by Jessica Schremmer
DANCING: Young dancer Brooke Derksen, 12, was awarded Shaping Lives dance studio's Dancer of the Year award last month.
Shaping Lives dance studio director Chantahl Stedman said Brooke was extremely diligent in her practise and rehearsals.
"It was very clear that she was putting in a lot of time at home, she had excellent class attendance and she is an extremely good role model to other students,” Stedman said.
"She is very kind and uplifting and is always ready to help.
"The qualities of the Dancer of the Year are not only about the skills and improvement of the dancer but also their dedication and attitude towards dance and the dance industry.
"It is her passion and personality towards dance alongside the skills she has developed especially throughout this year.”
Brooke said she didn't expect to win the award.
"I was pretty shocked to tell the truth, I didn't think I was going to get it,” Brooke said.
"I am very happy though that I got it.”
Brooke started dancing when she was three years old and dances today contemporary, jazz and acrobatics.
She said she likes contemporary the most.
"I like how you can lose yourself when you are dancing, like nothing else matters,” she said.
Brooke also choreographed a contemporary dance to All of Me, by John Lennon.