In preparation for Tokyo, rowing Australia had the special opportunity to train with Queensland ballet, an opportunity the patron of both rowing and artistic swimming had arranged for rowing and artistic swimming. last night in Adelaide, Rowing Australia had the honour of meeting with ballet superstar, Queensland Ballet Artistic Director, Li Cunxin , in Adelaide.
Li’s story, recounted in his biography ‘Mao’s Last Dancer,’ is one of determination, perseverance, vision, courage, incredibly hard work and resilience.
Rowing Australia Patron Mrs. Gina Rinehart introduced the rowers with Li, as saw the connection with ballet dancers and Australia’s Olympians – the hard work, focus, training and dedication and more across both sports.
Attached is a group photo of Mr Li with the Rowing Australia Team, and directly below a message from rower Georgie Rowe to Mrs. Rinehart, to show what this meeting meant to our rowing team.
In 44 days our team will be entering the world stage. We will finally be given our chance to show the world what we have been working towards. It is our time to perform our favourite dance.
This evening we were blessed with an incredibly inspiring guest speaker. A very close friend of yours from what I understand. As this slender unfamiliar man floated into the room, some of us perplexed, whilst others recognising the wealth of expertise, experience and knowledge among us. Mrs Rinehart, I cannot express enough how much that meant to all the women on the team. We train to physical and mental exhaustion daily, and sometimes it seems too hard, this evening Li captivated us with his words and his experiences. He lit a fire within us, he reminded us how fortunate we are to be doing what we are doing and how precious this moment is. He shared some of the absolute Everest’s of his career as well as the moments of pure love and joy. On behalf of the women’s team, thank you. Thank you for believing in us and guiding us to think outside of the box and leave no stone unturned. Thank you for your ongoing support and everything that goes on behind the scenes. We may be the ones on the stage but don’t ever forget that you are an extremely important part of our team and we wouldn’t be able to do this without the support from you.
We will do you proud!