Three South African Girls’ Journey to Millennium Dance Complex
Pulse EXP TRIO is made up of three young dancers: Jeanne Bissett and Kathleen Van Rooyen, both 8 years old, and Bianca Fourie, 7 years old. The girls are talented with a passion for all styles of dance with their favorite being Hip Hop. They study at the popular Pulse Dance School in Johannesburg, South Africa where they got the opportunity to compete at the well known South Africa Championships of Performing Arts (SACOPA) in April 2015. Jeanne, Kathleen and Bianca trained 4 to 6 hours a day for weeks prior to the competition. Their training paid off. They competed and won their place on the South Africa Team to complete at World Championships of Performing Arts (WCOPA) in Los Angeles. WCOPA is many times sited as the “Talent Olympics” and is held every year with actors, singers, dancers, musicians and models competing from more than 50 countries. Now the pressure was on the Pulse Exp Trio but these three little girls endured to win the “Gold” for junior dance in the categories of Hip Hop and musical character but the story does not end there.
WCOPA provides over $400,000 in acting, music and dance scholarships. I am proud to say that over the past five years, our own Millennium Dance Complex has given out thousands of dollars in scholarships to young dancers at WCOPA. Millennium is one of the reasons why the NoHo Arts District has become an international training area. At WCOPA’s all day Boot Camp, Jeanne, Kathleen and Bianca were dancing at the Hip Hop workshop and Kenya Clay (Millennium instructor) spotted these three talented girls and gave them each a one-month scholarship to Millennium.
Nine months later, the girls came back to L.A. to take class at Millennium. With them came their mothers who truly deserve to be recognized for their unbridled support of their children. All three moms spurted out the same thing “this is a once in a lifetime opportunity and we had to do this for our kids.” The moms could not stop talking about the confidence their children gained from this experience which something/nobody could take that away from them.
Now, what did Jeanne, Kathleen and Bianca feel about their experience? “Our favorite part of our experience in Los Angeles was dancing at MDC, especially with dancers like Kenya Clay and Anze Skrube.” Both moms and girls said, “We loved celebrating July 4th like Americans.”
It was a long road from South Africa to NoHo, with a lot of people helping these girls get here. Special Thanks to Dr. Ellen Roux of South Africa Championships of Performing Arts and Griff O’Neil, Founder/CEO of World Championships of Performing Arts who had the vision and determination to give emerging artists the opportunity to compete on the world stage. BRAVO!
We look forward to seeing these young girls come back to dance with us in the NoHo Arts District.
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