SHARE
Top talent . . . Oamaru highland dancer India McLay (16) received an overall ranking of ninth in the under-18 section at the recent New Zealand highland and national dancing championships in Christchurch. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

Oamaru dancers were jumping for joy after the recent New Zealand highland and national dancing championships in Christchurch.

Several dancers from the Kimberley Mavor School of Dance took part in the championships, held at the Aurora Centre for the Performing Arts.

India McLay (16) was a standout performer, achieving an overall national ranking of ninth in the under-18 New Zealand championship section, thanks to the points she accumulated across several dances.

She finished eighth in the highland reel and double time jig, seventh in the single time, 10th in the highland fling and Reel Of Tulloch, ninth in the sailor’s hornpipe, and sixth in the Irish hornpipe.

Mrs Mavor said she was “absolutely delighted” with India’s performance.

“Her achievement is right up there.”

While those who compete in the senior sections are given national rankings, junior dancers are not.

Neve Mavor (9) was named points champion in the under-10 section after she finished first in the 8-10 sword dance and sailor’s hornpipe, and third in the 8-10 years highland fling and Irish jig.

She also won the 9 years sword dance and was second in the sailor’s hornpipe.

Georgia Fraser (7) finished runner-up in the under-8 section, and Olivia Mavor (11) was runner-up in the under-12 section.

Lily Murphy (7), Isla Selfe (9), Lucy Mavor (9), Sarah Jamison (11), Katie Murphy (9) and Ella Fraser (10) all competed in the junior section.

The unluckiest at the competition was former Oamaru dancer Tannah McLay, who is now based in Dunedin.

She pulled her Achilles tendon while dancing the highland fling and was forced to withdraw from the 18 and over New Zealand championship section.

Kendyll and Mackenzie Taylor also danced in the 18 and over section, but did not place.

Mrs Mavor said the results exceeded expectations.

“I’ve never had three juniors in the junior prizegiving at the championships before . . . it was pretty awesome.

“I couldn’t be prouder of the girls. They really worked hard to achieve what hey have. It’s all you ask as a teacher that they go and give their best. Every single pupil of mine that went gave it 100%.”