Skip navigation

Alison Lowson
Perthshire Advertiser
Oct 2 2009


Aiden O'Brien, 11, Julie Young Dance Studios 2009 PERTH is fast gaining a reputation as the dance capital of Scotland. The latest in a long line of talent finely honed by Julie Young Dance Studios is making the grade at the top level in UK ballet. The dedicated dance and performing arts school operator admitted: “The success of the current crop of local talent is unprecedented.”

Aiden O’Brien (11) has caught the eye of the Royal Ballet School. As one of just 12 boys selected from more than 1000 worldwide hopefuls who auditioned, Aiden has begun training at the famous school, chasing a dream of becoming the next Carlos Acosta.

He has been a junior associate with the Royal Ballet for the last two years and has been dancing since he was six.

Aiden joins former pupil Stephanie Rae, who is now in her fourth year with the Royal Ballet, having already savoured the Royal Opera House atmosphere in their production of ‘Nutcracker’.Aiden O'Brien, 11, Julie Young Dance Studios 2009-2

There are just four Scots at the Royal Ballet and two emerged from the Julie Young school.

Meanwhile, Michaela Rondelli (16), a former Perth Grammar School pupil, and 17-year-old former St Columba’s High pupil Adele Duffy, have enjoyed a successful year.

Michaela, who added the senior Scottish ballet and senior Scottish Modern titles to her name in 2009 enjoyed successful auditions at top UK colleges. She has decided to embark on a three-year BA hons course in theatre dance at the London Studio Centre.

Adele has performed in various Perth Theatre productions. No stranger to the London dance circuit, she has chosen to attend performers college on a full-time professional dancer’s course.

In the younger age bracket, Kirsty Michie, from Coupar Angus, and Jodi Milne of Kirriemuir – both 11 – successfully auditioned for the Dance School of Scotland, part of Knightswood Secondary School in Glasgow.

With input from Michael Ellacott and Amanda Beveridge, the popular Perth dance school has widened its net to nurture dance, music and acting talent under the umbrella of the Julie Young School of Performing Arts.

Julie takes pride in the progress made by former pupils who are reaching for the heights in their chosen professions. “Shaun Kelly is in his final year with the English National Ballet School and will be performing in their Christmas production of ‘The Nutcracker’. Along with others, they have all played key roles in a wide variety of charitable and community entertainment.

Julie observed: “The pupils enhance the cultural life of the city and with greater emphasis on musical theatre Michael and Amanda are making the most of the raw talent we have in Perth.”


© 2009 Scottish & Universal Newspapers

%d bloggers like this: