Young ballet star on road to success

Ellis Derrick
Ellis Derrick

A young ballerina has completed a remarkable clean sweep of major trophies during 12 months of unprecedented dancing success.

Earlier this year we reported how talented Ellis Derrick (13), from Bishopbriggs, successfully defended her Junior Scottish Ballet Championship crown in Helensburgh.

The Turnbull High School pupil has now added the Central Scotland Junior Ballet title and the West of Scotland Junior Ballet crown to her growing list of achievements.

She also landed the Central Scotland Modern Dance trophy - putting more pressure on her overloaded mantelpiece - as well as taking part in a range of other dance categories.

Meanwhile, in the West of Scotland Championships she was given the Bursary Trophy for the best dance of any kind in the entire competition.

It’s been by far the most successful year of Ellis’ fledgling ballet career.

She began dancing even before she could walk and at the age of five joined to the Linda Lowry School of Ballet.

Her first foray south of the border saw her placed 5th out of over 70 competitors in the British Ballet Championships in Blackpool.

And she learned a few new tricks after winning a place on English National Ballet’s prestigious summer school.

Mum Janice, who is a dance teacher, said: “She absolutely loved the summer school and was even given a pointe solo in the show at the end of the week.

“I couldn’t be more proud of her. She works so hard, does so well, and is still a really great person.”

Next year will be Ellis’ last year in junior competition and she’s hoping to make it a hat-trick of wins in the Scottish Ballet Championships.

There’s also the small matter of her grade seven and foundation dance exams, while 2014 could be the year when she achieves her dream of attending the Royal Ballet’s summer school - having narrowly missed out on a spot this year.

And she’ll be travelling down to London to perform at the Charlotte Leatherbarrow Foundation - an organisation dedicated to helping young artists fulfil their potential.

It’s another step towards her dream of attending the Royal Ballet School, which would be the ultimate reward for the hours of training she puts in each and every week.

* Have you got a story, picture or comment? E-mail kirkyherald@jnscotland.co.uk

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