A Joy-ful 80th birthday


Joy Baldwin celebrated her 80th birthday on Saturday with friends, the Cameron Pipe Band and marching bands, highland dancers, ballroom dancers, tap dancers and her current students and their parents.

The party was held at the Sturt Club, which laid on an impressive service.

“They fell over backwards to help us and everyone said the meals were so quick and cooked beautifully,” said Joy.

Post-prandial entertainment delighted guests as Joy and Peter Piasente carved up the dance floor with the Festival Jive and the Sallyanne Cha-Cha.

Other dance performances were by Joy’s senior students and Zahra Cawley, a junior student who won a dance scholarship earlier this year.


Joy’s own young dance days were on display, including her favourite photo, which was taken when she was a six-year-old Cupid doing interpretative dance with local ballet teacher, Dawn Norris, for ‘In an English Country Garden.’

She loved being a marching girl for the Citizens and the Limelights, where she led, chaperoned and instructed.

The highlight of Joy’s long dance career was when she took her Adelaide students and her three sons to compete all around Scotland.

Her sons, Andrew and Dean, won a few trophies, Jamie-Scott returned home with medals and the three boys were featured on the front page of the Australasian Highlander magazine.

Joy’s most heart-warming and extraordinary dance performance was when she was in first year of high school and danced with the Ramblers Review in Wilcannia. Both performances were fully booked out and the Wilcannia residents were lined up outside the theatre and angry and wanted a hole made in the theatre wall so they could see.

The theatre manager didn’t have any other solution and Joy heard him say “They said they would fix it up so here’s hoping.”

“So, with permission, some locals took iron off the side of the theatre, made a hole and let them see through,” said Joy.

“The audience brought chairs and I could see them through the hole in the wall when I was dancing.

“After the show, locals took hammers and banged the iron back on.”

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