13th October 2021 — A talented dancer from Harrogate is set to be a rising star in the UK Championships. Phoebe Russell was placed 1st and 2nd place in a national dance competition in Southampton, quickly followed by 2nd and 3rd place in a national competition in Blackpool Winter Gardens. At 16, she was the youngest competitor in her age group which spans 16-29 year olds.
Phoebe, who joined Harrogate Ladies’ College on a dance scholarship, plans to become one of the few people in the world to specialise in dance physio at university.
She excels in Ballroom and Latin dance and even designs her own costumes for her pro-am competitions.
She started ballet at just two and developed her passion for Ballroom and Latin long before the phenomenon of the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing show.
Phoebe plans to enter international competition and one day dreams of setting up her own dance school in her home town of Harrogate.
Phoebe, who is a Year 11 pupil at the school, is even hosting dance lessons for fellow pupils in one of the school’s boarding houses.
And she credited sports teachers at the school for the extra help in core strength work and exercise.
“I absolutely love it, it’s given me great strength and also perseverance.
“I really enjoy the competitions and the training in Manchester every weekend with Amy and Alex at A Class dance Studios.
“Dance teaches you many things and as soon as I saw Ballroom & Latin as a much younger child, I knew I wanted to do it, and my first teacher Darren Hodgson at The Harrogate Dance Centre saw something in me. He encouraged me, telling me to do it again and again!” she said.
Mrs Sylvia Brett, Principal of the School, said the whole school was thrilled to see Phoebe’s remarkable progress.
“She has an amazing raw talent which shines through, and which inspires younger pupils to really believe in themselves and follow their dreams,” she said.
“Phoebe has shown real grit and determination in her pursuit of her ambition and great physical and mental resilience alongside her school work.”