Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

All work and snow play for Bethany Kingsley-Garner in Scottish Ballet production

© Jane Barlow / PA WireConstance Devernay stars as the Snow Queen in the Scottish Ballet production
Constance Devernay stars as the Snow Queen in the Scottish Ballet production

The world premiere ­production of Scottish Ballet’s The Snow Queen is a special one for Bethany Kingsley-Garner.

Not only is the company’s principal dancer one of three female leads in the show, which is unusual in itself, but she was also involved in the creation of her character.

She plays Gerda, alongside fellow principal dancer Constance Devernay as The Snow Queen, in the lavish staging.

“To be a ballet dancer and to have a creation, that’s something not to be taken lightly. It’s gold dust,” said Bethany.

“I’ve worked with our artistic director, Christopher Hampson, throughout the main part of my career, so he knows me and my personal life, personality and strengths.

“I also have a sister and have been a fiancée and got married, so these things all added into this.

“It does feel like an achievement, but not a singlehanded one.

“From the dancers and director to the costume, design and lighting departments, there’s a real team environment and that’s when empowerment comes in – we feel strong as we work together and bounce off each other. It’s a world premiere, so everyone had to be on board.”

In this version of the tale, Gerda becomes engaged to her partner, Kai, at the beginning of the ballet.

When he suddenly disappears, Gerda will do anything she can to find him.

She is accompanied in her quest by Lexi, a formerly minor character known as Little Robber Girl in Hans Christian Andersen’s tale, who also happens to be The Snow Queen’s sister.

“I think it’s a perfect time for us to produce something like this,” said Bethany, who has been with the company for 12 years.

“We’ve always branched out and never followed a trend, so we’re really proud of what we’ve created here.

“When we performed Cinderella, she was such a strong character and didn’t need to find her prince for a happy ever after.

“Her prince added to her happy ever after, but she had already found herself by the end of the story.”

Having joined Scottish Ballet in 2007 after graduating from the Royal Ballet School, Devon-born Bethany was promoted to soloist in 2013 and principal dancer three years ago. She’s now in a position to pass on her experiences to the next generation, something she did as a mentor on the latest series of BBC’s Young Dancer competition.

“It’s important to have someone to look up to who has had a similar story,” she continued.

“I think stories of where women have been and what they have gone through to get to where they are is so important for the younger generation of dancers to know.

“I believe in providing as much mentoring and information as we can, because knowledge does empower and giving people empowerment provides a knock-on effect to the group as a whole.

“I’ve always looked up to my fellow dancers. Having a voice and being brave is something to be proud of – we’re following in some amazing footsteps, so it’s about keeping up that momentum and strength.

“It’s a responsibility I love and I will be proud to hand the baton to another dancer, because I know I would have given my utmost in mentoring them.”


The Snow Queen, Festival Theatre, Edinburgh, until December 29

After its Edinburgh run ends, The Snow Queen continues on to Glasgow, Aberdeen, Inverness and Newcastle in Jan and Feb