A TALENTED eight-year-old had the honour of performing at a special event at the British Embassy in Stockholm.

Josefine Backman Juliff, or JJ as she likes to be called, was invited by Ambassador David Cairns and his wife to perform a Scottish highland dance at a birthday celebration for Queen Elizabeth II in the Swedish capital on June 9.

JJ, who lives in Colchester and goes to Hamilton Primary School, has been dancing since she was three years old and attends the Sharon Radcliffe School of Dance.

She said: “I like Highland dancing because it is a lot of fun, you get medals and you get prizes.

“I saw the dancers in the Castle Park once and after I started to do lots of dancing."

When a Swedish dancer had to pull out of the birthday party, a bagpipe playing friend of JJ’s mother was more than happy to put in a recommendation.

Around 2000 guests were invited to the garden party, which had a 19th Century theme with food, drinks, games and entertainment.

The main event however was JJ's dance at the end of the night, which she performed along with three other dancers.

JJ said: “I was a bit nervous, but mainly excited.

"I have been to Sweden lots of times as my mum is Swedish – I was born there.

“My grandma lives there and we go to see her.

“In Stockholm it is really fun.”

The youngster recently performed in Castle Park at the Scotland in Colchester event.

Pia-Evelyne Backman, JJ’s mother, said: “As her mum I could not have been prouder.

“She put on an excellent performance and the audience loved her.

“JJ is full of energy and loves making people happy.

“She is a very busy girl outside school with many activities, like dancing, drama, gymnastic and singing.”