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Ballan ballet champions

2 dancers in white: Milly O'Hanlon, Willow Arthur. Photo - Studio C Performing Arts Ballan

By Lachlan Ellis

A Moorabool performing arts studio has plenty of silverware to show off this month, after stellar performances from its troupes and individual dancers in Warrnambool.

Students from Ballan’s Studio C Performing Arts headed to the Warrnambool Eisteddfod, which ran its Dance section from Monday 3 July to Sunday 9 July, with the studio winning multiple first, second, and third place medals.

First time competitor Alice won first place in the 6yrs & Under Novice Neo-Classical Solo and second in the Classical Ballet Solo, while fellow 6yrs & Under competitor Maisie came first in both the Classical Ballet Solo and Jazz Solo.

Other first place winners were Milly (Jazz Solo, Demi-Character Solo, and Neo-Classical Solo 8yrs & Under), Reina (Neo-Classical Solo 8yrs & Under Novice), Ella (Jazz Solo 14yrs & Under Novice), and Tilly (Lyrical Duo 12-14yrs with Ella).

Phoebe finished second in the 12yrs & Under Novice Jazz Solo, while Tilly finished third in the 14yrs & Under Novice Lyrical Solo, and Charlotte finished second in the Open Age Novice Contemporary Solo.

As for the troupes, both the Neo-Classical and Jazz Troupes from Studio C came first in the 12yrs & Under group, while the 13yrs & Over Contemporary Troupe finished third.

Studio C owner and director Charlotte Hamilton said she was beyond proud of the effort her students had put in, and the results they had achieved.

“I’m really pleased with how much work they’ve put in and how much they’ve progressed this year. They should be so proud of themselves. I think it’s a really wonderful accomplishment to perform on stage, and so great to also gain recognition for your achievements,” Ms Hamilton told the Moorabool News.

“The kids train every week, some take private lessons for their solo routines. In the lead-up to competitions we have extra rehearsals. The commitment is so good. There were around 20 other schools competing from all over Victoria, from Ballarat, Ararat, some from Melbourne even and Geelong. So to see our girls do so well was amazing.”

Studio C ballerina Willow Arthur said being in her first competition was an exciting experience, and she hopes to compete again in the future.

“I think I was seven or eight [when I started ballet], and my best friend Rosa was doing ballet, so I started doing it with her. Miss Charlotte said I might be able to compete solo in the next competition or the one after that,” she said.

“I like being in a team, but I might try doing it on my own and see if I like it. I really enjoy it. It was really exciting being in the competition in Warrnambool…I’d done concerts before, but never competitions.”

Ms Arthur said “practicing a lot with timing” helped the Neo-Classical Troupe she was a part of win in their age group.