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Help Mia’s Disney World dream come true

Five young dancers have the opportunity of a lifetime to dance among the stars in the annual Disneyland Parade.

Mia Johnstone (11), Lizelle Wentzel (11), Bianca Taljaard (13), Tenieke Oberholzer (8) and Leani Strydom (14) were invited to participate in the auspicious Christmas Parade in Orlando, Florida, in December after being selected in an audition hosted by Dance Connections SA.

Mia, a grade 6 learner from Laerskool CR Swart, has been dancing since grade 1, at first under the direction of Ms Nadia Pieterse from Pivot Dance Studios and later Ms Leana Pelser from HTS Middelburg.

According to Mia’s mother Jolandi, this tour is a great achievement and one that they as parents are very proud of.
“It is the opportunity of a lifetime and one that isn’t likely to present itself again,” Jolandi said.

While visiting Disney World alone is every child’s wildest dream, being able to dance on an international stage is an opportunity that Mia’s parents don’t want to deny her, and therefore they need help.

“The cost of her participation works out to between R85 000 and R90 000, and while that amount seems impossible, we have worked out that if 30 companies could sponsor R3 000 each, then Mia can attend the Disneyland Christmas Parade. The tour will not only give the dancers an opportunity to visit Disney World but includes a dance in the holiday-themed parade, a dance masterclass with industry professionals, as well as a performance on stage in the Theatre of the Stars, in the Disney Hollywood Studios.”

While Mia’s parents are trying their best to secure the funds for her tour, the other four girls will likely not attend due to the enormous costs.

Lizelle’s mother Chantell said that she has been dancing since she was three after being taught by Ms Jolene Badenhorst.
Lizelle, Bianca, Tenieke and Leani are all currently being taught by Ms Badenhorst at the Elite Dance Studios.

“We are very proud of Lizelle being chosen but she will likely not attend because she will be performing in the IFAA Championships in Mauritius in September,” Chantell explained.

The 8-year-old Tenieke, with her Protea Colours, has also been dancing from the age of three under the direction of Ms Badenhorst.

“We are very proud of her achievement and she loves dancing. She will forget to eat, as long as she can dance,” Maritha, her mother, explained.

Bianca Taljaard has also been dancing with Ms Badenhorst since the age of three.
“It is a very big honour to be chosen for this event,” her mother Annelize said.

The young Leani, a learner from HTS, will also not be attending but her mother is glad for the exposure, “Dance Connections SA hosted a workshop on the day of the audition and the main reason for sending her was to offer her some exposure in dancing,” Marinette said.

Leani is another student at Elite Dance Studios.

• Anyone who would like to assist with donations towards Mia’s Disney World dream can visit her Back-A-Buddy account by visiting the following link:

https://www.backabuddy.co.za/campaign/get-mia-to-disneyland-dance-parade

 

 

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