Young ballerina leaps from college studies into Swan Lake

Friday 31 March 2017

The English Youth Ballet has gained a new recruit with John Leggott College student, Sam Lawton, who has danced her way into the upcoming production of Swan Lake.

Sam, who came to John Leggott College from Danum Academy in Doncaster, travelled to the Sunderland Empire Theatre this week to audition alongside 70 other shortlisted ballerinas for 30 final places in the cast. After a gruelling day of auditions, she was thrilled to be offered a position in the production, and now eagerly awaits the start of rehearsals in early May.

Dancing since the age of three with the Ibberson School of Dance in Doncaster, Sam is experienced in acrobatics, modern and tap dancing as well as classical ballet. It was her love of dance and performance that inspired her to book a tour at John Leggott College, as no other education providers she considered would offer A Level Dance. She now studies Dance, Geography and Psychology, with a view to joining a professional Dance School after completing her A Levels.

Speaking about her success, Sam said “I felt nervous but excited about the audition – it was quite overwhelming. It feel like all the preparation I have been doing over the years is now paying off. My mum was jumping up and down because we were both so happy that I had got through.”

Sam is now continuing with her studies at John Leggott College, as she prepares for rehearsals starting with the English Youth Ballet and the first performance scheduled for Friday 16th June. She credits her A Level Dance teacher, Bridget Jacques, with pushing and challenging her to improve as well as receiving continued support from her teachers at the Ibberson School of Dance.

The dance facilities at John Leggott College include a fully air-conditioned studio with actively sprung floor similar to those found at the Royal Ballet School, full-height mirrors and ballet barre, alongside a 140-seat performance auditorium with a sprung floor, large rehearsal rooms with semi-sprung floors, a state-of-the-art sound and lighting booth and brand new music recording booths.

“I chose John Leggott College because it offered the subjects I wanted to study, but also because the environment feels happy and relaxed. There are really good facilities, nice study and social spaces, as well as a Starbucks!”

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