four dancing queens have put their best feet forward to shine as real twinkletoes after passing their ballet exams - with a combined age of 150!
Ballet buddies Nessa Cashmore, Tarryn Hollis, Barbara Kayser and Jane Warrener not only passed their grade three exams but they leapt over the benchmark to scoop an array of distinctions and merits.
Those awards were made even more special because the mature movers - who are all aged 31 and over - had never even pulled on a ballet pump before joining Bawtry’s The Dance Space, which opened two years ago.
With Hollywood blockbuster Black Swan helping to boost the popularity of ballet, the grade A group’s teacher Janice Cotgreave believes more and more adults are taking up the dance in a bid to keep fit.
The 48-year-old from Westwood Road, Bawtry, said: “I’m so pleased for them and really proud. They have never done it before so it’s a remarkable achievement.
“It wasn’t an easy exam, they had to complete 45 minutes of exercises and dance routines. It took them about a year and ahalf to train for the grade so they have worked really hard.
“As they were starting from scratch we had to teach them the basic techniques that we do for children learning ballet.
“I am very proud, it shows everyone that ballet can be taken up by people of all age groups.
She added: “They are part of small but dedicated group of adults that we have here learning ballet. A lot come along because it’s a fun way of keeping fit. Some people don’t like going to the gym so this is perfect for them.
“I think the film has helped because it has brought ballet to the forefront of everyone’s mind and helped it become more popular.
Following their impressive success, the group, who hail from Bawtry, Rossington and Thorne are now skipping an exam to train for their grade five qualification in front of the Royal Academy of Dance examinations board.
The fantastic foursome showed off their grade three routine for family, friends and patron Shannon Parker during a special presentation of exam certificates on Sunday which included a performance from the club’s junior section which teaches children from the age of six and upwards.
Owner Janice, a former professional dancer who has toured the world to showcase her talent, added: “The presentation was really good, we had demonstrations from our 40 students who passed their exams.
“We’re trying to provide professional teaching for everyone by giving them the best opportunity to learn from good teachers.”
There are now plans of turning The Dance Space, in Top Street, into a recognised centre of excellence. It already offers workshops and training in a variety of dance including tap, jazz, Bokwa and zumba.
For more information visit www.thedancespace.co.uk or call 01302 714792