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By South Wales Argus Newsdesk
6th March 2009


Related Article: Gwent dancer is following in Billy Elliot’s footsteps



A CROESYCEILOG schoolboy who danced his way to a place at the Royal Ballet Associate programme now plans to study ballet and dance full time at a performing arts school.

Alexander Smith, 12, who attends Ysgol Gyfun Gwynllyw School, will audition for Tring School, a specialist performing arts and ballet school near London on March 12 where he hopes to become a full time boarder.

In December 2008 the Argus reported Alex had successfully auditioned for the Royal Ballet associate programme in Bristol, where he now attends classical ballet classes fortnightly with Royal Ballet teachers.

He is taught by Karen Paisey, a former principal dancer with the Royal Ballet company.

His mother Deborah Smith, 37, said: “He’s absolutely loving it. He just loves to dance, he loves the whole thing. “We hope he gets the chance to do it full time, it will be good for him I think.”

Alex now hopes to be given the opportunity to star in a Royal Ballet show in London, and associates are often given the chance to dance with the Royal Ballet company, the Birmingham Royal Ballet and other ballet companies.

© Copyright 2009 South Wales Argus


Cwmbran lad still aiming for top fame academy

By South Wales Argus Newsdesk
30th December 2009

A CWMBRAN schoolboy, who was left devastated when he was unable to fulfil his dream of attending a top performing arts school due to a lack of funding, will re-audition for a place in the new year.

Thirteen-year-old Alexander Smith, of Croesyceiliog, was due to start as a full time student studying ballet, contemporary and jazz dance, alongside academic subjects at Tring Park School for the Performing Arts, near London, last September.

But the pupil at Ysgol Gyfun Gwynllyw, narrowly missing out on a paid scholarship and his family were unable to afford the £28,000 a year fees.

His family tried to find a sponsor to help pay for the fees and his dad Richard, 43, raised almost £2,000 towards the school costs after completing a 250-mile sponsored bike ride last year.

But Alexander’s mother Deborah, 37, said the family has found it impossible to find the money needed.  She said: “He was devastated, he was really upset but he’s just got to keep trying. It’s all he wants to do.”

She said Alexander, who has a sister Eleri, 11, and a brother Carreg, eight, who are also keen dancers, is dedicated to pursuing a dance career and attends monthly boys sessions at Tring Park School. Alexander, who started danced when he was six, is now looking forward to auditioning again for the school in February with the hope of winning a paid scholarship.


© Copyright 2009 South Wales Argus

Related Article: Gwent dancer is following in Billy Elliot’s footsteps


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