Pointe to prove

Bal­let dancer ac­cepted into New York school

Canning Times - - FRONT PAGE - Jes­sica Nico

PARK­WOOD bal­let dancer Claire Kaines is about to em­bark on the op­por­tu­nity of a life­time, but it was a dream that al­most never was af­ter an ac­ci­dent three years ago.

The 19-year-old was not even two when she started danc­ing at the Va­lerie He­ston School of Dance, but a life­time of danc­ing and train­ing al­most came un­stuck when she crushed a bone in her foot while in class.

“I con­tin­ued to dance for about an hour af­ter as we are so used to be­ing in pain when we dance,” she said.

“I didn’t re­alise I had done so much dam­age.

“I was told by the sur­geon he could hope­fully get me back to danc­ing again, but prob­a­bly not on pointe as he needed to insert screws and a bone graft into my foot.

“I was de­ter­mined to con­tinue danc­ing and although the re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion was long and hard, it was def­i­nitely worth it to get me back do­ing what I love.

“It was nearly two years be­fore I could do my first pointe class and from then I never looked back.”

Now fully re­cov­ered, the Grad­u­ate College of Dance grad­u­ate will take her tal­ents on to the big stage af­ter be­com­ing the first WA dancer to be ac­cepted to the Jof­frey Bal­let School trainee pro­gram in New York.

“I found out early one morn­ing by email and I did not be­lieve it was true,’ Kaines said.

“I read the email so many times be­fore I called my mum, who was on her way to work, to tell her.

“I’ll never for­get that day.

“I am the first per­son from WA to be ac­cepted.

“They don’t ac­cept many peo­ple from world­wide au­di­tions each year.”

The four-year course, which in­cludes classes on clas­si­cal tech­nique, pointe, anatomy, nu­tri­tion and bal­let reper­toire, could cul­mi­nate in Kaines earn­ing a cov­eted place in a bal­let com­pany.

“My ul­ti­mate dream is to be ac­cepted into a bal­let com­pany,” she said.

“I hope to gain the knowl­edge and abil­ity to work in a clas­si­cal bal­let com­pany and I will be au­di­tion­ing for com­pa­nies all over the world dur­ing my time at Jof­frey.

“I don’t mind where; I would love to travel and ex­pe­ri­ence the world.”

www.com­mu­ni­typix.com.au d485221 Pic­ture: Bruce Hunt

Claire Kaines is off to New York af­ter be­ing ac­cepted into a pres­ti­gious dance academy.

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