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Ballet Girl from Quake Ruins Dances at Paralympics

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The sky became calm when the music began. Eyes from around the world concentrated on a girl named Li Yue under a spotlight.

She was seated in a wheelchair and had a red dancing shoe on her right foot. She stretched her arms slowly and danced elegantly in the night.

This was the opening ceremony of the Beijing Paralympics. Many people's eyes flooded with tears at that moment. The dancing girl, 11-year-old Li Yue, is from Beichuan County and revels in ballet. She lost her left leg in the earthquake but still dreams of dancing ballet. With the help of many people, she has been able to dance again before the entire world!

Photo taken on September 6, 2008 shows the art performance during the opening ceremony of the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games in the National Stadium in Beijing, China. [Xinhua]

Li Yue, a ballet student who survived the May 12 earthquake that hit southwest China's Sichuan Province but had one of her legs amputated, performs during the opening ceremony of the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games in the National Stadium on September 6, 2008. [Xinhua]

Chapter One

The name of Li Yue's performance was Never-ending Steps. This little girl has not given up on her dream of dancing ballet.

Her performance was set to a famous song composed by the French musician Maurice Ravel. Performers from the China Disabled People's Performing Art Troupe circled around Li Yue and elegantly danced. Li Yue danced with Lü Meng – China's "prince of ballet."

For that one night, Li Yue, dressed in a tutu, was the lead ballerina. She looked up into the sky and danced for her dream, for the villagers in Beichuan County, for classmates who had passed away and for all the people in the quake-hit area...

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