The Team (Key Staff)
Peter Coenen (Artistic Director)
Having started dancing at the age of 10 at the Dorothy Stevens Ballet School (Halifax), Peter became a scholar with The Royal Academy of Dance (York) from the age of 11, being awarded Scholar of the Year for the entire country at the age of 13.
Peter was accepted to The Rambert School aged 16. Whilst at Rambert he worked with Christopher Bruce, Richard Alston, Robert Cohan and Anthony Van Laast amongst others. Upon leaving Rambert School with Distinction Peter performed with Ballet Rambert at Sadler's Wells and Bristol Old Vic performing Dancing Day choreographed by Christopher Bruce. Peter then joined Southern Ballet Company, Bournemouth as Principal performing both Classical and Contemporary works. His work included 'Focus On Dance' Bournemouth, an educational contemporary dance company working in Schools all over the South of England delivering workshops and performing for young people.
Further performance credits include:
The Champions Jazz Troupe (Performing in Europe and Middle East), Pop Videos including Sinitta, Bonnie Tyler, Kate Bush, working with West End Choreographers Stuart Arnold and Paul Henry. Also various Pantomimes and films.
Since retiring from performing Peter has been teaching in the Calderdale area of West Yorkshire for the last 20 years and was the Academy Director for the Calderdale College Dance Academy in Halifax. He is a Qualified Exercise to Music Instructor, Zumba Instructor and Mat based Pilates Instructor and has Level 4 Certificate in Teaching (F.E.). Peter has recently taught contemporary dance technique at the Louise Browne Yorkshire Ballet Scholarship Centre, which takes only the top ballet students from across the North of England.
Toni started taking ballet lessons at the age of 6. These were quickly followed by modern and tap classes as her interest in the subject took off. Her other passion at that age was gymnastics, 2 things which complemented each other perfectly.
At 16 Toni entered full time dance teacher training at the Dorothy Stevens School of Dance in Lightcliffe, Halifax, studying ballet, modern and tap and by the time she left full time training had acquired teaching qualifications in all three disciplines.
Toni has worked in Ireland and Germany as well as England teaching dance in a variety of settings. She has worked in dance schools teaching from age 2 up to adults in recreational dance. She has also taught vocational dance students from age 16 in ballet, modern and tap.
Toni has been trained extensively in National Curriculum Dance through Leeds City Council and also through Kirklees Council and has used this training to run schemes of work in many primary school settings for both councils from day workshops to a whole term scheme of work linking to other areas being covered in the curriculum. She also has close links with the Halifax Sports Acro gymnastics club doing choreography for their competition squad.
Currently Toni has qualifications with the International Dance Teachers Association (IDTA) in ballet, modern jazz and tap, the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dance (ISTD) in ballet, modern and tap and the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) in ballet. She gained her Certificate of Education (FE) from Leeds Uni. She is also working towards her Freestyle Associate with the IDTA to be able to enter children for exams and competitions in freestyle, rock and roll and street dance.
Toni firmly believes in ongoing professional development and regularly attends seminars to remain up to date on current practices and is an active member of the Yorkshire teachers Group, and continues to take professional examinations.
Julie began her personal dance training at the age of three going on to taking senior examinations through the RAD at Dorothy Stevens School of Ballet. She then went on to gain a BTEC National Diploma in Performing Arts in Huddersfield before attending dance college in London going on to train as a qualified dance teacher with the International Dance Teacher's Association (IDTA). Julie has gained teaching experience after teaching at a number of well established RAD and IDTA dance schools across West Yorkshire with some of her pupils having been accepted into the Royal Ballet School, London Contemporary dance and various other vocational schools.
Alongside her teaching Julie has also continued her professional development with the IDTA and has gained Licentiate in Ballet and Modern Jazz, Associate in Tap all with high distictions as well as currently studying for a Master of the Arts in Dance Practises through Liverpool John Moores University, she hopes to continue to become an examiner for the IDTA and eventually hold a PHD in Dance Practices.
Becky started dancing from a very young age at Stuarts Stage School in Heckomondwike. After high school she studied dance at Calerdale College (under the supervision of Peter Coenen).
Becky then went on to continue her training in London, firstly with a year at Bird College and then went on to achieve a 2:1 BA Hons degree in performing arts at London Studio Centre.
On graduating she was also presented with the Sheila O'Neil award for achievements in musical theatre.
During training Becky played roles such as The Black Queen in Chess, the soloist of the Whitney Tribute and Iola Stover in her third year production of Parade.
Since graduating she has appeared as a featured dancer in ITV's Endeavour and along side stars such as Warwick Davies and Jennifer Ellison in First Family's production of Snow White at Milton Keynes Theatre.
Becky was also the understudy for the lead role, Snow White.
Becky has recently moved back up to Yorkshire to pursue her dream of becoming a dance teacher.