Sydney Eisteddfod’s first ballerina

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When dance was first introduced in the Sydney Eisteddfod program in 1934, 14-year-old Lynne Golding won two gold medals and emerged as star of the show. Tiny and energetic, Lynne dreamed of following in Pavlova’s footsteps, but as there were no professional ballet companies in Australia at the time, she began her career in vaudeville on the Tivoli Circuit. In 1951, Lynne danced the dual role of Odette/Odile in Swan Lake for Melbourne’s National Theatre Ballet. Her opening performance made headlines and, after performing the role eight times a week for an extended season, she left Australia and enjoyed an international career as a classical ballerina. When her dancing days ended, Lynne turned to teaching, and in 1965 returned to Australia and established a studio in Melbourne where she taught for 15 years. Lynne died in 2008, but as the inaugural ballerina to rise from the Sydney Eisteddfod platform her name lives on in its chronicles and the history of Australian dance.