Theatre School Staff

Staff

CHILD PROTECTION

All our staff have had fully enhanced CRB/DBS checks.

Peter Addis

PETER ADDIS BA (Hons) Theatre Degree

Co-Principal
Head of Senior Performing Arts School

Peter received a First Class Honours degree from Rose Bruford College of Speech and Drama, graduating as an Actor-Musician. He initially performed in many typical Actor-Musician shows such as Return to the Forbidden Planet; From a Jack to a King and Buddy on tour and in the West End, as well as appearing in several straight plays and on TV in popular shows like EastEnders; The Bill and London’s Burning. However directing, which was always his greatest passion, very soon became the mainstay of his career and he directed The Missing Link (Quantum Theatre), The End of the World Show (Great Escape Theatre); Statements of Attainment (Bradford Playhouse) and Nativity (Soho Theatre). He also directed Love off the Shelf (Guildford Conservatoire) and Children of Eden; Cider With Rosie; HMS Pinafore; Thoroughly Modern Millie; Ruddigore; Once on this Island; Iolanthe, High School Musical and The Wedding Singer all for Arts Educational School in Chiswick. Peter was the Assistant Director on A Delicate Balance (Theatre Royal, Haymarket) with Maggie Smith and Eileen Atkins and for over seven years was the London Associate Director for the hit ABBA musical Mamma Mia!. For the last five years Peter has been Associate Director and Head of Acting at Midland’s Academy of Dance and Drama for whom he has directed Spend, Spend, Spend; Snoopy, Into The Woods, Fame, Sweet Charity, Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, A Chorus Line, Sweeny Todd, Footloose, Parade, The Hired Man, Honk and Jekyll and Hyde. Future projects include The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee and Thoroughly Modern Millie for Midlands Academy.


Jacqueline Addis

JACQUELINE ADDIS ARAD, RAD RTS

Co-Principal
Head of Junior Performing Arts School

Jacqueline trained at The Academy of Ballet in Edinburgh, during which time she became an Associate of The Royal Academy of Dance. She has enjoyed a long and successful career in theatre, appearing in productions as varied as the renowned Gaiety Whirl in Ayr to The Merry Wives of Windsor at the prestigious Chichester Festival Theatre. Along the way Jacqueline appeared in pantomimes at Stirling, Motherwell and Ayr as well as Plymouth Theatre Royal and the Birmingham Hippodrome. Having won a scholarship from The Stage she then took a Post Graduate course in acting. Her West End credits include Brigadoon (Victoria Palace); The Laurence Olivier Awards (Dominion); My One and Only (London Palladium); The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (Strand); The Killing of Sister George (Ambassadors); Closer (Lyric) and Mamma Mia! (Prince Edward). Latterly Jacqueline moved into Stage Management and ultimately to production where she had the privilege to travel and work as PA to Judy Craymer MBE, the Producer and Creator of Mamma Mia!. To date the productions of which she is most proud are her two children!


Gráinne Gillis

GRÁINNE GILLIS Bmus (Hons)

Singing Teacher - Performing Arts (7-18 years)

Gráinne read Music at University College Cork and graduated from the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. She has worked in theatre, TV, film and radio. Career highlights include appearing at the ROH, Shamlet at the King’s Head and touring in Sir Peter Hall’s production of As You Like It. Performances in London have included La Nourrice in Ariane et Barbe-Bleu, Zita in Gianni Schicchi and La Badessa in Suor Angelica, all for Morley Opera; the Mother in Hansel & Gretel for Opera At Home at Grimeborn; and La Zia Principessa in Suor Angelica for Co-Opera Co. Performances in 2014 include: the Third Witch (solo role) in Macbeth for Aylesbury Opera, Dryad in Ariadne auf Naxos for Queen's Opera, Alice in Till the Boys Come Home for Sydenham Arts Festival, Baba in The Medium at Grimeborn 2014, Annie Jump-Cannon in The Observatory at the Greenbelt Festival (a new opera by Jump Cannon Productions and Improbable Theatre, using British Sign Language), and The Mother in Hansel and Gretel for Thames Philharmonia in December. Gráinne has a huge amount of teaching experience and is highly skilled at teaching all levels - previously she has taught students ranging in ages 3-60, of varying abilities, from amateur to professional. Previous employers include Jigsaw Arts, NLPAC, Italia Conti, Kingston College and Scott Wiseman School of Performing Arts. Though her background is as a classical singer, she is skilled at teaching across all musical genres, and has a lot of experience teaching pop and musical theatre songs. She has also successfully coached students for drama school auditions (BRIT, LAMDA, ALRA) and for LAMDA and UWL (in musical theatre) examinations. Gráinne brings a huge amount of drive, practical knowledge and passion to her teaching, and endeavours to inspire her students to achieve their best. Gráinne also has extensive experience as an actress and voiceover artist.


Susan Cullen

SUSAN CULLEN MA BSc PGCE

Acting Teacher - Performing Arts (7-18 years)

A postgraduate of the prestigious Central School of Speech and Drama (CSSD) with an MA in Voice Studies, Susan is a professional performer, director, voice and acting coach. She is currently Head of Voice at the Midlands Academy of Dance and Drama in Nottingham, and has been a guest lecturer at CSSD and Essex College of Performing Arts. Susan originally trained as an opera singer and made her professional principal debut as Countess Ceprano with English National Opera in the award winning mafia style Rigoletto directed by Jonathan Miller. Her international operatic career has taken her to Europe, the middle and far East and the USA. TV and radio broadcasts include appearances for Channel 4 and Thames TV. She was assistant director and vocal consultant at The Castle Theatre Wellingborough for The Princess and The Pea, and created and directed their one week summer course Acting Out. With an early training that included dance and gymnastics, Susan naturally moved into the world of cabaret and musicals. She appeared in the award winning West End musical Chess and toured the UK with The Sound of Music, combining understudying the role of Maria with the responsibility of Dance Mistress and rehearsing in each new cast of children. She also created several new roles in the field of music theatre with Babel Theatre Company. Since 2005, Susan has worked as venue director with the Shakespeare for Schools Festival, using professional venues and technical support to stage hundreds of performances by school children. Susan is also a Shakespeare Champion, one of a nationwide team working towards Shakespeare 2012. The aim is to have a nationwide celebration of Shakespeare to coincide with the London Olympics, spanning amateur, professional and youth and community settings. Working with up and coming talent has always been her passion, and in 1998 Susan launched and spearheaded a travelling Opera in Education company,The Opera Express! She has translated and rearranged several popular operas, creating inventive re-workings that include the best loved melodies, imaginatively restaged for students to perform alongside professionals over an intensive day-long experience, up to 100 children at a time would create a public performance in a local theatre. The company’s groundbreaking work with Carmen at Bow school in London’s east end was the subject of a documentary film narrated by Tom Conti.


Joantha Wood

JOANTHA WOOD

Dance Teacher - Performing Arts (7-18 years)

Joantha trained at The Hylton Bromley School of Dance and Drama, on the Wirral. Her first taste of professional work was performing as a child in pantomimes at the Floral Pavilion New Brighton. On leaving Hylton Bromleys she toured Europe for two years, with a six-member dance group, gaining what was once a much-treasured possession.... An Equity Card!! On returning to the UK, she successfully auditioned for the original touring production of Cats, playing Cassandra and Bomballurina. The tour visited Blackpool, Edinburgh and Dublin. This was the first time a long running established West End Musical had toured, and it paved the way for all tours since. She transferred from the tour into the West End production at the New London Theatre playing the same roles. After leaving Cats she performed at The London Palladium and Drury Lane in The Royal Variety and The Lawrence Olivier Awards. Her next engagement was in the musical Cabaret (Sheffield Crucible), appearing along side Andy Serkis, of Gollum fame. She was then asked to return to the West End to appear once again in Cats. Following this Joantha gained a role in the tap extravaganza Gershwin Musical, Crazy for You (Prince Edward Theatre), and stayed put for two years, then went on tour with the same production. Whilst performing in Crazy for You, Joantha appeared in various television shows including The Big Breakfast, Challenge Anneka, Talking Telephone Numbers, London Tonight and A Tribute to Gershwin (Royal Albert Hall). She also met and married her husband! Jo’s professional performing career came to an end with the arrival of the first of her three children. She now enjoys sharing her passion for the theatre with a new generation, and has taught at many theatre schools and taken master classes throughout the UK.


Amy Findlay

AMY FINDLAY BA (Hons) Dance

Dance Teacher - Tap, Modern & Ballet

Amy started dancing at six years old with the Janet Ashton School of Dance in Lincoln, where she had the opportunity to perform in Pantomimes as well as Lord Mayor's Shows and County festivals. After working to advanced levels in Ballet, Tap, Modern and Jazz, Amy continued her studies at Roehampton University London and completed her BA(Hons) Degree in Dance. Whilst studying for her degree Amy worked with local dance schools and her passion for teaching developed. After assisting dance classes for two years Amy trained as an ISTD Tap and Modern teacher. Since then Amy has taught at various schools around South London. It was at university that Amy also became involved in Cheerleading. After competing at National level, Amy completed her UKCA cheer coaching and has since coached several cheer squads for Regional competitions. For many years Amy has taught dance to children as young as 18months, as well as coaching older students through their graded exams, dance competitions and school shows. Amy is now looking forward to bringing her fun and friendly classes to CentreStage Theatre School MK.


DEMI YORK

Assistant for Junior Performing Arts and Ballet classes

ELLEN KITCHING

Assistant for Ballet classes