Federal's Sophia Bell, 16, will spend three years in Switzerland pursuing her dream to become a professional ballerina.
Federal's Sophia Bell, 16, will spend three years in Switzerland pursuing her dream to become a professional ballerina.

Sophia chases ballet dream

NO matter how hard she trains, 16-year-old Sophia Bell knows she can never reach perfection.

But the journey towards the unreachable is what makes the local ballerina tick.

After dedicating a good part of her life to ballet, Sophia will move to Switzerland in August to undertake a three-year course at the Basel Ballet School, with the aim of achieving a dream of becoming a professional dancer.

"I just love performing and I love being on stage," Sophia said.

"You feel free, and I love being able to express myself through dance.

"It's hard work and a lot of training, and I know you can never reach perfection, but the challenge of trying to is
what I enjoy the most."

Sophia, of Federal, started dance classes at Byron Bay when she was just six.

She had been taking gymnastics classes with her brother, Sebastian, but when their teacher left she was told ballet was the next closest thing.

While her brother changed his focus to soccer, Sophia continued with ballet and when she was 12 joined Fiona Munroe's Gold Coast Dancer's Co Inc.

She has been a full-time ballet student for the past two years, training for about eight hours a day, six days a week, doing her school work at home or through distance education.

In April, Sophia sent audition tapes to a number of prestigious European ballet schools, and received offers for places at five of them.

She has decided to take up the offer of a place at the Basel Ballet School and will move to Switzerland on August 6, just six days after her final performance with the Gold Coast Dancer's Co.

As if she wasn't busy enough, Sophia has been learning the language while working towards gaining her Advanced 2 Royal Academy of Dance certificate.

And while moving overseas at 16 would seem daunting to most, Sophia is adamant she will thrive on the opportunity.

"I'm so excited. Mum's coming over for the first 10 days, and after that I'll live in an apartment with other students from the school," she said.

"It will be kind of strange being away from my family at first, but I'm really looking forward to the challenge."


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