Karen Sant – Certificate in Ballet Teaching Studies, BA (Hons) Professional Practice in Teaching and Choreography
Karen started dancing at the age of 8 and reached the Advanced 2 level in the Cecchetti syllabus. At the age of 11 she was awarded a scholarship at the Cecchetti School of Ballet in Tring, London. Later she auditioned for the Northern Ballet School in Manchester and was awarded a scholarship to start training there full time in September 2004. she graduated 3 years later with a Diploma in Professional Dance and a job as a soloist in a small contemporary/ballet company. Since then she’s focused more on the teaching aspect of dance. She has a passion for teaching and takes great pleasure in passing on the knowledge and experience she has gained whilst watching dancers evolve. Karen teaches ballet at Salford University, she’s been invited by several establishments to teach workshops, including Manchester City College and the Conway Centre in Anglesey. She has also taught company class to the principals and soloists of the Chinese National Ballet during their tour with Akram Khan Dance Company. She regularly gives private tuition to young aspiring dancers, and runs classes for professional dancers who are in between jobs. She has worked with dancers from Royal Ballet School, Central School of Ballet, Elmhurst, Hammond, Northern Ballet School, Dresden Semper Oper, English National Ballet, Bern Ballet, Royal Ballet Company and La Scala. She recently founded a dance company which performs at various events (corporate and private), allowing her to pursue her other passion of choreographing.
Ailsa started dancing at 3yrs old, training at Bramhall School of Dancing. Ailsa competed successfully in local and national competitions, in a huge variety of dance styles including Ballet, Tap, Jazz, National and Song & Dance, performing solos, Duets,Trios and Group dances. This well rounded dance training has given Ailsa a great foundation for her present performances and inspiration for choreographic work. At 18yrs old Ailsa was awarded a scholarship to study a degree in Theatre Dance at London Studio Centre, majoring in Musical Theatre for her final year and performing “The Wiz” with the ‘Seedtime’ Musical Theatre Company at Greenwich Theatre, London and The Kenneth More Theatre, Ilford . She gained a 2:1 and was asked to perform in the student Showcase at the Criterion Theatre, London. Ailsa stayed in London for a year after completing her degree, performing a supporting role in various adverts and the movie ‘The Duchess’, directed by Saul Dibb. She was also the poster model for up and coming movie ‘Charnel House’, directed by Paul Campion. Paul also directed the Award winning ‘Night of the Hell Hamsters’, in which Ailsa featured as a damsel in distress!
Sarah began dancing at age nine, learning Ballet, Tap and Jazz at the Angela Hill School of Dance in Melbourne, Australia. She was awarded highly commendable for RAD grade 2 ballet, received a special mention for her entry into the schools choreographic competition and took part in national competitions.
At age eleven she was accepted at The Victorian College of the Arts, but after a year her family returned to England where she began her training at The Royal Ballet School, Whitelodge in London. She completed her studies there and progressed to The Royal Ballet Upper School.
Over the years she trained in techniques such as Tap, Scottish, Character, Greek, Contemporary, Pas de Deux, Repetoire, Solos, Gymnastics, Drama and Choir. At the end of each year the schools put on shows at both The Royal Opera House and Holland Park Theatre. Sarah danced parts like, a big swan in Swan Lake, the lead in Macmillans Soiree Musicale and a corps part in Balanchines Valse Fantasie. In her final year at Upper School she worked with The Royal Ballet and Birmingham Royal Ballet companies as a student.
Upon graduation she was offered two jobs, one with The Birmingham Royal Ballet and the other with The English National Ballet, both as an artist. She accepted the position with The Birmingham Royal Ballet and performed with them for two years in productions like, Swan Lake, Romeo and Juliet, Sleeping Beauty, Coppelia, The Nutcracker, La Fille Mal Gardee, Sylvia, Fall River Legend, Choreatium, Job, Symphony in Three Movements, Serenade, and Theme and Variations, travelling all over the U.K. and Europe.
After Birmingham she moved to California in the U.S.A. and joined a small company called Coast Ballet, now known as The Anaheim Ballet. Here she was given the opportunity to dance bigger roles and had parts created for her in pieces such as New Era and Pocahontas. She stayed with them for three years. Her favourite choreographer is George Balanchine.
Now after fifteen years of no dancing she is taking classes again as a way of keeping fit. She has recently started teaching Ballet classes at KNT Danceworks and is enjoying passing on her extensive knowledge of Classical Ballet
Josh started dancing at the age of 7 where he became interested watching the film ‘Billy Elliot’. He decided to give dancing a go at his local dance school (Capriole Academy of Dance). After enjoying his first few lessons, it became a hobby for him dancing styles such as Ballet, Modern, Jazz and Tap. After Years of Exams and training at the age of 16 Josh auditioned for ‘The Northern Ballet School’ in Manchester, where within two weeks he found out he had gained a full scholarship and place at the School. Josh studied at the Northern Ballet School for 3 years performing in companies such as The Manchester City Ballet Company and Jazzgalore Musical Theatre Productions. He has danced principal roles in Coppélia, dancing the role of Betrothal. Gaining an NVQ Level 6 in Professional Dance Studies.
After completing 3 years of vocational training, Mark graduated from Northern Ballet School with a National Diploma in Professional Dance. Mark’s first job was with Costa Cruises where he was lucky enough to cruise around Asia.
Mark then on to work for P&O Australia and finally finished his time at sea with Celebrity Cruise’s. In 2011, Mark danced for ITV in their adaptation of Mrs Biggs. He was offered a chance he couldn’t turn down it as it was for Walt Disney Productions. Mark danced in the role of Pirate in ‘Pirates Of The Caribbean’, which was performed in Hyde Park London over 2 days in front of more than 50,000 people. After this he went on to gaining a contract in the Middle East (Saudi Arabia) working for Aram Co in their summer fair.
He was offered dance captain for this show and helped influence it artistically along with his director Helen Dale. After working in Saudi Arabia he went straight into rehearsals for Rio Carnival. This was a spectacular production performed over the Christmas Season, celebrating song and dance from Brazil. Even before he had finished Rio Carnival he was offered his next contract in Best Of Broadway performing in Dubai.
After this successful contract Mark was then offered Musical Magic again performing in Dubai. Shortly afterwards he was offered yet another contract in The Middle East dancing in a show called Pirates. Mark was home only for two weeks before flying back out to Abu Dhabi to work with Helen Dale on The Freej Production. This time Mark was to choreograph the show, this was just opportunity Mark wanted, but would not have been able to do without the help of Karen Sant.
Since being back Mark has danced in two flashmob, both in the name of charity. Most Recently Mark performed in a Bob Fossè style show for Winter Works.