Bendigo dancers leap of grace

FOUR Bendigo dances have pirouetted their way to prestigious dance scholarships. 

Paige Davis, Sarah Seery, Brittany Wassing and Ben Harris have been accepted into the Cecchetti Scholars program and will join the year-long course next year. 

All four dancers attend CMS Danceworx, a local ballet school previously known as Bendigo Dance Academy. 

Dancing has become a passion for these youngsters, who spend countless hours practising every week and take part in competitions every school holidays. 

Fifteen-year-old Paige has been a Cecchetti scholar before, but is still excited by the prospect of extending her training. 

The seasoned professional said she had been dancing since she was two years old. 

“My mum put me in classes because I was dancing around the house – and I haven’t looked back since,” Paige said. 

“I love everything about dancing.

“I love being able to perfect every movement, it is so much fun.”

Sarah has also been involved in the Cecchetti Scholars scheme before. 

“I have been a part of the program for the past few years and to be able to have the opportunity again, I am really looking forward to it,” she said. 

“I have already gained so much know- ledge from the calibre of teachers. I am really excited.” 

Sarah said she vividly remembered when she decided to take up dancing. 

“We were driving to kinder and I said to my mum, ‘I think I would like to do dancing’, she recalls. 

“She said ‘OK’ – and it’s been the best experience.”

The 15-year-old said the best thing about dancing was having the freedom to move however you wanted. 

“I love the freedom you are given and the ability to express yourself through the movements. It is just amazing, what you can do,” Sarah said. 

For Brittany and Ben, this is the first time they’ve been accepted as Cecchetti scholars. 

Brittany has also been dancing since she was just two. 

“I was one of those little girly girls, always wearing tiaras and fairy wings all around the house,” she said. 

The 12-year-old wants to pursue dancing when she finishes school and she is looking forward to taking part in the sought-after Cecchetti program. 

“I love everything about dancing – you just feel free and I feel good doing it,” she said. 

Ben, who began dancing when he was four, took the activity up because all of his cousins were dancing. 

He said he was keen to take advantage of any opportunities that may come from the scholarship. 

CMS Danceworx owner and teacher Carlie Sutton said she was proud to see her dedicated dance students  rewarded for their effort. 

She said the Cecchetti Scholars program aimed to improve the skills of promising young dancers. 

“The aim is for dancers to improve and to get a different perspective, which is always great because sometimes we focus on what we are looking for and the scholar teachers look for something else,” Miss Sutton said. 

“Once a month next year, they will go down to Melbourne for a special scholars class and it is all free.”

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