St Albans dancer putting on charity show in Stevenage to thank open heart surgeons

PUBLISHED: 17:00 08 September 2019 | UPDATED: 11:15 09 September 2019

Elise Percy at the Dance World Cup. Picture: Maxine Percy

Elise Percy at the Dance World Cup. Picture: Maxine Percy

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A teenage dancer is putting on a show to thank the surgeons who carried out her open heart surgery.

Elise Percy at the Dance World Cup. Picture: Maxine PercyElise Percy at the Dance World Cup. Picture: Maxine Percy

Elise Percy, who lives in St Albans, is presenting the Celebration of Stars at the Gordon Craig Theatre in Stevenage to raise money for the British Heart Foundation.

In April the 17-year-old underwent open heart surgery at the Royal Brompton Hospital to correct congenital heart disease, a type of birth defect which meant she had several veins in the wrong place and a hole in her heart, and now she wants to give something back to those who treated her.

Elise said: "I've always been a dancer since I was young, and I came out of that hospital with a new heart and a new day and I just really wanted to give back to them for what they've done for me.

"There was no better way to give back, by doing something that I love and I am now able to do again."

Elise brought home a trophy for most outstanding solo in tap or musical theatre at the Dance World Cup in Spain last year.

Her mother Maxine Percy said: "There are not enough adjectives to describe how I feel about her.

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"I think she's inspirational and I think there are lots of people who will look up to her and think 'wow, she's amazing'."

The show will feature a huge range of dance styles from tap to jazz, musical theatre and ballet.

Also featuring in the show is West End star Caroline Deverill, who had a lead role in Mamma Mia! as well as roles in We Will Rock You and Billy Elliot.

Six local dance schools are participating in Celebration of Stars with several other World Dance Champion and All England finalists performing.

The Gordon Craig Theatre have agreed to give the venue to Elise for free at a 17 per cent commission on ticket sales.

The rest of the profits will go to the British Heart Foundation.

According to Maxine, about 100 tickets have sold so far.

Find out more about the British Heart Foundation at www.bhf.org.uk

Celebration of Stars will take place on September 15 at 3pm. Tickets are £18 for adults and £10 for under 16s from www.gordon-craig.co.uk/celebration-of-stars-i2282

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