Southend boy dancing with delight
7:00am Friday 22nd March 2013 in Echo News
A BOY is dancing with delight after being offered a place at a prestigious ballet school.
Samuel Phelps Jones, 11, from Southend is one of only 12 children to be offered a spot at the £32,000 a year Royal Ballet School in Richmond.
The youngster from Weybourne Gardens said: “It’s nerve wracking but very exciting as well. I’m looking forward getting my own freedom.”
Samuel has been brought up on dance as his mum Tina runs the Tina Phelps Stage School at St Lukes Church Hall. Samuel has been attending since he was three, taking part in tap and modern, but only starting ballet a year ago.
He said: “I saw my mum doing it and it kind of reeled me in. I’ve made a lot of friends here, and that’s what I’m going to miss the most when I leave.”
Remarkably, Samuel will be following in the footsteps of his mum as Tina once auditioned for the school herself. She said: “We will miss him terribly but his dad and I know that this is an opportunity of a lifetime and we are extremely proud of him. Who are we to say you’re not going to go because we want you at home?"
Pupils offered a place at the school are automatically offered funding for the £32,000 a year fees, with parents asked to put forward a nominal fee based on their income.
Tina added: “He’s finding it all a bit overwhelming at the moment, but I know he’s going to have a lovely time.”