Dancer pirouettes his way to school success

Ballet dancer Cameron-James Bailey, who has won  a place at the prestigious Elmhurst School for Dance in Birmingham.
Ballet dancer Cameron-James Bailey, who has won a place at the prestigious Elmhurst School for Dance in Birmingham.

A budding Billy Elliot has danced his way to a place at a renowned ballet school, beating off stiff competition.

Cameron James Bailey, 11, of Bare Lane in Morecambe, a pupil at the Robinson Read School of Dance, will be attending the Elmhurst Ballet School in Birmingham in September and is one of only eight boys to win a place at the school.

Cameron, a pupil at Torrisholme Primary School, will be at the boarding school from age 11 to 16 and can then stay on in sixth form if he wants to.

Cameron, who has been dancing since the age of three said: “I’m very nervous but I’m getting excited as well.

“It’s going to be an adventure.” Cameron has held a prestigious scholarship with the Royal Ballet School as a Junior Associate.

He has also gained many successes in festivals both home and away.

At the recent Lancaster dance festival, he brought home 14 trophies.

He passed his 11 plus exam last October and began the first round audition process, completing auditions at Tring Park School for Dance, The Hammond School, Elmhurst School of Dance and The Royal Ballet School.

In March he attended final auditions and was offered a non-funded place at Tring and a scholarship at The Hammond and Elmhurst and was offered a place on the mid-associate programme with the Royal and a place at international summer school held at White Lodge.

He was accepted at Elmhurst and also accepted a place at the Royal Ballet summer school. Cameron’s mum Penny Bailey said: “I was so proud of him because he reallly deserved it. In Year 5 he watched the Royal Ballet and said ‘I really want to do this for a living, that’s my life Mum’ He has achieved so much and I don’t want him to leave but it is the right thing for him.”

Cameron said: “I like performing on stage, I just really enjoy it. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do. It’s the travelling and the build-up to auditions. I might be in London one week and Birmingham the next. Auditions are sometimes quite hard, some have a vocal performance.

“In my last vocal, I chose the song ‘Proud of your boy’ from the Disney film Aladdin and the singing was more nerve wracking than the dancing, because I was used to doing that.

“Dancing was just a hobby but it has grown into so much more.

“I’d like to be a principal dancer with the Royal Ballet when I’m older.”

His teacher at the school, Karen Read said: “ Cameron has been a delight to teach since day one, a focused and dedicated young man, who we will all miss teaching. We wish him lots of luck in the future. ’”

Cameron James will commence his training in Birmingham this September.