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Former PH street kids win at Asian Grand Prix ballet competition

Rappler.com
Former street kids Edmar Sumera and Benedict Sabularse are among 12 young Filipino dancers who won awards and scholarships at the international competition

EDMAR AND BENEDICT. Former street kids Edmar Sumera and Benedict Sabularse win big at the 2016 Asian Grand Prix. Photo courtesy of Jeffrey Espejo

MANILA, Philippines – Twelve young ballet dancers won awards and scholarships at the 2016 Asian Grand Prix, an international ballet competition, and among them were former street kids Edmar Sumera and Benedict Sabularse. (READ: The inspiring story of 2 street kids who became amazing ballet dancers)

Edmar won a silver medal, while Benedict placed 4th in the Junior B Division of the international ballet competition. 

Benedict also won the Fonteyn Prize, a special award, while Edmar was offered a summer school scholarship at the Elmhurst School for Dance.

According to their teacher, Jeffrey Espejo, the director of the New Zealand School of Dance is also interested in offering them both a long-term scholarship.

The two boys came from struggling families before they entered the Tuloy Foundation, a non-profit organization that shelters and educates street kids. They then took up ballet at the Academy One Music and Dance Center after entering Tuloy. 

Before competing in the Asian Grand Prix, the two boys were in London, as they had scholarships to the Royal Ballet School’s Covent Garden summer classes.

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The Asian Grand Prix took place from August 8 to 12 at the Y Theatre in Hong Kong, with the Winners Gala taking place on August 13. 

Aside from the two, Shaira May Comeros from the Philippines also won the Most Promising Female Dancer Award as well as 5th place in the Junior B Division.

Here’s the full list of winners from the Philippines:

  • Most Promising Female Dancer Award – Shaira May Comeros 
  • Senior A 5th Place – Ana Andes
  • Senior B 4th Place – Raymond Salcedo
  • Senior B 5th Place – Rodney Catubay
  • Junior B Division Silver Medal – Edmar Sumera
  • Junior B Division 4th Place – Benedict Sabularse
  • Junior B Division 5th Place – Shaira May Comeros
  • Junior B Division 6thPlace – Alvin Dictado 
  • Junior A Division Silver Medal – Nicole Kaludine Barroso
  • Pre-competitive 3 Division 6th Place – Natalia Tordesillas
  • Pre-competitive 2 Division – Loraine Gaile Jarlega
  • Pre-Competitive 1 Division 6th Place – Zabrinna Jacqueline Santiago
  • Fonteyn Prize – Raymond Salcedo
  • Fonteyn Prize – Benedict Sabularse

The Junior A Division is for 13- to 14-year-olds and the Junior B Division is for 15- to 16-year-olds.

Those in the Pre-competitive Division 1 were 7 to 8 years old, Division 2 were 9 to 10 years old, and Division 3 were 11 to 12 years old.

Here are the scholarships offered to the Filipino dancers:

  • Canada’s National Ballet School summer scholarship – Rosanne Paz Melencio
  • Elmhurst School for Dance summer school scholarship – Nicole Klaudine Barroso
  • Elmhurst School for Dance summer school scholarship – Edmar Sumera
  • Shanghai Dance School full scholarship – Nicole Kaudine Barroso

Congratulations to Benedict, Edmar, and all the winners! – Rappler.com

Editor’s note: A previous version of this article failed to mention Alvin Dictado and Zabrinna Jacqueline Santiago. This has been corrected. We regret the error.