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Sister's Swan Lake performance is helping West Wing
11:00am Saturday 21st September 2013 in News
TEENAGER Laura Thompson is watching her sister Rachel with pride as she performs in a special production of Swan Lake.
The 15-year-old from Chilton near Didcot, who spent the first nine months of her life in Oxford Children’s Hospital, went to the English Youth Ballet performance at Oxford’s New Theatre last night. The production, being performed again today, is raising money for equipment for the children’s hospital, part of the West Wing at Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital.
Laura, who has a condition called Vacterl Association, was born with her oesophagus joined to her trachea, a hole in her heart and a need for surgery on her stomach. She has had around 10 operations already in her life, including surgery on her spine.
She told the Oxford Mail: “It is really good because the hospital is local. Most people forget about the hospital and usually give to national charities. It is nice that the English Youth Ballet is raising money.”
Her sister Rachel, who is in the production, added: “It is good because it is not just about the ballet. It is about helping the children’s hospital as well.”
Mum Sylvie Thompson, 46, said: “The staff and doctors at the children’s hospital have been excellent. Laura has had a couple of life-threatening experiences but she has pulled through every time. She is a little fighter.”
The English Youth Ballet dancers visited the hospital in Headington on September 13 and ran a workshop with children there.
Penny Hambridge, Children’s Hospital fundraiser, said: “It is wonderful when local children show their support for the hospital, and a performance like this is so inspiring.”
The cast of Swan Lake features 122 dancers from Oxfordshire performing alongside eight principal dancers and 46 of the cast were either born at the John Radcliffe Hospital or have received treatment there.
- There are two performances today at 2.30pm and 7.30pm.. Call 0844 871 3020 for tickets.
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