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Short film honours County dancer who set the “barre” high


Quinte Ballet School is celebrating the legacy of ballerina Sara Holton with the launch of a short film on International Dance Day, April 29th.

“This remarkable dancer grew up in the County and was part of Quinte Ballet School’s professional training program for many years,” said Jane Gardner, General Manager, Quinte Ballet School Canada (QBSC). Holton died in a tragic cycling accident in September 2018.

The film ‘Remembering Sara’ edited by Drew Berry, honours the legacy of Holton, her passion for dance, her impact on QBSC dancers and how she’s given others an opportunity to grow as dancers. It is to be posted on QBSC’s website at

“Sara loved to dance and we treasured her contributions and her talent while participating in QBSC’s professional training program,” said Catherine Taylor, QBS Artistic Director. “In 2018, just a few short weeks after returning from her summer dancing in Europe, there was a fatal accident. Every Sept. 23rd, we invite our dance colleagues across the country and dancers at QBSC to “Dance for Sara” and share their memories and postings on social media.”

QBSC is grateful to Sara’s parents Kristin Morrison and Gordon Holton and friends who established the Dancer Enrichment Fund in memory of Sara’s passion for ballet and her drive to seek out experiences that would educate and challenge her in new ways and to enhance her performance of ballet. The Dancer Enrichment Fund enables QBSC students in the professional training program to experience ballet performances by professional dance companies and participate in ballet-focused workshops with various guest artists.

“Sara appreciated every new experience she had. She loved to dance, to travel, to meet new people and to spend time with her friends and family. Sara’s grandfather, Dr. Rolfe Morrison, along with other family members and friends, donated funds to establish the Sara Holton International Program in her memory.

“Her love of travel was shared with her extended family, and in particular, her grandfather, who witnessed first-hand how much Sara thrived and how important it was for her to be able to attend international summer dance training programs.

As a result, Dr. Morrison created a fund in Sara’s name to assist other QBSC students to attend the Royal Danish Ballet’s summer program and intensive experience.

QBSC 2020 grads Katie Baird and Daryk Richards were the first scholarship recipients in 2019.

Richards, a classmate of Sara’s since 2016 who is continuing his training with Alberta Ballet School said Sara inspired him “to work hard and made me want to do even more with my dance. She always liked new experiences, she was totally committed to her dance and I try to replicate her passion.”

Baird, who graduated in 2020 and is continuing her post-secondary training at Victoria Academy of Ballet added, “one of the many things I loved about Sara was her excitement toward dancing. There wasn’t one dance in our Holiday Dance and Dance of Spring showcases that she didn’t know. She had a tremendous impact on me – she was an amazing dancer and friend.”

Gardner notes the closures of dance schools, studios and theatres has been an added challenge to dancers of all ages this past year.

“From online classes to improvised home studios and ZOOM rehearsals, dancers everywhere are learning to adapt to the realities of the pandemic. On International Dance Day 2021, Quinte Ballet School celebrates the perseverance of all dancers as they creatively find ways to keep dancing.

“Sara Holton has been an inspiration to other dancers and set the “barre” high for future QBSC students to follow.”

Sara Holton


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  1. Agnes says:

    Absolutely wonderful article on Sara Holton. What a tribute and so deserving of our recognition of a truly gifted lady.

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