A NINE-year-old dancer has hot-stepped away from a national competition with a major trophy.

Liliana Arnone, from Darwen, was crowned National Slowdance Champion at the national finals in Blackpool’s Winter Gardens.

The youngster, who attends the Lancashire Dance Academy (LDA) in Lower Darwen, also won Medallist of the Year, out of 107 of the country’s best dancers in her age group.

And along with her partner and best friend, Tabitha Swift, she also placed fourth in the Rock and Roll section, from more than 60 couples.

Principal of LDA, Ashley Miller, said: “I am so proud of these kids; they work and train so hard – some dancing almost every day including five hours on Saturdays and they absolutely deserve these achievements. I am immensely proud of all of our dancers they are amazing.”

Another of LDA’s freestyle dancers, eight-year-old Olivia Holroyd, placed eight out of 67 dancers in her age section of Freestyle Solo, while other dancers from the school also made the semi and quarter finals from huge heats.

Liliana said: “It was an amazing day, I’m still on cloud nine.

“Dance is all I love to do, and I have the best teachers and dance friends who were so happy for me too and we all celebrated together.”

Liliana previously won the Freestyle Solo title, Freestyle Slowdance Champion and Rock and Roll title at the North West heats in June.