South Queensferry dancer sets sights on big-stage ballet breakthrough

A talented dancer from South Queensferry earmarked as an outstanding student of a UK ballet school run by one of the world’s most famous dancers is setting her sights on a career on stage as a professional ballet dancer.

Friday, 12th March 2021, 1:00 pm
Queensferry High School pupil Abbie Garmany.

Queensferry High School pupil Abbie Garmany (15) has spent lockdown working towards her dream of making a mark on the big stage by training with the prestigious Edinburgh Festival Ballet school. She was accepted onto the school’s part-time course, established by ballet dancer, choreographer, director and Olivier award-winner Peter Schaufuss.

Schaufuss, the founder of The English National Ballet School, has performed and directed all over the world with leading companies including Kirov Ballet, Paris Opera Ballet, Royal Ballet and New York City Ballet.

Abbie, who started dancing with Central Scotland Ballet School in South Queensferry when she was just three, said: “I fell in love with ballet when I watched The Nutcracker for the first time as a child.

Queensferry High School pupil Abbie Garmany

"Once I finish my training, I’d love to join a professional ballet company so I can travel the world performing. My dream is to one day inspire others the way the dancers in The Nutcracker inspired me.

“When I was offered a place to train at Edinburgh Festival Ballet after my audition I couldn’t believe it. Peter Schaufuss is such a big name in the dance world and getting to train with him is an unbelievable opportunity for a young dancer like me.”

Edinburgh Festival Ballet continued with distanced classes until December in its newly-refurbished Ashton Studio in Saint Stephen’s in Stockbridge but has since moved classes online.

School principal Johan Christensen said: “Abbie is a great example of what can be achieved by students. Both sections of the school — part-time and full-time — present opportunities for aspiring dancers to learn from those that have been at the highest level of the dance profession.

Queensferry High School pupil Abbie Garmany

“We would welcome applications for our part-time school from dancers with similar aspirations to Abbie. Students may be on the way to making a career as a dancer or may not have danced before.”

Youngsters aged 12 and over can apply for a place at the part-time school at www.edinburghfestivalballet.com or via [email protected]