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This 22-Year-Old Professional Dancer With Down Syndrome Is Breaking Down Barriers

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Hannah Sampson has been dancing since she was a child. Now, she makes a living doing it.

The 22-year-old British woman with Down syndrome became involved as a part-time member of Stopgap, an integrated dance company consisting of dancers both with and without physical and cognitive disabilities. After a while Sampson was made full-time and now is a paid dance teacher and performs locally and internationally with the company, according to BBC.

She dreams of being a choreographer and choreographing dances involving both disabled and non-disabled people.

Hannah Sampson dancing

“When I was younger I always dreamt about being a professional dancer in the main team,” Sampson says in the video below. “Now, I’m living that dream.”

Sampson’s accomplishments are impressive not just because of the way in which they break down barriers between people with disabilities and careers within the arts, but also because, according to the National Down Syndrome Society, a common trait in people with Down syndrome is low muscle tone, which could make a physically demanding career like professional dancer more challenging.

Get more on Sampson’s story in the video below: 


This professional dance teacher is 22 and has Down's syndrome. Journalist: Kate Monaghan Via BBC Ouch Posted by Newsbeat on Thursday, February 11, 2016

Have you seen the first film with a national release to star a person with Down syndrome? Check out the film “Where Hope Grows” today!

Available for purchase on Amazon and iTunes.

Originally published: February 16, 2016
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