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Ballet career given help

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A teenage dancer has received sponsorship to help her to continue training with the New English Contemporary Ballet.

Madeleine Drabble (13) a pupil at Toot Hill School, Bingham, has been studying a professional programme of dance training with the company at the Djanogly City Academy, Nottingham, for two years.

Madeleine has been given £100 by Aimhigher East Midlands, a national initiative that tries to raise levels of participation in higher education, after applying for it earlier this year.

She said: “I had to send a letter asking for the money and say what I needed it for. I’m really pleased I’ve got it because it is quite expensive.”

The money will help to cover the cost of her training fees.

As well as attending classes on Saturday mornings, Madeleine also takes part in the company’s week-long intensive training courses during the summer and Easter holidays.

She was one of 120 young dancers from Nottinghamshire picked to perform in the company’s version of The Nutcracker at the Palace Theatre in Newark last year.

Madeleine is working towards her grade five in ballet and also studies jazz, modern, tap, choreography and musical theatre with the New English Contemporary Ballet.

She also attends weekly classes at the Shan Jones School of Dance in Bingham.

Madeleine said: “I dance with the New English Contemporary Ballet on Saturday mornings then go to Shan Jones until about 6pm so I’m quite busy. I dance for most of the day.

“It’s quite challenging some of the stuff you do but you get used to it. It’s quite easy to pick up.”

Madeleine said she often went to watch the ballet at the theatre in Nottingham with her parents.

She said: “I have always wanted to be a dancer.”

Madeleine is one of more than 100 pupils on Toot Hill School’s gifted and talented PE programme.

She hopes to continue studying dance when she finishes school and eventually wants to become a professional dancer.

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