Sidmouth ballerina makes the grade

PUBLISHED: 10:00 28 March 2009 | UPDATED: 08:51 18 June 2010

A YOUNG Sidmouth ballerina is living her dream after being awarded a contract with the prestigious Birmingham Royal Ballet Company. Jade Heusen, 18, of Cotmaton Road, was the only girl to be offered a contract with the company this season which makes her

A YOUNG Sidmouth ballerina is living her dream after being awarded a contract with the prestigious Birmingham Royal Ballet Company.

Jade Heusen, 18, of Cotmaton Road, was the only girl to be offered a contract with the company this season which makes her achievement even more remarkable.

She will be appearing on stage in Plymouth with the company's version of 'Serenade' next Wednesday in front of a packed audience.

And it will be a double celebration as Jade will turn nineteen on the same day.

The rising star was first spotted at the tender age of seven when she attended a weekly fun dance class at the Dolphin Preparatory School.

Jan Cload, Jade's first dance teacher, said: "Jade's talent was immediately apparent. I asked the head-mistress, Mrs Judith Bishop, if I could contact her parents with a view to her starting ballet training, as Jade had all the right attributes to train as a classical ballet dancer.

"Her parents were delighted to accept, and Jade started ballet classes immediately."

Jade's talent shone through as she gained Honours in her first ballet exam and she successfully auditioned for The Royal Ballet Associate classes.

At only ten, Jade was offered a place at the Royal Ballet Junior School in London where she trained for five years before continuing her training at Elmhurst School of Dance, the vocational college associated with The Birmingham Royal Ballet.

During this time Jade was chosen to work alongside professional dancers in the company and travelled extensively, not only in the UK but also in Japan and China in several productions such as The Nutcracker and Swan Lake.

Proud mum, Dawn, said: "If it wasn't for Jan Cload, Jade would not be where she is now.

"I know she is very proud of the many girls and boys who have made a career of dance and we are gratified that she took an interest in our daughter.

"She had faith in Jade and has encouraged and supported her all along, even after she retired from teaching in 2006.


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