Two young ballerinas from a Helensburgh dance school are “super excited” for their future as members of a prestigious ballet institution.

Friends Charlotte and Layla – both aged 10 - from the Claire Burns School of Dance were ecstatic to find they have been accepted into the Scottish Ballet Junior Associate Class.

The girls will train with some of Scotland’s best instructors and get the chance to appear in shows such as the Nutcracker – Layla’s dream production.

Layla said: “I have always dreamed of being in the Nutcracker and when I found out I got into Scottish Ballet I was super excited.

“I can’t wait to start back and I’m so happy to do some classes with my friend.”

Helensburgh Advertiser: Charlotte and Layla show off their skillsCharlotte and Layla show off their skills (Image: Claire Burns School of Dance)

Layla was accepted into Scottish Ballet in 2022, but had to audition again for this year’s intake - as all dancers in the group are required to.

Mum Emma added: “She was determined to get in because it is her absolute dream to be in the Nutcracker, and to get in a second year was also fabulous.

“It’s her dream to be on stage at some point in her life. Any opportunity she gets to perform, she volunteers herself for it.

“She’s definitely hard-working, and I was just making sure that she was doing everything she could to get in for a second year.”

This is Charlotte’s first year auditioning for Scottish Ballet and she is thrilled to be one step closer to her dream of being a professional ballerina.

Her mum Stephanie said: “Me and her dad are just absolutely delighted for her, and she’s delighted herself and just really looking forward to the challenge.

“She wants to be a ballet dancer and she wants to just be on the stage in general.

“She’s been with Claire for almost eight years - since we moved to Dumbarton.

“Claire doesn’t put any pressure on them at all there’s so much praise and so much encouragement – they’re actually a dance family and it’s so lovely.”

Helensburgh Advertiser: The friends are excited to start the classes togetherThe friends are excited to start the classes together (Image: Claire Burns School of Dance)

The girls’ teacher Claire couldn’t be prouder of their achievement as she encouraged them to audition.

Claire said: “Both girls won the Most Promising award at my show last year and have absolutely grabbed that with both hands and improved so much.

“This is Layla's second year getting into the Scottish Ballet Junior Associate class and Charlotte's first year of auditioning.

“Scottish Ballet auditions are very strict, and discipline and dedication are a must to even think about auditioning.

“It's a real honour for both girls to be chosen to learn from the best.”

Claire also pushed the girls to audition for a production of Treasure Island at the Theatre Royal, which they appeared in over two dates in July.

The Claire Burns School of Dance – which has classes in Helensburgh, Dumbarton and Alexandria – was established 28 years ago and has trained 18 Scottish junior and senior champions in tap, ballet and modern.

The school holds tap, ballet, Highland, modern, cheerleading, acro, and hip-hop classes.

For more information, contact 07931 153570 or message their Facebook or Instagram pages.