Sophie dances her way to Disneyland Paris

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Gore girl Sophie Davis (10) has been invited to perform at the Gathering of Scottish Highland Dance in Paris next month.

The event will be held at Disneyland Paris.

Sophie, who said it was the “trip of a lifetime”, will travel to Paris with the Julie Hawke School of Dance on a trip lasting from November 20 until December 3.

“Two years ago, I won the overall New Zealand Champion under 8 years and last year I was overall runner-up for 8-10 years,” she said.

Sophie said winning these was her greatest achievement.

Sophie’s mother, Jayne Davis, said her daughter was lucky to get to dance with the Julie Hawke Dance School.

“Sophie’s dancing teacher, Lynette Mitchell, of Dunedin, was approached by Julie Hawke and asked if Sophie would be interested in joining her dance school from Christchurch to attend the Gathering of Scottish Highland Dancing in Disneyland Paris this November,” Mrs Davis said.

“Lynette is attending also and has three other pupils joining them, with a total of 26 dancers,” she said.

“Although this is the trip of a lifetime, it also has a considerable cost .. to attend.”

Sophie said fundraising had included selling cheese rolls, raffles and other ventures.

“However, there is still a considerable amount we will have to fund ourselves.”

In her time as a dancer Sophie has danced in many places.

“I recently danced for the Mataura Kilties [Hokonui Celtic Pipe Band] at their fundraising event, I have also danced for the elderly at Windsor Park through St Mary School and Resthaven.”

Mrs Davis said she was “very proud” of her daughter.

“She works very hard on her dancing and it’s great to see her get an opportunity like this from it.”

Sophie recently applied for funding from the Mataura Licensing Trust (MLT) to help with her travels.

The trust granted Sophie $1000.

MLT board member Janine Cunningham said Sophie was “brilliant”.

“It seems very prestigious and to be invited is amazing,” Mrs Cunningham said.

Sophie said she was extremely grateful for the grant from the MLT.

The dancer said she was looking forward to the rides at Disneyland but also being able to be a part of the “amazing event”.