Sunday, July 22, 2018     Volume: 19, Issue: 20

Santa Maria Sun / Athlete of the Week

The following article was posted on August 9th, 2017, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 18, Issue 23 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [] - Volume 18, Issue 23

Claire Scattini


Is ballet an art or a sport? Ballerina Claire Scattini of Nipomo argues, "Why not both?"

Scattini, 18, has been dancing since she was 3, when her parents enrolled her in the California Arts Academy in Fresno, where she grew up.

"Ballet is very physically demanding, but it still requires a lot of emotion and artistry," Scattini told the Sun. Like ice skating, ballet blends athleticism and performance art, which puts it in that "gray area," she explained.

Claire Scattini

"I love the constant challenge that ballet offers," Scattini said. "I love being able to create a story and a character for an audience."

Scattini attended Bullard Talent Elementary, a K-through-8 performance school in Fresno, which only fueled her passion for dance, she said. Although she loved her childhood, Scattini wouldn't call it an ordinary one, as ballet was often her top priority.

"I missed out on a lot of weekend activities, sleepovers, and other things most kids get to do. But it was so worth it," she said. "Ballet is a huge commitment in every way, from the food you're putting in your body to the amount of sleep you're getting."

After moving to the Central Coast, Scattini spent her freshman year at New Tech High School. Starting a new chapter of her life at a tech school wasn't easy, she explained.

"It was just too difficult for me socially," Scattini said. "I didn't fit in with the type of students that particular school attracts."

The performing arts program at Nipomo High School—literally next door to New Tech—was a big draw for Scattini. She transferred to Nipomo her sophomore year, and she graduated from there in June.

Along with dancing in several school shows, Scattini has performed with the Coastal Chamber Youth Ballet, Coastal Dance and Music Academy, and San Luis Obispo Movement Arts Center.

A few of Scattini's favorite ballets on her resume are The Carnival of Animals and Babes in Toyland, which she performs with the Coastal Chamber every year around Christmas.

In January, Scattini is moving to Auckland, New Zealand, to attend Equippers College where she will perform on the school's dance team.

Although she's been dancing practically since birth, Scattini still gets butterflies before every show, she admitted.

"The moment right before you go on stage is my favorite. You get this nervous giddy burst of energy," she said. "No matter how many times I've danced on stage, I still get that 'energy high' right before the lights hit."

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