Cameron Roberts, who recently won Bristol Ballet’s Teresangela Schiano Memorial Scholarship, has been taking dance classes since she was 3.
“I have always been dancing. As soon as I was able to walk, I was dancing all throughout my house. When I was 3, my mother enrolled me in classes with Ballet Arts Academy with Ms. Jo Rosser because she thought that I would enjoy it. Everything started with that small class.
“Ballet is a gift for me. It gives me so many opportunities that I would have never thought I would get to do. It teaches me so many life lessons: like how to be responsible and how to handle hard situations with grace. It lets me express myself when words cannot.
“Receiving the Teresangela Schiano Memorial Scholarship means the world to me. I was never able to meet Ms. Teresangela, but by just hearing her story I know that she loved dance with all of her heart. Everyone in the company works so hard and deserves this award; I am very honored to have been chosen. I hope to make Ms. Teresangela’s family proud,” Cameron says.
She has studied at the South Carolina Summer Dance Conservatory’s Summer Intensive. She studied ballet one year and contemporary dance the second. She studied with Meagan Fairchild, Shannon Ludlum, Maleek Washington, Nikole Black and more. She also had the opportunity to perform original pieces by Jessie James, Kate Harpootlian, Stephanie Wilkins, Addison Ector, Cindy Flach and Jessica Edwards.
Recent roles include the March Hare in “Alice in Wonderland,” Marzipan and Flowers in “The Nutcracker,” and, her favorite, the Wicked Witch of the West in “The Wizard of Oz.” Her favorite ballet is “Giselle.”
Cameron doesn’t confine her talents to just the ballet. She also performs with Theatre Bristol.
Some of her past roles in theater include Annette in “Annie,” Ruchel/Russian in “Fiddler on the Roof,” Hatseller/Villager/Napkin/Wedding Guest in “Beauty and the Beast,” Miss Prism in “The Importance of Being Earnest,” a Jitterbug in “The Wizard of Oz” and Ensemble in “The Music Man.” Her two favorite shows are “Beauty and the Beast” and “Fiddler on the Roof,” because “everyone in both casts were extremely talented and taught me so much.
“I love getting to perform with all of the company members. We have all become a little family, and I don’t know what I will do without them. For the past couple of years, I have enjoyed getting to be an assistant and a teacher to the creative movement class. I enjoyed getting to spend time with the children and watch them grow to love dance as much as I do.
“So many people have influenced me over the years. All of the teachers with Bristol Ballet have played a main part in my journey through dance. They have not only taught me how to be a better dancer, they have challenged me to be a better person,” she says.
Cameron says she can’t choose between acting and dancing. “I love them both because they help me be a better dancer and performer. I have to be able to act when I am dancing, and able to dance when I am acting. Without one, it is hard to do the other,” she says.
She plans to attend the University of South Carolina and double major in dance education and journalism. Cameron is the 16-year-old daughter of Temmy and Cynthia Roberts of Bristol, Tennessee. She is a junior at Tennessee Avenue Christian Academy.