A principal dancer with the National Ballet of Canada, Greta Hodgkinson, 39, was born in Providence, Rhode Island and started studying at the National Ballet at the age of 11, becoming a principal dancer at 22, in 1996. She has been showcased as a guest artist with companies as far flung as Russia's The Kirov Ballet and Milan's Teatro alla Scala.

Married to Etienne Lavigne, a first soloist with the National Ballet, and a mother to son Maxime, who will be three in December, Hodgkinson's resume includes such roles as Odette/Odile in "Swan Lake" and Juliet in "Romeo and Juliet." Hodgkinson is performing as the Red Queen in Christopher Wheeldon's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland at Toronto's Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts. The show is the biggest the National Ballet has ever done, according to artistic director Karen Kain, and will be running from November 10 to 25.

11 questions

What is your idea of perfect happiness?

A day at the beach with my husband and son.

What is your greatest fear?

Losing a loved one.

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?


What is your greatest extravagance?

Fine dining.

On what occasion do you lie?

To avoid hurting someone's feelings unnecessarily.

What drew you to dance?

Music, movement and telling a story

What is the one thing about your industry you would change?

I would make the profession more financially viable for all dancers, eliminating the cliché of a "starving artist" suffering for art.

When and where were you happiest?

Home, reading to my son at bedtime.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Having a family and a career.

Who are your heroes in real life?

My mom and dad.

How would you like to die?

I wouldn't ... but if I have to, in my sleep.

Read More '11 Questions' with other notable Canadians. Who else would you like to see answer these 11 questions? Are you interested in taking part? Contact us with your suggestions.

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