AN overjoyed teenager can take up a place at a top stage school thanks to the amazing generosity of the Hartlepool public.
The Hartlepool Mail told last week how 13-year-old Amelia Wild had a chance of joining the Barbara Speake Stage School in London – but only if she and her family could raise half of the scholarship.
Amelia was chosen after a fantastic audition in which she was picked ahead of thousands of rivals. School officials granted her a place on a half a scholarship.
But that would cover only cover half of her £12,000 fee for the first year, said mum Kirsty Wild, 34.
Yet now, after an appeal in the Mail, the public has raised £7,345 including one pledge of £6,000 from a friend of the family who read of Amelia’s story in the Mail.
Kirsty, a nail technician from the town centre area of Hartlepool, said: “It is wonderful. I can not believe it. I am overwhelmed by the generosity of people. I really did not think it was possible.”
Amelia who has been a member of the Bobby Dazzlers dance school in Stockton for years, had been fundraising herself towards her dream.
She held a charity night at the Oxbridge pub, in Stockton and 50 people turned up, helping her to raise £300.
But Kirsty said the public really helped. “So far, we have got £7,345 and some of it is from a friend of the family who has given us £6,000.
“He read it in the paper and said he would give the money because it was ‘an investment’ and he knew Amelia was going to go places.”
Kirsty said donations had also come in from members of the public and £200 had come from the UK Steel organisation.
The family had until May 24 to tell the stage school officials whether they would be taking up Amelia’s offer of a place.
Kirsty said: “We have accepted it. Amelia is really excited by it.
“There was a doubt there on my part that we would get there but Amelia never had a doubt.”
Amelia certainly has plenty of stage pedigree. She starred in a recent production of Annie at the Forum Theatre, in Billingham.
And she came fourth in the national finals of the Britain Does Variety singing competition.
She was also chosen as best female vocalist by Red Dreams last year.
To qualify for the stage school, Amelia had to stand in front of a panel of five people and do a dance, song and a monologue.
Kirsty said: “They seemed to really like her and they kept her in the room for ages.”
The delighted family then received an email from the stage school saying Amela had given a wonderful audition and she would fit in really well at the school.