Meet the dancing dads preparing to don a suit and tie and step onstage with their pint-sized daughters for a ballet performance like no other
- Hundreds of dads in Melbourne are gearing up for a ballet performance
- Father-of-five Brad Harris will be dancing alongside his five-year-old daughter
- Meanwhile IT project manager Jonathon Pace will be performing with his girl
- The Melbourne performances are being held on Sunday February 13
Melbourne father of five Brad Harris is one of hundreds of dads putting on a suit and tie this weekend, to step onstage with his daughter for a ballet performance.
‘I get emotional on stage, just to have that one moment with Grace that she’ll remember for the rest of her life … our kids grow up very quickly,’ he told AAP.
The swim coach and his five-year-old daughter have been practising together for months, at ballet school Tiny Tutus.
The school holds daddy-daughter classes in most capital cities and across the country up to 500 dads participate in what is likely the only ballet program of its kind in Australia.
Melbourne father of five Brad Harris (pictured with his daughters Lucy and Grace) is one of hundreds of dads putting on a suit and tie this weekend, to step onstage with his daughter for a ballet performance
Mr Harris says that while ballet isn’t a stereotypical dad activity, it’s given him valuable one-on-one time with his youngest daughter.
‘We do a lot of things as a family but this is just one-on-one time with one child and it becomes our special thing,’ he said.
Program co-ordinator Kate Collier told AAP the dads are not actually doing pirouettes or arabesques but a series of steps more akin to ballroom dancing, so the kids can show off their own moves.
Mr Harris says that while ballet isn’t a stereotypical dad activity, it’s given him valuable one-on-one time with his youngest daughter
There’s a short waltz to learn and the biggest challenge is, of course, a lift.
‘They really get into it, dads are sending me videos saying “I did this practice today, what do you think of this?” It’s really amazing how invested they get,’ she said.
Brad Harris would agree.
‘I reckon all the dads are killing it, the daughters lead and help the dads dance … I’m competitive by nature, so I’m on the dance floor making sure that I’m nailing every move,’ he said.
IT project manager Jonathon Pace is the father of three girls and has been attending classes with his five-year-old, Lucinda, who has been doing ballet since she was 16 months old.
‘It’s a good way to bond with her … it’s actually a good experience because I like to dance myself anyway,’ he told AAP.
‘I reckon all the dads are killing it, the daughters lead and help the dads dance … I’m competitive by nature, so I’m on the dance floor making sure that I’m nailing every move,’ he said
He puts this down to a love of rock music – and his Maltese background.
‘Whenever we have big gatherings or parties, it’s always a big thing to get out and have a good dance,’ he said.
‘For some reason the Maltese, they love Elvis. I don’t know why, whenever there’s a big event there will be Elvis.’
The daddy-daughter ballet program started in Newcastle with 15 dads just under a decade ago and was so successful Tiny Tutus launched it nationally soon after.
‘Electricians, plumbers, surgeons, anaesthetists, garbage men, IT guys, they are just your regular dads and none of them have a dance background,’ Ms Collier said.
She said while most of the grownups dancing are dads, there are also uncles, big brothers, stepdads and grandads, ‘whoever is the ballerina’s person’.
The Melbourne performances are being held at Langwarrin Performing Arts Centre and Catholic Regional College in Caroline Springs on Sunday.
Read more at DailyMail.co.uk