Oban youngsters blow away Ballet West chief with spectacular dance show
HUNDREDS of parents and dancing enthusiasts made their way to the Corran Halls in Oban last week to watch Oban High School’s dance show, which left Ballet West’s vice prin-cipal ‘amazed’.
Spectators were treated to three shows over two days of dance on Wednesday and Thursday, with a number of performances from Ballet West’s full-time students, students from their out-reach programme, led by Amanda Sloss, and 250 pupils from Oban High School. Dance groups from S1-S6, the gymnastics squad, Highland dancers and Oban High School Pipe Band, primary hip hop, and S1, S2 and S3 Oban High School of Dance all ensured the show was a huge success.
Speaking about Wednes-day’s show, Jonathan Barton, vice principal at Ballet West, said: ‘I was actually amazed by the dance show. I’ve watched it every year for the last four years and there was a big difference in their performance.
‘Each year the level of dancers has been steadily getting better, but this year took it to a new level. It’s because Oban High School has embraced dancing over the years. It encourages them to learn at a high level, not just a club level, and the difference is huge. Anyone that was there would have had a great night.’
Twenty-six senior dance leaders have held a full programme of classes from August in preparation for the show, at no cost to pupils attending. Three dance leaders also held a weekly class at the high school for P6 and P7 pupils, which was a new addition to the show. The matinee performance on Thursday
was attended by hundreds of primary school pupils, which added to the excitement for the new first year students taking part in the show.
PE teacher Denise Gemmell who along with the PE department organised the show, sad: 'We are so proud of our pupils; they worked so hard and put on a very professional show.
'Our younger pupils are certainly benefiting from our School of Dance programmes. The quality of their performances has really improved, which is a testament to our partner-ship with Ballet West and the huge number of dance leaders providing so many opportunities to dance in school.’
The high school pupils choreographed their own routines, which Jonathan Barton acknowledged ‘is not an easy thing to do’ and that ‘they done a really good job’. The staff at Oban High School also got involved and performed a routine of their own, which was ‘quite comical and had some good dancing in it’, according to the Ballet West vice prin-cipal. Head teacher Peter Bain thanked parents, staff, pupils and many members of the local community for the incredible amount of hard work and support that had gone into mak-ing the shows such a success.