We're very excited to announce Benedicta Valentina Mamuini will be taking over the role of Jub for our upcoming national tour of The Lost Happy Endings. Benedicta has danced with balletLORENT since she became an apprentice with the company in 2017, going on to dance in Rumpelstiltskin; Great North Star; After Dark; The Lost Happy Endings; lullaby; The Current and Parade.
Benedicta in her new role as Jub with fellow company dancers Toby Fitzgibbons, Virginia Scudeletti and Thomas Charlton.
Costumes by Nasir Mazhar
Photographer - Luke Waddington
We asked Benedicta to share her thoughts on taking on the new lead role:
"The past 15 months have been some of the strangest months I have lived in. The constant change of rules, pace led me to question whether I still wanted to be an artist. The whole time I have spent in denial I have been trying to keep fit, learning new meals to cook, taking time away from electronics, reading, painting, trying to play an ukulele, trying to carry on and hoping for the best.
During the pandemic I had a few creative outlets firstly with balletLORENT lullaby and The Current, alongside other personal projects. When a crack in my bubble opened as we were able to enter society again by going back to work, I was able let go of the breath I was holding and return to my part time employment as a communications assistant and open up pandora’s box that was currently labelled as freelance work. Well, that all came to a halt one evening I had an extremely exciting phone call from Liv Lorent asking me whether I wished to join the core team at balletLORENT and then the all-important question ‘’We want you to also take on the role of Jub in The Lost Happy Endings, what do you think?’’.
It felt every single emotion under the sun that evening as I pondered on the question.
When The Lost Happy Endings was being created, roles were being brought to life. I would often stand in amazement as I watched Natalie breathe life into Jub. I stood in awe at Jub’s athleticism, her smile, her bounce, her cry, her love, her heart. I watched her being formed and brought to life from afar and now I have been giving the opportunity to take her on and make her true to me.
I am still going through every single emotion possible every day since accepting the role of Jub. I have felt invincible and believed I could do it. I have felt anxious, scared and in denial that it is happening. The feeling that I have carried with me the most is feeling honoured to be given this incredibly opportunity, during an extremely poignant time, when the Arts sector is piecing itself back together and getting ready to open her arms to the rest of the world.
I believe in the future I will look back at the next few months of my life and think I came out of the pandemic uncertain, anxious, in denial and ended it on stage with the most wonderful people in an exciting new position.
I can only hope that I breathe into Jub this new person I emerged as, I can whisper into her bones all that I have been through the last few months, the laughter, the denial, the uncertainty, then the certainty, the love for others and the desire to be connected. I hope I can do her justice; I hope she will help begin to heal and move on. It feels surreal but I am ready to begin the work to make it happen, keep your fingers crossed for me!"