DN Spotlight: Eilidh Stewart has been coming to DN Dance since July 2011, when she was just 2 years old. She is one of our longest attending students and we’ve had the privilege of watching her grow into an talented and graceful dancer who is truly lovely young girl and a pleasure to teach. Eilidh has performed in every dance show with us, and even though she had broken her arm shortly before our last show, she was so determined to be on stage that she performed with a cast on. Today we’ve had the pleasure of hearing from Eilidh and her mum Donna about their time and experiences at DN Dance over the past decade.
When did your DN Dance journey begin?
Donna – “I really wanted to find a fun dance class for Eilidh that was close to where we lived. I think I saw a banner outside Craiglockhart Tennis Centre advertising DN Dance and contacted Nicky to see if there was a space in one of the preschool dance classes for 2 year olds, the class was called Tiny Twinkles at the time. Eilidh’s first class was a drop-in class over the summer because even back then there was a big demand for classes out with the term time.”
What are your earliest memories of DN Dance?
Eilidh – “My earliest memory is being in the first DN Dance Show, The Toybox when i was 3 years old. I was dressed in a bear outfit which was a bit big for me and we were dancing to the gummy bear song. It was my first time being on a stage performing in front of lots of people and i can remember seeing my family in the audience and being excited.”
Donna – “My earliest memory is being in Tiny Twinkles (now Tiny Dancers). It was a parent and toddler dance class where the adults stay with the children due to them being so young. I can remember running around the studio with Eilidh encouraging her to jump into the hoops and wave the pom poms.“
What has kept you coming to dancing for so long?
Eilidh – “I find it really good fun and I think all the teachers are great. Also, i’ve really enjoyed coming through all the different levels with the friends i have made.”
Donna – “Nicky and the other dance teachers are brilliant with the children and are fantastic teachers. Right from the start, they have encouraged Eilidh and made the classes fun even though they are also a lot of hard work. They have the respect of the children who always seem to be listening intently in classes without being too serious and strict. Also, as there are a number of day/time options for the various dance classes and as they move to different levels, I have always been able to easily find classes over the years which fit in with my working hours and childcare arrangements.”
What are your best memories from your time with us?
Eilidh – “When i broke my arm a few days before the Newsflash dance show in 2018, I was really upset that I couldn’t do the show. However, Nicky and Jane agreed that if I felt like i could do the ballet dance routine then they were happy for me to do it because it was nice and gentle and they could adapt the bits for me that i couldn’t do. I wasn’t able to do the tap routine however, it felt amazing when i went on the stage to do the ballet dance with the rest of the class and i could see all the people in the audience.“
Donna – “My favourite memory is when Eilidh was in the first DN Dance show, the Toybox, when she was 3 years old, dressed up as a bear. There were only 4 from her class who were able to do the show that year and they looked so tiny on the stage. I wasn’t sure what to expect as they were so young and was so proud of them when they did the routine.”
What’s your favourite class and why?
Eilidh – “My favourite class is the tap dance because i love the way its so energetic and noisy.”
How does coming to DN Dance make you feel?
Eilidh – “I feel excited when i go to dance class as i love the sense of achievement when i learn a whole routine and can perform it perfectly.”
What’s been your proudest achievements at DN Dance?
Eilidh– “My proudest achievement was getting a distinction in my Grade 1 Ballet exam. In the previous exams i had done i got a pass or merit and so it felt amazing when i got the results and it made all the practicing worthwhile.”
What positives has dancing had on your daughter?
Donna – “Dancing has been great for showing Eilidh how you can improve in something over time if you focus and put the effort in and it culminates in achieving a goal, whether that’s sitting the dance exams or taking part in the dance show. It also helps to keep her fit and has made her confident enough to perform in front of a big audience on a stage.”
If someone asked you to describe what DN Dance was like, what would you say?
Eilidh – “DN Dance is fun, energetic and all the teachers are very patient and supportive.”
Donna – “I’d say its a great place to meet people, make new friends and learn something new which helps to keep you healthy. There is a family friendly atmosphere and there is always a relaxed and positive vibe around the studio. The teachers are extremely approachable if you ever need to talk to them about anything.”
What other things do you enjoy about DN Dance?
Eilidh – “I love the summer schools that DN Dance do and over the years I’ve attended the Wizard of Oz, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Hairspray, Mary Poppins and Mama Mia. Its a great way to spend a week over the summer holidays and finishing with a show for your family at the end of the week.”
We’ve loved shining the DN Spotlight on Eilidh and her mum Donna about their time at DN Dance. Her teacher Miss Jane describes Eilidh as “a super enthusiastic hard working student who brings an infections energy to every class”. Eilidh has been an important part of so many fabulous memories over the last decade and we’re looking forward to making many more, starting with our 10th Anniversary show, Stardust.
A huge thank you to Eilidh and her mum Donna from all the DN team for everything you bring to the #DNDanceFamily