Haywards Heath's Ella gets a taste of life as a professional dancer

Ella Burns
Ella Burns

Ella Burns, a ten-year-old dancer from Haywards Heath, was thrilled to be selected to join the National Youth Ballet of Great Britain for their 2019 season.

Working with a team of professional dancers, choreographers and teachers, she performed in their production of Wonderlands at theatres in Birmingham and London, with a gala performance at the international dance house Sadler’s Wells.

She was awarded the highly coveted place after auditions earlier this year, when 105 dancers (aged between nine and 18) from across the country were selected. This summer she took part in an intensive two-week residential programme, held at Elmhurst Ballet School in Birmingham, that saw the young company come together and be taken on a journey from studio to stage, emulating the experience of being in a professional dance ensemble.

Ella, who attends Harlands Primary School in Haywards Heath, has been dancing since the age of three.

She is a dancer at The Gielgud Academy of Performing Arts, where she learns ballet, tap and modern.

She said: “The National Youth Ballet was such an amazing experience! I made lots of new friends and it has been very inspiring to work with such talented dancers and choreographers.

“I feel so lucky to have been selected and it was really exciting to perform at Sadler’s Wells.

“A dream come true!”

For its 2019 season, the National Youth Ballet presented Wonderlands, a mixed programme of new works choreographed by some of the country’s rising talents.

Ella’s mum Emma said: “Wonderlands was an absolute joy to watch. The unique choreography and the quality of dancing were both outstanding.

“We are so proud that Ella was given the opportunity to be part of it.”

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