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Prix De Lausanne’s Golden Girl
By Grace Edwards
At only 16, full-time ballet student Hannah O’Neill overcame a field of approximately 80 dancers from around the world to become the first student from the Australian Ballet School and only the second New Zealander to win the grand prize at the prestigious international ballet competition the Prix de Lausanne in February.
Arguably the most significant international competition for exceptional young dancers, former winners of the competition have enjoyed illustrious careers in such companies as the Royal Ballet, with other candidates receiving offers and scholarships to distinguished full-time ballet schools all over the world. Dance Informa’s Grace Edwards caught up with Hannah on her return to Melbourne.
What an amazing achievement Hannah!
Tell us about the different stages of the competition.
First, I had to do a video audition in June in order to get into the Semi Finals and after that we had a week of classes in classical and contemporary in Lausanne, Switzerland. The judges sat in on some of these classes and then we performed our solos in what would have been the Semi- Finals, I guess. The final candidates were announced that night and then the finals were held the next day.
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