Star dancer wins medal and praise in the U.S.Promising ballerina Park Sae-eun, 17, has shown good results in international competitions recently. Sae-eun won a silver medal at the USA International Ballet Competition in Jackson, Mississippi. No one won a gold medal at the event.
A sophomore at Seoul Arts High School, Park was ranked second in the 16 to 19 years old category at the inaugural Beijing International Ballet Competition, which closed on Oct. 8. The Beijing competition is one of several cultural events set up by the Chinese government to increase its presence on the international cultural stage. A total of 52 people from 18 countries competed in that event.
Matz Skoog, the chief judge of the competition andWayne Eagling the artistic director of English National Ballet, praised Sae-eun for her excellent performance and stage manner and for dancing with the dignity of a princess.
Park said she was not always such a top performer. When she was in an elementary school, she attended a ballet school run by the Korea National Ballet. There, she had to stay in the same ballet class for two years. When she was in Seoul Arts High School, she stayed in the lowest class because she was shorter than 140 centimeters (4.5 feet) and fell behind her peers; she is now 167 centimeters tall. To overcome her disadvantage, she practiced harder than other students and tried to memorize production notes by writing memos in her notebook, she said.
by Choi Min-woo