Star turn for student who wins place at prestigious Central School of Ballet

A TEENAGE ballet dancer has earned a full-time place at a prestigious London dance school after successfully auditioning for one of only 100 places.

Helena Romanes student Charlotte Wightwick will be attending the Central School of Ballet to complete courses in Professional Dance and Performance.

The 16-year-old is “thrilled” and “cannot wait for next year”, and said: “Central has always been top of my list and I can’t wait to be in an environment where all the students are of a similar level and will all have so much enthusiasm and passion.

“I am sure the experience will give me some of the best years of my life, and set me up for a career.”

Charlotte’s mum, Katie, recalled that her daughter found her calling later than the average dancer: “It was in her last year of primary school so she would have been 11. She had done a little bit of dance at school and it got her thinking that she would like to take ballet lessons. Eleven is very late to start, compared to most who begin dancing from a very young age.”

Charlotte signed up for lessons at the Harlow Ballet School and a year ago she starting pre-senior classes at Central.

In March she attended her first and second auditions and on April 30 she received the call.

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“We’re absolutely delighted,” said Katie. “Without HRS and Harlow, her dream of becoming a classical ballet dancer would not have come to fruition.”

Louise Judd, head of dance at HRS, said: “I’m so proud. She has always worked incredibly hard and we applaud her for her success.

“We wish her the best of luck and would welcome her back to perform for us.”

In the first two years as a student she will work towards the Foundation Degree alongside optional A-Levels. The core disciplines are ballet supported by contemporary dance alongside disciplines such as choreography, Spanish dance, Pilates, jazz dance, drama and singing.

Graduates can be assured that when their careers end, they retain an internationally recognised qualification.

Charlotte added: “One of my favourite things about ballet is that when I dance I don’t think about anything else. I channel all my energy, and feel myself improve over time. I can’t wait to see where ballet will take me in the future.”