Local schools win J-Rock dance competition

Illawarra primary schools proved they were top of the pops over the weekend, as Dapto Public School and St Joseph's Catholic Primary School Bulli took out first and second place in the national Junior Rock Eisteddfod dance competition.

The J-Rock finals were televised on Saturday with winners announced throughout the show.

Dapto Public School's moving dance A Piece of Straw - about a Japanese peasant who is rewarded for her kindness - was declared the winner, while St Joseph's beautiful, colourful piece The Power of One came second.

Dapto dance group coordinator Jane Nordstrom said she and her 120 students, who also won the NSW finals of J-Rock earlier this year, were blown away by their national win.

"We weren't expecting this at all, we were obviously watching but we weren't expecting to win so it's a bit mind-blowing," she said.

"It's all abuzz at school this week."

The students performed Sydney Entertainment Centre in August for the state finals and were then automatically entered into the national televised final.

Ms Nordstrom said a strong storyline, coupled with a visually and musically exciting performance, sealed their win.

"Our story was very strong, our characters were excellent and they looked amazing - the costumes and our wonderful backdrops and set just pulled it altogether," she said.

"The whole production was a result of help from kids, parents, teachers and grandparents - so it's a whole school community effort. It was lots of hours and lots of effort but it paid off."

Ms Nordstrom said the school now had the daunting challenge of following their award-winning performance next year.

"We've all had a bit of a joke, just saying 'what on earth are we going to do?' and we don't know at this point but we're going to have to think very hard," she said.

"But we might have a bit of a breather and celebrate this win."

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