As early as she can remember Jaimee Heffernan wanted to be a dancer.
The Eurongilly 17-year-old’s efforts are paying off as she prepares to perform in M&T In Motion’s FORTE from next week.
“I started dancing when I was four, but I gave it up when I was 12 and didn’t go back to it for about three years,” Miss Heffernan said.
The hiatus was prompted by the untimely closing of her dance school in Junee. She didn’t take it up again until she moved to high school in Wagga.
“I lost most of my fitness, but I knew I was serious and my teacher knew it too, so we worked really hard and got there.”
Miss Heffernan’s original hopes to become a ballerina were thwarted by situations beyond her control.
“Ballet is pretty strict with its standards and my physique is just more contemporary.”
Her acceptance into M&T In Motion’s young artist program means Miss Heffernan and five other dancers from around the country will have the opportunity to work alongside renowned choreographer Tim Podesta and Royal Ballet Company principal artist Mara Galeazzi.
With her commitment to 30 hours of training each week, it has also meant that she’s had to leave school.
“It’s so nerve-racking to be [on stage] with these professionals, I’m striving to be like them and hopefully one day I’ll be better.”