh Festival. It was a documentary style play using accounts from humanitarian workers and what drives them to undertake their work. The way they staged the production and brought the story together was incredible. I also loved seeing Akram Khan’s Jungle Book which my friend Luke was dancing in. We trained together when we were young and it's always special seeing friends dance on stage.

You’re in a station or airport shop ahead of a journey. What magazine do you grab?

National Geographic.

Favourite ballet?

To dance, it would have to be Swan Lake. Scottish Ballet’s production is choreographed by David Dawson, whose movement style is based in classical ballet but with a more extreme physicality, so it’s quite different from a traditional version. It’s a challenging but exciting piece to dance, and the whole production is beautiful. I’m buzzing to get into the theatre and perform it with the orchestra.

If you could work with one choreographer or dancer, alive or dead, who would it be?

I’d love to work with Crystal Pite one day. I love her movement style and the concepts she comes up with. I remember the first time I saw her work Betroffenheit I was completely blown away.

Favourite actor and why?

I’m in a Julia Roberts phase at the moment. I’ve been watching her older films, like Erin Brockovitch and Steel Magnolias – the outfits are iconic.

If you’re a fan of graphic novels, what’s the best one you’ve ever read and why?

Soft City by Pushwanger … because it’s the only one I’ve read.

Recommend a TV box-set and say why it’s so good …

The X Files for the titles and 1990s CGI.

Recommend a podcast …

I’m always recommending 99% Invisible. Every episode is on a different topic – normally a deep dive on an aspect of architecture, design and the things we might not notice but affect the way we live our lives.

Recommend an album …

Frank by Amy Winehouse. It’s been a big album in my life and I just think she has one of the best voices of all time. I will never get over how she wrote those songs when she was only 19.

Recommend a film …

Ponyo. The animation is so beautiful and I felt so happy the first time I watched it.

Fiction or non-fiction?


Costume drama or modern dress?

Costume drama

Vinyl or MP3?

MP3 (I was an iPod Nano kid)

Swan Lake is at the Theatre Royal Glasgow (until April 6) then tours to His Majesty’s Theatre, Aberdeen April 18- 20 April), Eden Court, Inverness (April 26-27) and the Festival Theatre, Edinburgh (May 2-4)