Zoe’s flying high in tourism ads

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A talented ballerina from Eglinton has been chosen to showcase Derry in the Northern Ireland Tourist Board’s campaign for the City of Culture year.

Young Zoe Kyte, who’s just 13, was picked from a number of candidates to enhance their ad campaigns with her grace and elegance.

She explains, “My dance teacher Venesssa Chapman, who runs the Rainbow School of Dance, heard that NITB was looking for a ballet dancer for their ads and put my name forward. Initially they wanted an adult dancer but they agreed to let me try out for the part and I was surprised and shocked to hear that I had been chosen to play a part in the television advert.

“It was filmed in January and it has been really strange to see myself on tv.”

The NITB were so taken by Zoe’s beautiful dancing that they asked if she would be photographed for their print campaign, and in March this year the Limavady Grammar student found herself on billboards and in newspapers right across the country.

It’s no surprise to hear that both Zoe’s mum Sandra and her dance teacher Venessa are incredibly proud of her.

Her mum, Sandra Kyte said, “I am so proud of her. She constantly surprises me and she has been so dedicated to her dancing over the last ten years. She loves it and it’s lovely to see her dedication and time paying off. She’s quite a shy girl normally, but when she gets on stage she simply lights up. It’s been a brilliant confidence builder and Venessa is so encouraging to all the dancers.”

Dance teacher Venessa said, “Zoe has always shown great poise and elegance and it’s great to see this portrayed so well in the adverts. In addition to this great opportunity, Zoe has also shown great promise in recent competitions in Birmingham.

“In fact, she came first in the Tap and Acrobatics categories, second in Modern dance and third in Ballet, beating over 80 people in each category from all over the UK.

“Her success at these competitions has gained her a prestigious place to dance at Blackpool in August at the Tap Championships, as well as a scholarship with the Theatre Dance Council presenting the Associated Board of Dance in Birmingham later this year.”

Other local dancers have also placed well at the competitions. They include Nicole Grant from Buncrana based dance school Jazz It Up, who came second in Acrobatics and fourth in Modern. Amy Gilgore from the Rainbow School of Dance placed fourth in Acrobatics, while three other girls, Tara McDermott, Caoimhe Kenny and Aine O’Riordan were asked to re-dance.