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Sabri Seepersad performs a classical Indian dance for the finals of the 12 and Under competition at the Southern Academy for the Performing Arts, San Fernando on November 6. - AYANNA KINSALE
Sabri Seepersad performs a classical Indian dance for the finals of the 12 and Under competition at the Southern Academy for the Performing Arts, San Fernando on November 6. – AYANNA KINSALE

Spending five hours a day to practise dance may seem like a lot for some, especially after school. But Sabri Seepersad said that is her routine every day and she loves every single minute of it.

“I’ve been doing this since I was three years old and my favourite dances to do are Bharatanatyam, I love hip-hop as well, and classical (Indian dancing).”

Sabri thanked her mother – Mohanie Seepersad – for teaching her to dance. Mohanie is the owner and teacher of Apsara Dance Company.

With her flawless talent and ability to perfectly time the steps to the song being played, Sabri won season one of TTT’s 12 and Under talent show. It was a reboot of the pioneering show with late host “Aunty” Hazel Ward-Redman.

Sabri, ten, competed against seven other children and won with her Indian dance routine during the finals at the Southern Academy of the Performing Arts, San Fernando on November 6. She was announced the winner on TTT’s Now morning programme on November 14.

Sabri described the day when she first took part to Newsday Kids. “That Sunday morning, my Mummy woke me up and I didn’t know where I was going, but my Mummy just told me to get ready. She put on my makeup, did my hair and helped me with my clothes. While we were on the way, she finally told me where we were going.”

Sabri Seepersad dances at the Botanical Gardens, Port of Spain. – ANGELO MARCELLE

When her mother told her where they were going she said she was bursting with excitement and couldn’t wait to take part in the competition.

During the six-week programme, Sabri met and bonded with like-minded and talented children, as well as visited the National Museum and Art Gallery on Fredrick Street, Port of Spain and the Divali Nagar site in Endeavour, Chaguanas. Sabri said the production team quickly became her favourite set of people at the competition.

She added that she has danced at one other competition – Little Miss Mastana Bahar 2022 and won. She also won Little Miss Naturally Fair 2022.

Sabri, a standard five student of Montrose Vedic Primary School, Chaguanas, said she’s ready to be done with school. But has plans to attend CTS College of Business and Computer Science Ltd, Montrose following in her older sister Suri’s foot steps.

She said she isn’t sure which subjects she wants to do at the college, but knows that her dream is to become the “best dancer in the whole entire world.”

At the Botanical Gardens, Port of Spain, on Friday, Sabri performed an Indian classical dance to Dheem Ta Dare. She dressed in a hot pink floral dress and matching sneakers, but it didn’t stop her from completing the routine. Sabri immediately took off her shoes and socks and began dancing without skipping a beat. She performed effortlessly even when it looked as if her long hair would get in the way.

The concrete path was scattered with small branches and leaves, but Sabri was able to ignore them and gracefully moved in time as the song played from a cellphone.

After her short performance, she ran to see a brown squirrel on a nearby tree and had her father lifted her up to get a better look at it.