Phoebe Russell, who joined Harrogate Ladies’ College on a dance scholarship, placed first and second in a national dance competition in Southampton in July, quickly followed by claiming second and third place in a national competition at the Blackpool Winter Gardens.
At 16 years old, she was the youngest competitor in her age group which spans 16-29 year olds.
Phoebe excels in Ballroom and Latin dance and even designs her own costumes for her Pro-Am competitions.
She started ballet at just two years old and developed her love and passion for Ballroom and Latin long before the phenomenon of the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing show.
Phoebe plans to enter international competitions and one day dreams of setting up her own dance school in her home town of Harrogate, as well as planning to become one of the few people in the world to specialise in dance physiotherapy at university.
The year 11 pupil is even hosting dance lessons for fellow students in one of the school’s boarding houses.
Phoebe has credited her sports teachers at the school for extra help in core strength work and exercise: “I absolutely love it, it’s given me great strength and also tenacity.
“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 and Latin as a much younger child, I knew I wanted to do it, and then my first teacher, Darren Hodgson at The Harrogate Dance Centre saw something in me and encouraged me.”
Mrs Sylvia Brett, Principle of Harrogate Ladies’ College, said the whole school is thrilled to see Phoebe’s remarkable progress.
“She has an amazing sparkly talent which shines through, and which inspires younger pupils to really believe in themselves and follow their dreams.”