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Dancing with distinction

Schools

Young ballet dancer Patric Annetta is flourishing as he pursues his passion for dance at Christian Brothers College.

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When Patric dances, nothing else matters to him.

“I love that when I dance I could be anywhere in the world,” said the CBC Year 8 student.

“There’s a freedom that it awakens.”

But being a young ballet dancer hasn’t always been easy for Patric. In fact, he left his old school because he was being bullied.

Patric has nothing but praise for CBC where he has felt comfortable enough to perform a liturgical dance at the opening of the school’s new building complex in August.

And he has excelled at his dance studies, recently achieving a Distinction for his first vocational ballet exam through the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD).

He is hoping to do dance as a SACE subject in Years 10 and 11 with the aim of joining a ballet company after completing Year 12 but his “ultimate goal” is to be a principal dancer.

Patric Annetta. Picture: suzanneopitz photography

Patric’s mum Tanya said her son was “dancing in the womb” and started taking ballet classes seriously for exams from the age of nine.

She said she couldn’t be more impressed with CBC and the support the whole community had given Patric in his first year at the inner city school.

“He went elsewhere and was bullied for his love of ballet,” she said.

“He was keen to keep it to himself but over the months that passed and the teachers’ support and interest in his love of his craft, he made the decision to make it public knowledge and the school has just embraced him.

“It’s a beautiful thing watching your child grow into their full potential with love and support.

“We feel very blessed to be part of the Christian Brothers community.”

Patric is a student at Terry Simpson Dance Studios in Adelaide.

“The culture at this dance studio is phenomenal and we really are a big family,” Patric said.

“I can spend up to 20 hours a week there so it really is a home away from home. Miss Simpson is an amazing lady and mentor. I just adore her and all my teachers.”

Patric spent three seasons with the South Australian Children’s Ballet Company which included two performances a year, one of them at the Adelaide Fringe.

He auditioned and was selected for the international training program for the Australian Ballet School in Melbourne and travels there or takes part in intensive lessons when the school comes to Adelaide.

He recently competed in the RAD awards and was runner up in the Floyd and B’Nay Award for Intermediate Foundation.

Patric said juggling his studies with dance was made easier by his supportive teachers and a structured approach to assignments and workload.

“I attend homework club before school commences to stay on top of it all,” he said.

“Most dancers at my studio are well organised and diligent, it comes with the sport.”

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