Saffron Walden teenager set to take the London stage for annual performance

PUBLISHED: 09:35 05 July 2019 | UPDATED: 09:51 05 July 2019

Ruby Sweetland-Main. Picture: ASH PHOTOGRAPHY

Ruby Sweetland-Main. Picture: ASH PHOTOGRAPHY

Amber Hunt

A teenager from Saffron Walden will perform on the stage in London in Central School of Ballet’s annual summer performance.

Ruby Sweetland-Main, 16, will appear at the Bloomsbury Theatre on July 18 and 19.

She joins more than 100 dancers from the school's undergraduate degree programmes in a celebration of dance achievement at the end of the academic year.

Ruby has been dancing since she was 13-years-old and has just completed her first year of training at Central School of Ballet, a world-leading training centre for professional dance in London.

Selected from more than 300 applicants, Ruby was one of just 34 students to secure a place last September on a degree in professional dance and performance, accredited by the University of Kent and affiliated with the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama.

Ruby was a student at Saffron Walden County High School before gaining her place at central school last autumn.

Ruby said: "I love being surrounded by like-minded hardworking people who are all driven to become a professional dancer. The training requires determination and discipline as we train six hours a day, six days a week. Being away from home can be tough, but the atmosphere at central is supportive, we are like a big family.

"I have learnt that it's really important that we look after ourselves mentally and physically to keep motivated and ensure that we are performing to our highest potential."

Heidi Hall, director of central school, said: "Our annual summer performance is an opportunity for the students to experience the joy of performing in front of ticket-buying audiences, allowing them to demonstrate their enhanced skills - this is what drives student dancers to succeed as professional dancers."

Places on central school's degree programmes are highly competitive, and entry is awarded through auditions between October and March each year in London, Leeds, Glasgow, Japan and USA. The process involves performing for central's teaching staff, all of whom are former professional dancers themselves. The focus of the course is classical ballet supported by classes in contemporary dance, Spanish dance, pilates, jazz dance, drama, singing and contextual studies.

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