Jennifer Olayvar

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Jennifer Rose Olayvar
Born Jennifer Rose Olayvar
4 October
Nationality Filipino
Known for Ballet
Movement Classical
Awards 2012 Gawad Buhay Awards nominee for Female Lead Performance in a Classical Production (Giselle) and Female Lead Performance in a Modern Production (Sinderela)

Jennifer Rose Olayvar was a ballerina from the Republic of the Philippines. She was a dancer for Ballet Manila from 2000 to 2013. She became the Special Assistant to Lisa Macuja-Elizalde from 2004 to 2007. Olayvar has taken minor and intermediate examinations for the Royal Academy of Dance London.


Olayvar studied ballet at Goldcrest Dance Workshop under the tutelage of Jinggay Formoso and Josette Salang. In 1995, she transferred to Steps Dance Studio[1] where she trained with Sofia Zobel de Ayala-Elizalde and Raul Sauz. At Steps, she has danced the lead roles of many of its shows including the Sugar Plum Fairy for "The Nutcracker" and Princess Aurora for "Sleeping Beauty". Olayvar came to the attention of Ballet Manila when she was able to get the principal role of Giselle in July 2000 when the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) held local auditions in the Philippines. She joined Ballet Manila right after where she stayed with the company until 2007 but returned after a year of absence. In an interview with Pointe Magazine,[2] about the support for the arts, Olayvar pointed out that Ballet Manila is not state funded and the dancers do not have contracts, instead they are paid from the troupe’s performances.

Notable performances[edit]

Olayvar has danced the principal roles of Lise in "La Fille Mal Gardee", Kitri in "Don Quixote Grand Pas de Deux", Giselle in "Giselle", Gulnara in "Le Corsaire", Micaela in "Carmen" and Sinderela in "Sinderela". She was also the Muslim princess for "Sayaw sa Pamlang" and was part of the pas de deux in "Arachnida", a critically acclaimed dance of the spiders and "Widmung", a German word for dedication in which the dance was choreographed to Jennifer and her partner Romeo Peralta. In her early years with the company, she has also essayed the Fairy Doll in 2001 and was the soloist in the 2002 performance of Markitanka Pas de Six. In 2008, during the visit of guest choreographer Sergey Vikulov[3] Olayvar was one of the dancers selected to perform the lead role of "Lise" in La Fille Mal Gardée (The Naughty Daughter).

Jennifer has joined the company’s performances[4] for La Bayadere, Romeo & Juliet, Carmen, Don Quixote, Paquita, Firebird, Nutcracker, Le Corsaire,[5] La Fille Mal Gardee, Swan Lake, Pinocchio [6] and Giselle. She has traveled and performed with the company during its 2004 Aberdeen International Youth Festival in Scotland, the 2004 & 2005 United States Tour, the 2005 8th Asia Arts Festival[7] in China, the 2005 Andong Mask Dance Festival in South Korea, the 2005 Russia Tour, the 2006 Angkor-Gyeongju World Culture Expo in Cambodia, and the 2011 England, Ireland, and South Korea Tour.

In 2012, she became a nominee at the Gawad Buhay Awards for 2 categories - Female Lead Performance in a Classical Production (for Giselle) and Female Lead Performance in a Modern Production (for Sinderela).

Personal life[edit]

Jennifer Rose Olayvar is the eldest of two daughters of DLTB Co. Senior Vice President James Asunto Olayvar and Landbank Assistant Vice President Emerita Sepidoza Estonina. Jennifer is a bachelor's degree graduate majoring in International Studies from De La Salle University where her undergraduate thesis[8] in which she got a perfect score of 4.0 was about the comparative study of ballet in the Philippines and Russia. Olayvar was also an active cheerleader[9] of the Pep Squad organization in DLSU. When she left Ballet Manila in 2007 to pursue a different career path, she got accepted to be in the 1st batch of Filipino flight crew members of AirAsia and was about to be deployed in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia for the next 3 years. However, after 5 months of absence in the dance circuit, she came back performing with Ballet Manila. The dance bug bit her as she fondly says. In her years with Ballet Manila (2000–2013), she has become the Special Assistant to the Chief of Staff, a faculty staff member of the Ballet Manila School and a Marketing Consultant. In February 2013, she has nailed a major project for Ballet Manila, bringing the dance company to Macau for the 113th Philippine Independence Day celebration and the 2012-2013 Years of Friendly Exchanges between the Philippines and China.

Olayvar has always been the athletic type – enjoying football in her High School alma mater at the Colegio San Agustin (CSA) in Dasmarinas Village, Makati. Being a team varsity of the CSA Soccer team and a pioneer of the Boosters (cheerleading varsity) squad, she also played for Makati Football School and had been a part of the champion team during the 1997 Metro Manila Girls Football Association, the 1st Alaska Soccer Cup, and many more. She had also joined in 3 international football tournaments – the Helsinki Cup in Finland, the Gothia Cup (described to be the "World Cup" for the youth) in Sweden and the Pondus Cup in Denmark.

Olayvar is now married to former Pacific Islands Club Guam Executive Sous Chef Jerome Espejo. The couple is now based in Perth, Western Australia. For the meantime, they enjoy doing yoga and taking ballet classes together, as well as traveling the world when their schedule permits.


  1. ^ "STEPS Alumni". STEPS website. Archived from the original on January 30, 2009. Retrieved 2009-06-17. 
  2. ^ "Ballet Manila". Pointe Magazine. Archived from the original on July 5, 2008. Retrieved 2009-06-17. 
  3. ^ "Top ballet companies' notable style". Archived from the original on 2009-07-15. Retrieved 2009-06-17. 
  4. ^ "Q4 'report card': Performing arts". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Archived from the original on 2009-07-15. Retrieved 2009-06-17. 
  5. ^ "New dance talents in Ballet Manila's 'Le Corsaire'". Philippine Star. Retrieved 2009-06-17. 
  6. ^ "Ballet Manila stages Pinocchio". Article Archives. Retrieved 2009-06-17. 
  7. ^ "8th Asia Arts Festival". China Archived from the original on 2009-07-17. Retrieved 2009-06-17. 
  8. ^ "DLSU News Letter" (PDF). De La Salle Univ. Retrieved 2009-06-17. 
  9. ^ "The Beautiful gals of DLSU". PinoyExchange. Retrieved 2009-06-17.