In­spir­ing dancer wins na­tional ti­tles at awards

The Invercargill Eye - - OUT & ABOUT - RE­BECCA MOORE

In­ver­cargill bal­let, jazz and con­tem­po­rary dancer Bella Robert is mak­ing mak­ing her mark on the na­tional stage, be­ing the first in South­land to win a pres­ti­gious award.

The 17-year-old at­tended two com­pe­ti­tions dur­ing the week­end, and re­turned home with sev­eral na­tional ti­tles.

She won the con­tem­po­rary sec­tion at the New Zealand As­so­ci­a­tion of Mod­ern Dance schol­ar­ship awards in Auck­land, be­ing awarded two tro­phies and a cash prize of $1000.

Bella was the first dancer from South­land to re­ceive the award, af­ter be­ing nom­i­nated four times but be­ing un­able to at­tend.

How­ever, her suc­cess did not stop there.

She also danced at the Na­tional Young Per­former of the Year Awards as a soloist and troupe/ group com­peti­tor.

At the com­pe­ti­tion she qual­i­fied as a fi­nal­ist in the troupe/ group sec­tion and a semi-fi­nal­ist in the solo jazz and con­tem­po­rary com­pe­ti­tion.

‘‘I was re­ally over­whelmed to be amongst so many amaz­ing com­peti­tors. It was such an achieve­ment.’’

Bella has been danc­ing for 13 years, and has been trained by al­most all of the mod­ern dance coaches in the Otago and South­land re­gions.

When she was 4, her mum got her into dance be­cause she was the tallest in her class and she wanted her to have good pos­ture.

‘‘I loved it straight away,’’ Bella said.

At 15, she started to fo­cus on her danc­ing more.

She now has dreams to be a com­mer­cial dancer, in mu­sic videos and work­ing with well­known mu­si­cians, and to one day own her own stu­dio.

She al­ready helps train up-and­com­ing dancers while fin­ish­ing year 13 at South­land Girls’ High School.

Bella hoped her suc­cess would in­spire the boys and girls she coached to go to the awards one day too.

‘‘It’s a huge learn­ing ex­pe­ri­ence.’’

La Muse stu­dio direc­tor and dance teacher Gina Stevens said Bella was a cap­ti­vat­ing per­former with a good tech­ni­cal base.

‘‘Bella’s got some­thing very spe­cial as a per­former.

‘‘She’s re­ally in­spir­ing for the kids [who she teaches]. They’re watch­ing her dance and her suc­cess all the time.’’

RE­BECCA MOORE/STUFF

In­ver­cargill dancer Bella Robert af­ter her wins at the Na­tional Young Per­former of the Year Awards and 2017 NZAMD Schol­ar­ship Awards.

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