Teen scoops top honour in ballet

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TALENTED Phikolwethu Luke, 16, received the prestigious Mabel Ryan Award for his Grade Five ballet exam last year.

Luke was among the many prize winners at the Heather Cooper School of Ballet’s annual prizegiving held last week.

The Mabel Ryan Award is an international prize awarded to the highest scoring and most promising Grade Five Checetti ballet student in each region.

Luke, nicknamed “Phiko” received the highest marks in the Eastern Cape for his exam last year and is the Heather Cooper School of Ballet’s ninth pupil to receive this award.

“With this medal Phiko can go anywhere in the world and they will know that he was a Mabel Ryan winner,” proud ballet teacher, Heather Cooper said.

Phiko also received top studio awards including the Grade five Shield for the top dancer in his grade as well as the dancer of the year award.

ALL SMILES: Mabel Ryan Award recipient, Phikolwethu Luke at the studio’s annual prizegiving after winning the prestigious prize. Picture: MADELEINE CHAPUT

In August Phiko will also travel to Florida in the United States of America to represent East London at the prestigious Applause Rising Talent Showcase (ARTS).

The showcase is an opportunity for talented singers, dancers, models and actors to gain international experience and be scouted by agents.

“Phiko has come a long way from that 10-year-old watching the girls’ ballet class and he has the potential to one day be a household name,” Cooper said.

“He is one of the most wonderful people you’ll meet and we are all really proud of his achievements.”

ALL SMILES: Mabel Ryan Award recipient, Phikolwethu Luke, with ballet teacher Heather Cooper at the studio’s annual prizegiving after winning the prestigious prize Picture: MADELEINE CHAPUT
The Heather Cooper School of Ballet senior dancers from left, Kate Wittstock , Phikolwethu Luke, Tayla Bowker and Claire Peters, with their awards, at the studio’s prizegiving.
Picture: MADELEINE CHAPUT

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