In March 2017 my dance school, St Hilda’s Studios, which I have danced at for 13 years, was selected to trail a pilot dance syllabus, Discovering Repertoire. The course is a new style of exam in classical ballet for the Royal Academy of Dance. I took the two exams involved and passed both with high distinction.

Last October, I received a notification that the Artistic Director of the Royal Academy of Dance had seen our results from the aforementioned exam and wished to have video footage of our dancing that the Academy could use to teach other teachers and dancers the repertoire we covered more effectively. Soon after sending off recordings of the repertoire, we were asked for full body measurements for costuming. I found out that Isla (another student whom undertook the initial exam with me) and I, were two of three dancers selected to dance at the formal launch of the syllabus.

So last Sunday, Isla and I travelled to the Northern Ballet in Leeds. There, we were coached rigorously by Miss Paula Hunt on her new syllabus, before performing it later in the afternoon during the formal launch. Our ballet teacher, Miss Natasha Creek, said: “These launches are happening across the globe and for [Ailsa and Isla] to be dancing for one of 3 events in the UK was a huge opportunity. I couldn’t possibly be prouder of their gorgeous dancing and calm and polite presence.”

Dancing at the Northern Ballet was an absolute honour and an incredible experience I will not forget any time soon!

Ailsa Legg (Y12)