Ss. Simon and Jude Eighth Grader Talks About Her Success in Ballet

Q. You practice ballet, tell us about that? Where do you practice? How many hours a week are you dancing? What is the best thing about being in ballet?

A.  I have been doing ballet since I was about four years old, where I started in Flagstaff.  I love doing ballet. It makes me feel happy and peaceful and I have made a lot of new friends.  I currently attend the School of Ballet Arizona. I am in Level 4 and this year I am learning to go en pointe, which I am excited about.  I attend class on average seven hours a week and if there are rehearsals for performances that is usually another 2-3 hours per week.  I am very grateful that my parents support me and my ballet.

Q. Tell us about your Nutcracker experience?

A. I love performing and have been in a Nutcracker production as a different character at least eight times.  In Flagstaff I had performed as a sheep, mouse, Chinese dancer, and party girl. Since in Phoenix I have performed at the Phoenix Symphony Hall through Ballet Arizona for three years, once as a soldier and twice as an angel.  This year I have been cast as a Bon Bon. I am grateful to get an opportunity such as this. My favorite role was for the School’s production of the Nutcracker in December of 2015. I got the lead role as Clara.

Q. Do you wish to pursue being a ballerina in the future?

A. Yes, I would like to become a professional ballerina through Ballet Arizona.  I also see myself teaching younger students ballet some day.

Q. Tell us about your schools service scholarship?

A. At the end of the school year in May, I was awarded the Kathryn Johnson Care Scholarship for my service to others. I had done over 170 hours of service during my 7th grade year at Ss Simon and Jude Cathedral School. I do service not only for my school and parish, but I also do a lot in the community. Attending SSJ has inspired me to do more service projects. 

Q. Tell us about all of your volunteerism?

A. While doing service I feel good being able to help people who are in need. I do many different kinds of service and volunteering from babysitting kids, to packing food at Feed My Starving Children, to Peer Mentoring students who struggle with schoolwork.  My favorite service that I have done is serving soup at the Wednesday Lenten dinners at my parish. The other thing I do every year is instead of receiving presents from friends for my birthday I chose a place in need. I not only enjoy helping others, but I also feel the need to help them.  As my last year at SSJ I feel privileged to be a Student Ambassador. I feel this position will give me an opportunity to give back to my school for everything they have done for me and to be able to represent SSJ well. 

Q. If you could change one thing about the world through volunteering what would it be?

A. Easy, to end hunger, especially in children.  

I have loved attending SSJ for the past 4 years and I have had a great time making new friends and experiencing some great things while receiving an amazing education. “

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