OUR FACULTY INCLUDES
KATIE MOREA (PRINCIPAL)
Contemporary, Jazz, Improvisation & Tap Faculty
Audition Prerparation Tutor
Katie started her professional training at the Stella Mann College, graduating to the London Contemporary Dance School and the Alvin Ailey School, NYC.
After a varied performing career that included Pantomimes, Cabaret and Contemporary companies, she then pursued her main passions, teaching and choreography.
She has taught at Elmhurst Ballet School, the London College of Dance and Bird College; this included teaching Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Contemporary and Choreography, as well as being Head of Contemporary and Composition and Dance Director for the Bird Theatre Company (Bird College).
It was at Bird College that Miss Doreen Bird and Sue Passmore encouraged Katie's choreographic abilities and alongside the numerous pieces for Bird College and the syllabi for the ISTD, as a guest teacher she has also taught and/or created pieces for many other colleges such as the Brit School, The Centre, The Dance College, The Hammond School, London Contemporary Dance School, London Studio Centre, Merseyside Dance Centre, Performers College, Preston College, Urdang Academy and many schools overseas, creating countless choreographies for graduation shows at professional colleges. She has also choreographed for a variety of organisations such as professional contemporary dance companies, Channel 4, the BAFTA Academy and Move It.
She is an international examiner and lecturer for the ISTD Modern and Tap faculties and a member of the ISTD Modern Theatre Faculty’s Committee. Katie is part of the creative team that devised the ISTD Modern Theatre Grades 1-6, the Advanced 1 and 2 and part of the Advanced 2 Tap.
As a lecturer for the ISTD, Katie delivers the syllabi and trains examiners and teachers worldwide. She has lectured at the ISTD’s Chichester Teachers’ course for the last 17 years, taught and adjudicated for the ISTD’s Janet Cram Award and Star Tap Award and at many ISTD congresses. She has also taught for the Royal Academy of Dance.
Katie has won awards, scholarships and development grants for her teaching and choreography, including those from the Lisa Ullmann Dance Trust award, London Contemporary Dance School, Bird College and the London College of Dance.
Katie has worked with many inspirational teachers and choreographers throughout her training and career such as Jane Dudley (original dancer for the Martha Graham Dance Company), Juliet Fisher (LCDS) and Molly Molloy (jazz teacher and choreographer). She has also been lucky enough to be guided and supported in her dance and teaching development and career by Muriel Ashcroft, Daphne Peterson and Tereza Theodoulou.
Katie continually increases her professional knowledge in many ways including travelling to NYC to update her with the training program at the Alvin Ailey School and at the Broadway Dance Centre as well as the annual ISTD Examiners’ training (where she is normally also a tutor for the course). Furthermore she regularly takes courses such as First Aid, Safeguarding and Health and Safety.
Katie is also the Artistic Director of The Dance Summer School organisation, which supports young dancers and teachers in their dance development.
Sadie’s early training began at White Lodge and later at Bush Davies.
She has previously taught at the professional Colleges such as Bird College and Liberatus and now is on the ballet staff at Morea Performing Arts.
Following graduation in 1989, Sadie worked in various pantomimes, and danced on-board the Q.E.2 for Jean Ann Ryan Productions and was also principle dancer with Opera North. Theatre credits include Carousel (The Royal National Theatre and Shaftesbury Theatre, West End) and a year UK tour of Oklahoma.
Sadie holds the fellowship status of the ISTD Imperial Ballet & Modern Theatre Faculty, as well as Licentiate Tap and Associate National.
Sadie has an extensive teaching experinece and is and ISTD Examiner in the Ballet, Tap and Modern Theatre faculties.
Jazz/Technique & Style
Bio coming soon
Jess Blatchley has worked professionally as a singer for the last 3 decades developing an extremely broad and varied repertoire which includes Musical Theatre, Classical, Jazz, Folk, Country, Rock, Pop and Gospel music.
Educated at the prestigious Purcell School of Music, Jess went on to do a Bachelor of Music at Goldsmith’s College, London. She has also studied singing with Harvey Rathbone (BBC Singers), Helen Kucharek (Sadlers Wells) and Jo Thompson (coach to Craig David, Pixie Lott etc.) and taken part in Gospel workshops run by vocal coaches David and Carrie Grant.
Jess began her career as a freelance choral singer, performing with The BBC Symphony Chorus and The Mozart Festival Chorus. As a jazz artist she has worked extensively in the UK and abroad and currently collaborates with guitarist Andy Rushton in duo Jazz Rouge performing jazz, latin, pop and funk music. Her studio experience includes working with well known composers such as Dru Masters “The Apprentice” as well as up and coming artists, and in 2013 she released her debut solo Gospel album “Restless Heart”.
As a teacher Jess has worked in Performing Arts and Theatre Schools all over the country, including Drama Studio, London (DSL) and Liberatus School of Performing Arts, Swindon. Her past students have gone on to work professionally in the West End and on TV, and have been scouted for future boy and girl bands, as well as launching their own solo careers.
Avalon Rathgeb graduated from Bird college in 2009 after studying on a three-year full-time scholarship. Since graduating she has received two internships from the American Tap Dance Foundation 2009/11, a scholarship for the Los Angeles Tap festival 2012 and was the winner of the 2013 cutting contest at Stockholm Tap Festival. Avalon was invited to accept 1 of 25 places reserved for outstanding dancers in the 2014 Tap programme at the School at Jacob’s Pillow in Massachusetts, USA. Her career highlights include dancing in the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games and the closing ceremony of the European Games, Baku, Azerbaijan 2015.
Avalon was a company member of Grant Swift’s TeAyPe in Melbourne, Australia, was asked in 2014 to join Tapestry Dance Company, North America’s only full time and paid Tap dance company. Avalon is the Artistic Director of Old Kent Road which she founded in London in 2014. Her first show ‘Fall Out’ was accepted to perform at Resolution! 2015, it received Arts Council England funding and premiered their first full-length show in 2016 and are currently preparing for a 2017 and 2018 tour.
As a solo artist Avalon frequently teaches and performs internationally for tap festivals and events including; Dubrovnik Tap Festival - Croatia, Taptastic - Germany, Stockholm Tap festival - Sweden, Prague City Tap festival - Czech Republic, Australian Tap festival, Escola Luthier Dansa, Tanzhaus - Dusseldorf, Tip-Tap - Poland, Moscato Tap Festival - Italy, Tapworks - Malaysia, workshops in Singapore and she was featured in the documentary ‘Tapworld’. In the UK she has recently performed at the Harrods Boxing day opening celebration, the 1st International Chinese Film Awards and interviewed for BBC Radio London. In the UK Avalon also teaches at Bird College and Pineapple Dance Studios.
Commercial, Body Conditioning and Jazz Pax de Deux Tutor
Audition Preparation Tutor
Tom trained at Laine Theatre Arts on a Scholarship and immediately started his professional career in ‘Saturday Night Fever’, Germany choreographed by Arlene Phillips, he played the roles of Joey and Ceasar.
After his time in Germany, Tom toured with ‘Saturday Night Fever’ which included a Scandinavian arena tour and two UK tours, this took him to playing the main featured dancer Ceasar in the West End London Apollo Theatre . In 2006 Tom also performed at The Apollo Theatre West End in ‘Movin Out’ choreographed by the world famous Twyla Tharp.
Following Toms theatre years he ventured into the commercial scene and was very pleased to be part of the ‘Take That stadium tour’ ‘Ultimate Tour’. Tom has worked with Take That on many occasions including ‘The Royal Variety Performance’, ‘The Brit Awards’ the’ Ultimate Tour’ DVD, and the X – Factor.
In 2009 Tom was chosen from thousands of dancers to perform with Anastacia on her world Arena tour.
Toms film credits include ‘Mamma Mia’ the movie in which he was privileged to work with many actors including Meryl Streep and Pierce Brosnan for 6 months at Pinewood studios.
His Television credits include ‘How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria’, ‘Mobo Awards’, ‘Brit Awards’, ‘Royal Variety Performance’ in total three times. ‘Children In Need’ , ‘Strictly Dance Fever’ where he performed a duet for Leanne Rimes , ‘Dance X’ , ‘Green Room’ , ‘T4 On The Beach’ where he performed for Basshunter , MTV Adidas commercial main feature , Freemasons music video, Sam Sparrow ‘Black and Gold’ music video, ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ performing with Duffy, ‘X Factor’ performing for Rihanna , ‘An Audience with- Lionel Richie’, ‘Meat Loaf’, ‘John Barrowman’, ‘Sugar Babes’ music video, ‘Eastenders’ ‘Holby City’ and ‘Olympic Closing Ceremony’ ‘One Direction’ and ‘ Annie lennox’ .
Tom has also been involved in numerous fitness DVDs including Denise Van Outen, Steps, K-Swiss, and Ministry Of Sound.
Tom has also been lucky enough to travel around the world shooting commercials and modelling, which include; the face of ‘Juliper Beer’, ‘PlayStation’ , ‘Iceland’, ‘McCain chips’ ‘Vodafone’ , Paris Catwalk convention, Mazda cars, Strictly come dancing ident, and L’Oreal.
His modelling credits include ‘Calvin Klein Jeans’, ‘Miami Nights’ Dusseldorf, ‘Wella’ , ‘GHD ‘, ‘FHM magazine’ , ‘GQ magazine’, ‘Ascot Catwalk’, ‘Diesel and Energie’. ‘Tom Ford’ ‘Harrods’ exclusive fashion show, and GHD in Australia.
Tom’s theatre work included a theatre premiere of ‘Vampirette’ in Manchester, Belfast opera house with ‘Westlife’,
and he also completed doing four Uk tours with the London philharmonic orchestra performing a theatre jazz show starring Erin Boag and Anton Du Beke, where he enjoyed teaching Anton du Beke private tap and jazz lessons. Tom has also travelled the world performing the costume ‘Quick Change’ act to many a surprised face.
Tom is now holding dance Workshops, teaching and judging competitions across the UK.
Ben trained at Doreen Bird College of performing Arts under the direction of Doreen Bird.
On graduating Ben began working with guest choreographers such as William Kemp, Chris Hampson & Wayne Sleep during World of Classical Ballet, performing various repertoires from Giselle, Sleeping Beauty and Flower Fair. Ben moved to Germany to dance with Theatre Der Stadt, Koblenz dancing in Swan Lake. On returning to the UK Ben danced in a Gala Performance celebrating Wayne Sleeps 50th birthday at Her Majesty’s Theatre London, dancing with guest artists Michael Nunn, Irek Mukhamedov, Agnes Oakes and Thomas Edur. Since graduating Ben has worked in varied areas of Theatre. Most recently Ben has been Choreographer and assistant director on Charlotte’s Web (Derby Playhouse) and as a dancer on the feature film ‘Muppets Most Wanted’ (Pinewood Studios).
Choreographic credits include numerous productions of Cinderella and Peter Pan, Ruthless (Stratford circus) Dial M For Martini (Warehouse Croydon) Children of Eden (Manchester) Once On This Island (Finsbury Town Hall)
His theatre credits include Swing/Dance Captain, The Producers (Theatre Royal, Drury Lane) Ha’Penny Bridge (Dublin) Beautiful And Damned (Lyric, Shaftsbury Avenue) Swing and 2nd cover Munkustrap, Cats U.K. Tour, Ted Vanderpool in Babes In Arms (Cardiff New Theatre, for the international music festival. My One And Only (Chichester Festival Theatre and Piccadilly Theatre, London) Dance Captain Magic of The Musicals (U.K. Tour) Dance Captain Jane McDonald Summer Spectacular (B.I.C. Bournemouth) Principal Dancer Lido La Tournee (European Tour). Ben has also performed in numerous Pantomime Seasons including five seasons as Dance Captain on Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs, starring Lilly Savage.
Television credits include; The Generation Game (supporting Bonnie Langford) The Brit Awards 1999 (for Robbie Williams) The Man Who Knew Too Little, starring Bill Murray (film) La Passione starring Shirley Bassey (film) Wayne Sleep’s 50th Birthday Celebration (Channel 4) and The Late, Late Show (Dublin)
Ben has taught at vocational level for many years in establishments such as Bird College, Urdang Academy, Performers College and London Studio Centre.
Alongside being an examiner for the I.S.T.D Imperial Ballet Branch, Ben has had the pleasure of adjudicating and teaching at the Imperial Classical Ballet Awards, adjudicating the Janet Cram Awards and is a mentor for the Level 6 Diploma In Dance Pedagogy.
Simon trained at the Royal Ballet Lower and Upper School and joined The English National Ballet Company in 1997.
In 1999 he performed in Matthew Bourne’s ‘Swan Lake’. In 2001 he rejoined the ’New Adventures Company’ to dance in ‘The Car Man’ and ‘Nutcracker’ performing many different roles! He followed this with a tour to Japan with Sylvie Guillem, performing in ‘Trois Histoires d’Amours’.
In 2003 he joined the Michael Clark Company, where he performed in the World premiere of ‘Oh My Goddess’ at Sadlers Wells and European Tour. In 2004 he performed with Mikhail Baryshnikov in ‘Solos with Piano or Not’ at the Barbican. In 2005/07 he returned to ‘Swan Lake’ to perform the leading roles of both ‘the Swan’ and ‘Prince’ for the world tour. Then in 2009 he rejoined the Michael Clark Company to premier the new work of ‘Come, Been and Gone’ on the World tour and Barbican seasons during 2009/10. During the ‘Come,Been and Gone’ tour he also performed in Matthew Bourne’s ‘Swan Lake’ dancing both roles ‘the Swan’ and Prince’ again, this toured until 2011!.
He also performed with Kylie Minogue for the ‘X Factor Ukraine’ that year. he returned to perform with Kylie Minogue again at the ‘X Factor Final” 2012, which was choreographed by Aaron Sillis. He recently finished the UK and International tour of Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake, performing the main role of ‘The Prince’ and ‘Swan’.
ATS/Musical Theatre Repertoire Faculty
Audition Preparation Tutor
Alex has worked closely with Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber as a performer and dance captain in London's West End for over 15 years.
Alex was born and raised in London, England. His first job was at the age of 12 working with Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber on a show called Young Apollo. He went on to train at the prestigious Arts Educational School in London where he was awarded the Andrew Lloyd Webber scholarship for Musical Theatre.
During his time at college Alex performed at the Royal Variety Performance and the Brit Awards working for Arlene Phillips. After graduating Alex went straight into work. His first job was Sir Andrew Lloyd Webbers "Sunset Boulevard", working with Sir Trevor Nunn and the legendary Bob Avion. Alex was the youngest cast member in the history of the show.
His next show was "Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat", teaming up with Andrew Lloyd Webber and again becoming the youngest person in the history of the show to play the title role of Joseph on stage.
Many shows followed including "LES MISERABLES" ,"RENT" and "WE WILL ROCK YOU" which he made his home for 6 years. Alex performed and acted as Dance Captain, working alongside Ben Elton, the legendary Brian May, and again with Arlene Phillips.
THEATRE WORK INCLUDES:
GUYS AND DOLLS NICELY NICELY JOHNSON
ARTS THEATRE CANADA
MY FAVOURITE YEAR SY BENSON
ARTS THEATRE CANADA
RENT SWING DUKE OF YORKS WILLIAM BAKER WEST END
WE WILL ROCK YOU SWING U/S BIG MACCA DOMINION (6 YEARS) BEN ELTON /ARLENE PHILLIPS WEST END
BORN TO LIVE STEPHEN PLEASANCE JONATHON TODD
SUMMER HOLIDAY 1st COVER EDWIN WINTER GARDENS ULTZ
JOSEPH1st COVER JOSEPH/SWING STEVEN PIMLOTT/A.V.LAAST WEST END
SUNSET BOULEVARD SWING TREVOR NUNN/BOB AVIAN WEST END
LES MISERABLES SWING GERMANY
YOUNG APOLLO RUPERT BROOKE HUGH WOOLDRIDGE
YORK THEATRE ROYAL PANTO (4 SEASONS) DAMIEN CRUDEN
THE WORLDS END MIKE EDGAR HOWARD WRIGHT UNIVERSAL
THE QUEENS LOST UNCLE KING GEORGE V1 ROB FLAME C4
FACE 2 FACE STEPHEN MICHAEL BENTHAM BBC2
THE IT CROWD JAMES GRAHAM LINE HAM ITV
CO OP COMMERCIAL ITV
LEVIS NATIONWIDE MODELLING CAMPAIGN PERFECT FIT
ROYAL VARIETY PERFORMANCE ITV
BRIT AWARDS SIMPLY RED ARLENE PHILLIPS
BAFANA SOLOMON MATEA
African & Contemporary Tutor
Bafana Solomon Matea was born in Mamelodi in Pretoria, South Africa. He trained at the Pro Arte Alphen Park high school, where he studied Vaganova and Cecchetti technique. In his final year, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater awarded him the Judith Jamison scholarship to study at the Alvin Ailey school.
At the Ailey school, Bafana worked with esteemed choreographers such as Mathew Rushing, Colin Connor, Igal Perry and performed with the Alvin Ailey company at New York City Center. Upon graduating, Bafana joined Ballet Hispanico, Elisa Monte Dance and Battery Dance Company under Artistic Director Jonathan Hollander.
He performed and taught workshops in over 54 countries, whilst presenting his own choreography also. Bafana’s choreography was hailed by the New York Times as, “Irresistible. Fast, exuberant, pulsatingly rhythmic, it covered space and used every part of the body. A delight in its own right, this was the dance that I would most want to see again.” Bafana also worked with other dance companies within New York city. Bafana co-founded Juxtapower (South African song and dance company) where he was rehearsal director under the artistic direction of Sduduzo Ka- Mbili.
Other companies he danced for included Dance anonymous, Alpha Omega, Delirious Dance under Edisa Weeks, Thomas Ortiz Dance, Matthew Westerby Dance, Staten Island Ballet, New Hampshire Dance Theater and Covenant Ballet. Although a modern dancer by heart, Bafana has danced in Ballet companies, in Soloist and Principal roles, in the Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, Beauty and the Beast and Cinderella.
Upon moving to London, he is the director of City Academy's Contemporary company in London and he also freelances as a teacher for Laine Theatre Arts, Bird College, Danceworks and Tavaziva Dance Company.