PHILIPSBURG – On May 2, Co-Director of the National Institute of Arts (NIA) Arlene Halley and dancers Dashaun Prince, Jeremiah David, Keona Inguenaud, Kiara Vanterpool, and Naomi Warsop left for France to join NIA teacher Peggy Oulerich, and teammates Lian Borsje and Zoe van Zadelhoff for the National Confederation de Danse, which takes place May 4-7, in Dijon, France.
The trip was made possible through generous donations from the private sector and the Government of St. Maarten, Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth and Sports.
NIA would like to extend profound gratitude to GEBE, St. Maarten Development Fund, Princess Juliana International Airport (PJIA), Dow Musical Foundation, Henderson Insurance, Marlene Mingo, Seven Seas Water Corp., Meredith Boekhoudt, Norman and Sue Wathey, Island Gems, Travel Planners and Winair, for lending their financial support.
Getting to this point was not an easy task. Beginning with St. Barths the dancers and their parents worked diligently to raise donations close to US $10,000 of the total $28,000 needed to compete in the regionals in St. Barths and at the national level in France.
Seven students qualified to compete in the National Competition in France. NIA students will be competing in the 4-day event, which features over 2,500 entries from the French Federation.