Those who can, teach at The Brighton Academy!
Kate Alexander - Principal
Hairspray – West End
Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat – West End
Guys and Dolls – West End
Footloose – UK Tour
Starlight Express – West End
Fame – West End/UK Tour
Grease – West End
Love Shack – UK Tour
Boogie Nights – West End/UK Tour
De La Guarda – West End
A Night With Liza Minnelli – West End
New York Fashion Week
London Fashion Week
Elite Model Look – Shanghai
Work It Campaign – Selfridges, London
Agent Provocateur – Berlin
Gigglebiz - CBBC
Stuart Dawes - Principal
Jersey Boys – West End
Urine Town – West End
We Will Rock You – West End
Grease – UK Tour
Spamalot – West End
Shall We Dance – West End
Fame – West End
Singing In The Rain – West End
Passion – West End
Romeo & Juliet – West End
On The Town – West End
Dick and Dom - BBC
Poirot - ITV
Emma Green - Principal
Wicked – West End
Spamalot – West End
Grease – West End/UK Tour
Shall We Dance – West End
Fame – UK Tour
42nd Street – UK Tour
Guys and Dolls – Workshop
Dancer: Tiller Girls
Dancer: Kylie Minogue
John Bishop Show - ITV
Dick and Dom - BBC
M&S Mother and Baby – Advert
World Poker Tour
Tim Newman - Principal
2011 What’s On Stage Awards Nominee - Best Supporting Actor In a Musical
Memphis the Musical – West End
Jesus Christ Superstar – Arena Tour
Mamma Mia! – International Tour
Grease – West End
Fame – UK Tour
Footloose – West End/UK Tour
Saturday Night Fever – West End
All The Fun Of The Fair – West End
Tap Dogs – UK/European Tour
Crazy For You – UK Tour
Build Me Up Buttercup – Workshop
Tap! – Workshop
Support Act For David Essex – Rock Arena Tour
“Remedy” – Debut Solo Album (DTJ Records)
“Why Me?” – Solo Album (Whiteburn)
The Dance Department
Justine Murray - Head of Dance
Justine trained at The London Contemporary Dance School and has worked in leading professional vocational colleges, as a jazz and contemporary faculty member and choreographer, for 22 years. These include; Performers College, Laine Theatre Arts, The Centre for Performing Arts and Bird College where she held the post of Head of Department.
As well as her college teaching commitments Justine is also principal and founder of The Young Dancers Foundation.
She has created syllabus work and lectures, in the UK and internationally, for The Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing.
Justine is excited to be taking on the role of Head of Dance for The Brighton Academy.
Clair Thomas - Head of Ballet
Clair trained at the Susan Robinson School in Byfleet, She won a Prix de Bourse in the 1989 Prix de Lausanne Competition before joining the Royal Ballet Upper School in 1990. Clair won the Gold Medal in the 1990 Adeline Genée Awards and began her professional career with English National Ballet in 1992. During her career she also danced with London City Ballet, Het Nationale Ballet in The Netherlands and Brussels Ballet in Belgium. She returned to the UK in 2009 to join The Michael Clark Company. Clair completed a Bachelor of Arts Degree at Birkbeck College, University of London in 2001 and graduated with a Professional Dance Teaching Diploma from the RAD in 2008. In recent years she has taught Ballet for the Urdang Academy in London, Bird College and The Royal Academy of Dance both at Head Quarters and on the Fondo International Summer School. For the last three years Clair was Head of Ballet at the D&B School for Performing Arts and joins The Ballet faculty at The Brighton Academy this September.
Kay Shepherd - Head of Tap
Kay Shepherd trained at Laine Theatre Arts where she also taught for many years. Other vocational posts include Bush Davies, Royal Academy of Dance and The Royal Ballet School. She has trained and coached children and adults in many situations throughout the UK and overseas.
Kay is a Fellow of the ISTD and has worked for the society as a lecturer and examiner. She did early development work on the current modern grades and contributed to the Advanced 2 Tap Syllabus.
She has enjoyed a long association with the National Youth Music Theatre for whom she directs and choreographs and has worked on many productions for them, including their highly acclaimed Bugsy Malone at The Queens Theatre.
She has many and varied choreographic credits covering musicals, operas, large scale community projects, site specific works, pantomime and plays.
Most recently ‘La Vie Parisienne’ for the Royal College of Music, ‘Whistle Down the Wind’ at the Rose Theatre, Kingston and ‘Carousel’ for Opera North at The Barbican and Theatre du Chatelet, Paris.
Simeon Weedall - Tap
Simeon trained at the London Studio Centre graduating with the Tap Award, furthering his training in New York. Jazz Company Uk Tour, Chicago international tour, Chicago West End. He choreographed, produced and appeared in About Time West End then Percussive Feet UK Tour. Playing the lead tapper in Magic of the Dance international tour and lead tapper for the Liam O’Conner Show international tour. He is currently appearing in STOMP in the West End. Tap soloist world-wide- for Coca Cola, Greenwich Cabaret, elan Fashion, Goldwell, Serco, Classical Spectacular, Big Dance, Brighton Dome Spectacular, the Paul O’ Grady Show, Tapestry, Reach For Dance, The Jiving Lindy-Hoppers, Will Gaines– 80th Birthday Celebration at Southbank Centre. Trafalgar Square Cabaret, the 02 Unity festival at the Millenium Dome, BBC Radio 4– the man who was Bojangles. Simeon choreographed for Dance Overture and Stepping Out for London Studio Centre. He appeared on the I.T Crowd and is currently jamming with jazz musicians on a regular basis at Ronnie Scotts London and the Brunswick in Brighton.
Mark Smith - Matt Mattox
MY SILENT WORLD, THE BOYS FROM SYRACUSE, THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM & COUNTY SPELLING BEE, DIE FLEDERMAUS ,CALL ME MADAM NOAH, THE 2012 PARALYMPIC OPENING CEREMONY, A MARVELLOUS YEAR FOR PLUMS, REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL, THE LION THE WITCH & THE WARDROBE, ALADDIN, WHEELS ON BROADWAY, SEQUINS AND SNOWBALLS, ALIVE (Deaf Men Dancing & Rachel Gadsden), IOLANTHE, SHOES
Off-West Awards and 2011 Broadway World UK Awards Nomination as Best Choreographer for Iolanthe (Critic’s Choice & Time Out’s top 10 musical of 2010).
Off-West Awards 2012 nomination as Best Choreographer for Call Me Madam.
Amanda Armstrong - Ballet
Amanda performed as a soloist/guest performer for many ballet companies including:
English National Ballet , London City Ballet, Scottish Ballet 2, English Bach Festival (ROH), MZT Dance Company, Vienna Festival Ballet , Wiener Ballett Theater, Gwent Ballet Theatre, Sadler’s Wells Royal Ballet and The Royal Ballet. Roles Danced Include: Swan Lake: (Odette/Odile, Cygnets, Ashton’s Pas de Quatre, Pas de Trois and Neapolitan) Giselle: (Giselle, Peasant Pas de Deux, Moyna and Zulma) Nutcracker: (Sugar Plum Fairy, Mirlitons) Cinderella: (Cinderella, Spring, Summer, Autumn (created Matthew Harts’ version), Paquita (Principal and solos), Raymonda Act III (Principal and solos), George Balanchine’s Who Cares ? (Glamour Principal), Sir Kenneth Macmillan’s Solitaire (The Girl), Christopher Hampson’s Trapeze (The Woman), Peter Darrell’s Othello (Desdemona) Sleeping Beauty (Grand pas Act III, Fairy of Temperament, Red Riding Hood, (created Deane’s Fairy of beauty, Gold and Silver , Cats ), Bournonvilles’ Flower Festival at Genzano Pas de Deux and Dances from Napoli (solos) Derek Deane’s Alice in wonderland ( Dream Alice Pas de Deux), Coppelia ( Dawn and Prayer), Le Corsaire Pas de Deux, Tetley’s Voluntaries, Cathy Marston’s Facing Viv ( ‘Neurotic Viv’)
Alex Cowie - Ballet
Alex began dancing from the age of 6. He then went on to train at the Royal Ballet School’s White Lodge and then it’s Upper School from 1988-1995. During his last few years as a student he worked touring with the Birmingham Royal Ballet, dancing in 'Romeo and Juliet’ and 'The Nutcracker’. With the Royal Ballet, he danced in 'Romeo and Juliet' and ‘Giselle' at the Royal Opera House.
He joined Ballet Schindowski in Germany where two years later was promoted to Soloist. After 6 years with them he joined Ballet Kiel also as a Soloist expanding his Contemporary dance knowledge and performed in many new works including ‘The Doors’, 'Moazart’s requieM' and 'The Wall' which were choreographed by Mario Schroeder. In 2005 Alex returned back to London and worked as a Freelance dancer. West End credits includes ‘Equus’ starring Daniel Radcliff and Will Tuckett’s production of ‘Pinocchio’ at The Royal Opera House’s Linbury Theatre. He then joined the UK tour of ‘Equus’ which was followed by performing and touring as Guest Soloist with Tetsuaya Kumakawa’s K Ballet in Japan, dancing in ‘Giselle’, 'Sleeping Beauty’ and ‘Coppelia’.
Zoe Green - Commercial
Training: Zoe trained 3 years at Laine Theatre Arts, followed by Zoonation dance Company.
Theatre Credits: Ensemble in Jesus Christ SuperStar UK, International Arena Tour. Flashdance The Musical original cast UK and West End and Cacophony Uk Tour.Television Credits: Zoe performed at the 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony and in many TV shows including Strictly Come Dancing, Britain's Got Talent, The X Factor, So You Think You can Dance, Lets Dance and The Brit Awards, dancing for artists such as Plan B, Kanye West, JLS, Cheryl Cole, Alexander Burk, WestLife, Alesha Dixon, Annie Lennox, One Direction, Tinnie Tempah, Jessie J, Wretch32.
Zoe featured in the Relentless Energy Drink and Heineken commercials and was the body double for Davina McCall in the Got To Dance opening titles.
Other credits include: Foxy Bingo Commercial 2015, Britain's Got Talent Tour, Capital FM Jingle Bell Ball, and Fashion/ Event shows for Nike, Reebok, Move It, Sure, Decathlon, The Clothes Show, Vitality, Metro Ski and Snowboard Show, Toyota, Nokia, Sandler, Tour de France and Breakin Convention.
Paul McLinden - Ballet
Paul McLinden brings with him over 30 years of experience teaching classical ballet, choreography, and Pilates. After completing his classical ballet training at the Central School of Ballet in 1982, Paul spent over a decade under contract in both the corps de ballet and as a principal soloist. At the peak of his career, he performed the classics on stage with some of the world’s greatest names in ballet: Rudolf Nureyev, Carla Fracci, and the Bolshoi’s prima ballerina, Nina Ananishvili.Paul is a Senior Lecturer for the Body Control Pilates Association, a world leader in Pilates education, and acted as their Head of Teacher Training for 5 years. He co-founded the Brighton Pilates Studio with Helge Fisher in 1997 and later launched Ocean Wave Pilates, Hove’s first Pilates studio.
Selina Hamilton - Jazz
London Studio Centre and Elmhurst Ballet School
Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (Savoy Theatre), Rock of Ages, Constance Sack (Garrick Theatre/ Shaftsbury Theatre) Mamma Mia! Swing and understudy Ali (International tour), understudied Marty and Cha Cha in Grease (Piccadilly Theatre), Spamalot, original London cast (Palace Theatre.)
This morning, The Royal Variety show, The Alan Titchmarsh show, The Fratellis-‘Chelsea Dasgger’ music video and the MOBO Awards.
Other work includes
Londons 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony and Classical Spectacular (Royal Albert Hall.)
Kaori Nakazowa- Ballet
After a successful career as a Professional Ballet Dancer, Kaori moved over to teaching. She started her training from the age of 5 in Tokyo and moved to London aged 17 to continue her training. She joined the Salzburg Ballet Company in Austria in 1990 where she danced in the corps de ballet and danced Soloist roles in Cinderella, Coppelia and Le Corsaire (Grand Pas de Deux). In 1992 she then joined the Ballet Schindowski Company in Gelsenkirchen, Germany, where she started in the Corps de Ballet before being promoted to Soloist dancer in 1994 and then to Principal dancer in 1998.
Her varied repertoire included classical ballet Principal roles in ballets such as Swan Lake, Cinderella and La Sylphide. She also dance in Contemporary works such as Beauty and the Beast, Kriminelles Kind and E Muoio Disperato, choreographed by Javier de Frutos and was a cast member of the company's musical version of West Side Story. In 2003 Kaori was offered the Assistant Director's role at Ballet Schindowski which incorporated being the Company's Ballet and Rehearsal Mistress.
Joseph Davenport - Jazz
Training: Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts. Joseph is also a trained gymnast.
Theatre includes: Ensemble in Book of Mormon (Prince of Wales), Swing in Memphis the Musical (Shaftesbury), Swing/cover Michael, Doctor and Escapologist in Matilda the Musical (Cambridge), Ensemble cover Pepper in Mamma Mia! (Prince of Wales), Crazy for You (London Palladium), All Male Iolanthe and the award winning All Male Pirates of Penzance (Wiltons Music Hall and Rose Theatre, Kingston), Meeting Mark (The Fan Museum), Aladdin (Courtyard Theatre, Hereford), After The Tone (Bridewell), Riff in West Side Story (Albany), and Mike Costa/Dance Captain in A Chorus Line (BAC)
TV /FIlm: Lilies, Children in Need and Paul O'Grady (BBC), Weekender (Momentum)
The Singing Department
Gary Jerry - Head of Repertoire & Performance
MD Credits: If It Only Runs a Minute – Landor Theatre – June 2012, Reuben Kaye at The Pheasantry (May 2012), News Revue (March/April 2012) A Night for Jennifer (Lyric Theatre, West End October 2011) Songs for a New World (Battersea Barge, April 2011), Hairspray (Hatch End, April 2011), Joseph (Childrens Choir UK Tours 2007-08 & 08-09), Godspell, Sage Summer Showcase, Sage at Xmas (Sage Academy), Little Shop of Horrors (Royalty Theatre, Sunderland), Bugsy Malone (Peoples Theatre, Newcastle), West End Performers (The Comedy Theatre, Leicester Square July 2011), Broadway Spectacular (Ryan Theatre, July 2010) Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Beauty and the Beast, Half a Sixpence, Dr Dolittle and Jesus Christ Superstar (All UK Tours – Sunderland/Newcastle Legs) – David Ian/UK Productions/ Bill Kenwright Keyboards: Little Shop of Horrors, The Book Of Dreams, A Kind of Magic, Godspell, Bugsy Malone, Gladrags, Jack and the Beanstalk, The Golden Age of Musical Theatre, Christmas Jazz Pianist for Musical Improvisation group – The Suggestibles – July 2009- Present – various dates and locations
Lesley McClymont - Head of Theory & Technique
SINGING TEACHING: Young Dancers Foundation Jan 2014 – present, The Centre, Performing Arts April 2013 – present, Chichester University (MT Degree) Oct 2010 – present, Trinity College of Music (MT Degree) Oct 2009 – present, Urdang Academy (MT Degree) Sept 2009 – present, Heathfields School January 2009 – July 2013, Pipers Corner School January 2007 – July 2010, Amersham & Wycombe College (Sessional) January – April 2008, Musical Theatre Techniques January – April 2006, Henley College (Sessional Lecturer – Perf Arts) September 2006 – July 2011, Lochinver House School (Prep) January 2004 – July 2007, Belmont School (Mill Hill Prep) September 2002- December 2006, Mill Hill School September 1999 – July 2008, Performers College (Deputizing) April 1997 – October 1997
DIRECTING EXPERIENCE: IAPS Summer Schools (Course Director) July 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, The Wild Party (Director) Amersham & Wycombe College – Dec 2006, Oklahoma! (Director) Amersham & Wycombe College – January 2006, Spend, Spend, Spend (Director) Amersham & Wycombe College – January 2005
Simon Pickering - Repertoire
Simon graduated in Music with Honours from University Of Southampton. His professional theatrical credits include: Associate Musical Director for Cabaret (Lyric Theatre), Guest Conductor at We Will Rock You (Dominion Theatre), Musical Director for Pirates of Penzance (Orange Tree Theatre), Aladdin (Camberley Theatre), Peter Pan (Kuala Lumpur), The Wonderful West End (David Graham Productions). As a keyboard player, his list of playing experience includes, Billy Elliot (Victoria Palace Theatre), Whistle Down The Wind (Palace Theatre), Mamma Mia! (Prince of Wales Theatre), Doctor Dolittle (Hammersmith Apollo, Grease (Piccadilly Theatre), Never Forget (Savoy Theatre), Hairspray (Shaftesbury Theatre), Cabaret (Lyric Theatre), We Will Rock You (Dominion Theatre), Blood Brothers (UK Tour), Tell Me on a Sunday (UK Tour), The Wedding Singer (UK Tour), Starlight Express (UK Tour), Hairspray (UK Tour) and Cabaret (UK Tour). In Cyprus he has been musical director for concerts with the winners of Greek X Factor and Pop Idol series 2010 and he has just returned from Cyprus where he played for a production of The Wizard of Oz, starring Lauren Samuels, finalist from BBC’s Over the Rainbow programme. His has arranging work has been used all over the UK, including the London Palladium.
Tom Carradine - Repertoire
As MD: HI-DE-HI (UK tour), STAVROS AND VALANDO @ THE MOVIES (Limasol and Nicosia, Cyprus), JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT (UK tour), RED PEPPERS (Theatre Vision, NYC), THE JUNGLE BOOK (Playhouse, Weston-Super-Mare), BABES IN THE WOOD and MOTHER GOOSE (Pomegranate, Chesterfield), OKLAHOMA! (Grimsby Auditorium), SPRING FEVER (King’s Head, London) and a studio cast recording of the rock musical AREA 51. As assistant MD: SCROOGE (UK tour), CABARET (UK tour).
As Children’s MD: THE SOUND OF MUSIC (UK tour).
As a keyboard player he has worked on the UK tours of THE SOUND OF MUSIC, WATERLOO UK, MAD ABOUT THE MUSICALS, BLOOD BROTHERS, HALF A SIXPENCE and GOTTA SING GOTTA DANCE as well as CATS and THE WIZARD OF OZ for the Larnaca International Festival in Cyprus. Tom has played keyboards on CINDERELLA at the Hackney Empire and is a regular dep on LES MISERABLES in London. He also worked as music programmer for the current UK tour of EVITA.
Lucy Pickering - Technique
Lucy studied classical singing at Royal Northern College of Music and jazz singing at Middlesex University. She has a cast-iron technique, a comprehensive understanding of the widest range of musical genres, and is an accomplished instrumentalist on both piano and guitar. These are some of the reasons why Lucy is such a sought-after vocal tutor. She provides invaluable guidance to
professionals and aspiring professionals, as well as maintaining a commitment to nurturing younger talent.
Her performing experience is equally richly varied. It includes playing the role of Mary in Merrily We Roll Along (Mermaid Theatre). She has been a singer aboard some of the world’s most prestigious cruise liners and has hosted her own folk and acoustic night in London. She regularly fronts an 11-piece function band, and is also a founder member of the Sondheim cabaret group, 3’s Company
The Acting Department
Verena Lewis - Head of Acting
Verena Lewis (ADVS) trained in Musical Theatre at GSA and, after ten years working as a jobbing actor (touring, panto, rep, fringe), trained as a Voice specialist at CSSD. She was a co-founder of Alpha Management Agency (now Alpha Actors) and a co-founder of Sturdy Beggars Theatre Co.
She reluctantly admits to over twenty-five years of teaching experience including GSA, LAPA, Mountview and Oxford School of Drama. From 2000-2009 she was Head of Voice at the Poor School, where she also directed. In addition to teaching she has directed on the London fringe and run community workshops in Voice, Spoken Word, Poetry and Drama.
Paul Tripp - Acting & Voice
PG Acting Dip – Master of Arts in Voice Studies at The Royal Central School of Speech & Drama.ACTING: For twenty years Paul has been a professional Actor and Director appearing in many Films, Musicals, Plays and also on Television and Radio. A few of his film credits include: The Gathering Storm – HBO, Sliding Doors – Miramax, Maybe Baby – Ben Elton & Paramount, Hitch Hikers Guide To The Galaxy – Douglas Adams/Touchstone – Loving Companions Channel 4 Films. On television appearances in ‘Extras’ – Ricky Gervais/ BBC, Shameless- Channel 4, Doctors – BBC, The Bill – ITV McCreedy & Daughter ITV/Fremantle to name but a few. Theatre work has included seasons at The RSC and National Theatre, ‘Aston’ in The Caretaker, Title role in ‘Macbeth’, ‘Rispolozhensky’ in A Family Affair, ‘Bottom’ in A Midsummer’s Night Dream, ‘Collins’ in ‘Fings Ain’t Wot They Used To Be’, Bill Sykes in ‘Oliver’, many Pantomimes as Dame, Ugly Sisters and Directing.DIRECTING: Assistant Director at The Kings Head Theatre Islington, working on many West End Transfers – Mr Cinders, Wonderful Town, The Sound of Music along with many award wining In-house Productions. Artistic Director at The Drayton Court Theatre for three years, directing over 20 productions. ’They Liked Me ” at Jermyn St Theatre, Blood Brothers Tour, Director of Chiltern Open Air Shakespeare Festival, Director of many London Fringe plays and musicals.
Mark Burgess - Acting
Mark trained at The Guildford School of Acting & made his West End debut in the award-winning play Another Country. He has toured the UK extensively in many productions, twice been directed by Brian Blessed, including a film version of King Lear, & been a presenter for BBC Southern Counties Radio. For four years he played Gordon Collins in Channel 4's Brookside.
Mark has written eleven stage plays, which continue to be performed, & eight plays for BBC Radio 4 as well as short stories & abridgements.
He has taught & directed students at Bedford 6th Form College, ACT in Brighton & was Head of Speech & Drama (LAMDA Syllabus) at Bedford Modern School between 2004 & 2015.