Jonathan Ollivier
Bullying Survivor
Male | New York, NY   United States
Kids called him poof
Bullying Type: Physical / Emotional
Posted By: brilliant
10/01/12 10:20 AM
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Jonathan Ollivier is now one of the principal dancers in Matthew Bourne's celebrated production of "Swan Lake," playing at New York's City Center through Nov. 7, but his path to success wasn't exactly easy.

As a boy in Northampton, England, Ollivier says he was physically bullied by kids who called him a "poof."

But Ollivier persevered and was nominated for the Dance Critic's Circle award for Best Young Dancer (Classical) and Best Male Dancer (Classical) and was awarded a Fellowship from Northampton University. Married to ballerina Desiré Samaai, the couple has a 2-year-old son, Lucas, who has not started dance classes but probably will.

I really got bullied from about 10 to 13. I got called a poof. I was getting physically bullied where people were coming round to my house, but I started martial arts before I started dancing. I'm a black belt in karate so I started fighting back -- not all the time, but there's only so much you can really take of it. I loved dancing so much and I knew that was what I wanted to do. I would have rather left school than leave dance school.

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Posted By: Results | 10/01/12 4:23 PM
Black belt in karate and professional balet dancer in NYC, now thats what I call a diverse man!
Posted By: Awareness | 10/03/12 2:19 PM
He is one tough swan :)
Story Details

Name: Jonathan Ollivier
Age: 45
Country: United States
Location: New York, NY
Gender: Male
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Profession: Other
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