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Young Achiever: Vidya born to perform

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Vidya Cannonier-Watson (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Vidya Cannonier-Watson has grown, literally, by leaps and bounds.

Watching her mother, Sophia Cannonier, teach ballet classes when she was 3, Vidya, now 10, recalled: “I asked her if I could start.”

This August, she heads off to attend the Tring Park School for the Performing Arts, in Hertfordshire, England, where making the grade is no easy task.

Her older brother, Ravi, also a dancer, has inspired her — but Vidya was also taken with “the achievement of it, of being able to do more difficult things as I got older”.

Standing on the tips of her toes requires a high pain threshold, but the jumps and intricate moves “make you feel light, and less bummed out if you’re having a bad day”.

It helps that her father, Michael Watson, is an expert physiotherapist.

Vidya’s favourite ballet show right now is Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. “I love fun ballet with costumes and a lot of props,” she said.

Vidya is gifted at singing and acting and should be well suited to Tring, which covers a wide range of performing arts.

She is a veteran of musicals, and her audition monologue from You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown won judge’s hearts.

Vidya turns 11 just before she heads off to Britain to start the first form, and her options include theatre.

“She has to make a choice,” Ms Cannonier said, “but the great thing about Tring is you have those choices.”

Vidya Cannonier-Watson (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
Vidya Cannonier-Watson (Photograph by Akil Simmons)