A ballerina on wheels; young girl with cerebral palsy pursues love of dance

Although she can’t dance in the traditional sense, Ruby and her classmates are preparing for their Spring recital.
Updated: May. 6, 2022 at 7:27 AM MDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - Dancing. It’s a performing art using your body to tell a story.

But what happens when your body doesn’t move the same as those around you?

One little girl with a disability dreamed of dancing and one local dance school is making her dream come true.

“I’m never going to stop,” said Ruby Lehmann, a dancing queen.

I’m never going to stop. Those are the words of a dancing queen with cerebral palsy.

Months ago, Ruby told her mom she wanted to learn to dance, and now her dream is on pointe.

“The other day, she was telling me how excited she was to go to dance class and that she loved dance so much and that she was excited because she could do it when she’s 10, she can do it when she’s 13, and when she’s 30 and she’s never going to quit,’ said Shannon Champion, Ruby’s mom.

This isn’t just a learning experience for Ruby but for mom as well.

“It’s very exciting,” continued Shannon. “This is all new because I’m not a dancer so it’s new, it’s exciting.”

Ruby is part of the creative dance class at Prima and they’re preparing for their spring recital, Toy Story.

Although she can’t dance in the traditional sense, Ruby’s teacher Miss Rachel is showing her the power of arm movement and facial expression for their recital piece.

“This class is just so fun,” said Rachel Harris, an instructor for Prima School of Dance. “To see her get comfortable with all of us and she knows the pattern and the drill for what we do every week now. It’s just been really fun to see her blossom in that way.”

Ruby is looking forward to bringing the razzle-dazzle to her first of many recitals.

“I’m nervous and excited,” said Ruby.

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