Patrick pirouettes to Europe

HE started out doing childhood ballet lessons in the Wollongbar Hall, and now Alstonville dancer Patrick Weir is set to take on the master classes of Europe.

The 18-year-old is leaving tomorrow for a month-long trip to London and Paris.

But this is not a holiday - his aim is to further his career as a professional dancer.

The journey has been made possible with a Cecchetti Ballet Australia study scholarship from BBM, formerly known as the Big Brother Movement.

With $8000, Patrick will be able to take a series of master classes at the internationally renowned Pineapple Dance Studios, as well as see shows, watch competitions and visit contemporary dance schools.

"I am excited, but pretty nervous as well," Patrick said.

"I've only just finished my HSC so it's all happened pretty quickly.

My main interests are in contemporary dance and choreography, so I am looking forward to learning some new things while I'm overseas.

Patrick started ballet when he was just five years old, and says it is still something he loves.

"I just enjoy it; I've always enjoyed it," he said.

"Yes, you have to work hard, but you have to work hard at anything you do. This is just a different kind of work.

The Trinity Catholic College graduate finished first in his class in the school's dance course - the first boy to do so - and all three of his HSC dance works were nominated for Callback, the state-wide showcase of exemplary performances and compositions.

It has been a successful year for Patrick says his teacher, Monique Feain.

"Patrick is very dedicated to making dance his career and has overcome many obstacles and worked extremely hard towards achieving his dream," she said.



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