Meet the team

The Step into Dance team is made up of office-based staff who work at the Royal Academy of Dance headquarters, and practitioners, who are based across London & Essex to deliver school classes.

Meet the office team:

Pagan Dorgan

Pagan is the RAD’s Community Artistic Coordinator, and an award-winning dance practitioner with over 25 years of experience in the industry.

After completing a professional dance training, Pagan travelled to Australia and New Zealand and built a successful career as a dance teacher, coach and choreographer. Including six years as the leading educator for the Royal New Zealand Ballet, where she delivered dance classes and workshops across New Zealand, developed a dance programme in men’s and women’s prisons and collaborated with other artists to create the MOOVIT project for High School students with limited access to dance. Pagan has a strong belief that a positive dance experience can make a difference in the lives of young people and is committed to sharing dance with as many people as possible. Many of her former students have gone on to have careers in dance, both as teachers and performers.

Since returning to London, Pagan has been teaching for the Royal Ballet School’s Primary Steps programme, City Academy, and she is also a Step into Dance practitioner! She looks forward to working with the Step into Dance team in a different capacity and is excited about her future journey with the Royal Academy of Dance.

Toni Hesketh

Toni is the Programme Manager for Step into Dance. She began her dance training at a young age in Ballet and Tap before moving on to explore Musical Theatre and later Street dance. She continued her practice throughout her school years studying it at GCSE, A Level and later opting to study Dance at the University of Surrey. During her degree, she studied a range of practical and theoretical modules including Contemporary Practices, training in Contemporary, Contemporary-African, Bharatanatyam and Ballet as well as studying modules in Choreography, Movement Analysis, Dance History, Arts Programming and a range of Theatre and Production Modules. In her third year she completed a placement at English National Ballet working in their Engagement team across a number of outreach programmes for nine months, solidifying her desire to work with and support young people in their development and provide them with opportunities to access dance. Her placement also inspired her Dissertation topic, which explored the reworking of classical ballets by contemporary companies.

Her favourite dance style is Contemporary because she really enjoys the free-flowing nature of this style and the role of weight/ centre of gravity throughout the movements.

Eva Holness

Eva is our Programme Officer. Eva trained at University of Roehampton for a BA (Hons) degree is Dance studies. Here, she trained in Cunningham, Graham, Limon, Horton and Release techniques. After acquiring a First Class with Honours, Eva moved on to study at Masters level at University of Chichester in Dance performance Mapdance company. She worked on commissioned works by Sarah Golding, James Cousins, Robert Clarke, and Kiera Martin, and toured nationally in 2022. Some of Eva’s biggest performance have been at venues such as Wembley stadium, The Royal Albert Hall and the 02. Eva is a freelance dance artist and educator with focus on contemporary dance and is passionate about making dance accessible to everyone.

Eilidh Patterson

Eilidh is the Lead Events Producer for Step into Dance. Eilidh is from Edinburgh, Scotland, and started learning Ballet at the age of three before branching out into other styles such as Jazz, Contemporary and Commercial. She studied a range of styles whilst completing her (BA Hons) Dance Degree, which she received from Northumbria University. As a keen performer, Eilidh went on to complete contracts across Scotland, England and Mallorca and worked at an immersive entertainment venue, Brewhemia in Edinburgh for four years until moving to London in 2022. She has also worked freelance for a number of creative arts organisations, including as a PR Assistant across the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Eilidh is an enthusiastic advocate for the benefits of dance for young people, and can’t wait to support the team with the 2023-24 programme.

Lauren McDonagh

Lauren is our Marketing Officer. Lauren studied Media Production (BA Hons) at the University of Lincoln, before moving to London in 2021. Growing up, she trained in acrobatics and performed in various group and solo events. Now, her love for live performance is shown through performing her band’s music at gigs around London.

Lauren is excited to support Step into Dance groups and encourage more young people to get involved with dance!

 

Meet the practitioners

 

Adrian Lawrence

Born and raised in the Lake District, Adrian studied at the University of Warwick before going his GDip Dance and MA Dance Performance at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, where he toured nationally with Transitions Dance Company. He has trained extensively in ballet, tap, jazz, contemporary, street and commercial dance. Adrian teaches at The BRIT School, the Royal Academy of Dance, South London Youth Theatre, Richmond Adult Community College, and Thomas’s London Day School. His work has been showcased in theatres across London and he has won awards, as both a performer and a choreographer, at national competitions. Inclusivity is at the heart of his practice, and he truly believes that dance is for everyone.

Aishani Ghosh

Aishani Ghosh (she/her) is a freelance performer, artist and facilitator. Her training started in Bharatanatyam and Ballet she then went on to train at London Contemporary Dance School, graduating with a first and the Principal’s Award.
Through her movement practice, Aishani is intrigued by culture and diasporic bodies and how that shapes movement and lives.

 

Aj Jackson

Going by the stage name AJ-47, AJ’s abundant mix of originality, power moves, character and stage presence are magnified by his stature to great effect, creating exciting shapes delivered with fantastic flow and energy. AJ competes regularly, attending competitions nationally and internationally, at the highest level. AJ is proud to be laying the foundations for future generations to build upon and is a great role model for aspiring dancers.

Ali Golding

Ali is a Choreographer, Movement Coach, Performance Facilitator and Dance Scientist. She has over thirty years of professional experience, with credits encompassing Feature Films, Drama and Musical Theatre, T.V, the Music Industry, Light Entertainment and high-profile Trade/Award Shows. Ali has choreographed, taught and been a faculty member for many of the leading London dance and drama institutions including Mountview, Guildhall, London School of Musical Theatre and Trinity Laban.

Amy Morris

Amy trained at Leicester College of Performing Arts gaining a London Trinity Diploma in Musical Theatre, LCM Grade 8 Singing and BTDA Diplomas in Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Lyrical and Acrobatics. Since then Amy has worked as a vocalist and dancer for Tokyo Disneyland, Thomson Cruises, Holland America Line and toured the UK as part of vintage girl act My Favourite Things. The experience Amy has gained throughout the years has a big influence on her lessons, encouraging students to achieve their very best. She is trained to teach Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Musical Theatre, Lyrical, and Contemporary. She loves to see what the children gain from dancing and singing, watching them grow in confidence and the joy it brings to their lives.

Amy Robinson

Amy is a freelance Dance Artist and Educator whose work is grounded in a Contemporary dance technique. She initially trained at Roehampton University, gaining a BA Hons in Dance Studies before going on to complete a graduate internship at TrinityLaban conservatoire. She is a skilled facilitator and educator who is driven by her passion for dance and movement. Her delivery focuses on creatively facilitating participants’ ideas to lead lively, fun, and engaging sessions, whilst championing her artform in an energetic and inclusive way.

Amy Sheppard

Amy is an experienced Dance Artist and Producer with a history of working in the dance and charity sector. She is a qualified and experienced dance teacher in various settings with particular experience in schools, including SEND environments. Delivering classes and workshops in ballet, creative dance, contemporary dance, jazz and tap. Amy has a Bachelor’s Degree in Theatre Dance from London Studio Centre, Dance Teaching Diploma from the British Ballet Organisation and most recently an MFA Choreography at University of Roehampton.

Aneta Zwierzynska

Aneta is a professional dancer, capoeira teacher and choreographer. She obtained a double MA degree at Anton Bruckner University in Austria studying movement research and dance pedagogy. She has trained and worked extensively in Brazil, Poland, Austria, Greece and the UK. She carried out her movement research in Brazil, exploring possibilities to exchange experience between contemporary dance and capoeira. Aneta performed with various dance companies and theatres in Europe and Brazil. She is currently working as a dancer/performer for Beatrice Allegranti Dance Company. She teaches her unique combination of contemporary dance and capoeira in regular classes and workshops in the UK and internationally. In 2016, she was selected as the main choreographer for the opening ceremony of the European Capital of Culture in Poland.

Angelina Sandall

Angélina Sandall (né Jandolo) studied at the National Conservatoire of Nantes in France and at Trinity Laban, where she graduated with a BA (hons) Dance Theatre. She has danced for major companies including English National Ballet – Shobana Jeyasingh, Rosemary Butcher (Sadler’s Wells), 2Faced, Cody Choi, Cathy Waller, Watkins Dance and more. Angélina has been teaching for Company Wayne McGregor, Shobana Jeyasingh Dance Company and Central School of Ballet. She is a Fellow of Ballet and a Modern Jazz Licentiate with the IDTA, and is a Silver Swans licensee with the Royal Academy of Dance. She is currently running her own school in London, Angélina Jandolo Dance, and joined the Step into Dance team in 2021.

Anna-Louise McMinn

Anna is dance professional who strongly advocates dance for any body and everybody. Since graduating from Middlesex University with a BA Hons Dance Performance, she has taught, performed, and collaborated within a wide variety of artistic and community settings around the UK. Her most recent achievements include being commissioned to choreograph and perform for the National Gallery’s Summer on the Square Festival, undertaking the role of Access Worker and Creative Learning Associate at Stopgap Dance Company, and carrying out advocacy work and research for One Dance UK as a selected One Dance UK Ambassador. Anna currently teaches for the Royal Academy of Dance, Stopgap Dance Company, the Dance Network Association, within secondary school education and inclusive arts charities. Her wide- ranging experiences have allowed her to develop an inclusive and welcoming approach, which is central to her practice as a teacher and professional. Anna is delighted to be working for the Royal Academy of Dance, where she previously undertook her dance training as a young person and inspired her to undertake dance as a career.

Anna Maria Barber

Anna trained at Italia Conti Academy London and has trained in Hip Hop, Street dance,Jazz, Contemporary, Musical Theatre, Ballet, Tap and more! Anna works as a professional dancer and choreographer within the arts industry. She has had dance contracts in Dubai, music videos and UK tours with artists such as the Jonas Brothers, Lady Leshurr & HENKA in roles as choreographer, dance captain & dancer. Anna has been teaching various dance styles for over 8 years and loves to pass on knowledge and foundations to her students and push them to perform with passion and have fun!

Anna Nicholls

Anna is a dance and creative movement artist, born and raised in NW London. She started her dance training at school and later joined Candoco Dance Company’s youth company, Cando2. Anna then trained in Contemporary Dance at Trinity Laban Conservatoire, graduating with a 1st Class Honours Degree in July 2021. Since then, Anna has worked closely with the Royal Academy of Dance and Greenwich Dance. She also has her own company Hallomai Dance and freelances within a variety of schools and community groups across London, teaching and touring interactive performances. Anna has over five years of experience working with young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities, and will continue to provide inclusive classes for the RAD and other community groups this year.

 

Arizona Snow

Arizona trained with ZooNation Youth Company for 5 years and during that time performed at various theatres including Sadlers Wells, Queen Elizabeth Hall and The Royal Albert Hall. Arizona starred as the lead role in ZooNation’s Groove On Down The Road for two consecutive summers. She has been teaching dance for the last 6 years in styles such as hip-hop, commercial and contemporary fusion. Arizona joined Step Into Dance in January 2022 and loves working with students to help build their confidence and find their passion to move.

Barbara Mirata

Barbara is a qualified dance teacher and experienced contemporary choreographer and dancer who is passionate about her art. For over 25 years Barbara has trained professional dancers, singers and actors for films, theatre and dance productions and created dance pieces for her own company. She has worked in France, Italy and England as well as in West Africa and Cuba. Barbara uses her expertise for inclusive work with children, young people and adults to teach classes in mainstream and SEND schools.

Benji Shogbolu

Beth Ackroyd

Beth Ackroyd is a dance teacher, community dance artist and dance science educator based in London. Beth trained at the University of Roehampton, Trinity Laban and the Royal Academy of Dance. Along with Step into Dance she is currently an artist for Sadler’s Wells and DanceWest and specialises in ballet, contemporary and creative dance.

Bethan Siddaway

Bethan trained in a plethora of dance styles at De Montfort University where she achieved a First Class BA Honours degree. She is now immersing herself in the dance scene in Birmingham as a professional dancer and freelance teacher to perform and deliver high quality dance to young people with a fresh skillset from achieving a Postgraduate Certificate of Education earlier this year. Bethan’s desire to continually expand her knowledge and develop has seen her become a part of Elementz Ent Training Company in 2021 and perform at Birmingham Hippodrome with the dance collective Company Apidae as a part of Breakin’ Convention June 2022.

Bismark Anobah

Bismark is a Dancer/Choreographer from East London with over 20 years experience in teaching. As a dancer his credits include the Queens Jubilee, Brit Awards, Wireless, Giggs, Lethal B, Boy Blue Ent. and many more. As an educator of dance Bismark has worked with ELD, Saddlers Wells, Movement Factory, Kingston University, Rich Mix, and Red Bridge Drama Centre. He is passionate about elevating platforms for the next wave of creatives as well as giving back to the community which has given him so much. It’s all about applying skills in real time to find solutions as a creative… all about that work.

Brian Gillespie

Graduating in 2012 with a first-class BaHons in Dance and Theatre Studies from the University of East London and Columbia College Chicago, Brian uses his studies in dance and theatre through his work as a freelance performer, choreographer, artistic director and teacher. He is the artistic director of B-Hybrid Dance and produces contemporary dance inspired and crafted from the hybrid of influences, experiences, and interests that both he and his company members have collected and practised. Brian is also a regular mentor and skilled teacher who believes that teaching is a two-way process.

Carl Nerona

Carl is a dancer from East London, and he joined the Step into Dance team in September 2022. He has a big passion for dance and to be a dance teacher has been a huge dream and a great achievement for him. He wants to help young people to express themselves through dance, but most of all to have fun!

Caroline Thomas

A passion for dance from an early age, coupled with the technical training of a degree at the prestigious Trinity Laban Conservatoire; have given Caroline an excellent foundation to become an adaptable, inclusive, freelance dance artist; in professional performance, teaching, and choreographic work. Over the past decade she has provided over 300 primary and secondary schools with pre and post school clubs, curricular workshops, and GCSE dance lessons; as well as devising and creating unique schemes of work, resource packs, and INSET and CPD training programmes.

Dylan Mazey

Dylan is a passionate & accredited teacher & mentor that specialises in urban dance styles. He has a bachelor’s degree in urban dance practice and has 5 years experience in the community sector & commercial industry. His classes have an educational but fun approach, suitable for all ages and abilities. He aims to build a creative community and offer social engagement for children and young people. Additionally, Dylan’s workshops focus on building independence, confidence and positive behaviour.

Ebony Robinson

Ebony Robinson recently graduated from Trinity Laban conservatoire of dance with a degree in contemporary dance. She began her journey into dance through commercial and hip-hop dance before studying at Rubicon Dance College where she gained a vast knowledge and performance experience in a broad range of dance styles including ballet, jazz and contemporary techniques.

She is passionate about promoting diversity in dance and creative positive environments for growth and sharing. Ebony loves to teach as she is passionate about sharing the art of performance and dance and inspiring young people to express themselves in artistic ways.

Elena Alava HilgertImage Description: “This is a portrait of Elena, a white person in their 20s. They have brown wavy shoulder-length hair and are wearing a blue long-sleeve t-shirt. Elena is smiling at the camera. In the background, you can see trees and bushes.”

Elena is a community dance artist with over eight years of experience in dance, social circus, and PE. Their passion for dance led them to their MA in Dance Leadership and Community Practice at Trinity Laban. Elena currently works freelance for different organisations, including the RADiate inclusive dance programme and as an Artist in Residence for Greenwich Dance. They also deliver their own queer dance workshops. Their teaching practice is based on creative contemporary dance, commercial and hip hop and centers around celebrating creativity and connection.

Image Description: “This is a portrait of Elena, a white person in their 20s. They have brown wavy shoulder-length hair and are wearing a blue long-sleeve t-shirt. Elena is smiling at the camera. In the background, you can see trees and bushes.”

Elly Braund

Elly danced for Richard Alston Dance Company for nine years, touring works by Alston and Martin Lawrance on stages and festivals internationally. In 2019 Elly danced in ‘Night of 100 solos: a Centennial Event’ performing in commemoration of Merce Cunningham at the Barbican, coached and taught by Cunningham Company dancers. As a dance practitioner Elly has regularly taught company class for RADC and Protein Dance and led workshops for DAP Festival di Danza a Pietrasanta, Tanzfaktur Cologne, the Virginia Arts festival. She is a teacher on the Rambert Dance faculty and currently teaches contemporary technique at Royal Ballet School and London Contemporary Dance School. She also loves working with younger students and those who may not have danced before, she has taught on outreach programmes with Essential Alston, and Agudo Dance Company.

 

Georgie Mziu

Georgie Mziu is a Hip Hop and Commercial dancer and choreographer from London. She trained and currently teaches for ZooNation: The Kate Prince Company for many years. Georgie’s practice specialises in Hip Hop foundations including Locking, Popping and House dance in addition to her own choreography. She loves teaching, being inspired by young talent and people that just love to dance!

Holly Smith

Holly is a London based dance artist and graduate from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance. Holly teaches for a number of organisations including Trinity Laban, Royal Academy of Dance, DanceWest, Wee Movers and is Artist in Residence for Greenwich Dance. Her teaching spans from children and young people, up to adults and older adults, in schools, community settings and dance studios.

Isaac Baptiste

Isaac AKA Vitamin participates regularly in Battles and performances. Isaac teaches at various schools and groups, and has his own breaking class at Danceworks in London. His work also includes various TV performances such as Plan B’s music video: She Said, and as a choreographer for Strictly Come Dancing. If you ask him about his standout performance so far, he undoubtedly will say it was dancing as one of the professionals in London 2012 Opening Ceremony.

Izabel Oliver

Izzi has been dancing since she was 3 years old and has been lucky enough to perform on the West End Stage in Billy Elliot the Musical. In 2019, Izzi graduated from a 3-year musical theatre diploma course at Performers College. Since then Izzi worked for P&O Australia and performed as dancer on board the Pacific Aria Cruise Ship and has loved pursuing her teaching career, bringing various dance styles to children, teens and adults across Essex.

 

Jasmine Hall

Jasmine is a Community Dance Artist based in London and the East of England. A Bath Spa University Alumni who gained a 1st Class BA Hons in Dance, she has dedicated her training and career to provide movement opportunities for communities who have restricted access in locations spanning from London, to Essex and Suffolk. As well as teaching, Jasmine also performs, choreographs and produces dance films.

Jumar Aben 

At aged 16, Spanish born Filipino, John-Mathew Aben aka Jumar ‘Jumanji’ began as a freestyle mover. Beginning his professional training at the centre of advance training at LABAN and Barnet College with classical technique in ballet, contemporary release and Cunningham. Whilst studying classical techniques, he became passionate about hip hop dance, commercial and funk styles. He trained alongside various hip hop dance crews and graduated from the University of East London with a BA in Urban dance.

Justyna Sochaj

Justyna is a contemporary dancer, community dance practitioner and qualified contemporary dance teacher. Graduating from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in 2011 with a Postgraduate Diploma in Community Dance, Justyna then joined the Nutshell Dance Company. She was also a member of Experimental Dance Studio ‘EST’ (Poland) as well as Gesture and Movement Theatre (Poland) groups. Her work in dance includes site-specific projects, workshops, performances and educational work.

Kabuki Johnson

Kabuki Johnson is a dance teacher and performer graduating from the University of Winchester in Choreography & Dance & Education Studies with First Class Honours. Kabuki has been teaching dance since 2014 and now performs and teaches in a range of Street Styles and Commercial Dance. She has also performed in a number of productions and shows such as ‘The Jonathan Ross Show’, ‘Big Eurovision Welcome’, ‘Capital FM Summertime Ball’ and ‘La bohème’ with the English National Opera as Dance Captain.

Katerina Chaida

Katerina has a Master’s degree from London Contemporary Dance School and has performed in theatres such as Sadler’s Wells, the Barbican and The Place. She has been teaching dance for more than 11 years and has choreographed multiple dance productions and competitions. She always strives to inspire her students in order to reach their full potential and loves transmitting the knowledge she gains from her own artistic practice. She is interested in the interdisciplinary approach to the arts and her recent research involves the incorporation of new technologies into performance.

Katie Serridge

Katie is a freelance dance artist, inclusive dance teacher and adaptive movement specialist based in South East London. She graduated from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance with a First Class Honours degree and Copenhagen Contemporary Dance School. She has performed, choreographed her own work and co-founded MassHysteria Collective.
Katie trained with Stopgap Dance Company to specialise in inclusive dance teaching. She has taught in several SEND schools, community settings and with charities, across a broad and varied spectrum of disabilities and additional needs.
Katie believes dance and movement support the holistic development of children and young people with additional needs as well as provides opportunities for enjoyment and fun!

Kevin Young

Kevin is a professional dancer who has danced all over the world from Hong Kong to Abu Dhabi and from Italy to Norway. He has worked on TV shows such as X Factor, The Brit Awards, Dancing on Ice, All Star Mr and Mrs, So You Think You Can Dance, Britain’s Got Talent, with artists such as Florence and the Machine, Plan B, Diana Vickers and Marcus Collins to name a few.

Kirsty Purnell

Kirsty is a freelance dance artist exploring how we move and how to move with others in playful, inclusive environments. She is particularly interested in how movement can be used to create, communicate and collaborate in the spirit of collective joy. She regularly leads projects for Rambert and Sadler’s Wells Learning and Engagement Programme with sharings at Sadler’s Wells Theatre and The Yard Theatre, Hackney Wick. She has also worked for Hackney Children’s Theatre, SLiDE, Trinity Laban and run workshops for F.A.T Studio and London College of Communication. Initially studying English Literature and Philosophy at Glasgow University and then completing her PGCE, she went on to receive a scholarship to study Community Dance at Laban.

Laura Ginatempo

Originally from Sardinia (Italy), Laura obtained a professional Diploma in Ballet and Contemporary Dance at Accademia Internazionale Coreutica (Florence, Italy) in 2012. After her BA degree in Contemporary Dance at London Contemporary Dance School she joined CaraBdanza Dance Company in Madrid (Spain) in 2015, to then become a soloist dancer and a teacher for their professional programme in 2017. In January 2022 she completed her Master of Arts in Dance Technique Pedagogy at Middlesex University. Laura now works as a freelance practitioner in London and co-leads the dance curriculum at Highgate School.

Liliana Della Valle

Liliana is a freelance dance artist, contemporary teacher and developing movement choreologist. She initially trained at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, gaining a BA(Hons) in Contemporary Dance before going on to continue her research into movement analysis on the Specialist Diploma in Choreological Studies. Liliana is a skilled facilitator and movement practitioner, driven by her passion for creativity and movement, and approaches her pedagogy through a choreological lens. As a contemporary dance teacher, Liliana has taught as part of the faculty at Cecchetti Scholars, Traceworks Dance and as part of the team at Vacani School of Dance. Her own choreographic works have been performed at the Bonnie Bird Theatre, Greenwich.

Mareih Belocura

Mareih is a recent graduate from the Urban Dance Practice Course at the University of East London. She has trained and specialises in ballet, contemporary, Hip-Hop and commercial dance. She is immersed in both the choreographic and freestyle aspects of dance.

Mahdi Ghali

Bboy Mahdi performs professionally as well as teaching and choreographing. Mahdi competes internationally as a top level competitor in the world of Bboy dance sport. Mahdi has also worked as a professional singer and rap artist in Europe and Algeria and has released numerous albums and urban tracks.

Maria Cassar

Maria trained at the Johane Casabene Dance Conservatoire in Malta. She graduated with a Ba (Hons) Dance Theatre from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance. Her ethos as a dance practitioner is an inclusive one and she strives to make movement accessible to all. From 2008 to 2015 Maria was Artistic Director of RedTape Dance Company in Malta. She has been a recipient of Kensington and Chelsea Arts Grant and Greenshoots fund for dance work within the North Kensington youth community, in the aftermath of the Grenfell Fire.

Maria Savva

Maria is an enthusiastic, keen and proactive dancer, teacher and choreographer, who graduated from De Montfort University in July 2016 with a high 2.1 BA(HONS) in Dance. She has experience in teaching and performing a range of different dance styles, including: contemporary, lyrical, street dance breakdance, Latin styles, Jazz, freestyle, modern and cheerleading and gymnastics. Her vision is a world where young dancers have the energy, the commitment, the team spirit and thoughtfulness to be positive and creative members of society.

 

Marta Szlachcianowska

Marta is a prominent Dancehall dancer, who teaches and performs in the UK dance scene as well as working internationally, she has taught Dancehall Workshops across the UK as well as workshops in Japan, India, France, Italy, Russia, Poland, Romania, and Gran Canary. Marta is also a personal trainer focusing on flexibility and dance.

 

Meghna LN Raju

Meghna LN Raju is a passionate Bharatanatyam dancer and yoga practitioner, deeply committed to exploring the nuances of movement and expression. A dedicated alumna of the prestigious Kalakshetra Foundation, where she was honored as the ‘Best Outgoing Student of the year’ and ‘Overall Topper Prize’ in both her undergraduate (2018) and postgraduate (2020) studies. Meghna’s artistic journey is fueled by a love for sharing the transformative power of movement through carefully curated sessions for diverse groups. Meghna’s deep understanding of Bharatanatyam is complemented by her expertise in yoga, allowing her to curate transformative movement sessions for diverse audiences. With a focus on grace, precision, and storytelling, Meghna’s artistry leaves a lasting impression on all who witness her dance.

 

 

Mia Okorafor

Mia initially trained at the Jurek Sroka school of dance in Plymouth, after which she studied dance full time at Stonelands School of Dance and drama in Dawlish Devon, as well as attending West Street Ballet School and the Royal Ballet Schools Senior Associate programme in London. She then won a three year scholarship to attend London Studio Centre where she completed her Diploma in jazz and theatre dance and her BA Hons in performance studies at Arts Educational Schools London.

Mia has worked as a professional artist for over 20 years performing on worldwide Arena tours, TV Shows, and commercials. Mia has a passion for teaching dance education and developing her students technical and creativity abilities. She has a level 6 dance teaching diploma and an MA in Education and always looks for ways to challenge and develop her practice in order to stay current and to give her students the best possible experience of dance.

Michela Di Felice

Michela is a professional dance artist from Italy with more than ten years’ experience in the industry. She is known for her wide versatility in many styles. Her training started in Italy, and she has also trained in Paris, Bruxelles, New York and L.A. She now works and lives in London where she joined one of the most influential street dance companies in the UK, Boy Blue Entertainment. Her performance credits include the MOBO AWARDS Fuse ODG, Tinie Tempah, Deborah Cox, BBC Radio 1 Teen Awards, MTV’s Plain Jane, Channel 4 Comedy Gala Show, Jaxx Jones “SNACKS” Tour, and “Doctor Strange 2.”

Mollie Stebbing

Mollie Stebbing is a professional dancer, teacher & choreographer who specialises in Contemporary, Commercial and Hip Hop. She trained at The BRIT School and London Studio Centre, and was part of the SID programme at her secondary school. Mollie’s credits include Kylie Minogue, The British Fashion Awards, Isle of Wight Festival and The Walk at Somerset House.

Nathan Mafwa

Nathan is a professional dancer, choreographer and dance teacher. He specialises in African dance styles, Breakdance, Commercial, Hip Hop, House, Krump, Locking and Popping.

Nina Bell

Nina Bell is a professional musical theatre performer and teacher. At the age of 11 Nina made her West End debut in ‘Billy Elliot The Musical’ & attended full time education at ‘The Sylvia Young Theatre School’. Following on training at ‘Laine Theatre Arts’ for 3 years, graduating with a Musical Theatre Diploma in 2017. A few of Nina’s most recent performing credits include: Swing in The No.1 U.K. Tour of ‘Matilda The Musical’ with the Royal Shakespeare Company, Bonnie in ‘The Little Beasts’ at The Other Palace and Betty Lou in the Original UK cast of ‘The Grinch Who Stole Christmas!’… Nina has been teaching and choreographing for the last 6 years, working for various performing arts schools throughout London and Essex. In the last few years she has been travelling all over the UK taking her own workshops/masterclasses and creating performances for children. She has a real passion for teaching. She wants to pass down and share her love, knowledge and skills with the younger generation.

Paula Vacarey

Paula began training in dance at her local ballet school at age 4. After a long break from dance, she found some local classes in jazz and contemporary dance as a teen, which set her on the path to Lewisham college training in Jazz, Ballet, Contemporary and Tap. She then trained at The Place (LCDS) gaining a BA hons in contemporary dance and choreography. Alongside dance school training she was on the London club scene learning new jack, Hip- Hip and ragga dance styles. Her interest in hip-hop grew and she trained in Breakin becoming a founder member of London Breakin crew “Foundationz”. She enjoyed a varied career performing as a B-Girl, a contemporary dancer and as a aerialst in theatres, pop tours, videos and festivals in the UK, Europe and the U.S.A. Her teaching career has run parallel to her performing career teaching in dance schools and the local community to people of all ages and abilities. She believes dance is a wonderful form of self-expression, which brings people together, enriches lives and builds confidence and self-esteem. Dance should be enjoyed by the many and not the few.

Paul Madden

 

Quita Doubleday

Quita studied BA (Hons) Dance and Theatre Performance at Liverpool College of Performing Arts. As well as being an experienced Bellydance, Contemporary and Jazz dancer, she is also a writer, actor and comedian and often performs as multi award winning comedian clown act ‘Cheekykita’.

Rachel Angus

Rachel L Angus is a fully qualified ballet teacher who’s dance practice ranges from ballet to bollywood. Through growing up internationally she has had exposure to and training in a wide variety of dance styles. She throughly enjoys her teaching practice and seeing students grow both physically and mentally through exposure to dance

Rachel Bolsworth

Rachel is a Scottish Performer, Practitioner and Fitness Instructor with a passion for movement and exploration. Rachel trained at Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts, gaining a diploma in Performing Arts; excelling in dance, singing and acting. Rachel then toured the world on board the Costa Venezia as Production Manager and Dancer. On returning Rachel trained intensively in commercial and hip hop, with her training taking her to Los Angeles, working closely with prominent choreographers and creatives. From her varied and broad background she loves to incorporate different styles and genres to fully explore movement and minds!

Rachel Newby

Rachel gained a degree in Creative Arts (Dance Major) from Manchester Metropolitan University, began her career at Cheshire Dance, had a great time working as a Dance Artist In Residence in the West Midlands and then moved to London. Her work has taken her around the country; giving some people their first experience of dance and going to the theatre. It’s been an interesting and rewarding journey through dance and performance.

Rachel has danced with giant pencils, performed as a singing dolphin, a ghost, a lion (who of course was the king, so she got to wear a crown!) and a bee called Boris. Theatre tots, Trinity Laban, English National Ballet, DashDotDance, Epping Forest District Council and DanceWest are just some of the companies she has worked with. Rachel enjoys the variety of her work and loves to sing as well as dance. The age range she delivers to is huge too, Rachel currently teaches a dancer who is 92 years young as well as some tiny tots of the age of 2!

Rosie Chesson (BA, APDA)

Rosie specialises in teaching Authentic Street Dance: Hip Hop, House, Waacking, Locking, Popping and Breaking; which she continues to train in, learning from the creators and pioneers of these styles. Alongside running her own dance school, she teaches for The Royal Academy of Dance, Step Into Dance and ZooNation. Rosie has judged competitions such as The Great Big Dance Off and seen her work performed at venues including Sadlers Wells and The Southbank Centre.

Ruth Mair Howard Jones

Ruth trained at Tring Park (Arts Educational), Central School of Ballet, and London Studio Centre. Before continuing her studies at RADA and Academia Teatro alla Scala. She holds an RAD Professional Dancers Teaching Diploma. Her short film Sono Con Te, created in lockdown, won the award for Best Actress at the Phoenix Short Film Festival.

Samantha Haynes

Sam is a Hip hop dance educator and performer with a BA and Masters in Dance. Sam has performed in the Opening Ceremony for London’s 2012 Olympic Games and for four consecutive years at Sadler’s Wells for Breakin’ Convention with The Locksmiths Dance Company. She has danced on Britain’s Got Talent and has performed in Italy, Malta, South Africa and St. Lucia. Currently she is touring with Cirque Bijou in their bespoke LED light-suit show. She teaches for Step into Dance as well as for university dance societies in London. She is co-founder of #makemefunky dance classes in London where she specialises in Popping, Locking and 1970’s funky social dances.

Shawn Aimey

Shawn started performing back in 2000 when he was at theatre school where he studied singing, dance and drama. Shawn then focused on dance and took part in numerous shows before proudly becoming a member of Plague Dance Crew in 2008. Shawn specialises in funkstyles (popping and locking). He has appeared on BBC3’s “Move Like Michael Jackson”, in the “Streetdance 3D” movie and in the iconic Michael Jackson tribute stage show “MJ Timeless”.

Steffi Armor

Steffi is an experienced dance teacher whose dance practice ranges from Ballet and Tap to Ballroom and Contemporary Dance. She initially trained at the Northern Ballet School before going on to gain her BA (Hons) in Ballet Education with the Royal Academy of Dance. Since then Steffi has worked in a wide range of educational and community settings, including SEND environments. Driven by a passion for movement, her approach has a strong emphasis on inclusivity and engaging with participants to unlock their creative potential.

 

Stella Rousham

Stella is a Dance Artist, Choreographer and Dance Writer based in South London. 

Her dance training started at The Place (2014 – 18), where she studied ballet, contemporary technique and improvisation. Stella developed an interest in inter-disciplinary choreography after completing the Next Choreography course at Siobhan Davies Studios (2017).

After completing a BA Hons. in Human, Social and Political Sciences, she gained experience teaching creative dance for a wide range of age groups and abilities, through her Graduate Internship in Youth Dance Programmes & Public Engagement at Trinity Laban (2022 – 23). Since completing her internship, Stella started work as a Support Artist for Corali Dance Company and Community Practitioner for The Blair Academy. As a member of independent dance magazine, dance art journal, Stella regularly writes reviews and conduct interviews with leading contemporary dance artists, as well as running dance writing workshops.

Stella takes an inclusive and non-hierarchical pedagogical approach, using creative tasks to centre on the agency of participants. The priority is to develop movement vocabulary and foster creative curiosity in a caring and nurturing environment.

Tanya Greig

Tanya has trained, toured and taught as a professional dancer for almost 2 decades. She is also a professional Yoga instructor.

Tara Choudrie

Tara is a freelance Dance Artist and Educator. She delivers dance classes and workshops in Contemporary, Ballet and Jazz techniques. She initially trained at NSCD and Middlesex University. Tara is currently a MA Dance Research student at Rambert School and is focussed on creating greater support for mothers working within the dance sector. Tara is a highly skilled and experienced dance teacher and facilitator who has taught for many years in various settings ranging from pre professional vocational schools, educational establishments within the GCSE, BTEC and AL curriculum, creating festival and show pieces for youth companies and schools, as well as delivering dance as an outreach worker for dance organisations.

Vivian Triantafyllopoulou

Vivian comes from Greece and studied contemporary dance in Trinity Laban in London. She continued as a chosen member of the Akram Khan Experiment and then she joined Jasmin Vardimon 2 professional development course, where she performed a national tour. She has performed in theatres like Royal Opera House, Richmix, Sadler’s Wells, The Place, and Northern Ballet.

She passionately teaches dance, dance theatre and improvisation at leading organisations such as Trinity Laban, The Place, City Lit, Greenwich Dance and others. Vivian is the founder of workshops ‘Energy and flow’, a contemporary dance workshop and ‘Movement waves’ an outdoors community improvisation workshop-usually happening by the sea! She created her own dance company in 2019 and her works have been supported by Tripspace, Chisenhale Dance, Arts Council England, Dance Cultural Centre and others.

Zoe Elliott

Zoe is a freelance dance artist, based in South-East London. After graduating from the London Studio Centre in 2014, Zoe has pursued her passion for bringing dance to every corner of our community, involving people of all ages, abilities and cultures. She teaches contemporary dance, creative movement and jazz, and strives to utilise movement as a therapeutic and expressive art-form.