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Young dancer raising money to train in London

A LOCAL teenager is raising money to go to a performing arts school in London, after he was accepted but is too young to apply for student loans.

Leo Horler, who lives in Coleford and goes to Writhlington School, has a place at the prestigious Bird College and is trying to raise £10,000 to help fund his living costs and tuition fees for the three year course.

Whilst studying at school for his GCSEs, 15 year-old Leo dances every day with companies in Frome, Somerset, Swindon and Bristol. He has been a performer since he was four years old and specialises in ballet, tap and contemporary dance.

Leo says, “I am trying to raise the money to help me realise my dream after dedicating my life so far to my passion for the performing arts.

“As I will only be 16, I am not eligible to receive an educational loan and I need help to live away from home and fully cover my educational fees.

“I hope to begin the course in September and I need to pay the first term fees in July.

“As I am doing my GCSEs and dance exams in the next two months, the pressure to find funding is  high.

“I really hope that there are some kind people who love performance and the theatre and can help me to be part of a performance that they enjoy in the future. Hopefully I will be able to finally train full-time and progress to the next steps in my career.”

Leo has been offered theatre school places before, but couldn’t get the funding to go.

For years he has been part of productions of all sizes, performing on stages ranging from his school to Bristol Hippodrome and the Wales Millenium Centre in Cardiff, where he performed in ‘Lord of the Flies’ in 2014.

In August, Leo will play a leading role in Frome Musical Theatre Company’s next youth production.

To find out more about his story or to donate to the fundraiser go online to www.gofundme.com/leos-fund