East Lancashire ballet kids step up in the world

7:00pm Friday 9th November 2012

By Sophia Rahman

A TRIO of talented youngsters have been chosen to dance with the English Youth Ballet.

The dancers were chosen from 200 hopefuls at an audition for Coppelia and will be coached by professional dancers.

Hannah Darling, 11, from Darwen, Ben Slack, 13, and Eleanor Lofthouse, 14, both from Blackburn, will now experience the lives of professional ballet dancers with a 10-day intensive rehearsal.

Eleanor, who attends Our Lady and St John’s RC Arts College in Blackburn, said: “I was really happy when I found out I’d got the role. Iit’s a role that needs good footwork and that’s what I’m working on so it proved to me that I can do it.”

Ben, who is home-educated and trains at the Zoe Taylor Dance Academy in Blackburn, has been dancing since he was seven and will play the role of Franz’s Friend, comrade to the lead male, Franz.

He said: “I am definitely looking forward to the performances. I like being on stage with the costumes and lights and everything.”

Ben Garner, the EYB’s company manager, said: “Working with English Youth Ballet will most probably be the highlight of these talented young dancer’s careers to date.

“The audiences watching EYB are in for a unique and exciting experience too.”

The production will be performed at the Southport Theatre and Convention Centre today and tomorrow.

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