Charlie Tait was only 3 when cancer claimed one of her kidneys, and it was at this tender age that the young girl discovered a love for ballet, a passion that would carry her through the hardest years of her life.
Today, she is 11 years old and on the other side of an 8-year battle with Wilms’ tumour, a form of cancer affecting the kidneys.
As a recipient of Cancer Research UK’s Kids & Teens Star Awards, an initiative aimed at honouring young cancer survivors, Charlie got to achieve a dearly held wish: dancing with professional ballet soloists Yuhui Choe and Benjamin Ella of the prestigious The Royal Ballet.
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Joining Yuhui and Benjamin in rehearsal for the upcoming dance production, The Nutcracker, Charlie got to experience what professional dancing is like.
Dancing has been a huge inspiration for the young girl, who says it was her love of ballet that had given her a sense of purpose and strength throughout her battle with cancer.
"For any other kids going through cancer, I just want them to follow their dreams and when they're feeling down to hold on to those dreams," Charlie told BBC News.
Her mother, Merran Tait, was also in attendance and was elated about her daughter's experience.
"Charlie was what she called 'nervous-cited' about meeting the dancers, but seeing her dancing with the ballerinas was just wonderful."
Blown away by Charlie's talent and spirit, Yuhui said “Charlie is super talented. She’s so gifted and to think what she’s been through already! She has so much potential and I can’t think of anybody that deserves more than her to win a Star Award.”
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