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Lillie’s leap to semi finalist
A LOCAL dancing star competed in the Australian Classical Grand Prix ballet competition last month, after being selected as one of 10 semi finalists for Victoria.
The Australia Classical Grand Prix (ACGP) is a prestigious ballet event for selected dancers to learn from ballet industry renowned instructors and showcase their ballet solos.
Lillie-Ann McPhee, aged 11, who trains with DanzWorx in Wangaratta, competed in the Junior Ballet Division in Sydney, and the young dancer said she was “so excited” when she found out.
“I had practised so much and did the best I could in my audition so I feel so proud to be selected,” she said.
“When I found out I called Michelle and Ms Jordyn straight away because I knew they would be really happy too.
“I am so thankful for all of their support, training and encouragement because I wouldn’t be able to do amazing opportunities like the ACGP without them.”
While Lillie didn’t make it to the finals, she said she was honoured to have gone and had the experience.
“Attending the ACGP was a really amazing experience,” she said.
“I got to make new friends and I learnt so much, not just about ballet techniques but also about ballet etiquette and styles of performing ballet.
“Watching the other performers was really inspiring, they were all such incredible and beautiful dancers.
“I was really honoured to receive the encouragement award, I am already passionate about ballet but to receive that award from the adjudicator feels really good because it makes me want to try even harder to be accepted next year.
“The award also came with a prize of a dance photoshoot so I am very excited about that.
“I really enjoyed taking the masterclasses with Ms Naomi, she was an excellent teacher and made what we were learning really enjoyable.
“We had the other adjudicators watching the masterclasses as well and they gave us some advice which was great because they have so much knowledge about ballet.
“Attending an event like the ACGP makes me really thankful for all of my training at Danzworx, because without Ms Jordyn and Michelle, I wouldn’t have made it as far as I did.
“I am really motivated to continue to work on my dance goals, improving my technique and working on my solo so that hopefully I can return to the ACGP next year.”
DanzWorx studio owner Michelle Parisi said she was very proud of her student.
“Ms Jordyn and I are very proud of Lillie for putting herself out there in a competition of such high calibre as the ACGP,” she said.
“To have a student that just started solo competitions four months ago doing so well representing Danzworx is an honour.
“She has come back to class even more motivated to focus on learning and strengthen her skills which is great to see.
“To be one of a few awarded the encouragement award shows that her hard work, passion and commitment to ballet was recognised by the adjudicators.
“Her goal is to return to the ACGP so we are looking forward to continuing work with Lillie to nurture and grow her skills for the ACGP in 2023.”