I was born to dance, by Claudia Santivetti

All around the world thousands of dancers celebrate International Dance Day on 29 April. It was first established in 1982 by the International Dance Council, a UNESCO partner. International Dance Day is important for us dancers, because we can celebrate our love for and commitment to this art.

This is why nine years ago, Angela Jane Burleigh, choreographer and president of The Starlight Company, decided to organise with the vice-president of the association Sandro Santivetti a dance competition they called Tivol…in Danza. It takes place every year in April in Tivoli, a town in central Italy, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This year the competition took place on 9 April. There were three different categories: ballet, modern dance and hip-hop. Twelve schools participated in the competition with a total of thirty-six choreographies.

When we organise these events, I realise as a dancer how lucky I am because I can express my feelings and emotions with my body. As part of The Starlight Company Team, I believe along with the rest of the team that the fortunate must help the needy. This is why the proceeds of our shows always go to charity. This year, The Starlight Company gave the proceeds to Krianda, an association that helps autistic children.

The most moving moment of the show was the delivery of the Città di Tivoli award. In previous years, major dancers were awarded, such as Joseph Fontano, Renato Gerco, Catherine Jameson, Martina Giammarini and others. This year the award was given to Aurora Guglielmetti. She was a dancer from one of the schools which participated in last year’s competition and died few months later, when she was only seventeen. The award was a painting by Letizia Rigucci in which a girl dances in the Fontana dei Draghi in Tivoli. At the end of the show, Sandro Santivetti read a question that someone had written on a website: “What is the most important thing to know?” Then Sandro read Aurora’s answer: “The most important thing to know is that everyone was born for a reason”.

I totally agree with this statement because I think that it can give us strength to think that everyone has his or her own mission in life. As a dancer, I was born to dance. I can appreciate every minute of my life while I’m dancing. I feel free and happy and I’m really grateful for this. As human beings, we were all born to help and love each other. This may seem obvious, but sometimes we forget. This is why I wanted to share these thoughts with you all. Remember, everyone was born for a reason. You just need to find your own.

Enjoy your life!


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