Jessica's Swan Song

By Kristine Lane - Jun 01, 2017 13:19
When 17-year-old Jessica Alback performs her last dance at this year’s Queensland CSTD Dance Festival, it will be with a sense of pride and nostalgia.

Since the age of two, performing has become a way of life for this Grade 12 Southern Cross College student who aims to pursue a dancing career overseas or complete a Performing Studies degree at university next year.

“ I adore dancing and music as it allows me to tell a story and to express myself. I also love acting and singing, so musical theatre is where I want to be,” says Jess.

Member of Brisbane Junior Theatre and winner of last year’s Street Tap category at the Redcliffe Dance Festival, Jess will also be performing routines in the Cabaret, Contemporary and Slow Modern sections at this year’s festival. Usually training 5-6 days a week, 3-4 hours per day, Jess is no stranger to hard work.

“I have competed in numerous dancing competitions all over the state since a child, but my favourite is the one closest to home,” says Jess. “I have attended this festival every year since I was five, so it will be bittersweet as this could very well be my last one.”

This year’s festival is expected to attract at least 2,000 participants and 6,000 attendees. Organiser of the event, Sharon Alback, says, “This is an immensely popular competition, catering for dancers all the way from Bundaberg and Gympie to Toowoomba, Lismore and the Gold Coast. It allows talented performers to showcase their skills and accomplishments, picking up prizes, trophies and scholarships along the way.”

Running from 22nd June – 6th July at Mueller College’s Performing Arts Auditorium on Morris Road, Rothwell, the 12 day festival has three sessions per day with categories of Classical, Ballet, Contemporary, Jazz, Hip Hop, Song and Dance, Acrobatics, Cabaret, Novelty, and a Mature and Motivated section catering for mums. Both females and males of all ages will be performing solos, duos, trios, groups, troupes and school groups, all the way from novices through to the very proficient.

“I still get that buzz performing,” says Jess. “On stage, I’m in my own little world where time stops, and I can’t wait to experience it again at my old stomping ground — the QLD Dance Festival.”

Tickets can be bought at the door: $10 each session.

Further information: Sharon Alback