Queens Speech

Learn to dance in the rain

Life’s not about avoiding the storms, it’s about learning to dance in the rain.

And if you want proof of that, all you have to do is look to Taine McKinstray.

Taine, from Anstruther, is an incredibly gifted dancer who’s destined for great things.

At 18, she’s already accomplished what some twice her age are striving for.

She’s performed on stage countless times in a variety of dance roles from as close to home as the Byre Theatre in St Andrews to the Theatre Royal in Glasgow and is set to take to the stage in Melbourne with YDance (Scottish Youth Dance) this year.

Last month she also showcased her choreography skills with her own piece entitled “Is it Pride…Or are you Just Vain?” at the Rep.

The world of dance is a challenging and competitive world to live in.  

It is one where perfection and performance is everything.

Taine has achieved so much already, but what will amaze you to know is that she has done so whilst dealing with a life changing condition.

At just 11 years old, she was diagnosed with an essential tremor.

And it was a diagnosis that put her life-long love of dance and a dream career on the stage into jeopardy.

An essential tremor is a progressive, neurological condition which is characterised by a tremor in the hands or legs.

Many would have given up and resigned themselves to never being able to continue.

But not Taine. Her determination to keep going through all of the ups and downs she’s faced.

She said: “I was 2 or 3 years old when my parents took me to my first ballet class and I instantly fell in love. 

“Dancing is everything to me. I’ve tried out various styles over the years until I started taking part in Scottish Dance Theatre’s classes and knew that contemporary was the style for me. I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.

“When I was diagnosed I thought I’d have to give up dancing, but I decided to keep going. The more I performed, the less I noticed it and when I’m on stage it helps me forget about it.”

Taine’s mum Lynsey added: “I’m extremely proud of her and how brilliantly she has coped with everything that she’s been through. I really hope her story encourages others to never give up on their dream, because she never has and she continues to amaze me.” 

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