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Written by Jia Ying Chia |

We’ve heard the saying, ‘When pigs fly’, but what about vegetables and fruit dancing? As final rehearsals for the Asia Ballet Academy Brunei’s first local production go underway at the Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) Pro-Chancellor Hall, my inner child was right there with the onions, carrots and lemons dancing across the stage.

Featuring over 60 young dancers from Brunei and abroad, this inaugural performance of ‘Chipollino’ also marks the first anniversary of the Malaysian ballet school’s foray into the Brunei market. “With a growing interest from children around Brunei, Chipollino is not merely a performance; it’s a vibrant showcase of budding talent, an embodiment of our aspirations, and reflection of our dedication to nurturing the performing arts,” explained Shizreen Saleh, Academy Manager of Asia Ballet Academy Brunei.

“Through this performance, we aim to not only delight our audiences but also to encourage and inspire more young dancers to explore the manifold benefits of dance. It’s our hope that this ballet will ignite a spark of artistic passion and a spirit of resilience among the children of Brunei.”

Dances in the stage production echoed these sentiments, saying they were grateful for the opportunity to take part in such a large performance and to be able to showcase the beauty of the art form to a wider audience and both genders. Unsurprisingly, there are also many parents who signed their children up for ballet as an extracurricular activity citing the dance style as a good way to encourage social developments, discipline and love for the arts. Asia Ballet Academy encourages all ages to sign up and even has free trial classes for anyone wishing to give ballet a go!

IG: @asiaballetacademybrunei


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