Hudswell dance student gains distinction in ballet exam

Olivia Richardson.

A 15-year-old dance student has gained a distinction in her advanced foundation ballet exam with the Royal Academy of Dance.

Olivia Richardson, from Hudswell, is a student at Janet Seymour’s Swaledale School of Dance, Dance City Newcastle’s CAT scheme and a GCSE dance student at Richmond School.

Janet said: “Olivia’s dedication to the art of ballet is remarkable. She has achieved exceptional results through her hard work and determination and has the potential to go far in her chosen career.”

Olivia has been successful in gaining a place on the spring intensive course with The English National Ballet School in London in February where she will learn repertoire and variations in ballet, contemporary dance, and choreography.

“This is a great opportunity to find out what life will be like studying ballet at this prestigious dance school,” Janet added.

Olivia said: “When I found out I had been accepted on the English National Ballet course I was so excited, I’m really looking forward to seeing the school and learning from the school’s teachers.

“My goal is to audition for a vocational dance school once I have completed my GCSEs next year and participating in intensive workshop will give me invaluable experience in preparing for this.”

In April she will be taking part in the daily intensive sessions for a week at Dance City in Newcastle, CAT (Centre for Advanced Training) where she trains four times a week during term time after school and at the weekends.

The intensive will help the students to focus on specialized dance skills

In May she will begin learning the repertoire for The Sleeping Beauty with The English Youth Ballet at Darlington Hippodrome performances in June.

These will be long days of dance training taking place over four weekends and half term. She is really looking forward to this as she was due to perform in their production of Cinderella which had to be cancelled last year due to the pandemic.


Olivia’s mum, Lucy

says, “We are very happy for Olivia to experience a taste of a professional

dance school, we want to support and enable her to achieve her goal to study

dance when she leaves school. She works very hard and has dedicated most of her

spare time to dance training so this will be a fantastic opportunity for her.”