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Big ballet stage beckons for these talented dancers

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: June 26, 2013

  • ballet girls Swansea dancers are rehearsing for their performances in at the New Theatre in Cardiff with the English Youth Ballet.

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TEN young, talented ballerinas have been plieing and pirouetting their way through hours of rehearsals after winning places in a top company.

The dedicated dancers, all aged between nine and 15, are preparing for a production of Giselle at the New Theatre in Cardiff — with the English Youth Ballet (EYB).

And they are certainly being put through their paces, putting in 60 hours of rehearsals for the performance and giving them an insight into the life of a ballerina.

One of those exceptional dancers is Erin Thomas, from Sketty, a pupil at the Isaac Clarke Academy of Dance.

She said: "I am 15 years old and I have been dancing since I was three. I am looking forward to dancing with EYB and getting the experience of dancing with the professionals. I'd love to have a career in dance, but I know it doesn't happen very easily, so I am concentrating on my school work as well as my dancing."

Another successful ballet dancer came from Mellin Theatre Arts and the remaining eight are students at the Raie Copp School of Dance, both of which are in Swansea.

Proud Raie Copp principal Melanie Sullivan described it as an incredible achievement for the students and the school, adding: "The girls really can't wait, they're so excited, even though it's such a busy few months for us all.

"We have a competition in Pontypool next weekend, so at the moment the dancers are having to travel between there and Cardiff and then back to Swansea.

"It's a serious dedication from the girls of course, but it also means a lot of support from the parents ferrying them to and fro."

International principal ballerinas, who have studied and worked with the likes of the Royal Ballet, the English National Ballet and the San Francisco Ballet, are teaching the choreographed routines over an intense 10-day programme.

And the seven professional dancers will be performing alongside their excited new protégés. British principal ballerina, Julianne Rice Oxley said: "The young dancers we are working with in Cardiff have great energy and attack.

"I feel very privileged to be a principal with the EYB as I get to work with some of the UK's most talented young dancers. I find them incredibly inspiring."

There will be three performances of Giselle, one on Friday and two on Saturday.

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