Wexford performer secures a place with the Irish National Youth Ballet

Paul Whitty’s dedication to his craft is such that when it came to securing a place with the Irish National Youth Ballet (INYB), he chose to do it on his own. At just 17, he applied and auditioned for a place in the country’s premier youth ballet company, even organizing his own ski lifts to and from the capital. And this week the Barntown student, who will be studying for his Leaving Cert at St Peter’s College this year, has accepted and signed a contract which means he will start and train and perform with INYB with immediate effect.

When he wants to do something, he does it,” said Carmel, Paul’s mother. “I think he will eventually have a career in acting and dance, his hope is to go to one of the music schools, maybe Dun Laoighaire.”

At the age of six, Paul’s first foray into the performing arts saw him play a munchkin in an Oyster Lane production of The Wizard of Oz in 2013. He has since performed with the Wexford Light Opera Society (WLOS) and the Wexford School of Ballet and Performing Arts. (WSBPA) where it continues to this day/.

“We’ve always encouraged him to do whatever he wants, you need that kind of encouragement,” Carmel says. “He is a very ambitious and dedicated youngster and it has helped him achieve his future ambitions to further his dancing career. The youngest of our four boys and from a young age he has entertained us with his shows behind the kitchen curtains, her grandparents being her biggest fans.We are all extremely proud of these achievements as her commitment to the arts is very evident at a young age.

Carmel praised everyone at the Wexford School of Ballet and Performing Arts (WSBPA) for their work in guiding and mentoring Paul throughout his time there, and its Music Director Suzanne O’Leary praise of the talented young man.

“He has been a student with us for many years and trains weekly in ballet, modern and contemporary dance at our studios on John Street,” says Suzanne. “He will still continue to train with WSBPA and in fact in December he will be dancing the lead role of The Nutcracker Prince for our two performances of The Nutcracker Kingdom at the National Opera. Paul is a dedicated and hardworking young man with whom it is pleasant to work. He has grown stronger and stronger over the years, excelling in his exams and delivering stunning performances.

“He has a real flair for the stage and it’s very obvious that he loves performing. All of Paul’s dance teachers and friends are so proud and excited for him and can’t wait to see him perform later this year in the Irish National Youth Ballet Company.

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