Local dancer’s amazing opportunity

Amy Brown, dancer from Pevensey
Amy Brown, dancer from Pevensey

Amy Brown, a 15-year-old dancer from Pevensey, is in rehearsals for a professional production of a double bill featuring Nutcracker Act II and Ballet Études which will be presented by English Youth Ballet at the Stag Theatre, Sevenoaks from May 19-21.

Amy, who attends Shining Stars Dance Academy and Willingdon Community School, will feature in the production alongside international principal dancers Adele Robbins, Monica Tapiador, Richard Read, Brenden Bratulic and Steven Wheeler.

All the soloist and corps de ballet roles will be performed by 100 of the finest dancers (aged eight-18) from Kent, Sussex and the south-east

Ben Garner, EYB company manager, said: “English Youth Ballet held a big audition for the ballet at the Stag Theatre in February. Over 200 young hopeful dancers turned up to the two auditions which were held on the stage.

“The atmosphere at the theatre, the nerves and the excitement were all electric. Director and founder of EYB Janet Lewis was on the lookout for the hottest young dance talent to join her award-winning company for the production in Kent. The lucky dancers heard they had been accepted on the day.”

Janet Lewis said: “EYB is all about providing extra performance experience to young dancers. We saw a very pleasing standard at the audition, and it was lovely to see lots of enthusiasm.”

Rehearsals for the ballet are taking place at Weald of Kent Grammar School.

Amy Drew is one of EYB’s principal dancers. She previously danced with Tasmanian Classical Ballet and National Ballet of Ireland. She coaches the young dancers in rehearsals.

She said: “The young dancers are treated like professional dancers during rehearsals – we work them hard but the results are fantastic! They learn what the life of a professional dancer is like. They are living their dream and they just love it!

“The young cast will rehearse for just ten days for the production. During those days EYB take over three of the biggest rooms in the school and run rehearsals simultaneously in each room.

“At the end of each rehearsal day the whole cast comes together in the largest space to share what has been learnt that day. The young dancers see the two ballets in the production taking shape like a big jigsaw.”