Malton, North Yorkshire 
 

Our Teachers 

Nothing would be possible without the support of our amazing selection of dedicated, highly qualified teachers, who represent all aspects of the performing arts. Read about them here: 
 
Angela Kirkham Artistic Director 
Head of RAD Vocational Ballet . Tap, Musical Theatre 
M.I.D.T.A R.A.D R.T.S LIFE MEMBER OF ROYAL ACADEMY OF DANCE 
 
The Kirkham School of Dancing opened in March 1971 at St. Joseph’s Church Hall, Pickering. Angela opened the Kirkham Henry Performing Arts Centre together with Jennie Henry in 1989 . 
 
Angela has worked over the years as an adjudicator for Dance Festivals/ Choreographer on touring shows, choreographing children’s ballets for summer schools, directing Ryedale Youth Theatre for 26 years, coaching ballet children for examinations and auditions throughout the country and coaching male dancers for the Billy Elliot school. 
 
Angela has also taught under-privileged children, who did not want to do anything with their life, to dance and be proud of their achievements. She also teaches senior citizens to help them stay young and mobile. this includes a dance for Parkinson's class in York. She believes in a strong ethical approach to teaching and has a renowned pastoral care system inplace. 
 
Over the 46 years that Angela has been teaching she has trained thousands of students to professional level, many of whom are now performing in musical theatre productions in the West End and on tour, on Cruise Ships and in The Royal Ballet Company and ballet companies across the world. Others have chosen to become professional musicians, theatre technicians, stage managers, teachers of dance, music and musical theatre etc. or to study for alternative careers at Universities and colleges throughout the UK with the help of the transferrable skills taught at Kirkham Henry. 
 
Angela is a life member of The Royal Academy of Dance. Awarded the Melvin Jones Fellowship for Dedicated humanitarian services- Lions club international foundation 2016 Malton Town Council award for services to The townspeople for exeptional contibution to the Town with the capacity to inspire with a gental caring nature 2011 
 
Sue Thackray  
Director 
 
I have a long association with Kirkham Henry, starting around 1986 when my eldest son, then 2, and I came along to a parent and baby dance group shortly after the current centre opened. This association has continued ever since as all four of my children and myself attended classes and just before lockdown my Grandaughter started at Babybop. I still enjoy my weekly Adult tap and my Mum is a stalwart of Golden Gliders! My belief in everything that KH had to offer to the young people of Ryedale led me to becoming the first Chair of Friends of KH, many moons ago! I have happy memories of the day that Miss Angela and Miss Jennie announced that they wished to hand over what was their own business to the community to ensure the ongoing future of KHPA, in the form of a ‘not for profit community interest company’, which meant KH would be eligible for a much larger range of grants. Although my day to day involvement decreased when the children left after more than 25 years, I have continued to help out whenever possible. Many of you will know me as ‘Auntie Sue’ Head Chaperone at the last 2 Showcases and general dogsbody! 
 
My day job is Headteacher of an Infant School and I believe this equips me with the skills to be a very effective director of KH CIC supporting and enhancing the continued development of such an amazing facility for young people in Ryedale. I have always had a love of music and the creative arts and take pride in coaching my own school choir, more than 40 Year 2 pupils, to be the best that they can be! 
 
Having known Miss Angela and most of the teachers for many years, Miss Jennie actually taught me singing at Malton School, I know they are not ones to rest on their laurels and indeed they work tirelessly to continue to improve the classes they offer, community classes, classes for fun and vocational classes. Their most recent work developing a range of classes for the elderly, learning Makaton to support those pupils who need it and their work to promote positive mental health should be very much applauded. 
 
I see my role as director as being there to support Miss Angela, as Principal and her team of very dedicated staff, in what they can offer the Kirkham Henry families, to give advice when needed, to help develop and oversee policies but most of all helping to seek out grants and support fundraising, I am passionate about ensuring the ethos of KHPA, is rekindled, in order that classes are affordable to all of our families whatever their financial circumstances. 
 
As Directors, we have worked hard during ‘lockdown’ to ensure that we are in a position to safely re-open the KH doors in September and we are very excited to be in a position to welcome back all our members- young and old! 
 
Joanne Dawson 
Foundation (Bt, Tap & Theatre-craft) 
AIDTA 
 
Joanne assisted in teaching and quickly realised she would like to make a career out of it. She studied for her Associate IDTA Teaching Examination under Miss Angela and passed with flying colours. Joanne teaches Ballet Tap and Theatre Craft from age 2 upwards. Jo is joint head of our lower school. She has choreographed Malton Pantomime since 2003 and Assists in the Dance for Parkinson's programme. 
 
Nicky Copley 
Singing ABRSM Musical Theatre 
 
Nicky grew up in the world of amateur theatre performing in local productions from a young age.  
 
Her key singing training was from the age of 16 when she joined the Oxfordshire Youth Chamber Choir under the direction of Peter Hunt, creator and editor of the renowned Voiceworks series for choirs, and the MAYC Orchestra and Singers under the direction of Craig McLeish who now, amongst other things, runs Young Voices. 
 
Her time with Oxfordshire Youth Chamber Choir included concerts in and around Oxford, national and regional competitions with the British Federation of Youth Choirs, performances at the Barbican, London, and attending International singing festivals in Loughborough and in Denmark. With the MAYC Orchestra and Singers her time with them included singing annually at the Royal Albert Hall for the weekend with Methodist Youth Clubs, performing on Songs of Praise twice and a live Christmas Day performance on the BBC in a cold barn in the middle of a field!, a tour of Ireland and more recently a reunion concert. She also recorded 2 CDs with the group – the first was a studio recording in Manchester where she was invited to join just a small group of singers as they were limited on space. 
 
Nicky gained a BAEd Hons in Music with Primary Education at University of Exeter where she studied the voice and oboe for her performance element of her degree and she also directed, musical directed and co-ordinated Methsoc (Methodist Society) musicals for 3 years.  
 
Following her degree she has worked for over 20 years with young people in the classroom, the highlight of each school year being the school production, and in the community working with looked after children and foster carers.  
 
She gained her level 1 and 2 Makaton whilst working in school.  
 
Outside school she has run several play in a week holiday activities and has been an active member of York Light Opera Company performing annually at York Theatre Royal in large scale productions for many years. She gained a scholarship to attend the NODA Summer School on the Musical Directors’ Course following which she was musical director for a production with Knaresborough Amateur Operatic Group. 
 
Most recently during 2020 she has completed the Teaching Young Voices Course, the ABRSM Become a Better Music Teacher course, has been learning the Kodaly method of teaching singing and has become a Vocal Health First Aider, one of the first few people to have completed and passed this course in the World! 
 
 
Sophie Roger 
BA (Hons), LRAD, ARAD, RAD RTS, PBT Certified 
 
At the age of three Sophie began her training at Kirkham Henry Performing Arts Centre in Malton, taking part in ballet, jazz, tap, contemporary, drama, singing and speech and drama classes. Alongside this she also trained at the Yorkshire Ballet Scholarship Centre. Sophie performed in many competitions and amateur productions including: The Nutcracker (Clara); Cinderella (Summer Fairy); Coppélia (Prayer), Giselle (soloist in the Dance of the Wilis); Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (Sleepy); Robin Hood (one of his merry men); Starlight Express (Nintendo); CATS (Rumpus Cat); FAME (Iris) and Oliver (Bet) to name a few. 
 
After gaining places at vocational musical theatre schools such as Bird College and Urdang Academy, Sophie decided that her passion was in teaching and graduated from the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) in 2018 with a BA (Hons) Ballet Education; Licentiate of the RAD (LRAD) and Registered Teacher Status (RTS). She is also an Associate of the Royal Academy of Dance (ARAD) after passing her Advanced 2 RAD ballet exam. 
 
The RAD provided Sophie with many opportunities such as: dancing to Strictly Come Dancing’s theme tune on BBC’s One Show; dancing in the Parade and Finale alongside Darcy Bussell in The Patrons Lunch celebrating the Queens 90th Birthday; dancing in a Taylor Swift flash mob on BBC1 Let’s Sing and Dance for Comic Relief. Alongside her studies Sophie taught at various dance schools across London including the English National Ballet. She is also a certified teacher of Progressing Ballet Technique (PBT). 
 
Sophie enjoyed her three years in London but pleased to be back up North teaching in Malton, York, Scarborough and Kirkbymoorside for the past two years. Sophie currently teaches: RAD Ballet, BTEC Ballet and Jazz, Contemporary, Commercial, PBT and private lessons on a weekly basis. Alongside this she is a company member of SK Dance Fusion in York and has performed at: the York Theatre Royal in ‘Dance it up North’ in a commercial/latin fusion dance; at Foss Fit’s Christmas event at the Moxy Hotel; a charity event ‘The Greatest Show’ in a lyrical dance to ‘Never Enough’ and jazz/commercial dance to ‘Come Alive’. She is looking forward to what is to come in her teaching and performing career. 
 
She holds a valid DBS, First Aid, Child Protection Level 2, Cyber Security Level 2, GPDR training, Prevent Covid-19, Infection Prevention and Control – training and certificates. 
 
Sarah Ferguson (nee Richardson) 
Jazz/Modern Dance 
 
 
Sarah is a former pupil of Kirkham Henry, attending from an early age up until sixteen, when she continued her studies at Brian Rogers Performers College, Essex. During her time there she took part in many Royal Variety and Palladium performances, charity events, backing vocal recordings and some hair modelling contracts. 
 
Sarah has choreographed extensively for shows and demonstrations and is a regular attender of ‘MOVE IT' London. 
 
 
Andrew Foxton 
Drama 
 
Credits include The King and I’, ‘Crazy for You’ and ‘The Wiz’ and was also fortunate to be chosen to appear in stage versions of Rhoald Dahl’s ‘Matilda’ and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s ‘Evita’ both at The Grand Opera House, York. 
 
Andrew took his love of performing arts to Huddersfield University where he gained a BA (Hons) in Theatre Studies and then to Bretton Hall, Wakefield to complete a secondary school teaching certificate specialising in drama. 
 
Jennie Henry Co founder 1938-2017 
Singing 
 
She had been closely involved for many years with York and Ryedale operatic societies both as a performer and ‘out front’ as chorus mistress and musical director. Extensions of Jennies work have reached as far away as West Africa where her first post as musical director was made in association with the British High Commission in Gambia. 
 
 
 
Madeleine Hudson 
Vocal Tutor 
 
For six years she was Music Supervisor, responsible for all the musical content and standards for RIVERDANCE -THE SHOW, from Broadway to Sydney and everywhere between! She is one of only two women worldwide to be appointed as a conductor for Andrew Lloyd Webber’s THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA 
 
She has worked on LES MISERABLES, MISS SAIGON and MARTIN GUERRE, all for Cameron Mackintosh, along with many of the other big West End musicals, in London and on tour in Dublin and across the North of England. 
 
She was pianist for no less than five EUROVISION SONG CONTESTS for Ireland, including the one that launched Riverdance. 
 
She has worked with orchestras throughout Scandinavia and Germany as well as the UK’s City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestra of Opera North, BBC Scottish Symphony and London Concert Orchestra, in concerts with some of the biggest names in the business. 
 
Madeleine has lectured in Musical Theatre at the Gaiety School of Acting in Dublin and has continued to work as a vocal coach to professional and amateur performers alike.  
 
In 2016, Madeleine was appointed Musical Director of the newly formed mixed voice York Theatre Royal Choir , which sings specially commissioned music to create new theatre, as well as making guest appearances throughout York. 
 
Michaela Kemp 
Foundation: Ballet/Tap/Theatre craft 
AIDTA 
 
Miss "Kyla" has also had more than 6 years professional Gymnastics training and was part of the York Olympic squad for 3 years. She will be assistant to our Gym coach, George. 
 
She has taken many leading roles in local productions over the years and now choreographs for the local pantomime. Miss Angela says: “Miss Kyla is like Super Nanny as she has such an amazing way with the very young children”. 
 
George Neacsu 
Gymnastic Coach 
 
A lack of funding meant that George had to secure employment and at the age of 16 he successfully auditioned for a place with Circus Globus – the prestigious National Circus of Bucharest. George further developed his gymnastic skills and mastered the notoriously difficult Russian Bar and Spring Board acts. 
 
Already wanting to further his career, George was head-hunted to learn a new skill known as ‘Hand to Hand’. In 2007 whilst contracted for the same cruise company, he met his future wife who we all know as Miss Rebecca. They continued to cruise together and perform in the production shows on-board for the next 5 years. 
 
After settling and buying a house, George is delighted have been introduced to Kirkham Henry and for this wonderful opportunity to pass on his extensive gymnastic talent through gymnastic classes for pupils of all ages. 
 
Rebecca Neacsu 
Ballet, Jazz, tap  
A RAD 
 
She was specially chosen to demonstrate at the NATD, BBO and the Molly Lake awards and the Jimmy Carr Live Tour. Rebecca graduated in 2005 as Head Girl. 
 
Her extensive cruise ship career began with Costa Cruise Lines and continued for the next 8 years, working with Costa and MSC cruise companies as a production Dancer, soon becoming Lead Adagio and later Dance Captain and Production Manager. 
 
Rebecca is thrilled to be back at Kirkham Henry fulfilling a love and passion for teaching dance she has choreographed for MNMT Panto for numerous years now. 
 
Audrie Woodhouse 
Drama 
BA Hons performing Arts, MA in Theatre and writing. 
 
She has appeared in film and on television many times including the programmes Coronation Street, Hollyoaks and Heart Beat. You may have seen her most recently in Emmerdale and in Fashion World Advertisements. 
 
Audrie began teaching in 2001 and is one of the Uk’s leading mask theatre practitioners, working with renowned companies including The Royal Shakespeare Company and Trestle.  
 
As a freelance acting coach Audrie coaches performers of all ages in Schools, Colleges, Universities and Theatre Companies and is proud to have an excellent track record in preparing students for success and longevity in the industry. 
 
Audrie has a Masters in Writing, Directing and Performance from the University of York where she gained Distinction and was awarded the prize for highest achievement, BA honours Degree in Performing Arts from Middlesex University and a Diploma in Musical Theatre from The London School of Musical Theatre. 

 Chloe Shipley Choreography  

Chloe first began her training at Kirkham Henry Performing Arts aged 4 and took part in many showtimes, pantomimes and Ryedale Youth Theatre Productions. She later trained at the University of Leeds/Bretton Hall in Theatre and Performance where she gained her degree and during this time she set up a new theatre company “203 Theatre”. 
Within this theatre company, she wrote and choreographed a new musical which won “Best New Show” Derek Award at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.  
 
After leaving Kirkham Henry, she ventured to New York to teach Musical Theatre where she took the role of Head Dance Specialist for 6 months returning the following year as Head Drama specialist. She has then freelance taught musical theatre both in the UK and Overseas and spent a duration teaching Drama and English Language in Italy.  
 
Previous to this, she has choreographed and directed many local productions as well as for York and Leeds companies and created a Theatre in Education tour for West Yorkshire County Council.  
 
As well as teaching, Chloe is a keen fundraiser and has raised over £17,000 for Cancer charities winning the Bright Young Star - Pride of Malton award for her efforts.  
 
Chloe now is a Performing Arts teacher at a local Secondary School after gaining her PGCE from the University of York and is based back in Malton teaching. 

Shirin Marshall Piano Teacher  

Shirin Marshall was born in Iran. She studied music at the Royal Academy of Music in London, with piano as her first study and obtained GRSM, LRAM and MTC certificates. After a number of years teaching music at a secondary school in Hillingdon/Middlesex and piano as a peripatetic teacher for the Inner London Education Authority, she worked as a full time ballet pianist at the Arts Educational School in Tring/Hertfordshire, now known as Tring Park for nine years. After moving to North Yorkshire in January 1995, Shirin worked as a free lance ballet pianist for RAD and RBS, as well as at KH alongside teaching piano at Terrington Hall School until September 2020. Shirin is also a qualified Iyengar Yoga teacher. 

Evie Jenkinson Jazz, Tap 

Evie has just joined us as one of our junior Jazz and Tap teachers 
 
Dancer - Flamingo Land Season, Flamingo Land 
Dancer - Move It 2017, Excel, London 
Actress - A Christmas Carol, Stephen Joseph Theatre 
 
TELEVISION/FILM/EVENTS 
 
Flamingo Land 2018 Advert 
Music & Dance: 
Commercial, Jazz/Musical Theatre, Tap, Contemporary, Ballet, Latin, Ballroom, Hip-Hop, Modern 

Martha Gosnold Contemporary Dance 

Martha started Kirkham Henry Performing Arts when she was 5 years old, taking part in a variety of classes. She became a Louise Browne Yorkshire Ballet Scholar, was a regular Festival dancer and took part in eight Ryedale Youth Theatre productions. 
 
At the age of 14 Martha developed a passion for Contemporary Dance and successfully auditioned for the Centre for Advanced Training (CAT) scheme at Northern School of Contemporary Dance (NSCD) at the same time she was invited to join Phoenix Dance Theatre's Youth Academy, where she performed at the Olympic Torch event, Phoenix's 30th Birthday Party Concert and with Artists North's production of Mandala. 
 
In 2012 Martha started her full time vocational training at NSCD where she completed the Access, BPA (Hons) and MA courses. During this time she had the opportunity to tour the UK, Austria and Switzerland with VERVE17.  
 
Since Graduating Martha has taught in various dance schools around the North of England and partaken in research and development session with Avant Garde Dance Company. 
 
Allison Saxton 
Drama Teacher 
 
Employment History 
2016 - Present: Eaglei Training. 
Providing specialist voice and body language sessions for industry. High Impact communications sessions and individual training plans as well as ‘presenting skills’ workshops for both live and recorded sessions. 
2015 - Present: Presenter/Archaeologist Op Nightingale Heritage and Services Archaeology and Heritage Association (part of the Soldier On charity). 
Working with injured serving armed forces personnel and veterans, presenting YouTube videos and helping on archaeological digs throughout the UK. 
2014 - Present Actor/teacher StageCentre and Lynx Education. 
Plays in a day with primary schools, leading workshops, directing short plays and ensuring performances are ready for end of school day. 
July 2010- Present: Professional Singer. 
A variety of work from solo cabaret to performing in rock bands. Styles from easy listening, musical theatre, rock, pop, to indie and light opera. 
August 2006 - Present: Freelance Actor 
Professional acting work for TV, film and theatre (theatrical CV available on request). Work includes roles on Coronation Street, working with Middlesbrough Theatre, Stephen Joseph Theatre Scarborough etc. 
2015 - 2016: Workshop Leader Little Monkey's Music and Movement. 
Leading music and movement sessions for preschoolers. Planning and delivering sessions, keeping session reports and paperwork, ensuring health and safety of participants. 
March 2006 - July 2010: Working with Llyndall Trotman School of Singing. 
Assisting singers in preparing for auditions and performances. 
August 2004 - 2006: Course Leader BTEC National and First Diplomas in performing arts at Runshaw College, Leyland. 
Taught A level Theatre Studies and Performance Studies. Wrote and developed BTEC courses (first and national diplomas) with 100% achievement and retention. Directed Summer Holiday, Little Shop of Horrors, The Crucible, TIE projects, Our Country’s Good and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (amongst others) as well as planning and delivering courses to students aged 16-19. 
October 1998 - August 2004: Community Development Worker/Lecturer, Bowling Community College. 
Ran GCSE Drama, NCFE Performing Arts, computers for beginners and Care Activity Organiser courses. Managed holiday play schemes for young people aged 5 – 16. Co-ordinated the college’s part in the European Leonardo Project providing sports and arts opportunities to young people from disadvantaged backgrounds. Assisted with delivery and planning of Junior Sports Leaders Award. 
1991 – 1994 Freelance performer/actor 
Worked with local drama groups and primary schools teaching drama as well as performing with Usher Street Theatre Company. 

  Guest Teachers 

 
Sarah Louise Ashworth 
Jazz 
AISTD, LIDTA, RAD member 
 
Sarah-Louise has worked extensively as both a dancer and singer in both theatre and television. Her credits include: Cinderella – The York Grand Opera House, Best Foot Forward – Epsom Playhouse, Aladdin - Sunderland Empire Theatre, Queen Mother’s 100thBirthday Celebrations – London, M/V Ocean Majesty – Dancer, An Evening with James Bond – UK Tour, M/V Ocean Majesty – Singer/Dancer, QE2, Broadway Bound NY – Dance Captain, World Cruise. 
 
In January 2006 founded the Sarah-Louise Ashworth School of Dance in Kirkbymoorside. 
 
Samanthe Raine 
Ballet Mistress to the Royal Ballet Company 
 
Samantha was brought up in Malton, North Yorkshire and trained at Kirkham Henry Performing Arts (her mother’s school) before joining The Royal Ballet School. She was awarded the Kenneth MacMillan Choreographic Award in 1995 and the first Dame Ninette de Valois Award in 1998. She joined The Royal Ballet in 1997 and was promoted to Soloist in September 2006. 
 
Sam became Ballet Mistress to the Royal Ballet Company in 2011. 
Pippa Raine 
 
Pippa started her training at Kirkham Henry Performing Arts centre in Malton, and went onto Laine Theatre Arts, Epsom, Surrey where she received the Laine Award for the most potential in the field of Dance. 
 
Pippa Has appeared in many West End shows and is also a qualified pilates teacher. 
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