Daisy set to be a royal ballet star

AN “exceptionally talented” dancer who has just secured a place at the world’s top ballet school has all the hallmarks of a star in the making, according to her teacher.

Daisy Mellor, from Ashdon, discovered last week that she has gained one of 12 places at the Royal Ballet (Lower) School in London following some rigorous auditions. Over 1200 students from dance schools from around the world battled for one of the coveted places.

Her acceptance puts 10-year-old Daisy on the right path to emulating some of the profession’s most well-known and respected international stars such as Margot Fonteyn, Darcey Bussell, Monica Mason – the current director at The Royal Ballet Company – Anthony Dowell, Wayne Sleep and current British stars Lauren Cuthbertson and Edward Watson. All were pupils of the school.

Now Daisy’s ballet teacher, Judith Harris, believes the youngster has what it takes to succeed at the highest level.

“Daisy has blossomed into an extremely promising ballet student, showing a natural aptitude for ballet physically and mentally,” said Ms Harris, who trained at the Royal Ballet Upper School herself from age 16 to 19.

“She is exceptionally talented, hard-working and conscientious. She is also a very bright little girl who is a pleasure to teach – she really deserves this amazing success.

Daisy has worked with Ms Harris at the Graham School of Dance in Bishop’s Stortford for the last two years, and has also been a student at Pure Rhythm Theatre School in Saffron Walden since 2007 under the eye of Sue Raven who, says Ms Harris, has been “vital in encouraging Daisy’s performance confidence and has been tremendous support and source of inspiration”.

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However from September, the Dame Bradbury School pupil will board full time at The Royal Ballet School and study classical ballet, character dance, Irish dancing, jazz and contemporary dance and choreography. She will also do her academic studies at the school, working towards her GCSEs before moving into the upper school and, hopefully, on to achieving her dream.

“I am really excited about following in the footsteps of such accomplished performers,” said Daisy, who already attends the prestigious Junior Associate Programme at the ballet school on a Saturday and has been performing with the company at the Royal Opera House in a production of Cinderella.

“Now I just can’t wait to start working towards my dream of becoming a professional dancer with the Royal Ballet Company.”

Ms Harris added: “These things don’t happen every day and we wish her all the best.”


• The Royal Ballet School was founded in 1931 by Dame Ninette de Valois along with The Royal Ballet Company based at The Royal Opera House in Covent Garden.

• The Lower School is world-renowned; called White Lodge it is based in Richmond Park, London