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The Sentinel
March 24, 2010


FIFTEEN-YEAR-OLD Josh Humphreys is leaving home for the Scottish Highlands to take up a place at a top ballet school. The Holden Lane High School pupil, from Ball Green, has won a part-funded scholarship to attend the Ballet West school in Taynuilt, in the West Highlands, from September. He beat hundreds of other hopefuls to take one of just 12 places and will now study for a HND in professional stage dance and a BA in classical ballet and dance performance.

He travelled to Scotland to audition for Ballet West in February and also auditioned at specialist dance college Bodyworks in Cambridge. He was offered funded places at both, but opted for Ballet West, because of the classical focus.

Josh showed a talent for dance from the age of five and went to his first dance class just before his ninth birthday. After completing his training, he hopes to pursue a career in professional dancing and eventually in teaching.

He has attended The Marye A Humphreys School of Dance in Newcastle for the past three years.

Josh said he couldn’t have got this far without the help and support of his dance teachers Marye Humphreys and Alison McNicol, mum Pam and dad Andy.

He said: “I am really excited about going, but nervous at the same time. I have wanted to go to dance college since I started dancing and now I am nearly there. I will miss my friends but this is a fantastic opportunity for me.”

Josh is studying for GCSE dance at Holden Lane, where he has been placed on their gifted and talented register in PE for his dancing, and a BTEC in performing arts at St Margaret Ward Catholic School and Art College in Tunstall. He will finish his GCSEs in July.

Younger sister Millie, aged 10, is also a talented dancer and attends the same dance school. She is auditioning for the Royal Ballet School junior section later this month.

Proud dad Andy, aged 41, said: “Josh has worked very hard and will have to continue to work to become a professional dancer. There will be written assignments, as well as practical assessments at Ballet West.

“We will miss him a lot and so will Millie.”

Dance teacher Marye said: “It is absolutely marvellous. It is such an achievement. He has shown exceptional talent and he has worked very hard for it. This will be the springboard for him to become a professional dancer.”



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