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Ballet breaks all boundaries

By Mark Beale

WHITSUNDAY Dance Connection principal Jenny Featherstone had only one lament about the Melbourne Ballet Company’s performances at the Whitsunday Arts and Cultural Centre (WACC) – that she didn’t attend both shows.

Described as a truly magical experience, the company from down south truly worked their Pointe in paradise, hosting several workshops on Friday and Saturday before an outside stage performance of their show Divenire on both nights.

“Going to the WACC, it wasn’t like we were in Airlie Beach, it was like we were in Melbourne,” Ms Featherstone said. “I’m very grateful to them for bringing a ballet of that standard to our small town.”

Ms Featherstone said it was an experience cherished by not only her students but their parents too. “We had students from ages four to 15 and 16 and if they weren’t at the workshops, they were certainly at the performances,” she said.

“We don’t get a lot of this in Airlie Beach so it’s wonderful for parents to see their child learn the stepping stones with me but then to see the end product of professional dancers (as well).”

Event coordinator Heidi Ward from the WACC thanked Whitsunday Regional Council and the Regional Arts Development Fund (RADF) for contributing money to put on the show.

“It’s great we have their support, it allows (the) establishment to host fantastic events that would be financially difficult,” she said. “Special thanks to Peppers Resort for putting up the dancers too – it was magical.”

Ms Ward said the team at the WACC had their sights set on bringing a mini circus to town next.

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