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ALUMNI

Stages has a vast alumni who are currently working in the West End, on UK and World Tours, Television, Plays and Cruises.  Whether you want to attend one class a week for fun or you are looking for a future career in the performing arts industry Stages will provide you with the foundations and opportunities you need to succeed.

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JOE ATKINSON

Joe attended Stages Performing Arts for 8 years during which time he worked professionally in the Hawth's Pantomime Cinderealla (QDOS) as ensemble and competitively achieved many Freestyle titles all over the UK.  Continuing his love of dance and Performing Arts Joe went to Bird College from 2010 - 2013 achieving a level 6 professional diploma in dance and musical theatre.  Joe's theatre credits include Geek! The Musical (Workshop) as Dance Captain playing Danny, Wicked Original UK Tour/swing, understudy Chistery, Cats Royal Caribbean, TumbleBrutus, Aerialist, Wicked International Tour, Featured Ensemble, Assistant Dance Captain, Jack and The Beanstalk Horsham, Ensemble, Matilda Original UK Tour, Swing, Assistant Gym Captain, understudy Micheal Wormwood.  Joe is currently making his Westend debut as swing in The Prince of Egypt.  Joe's Television credits include Royal Variety Performance, Take That, dancer, Got To Dance, Dance Illusion, Sunday Night at the London Palladium, Dancer, Acrobat, Just Eat Advert, dancer. 

Joe is also the recipient of a coveted Carl Allen Award for Freestyle Performer 

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JENNY BASSETT

After training at Stages Performing Arts in all disciplines Jenny took a contract with Costa Cruises which led to a further nine contracts with Celebrity Cruises working on shows such as Simply Ballroom and Boogie Wonderland as Dance Captain.  From here Jenny began working for Spirit productions on their Grande Cirque UK tour and Slapstix UK tour.  Jenny's other theatre credits include: Snow White, Crawley (QDOS), Snow White, Bradford (QDOS), Cinderella, High Wycombe (QDOS) and Masquerade Christmas Spectacular, London, Plan B Productions.  As a backing dancer Jenny has worked at many Festivals including O2 Wireless, Download Festival, Global Gathering, Cartier Polo Club and The Big Reunion for artists such as The Zutons, Richard Blackwood, The Audio Bully's and Fat Boy Slim.  Jenny has also performed with Viva Productions in Streetlife UK tour and Festival UK tour.  Other credits include an illusionists assistance with Matricks Magic as well as choreographer and audition panel for Celebrity cruises.  Having gained her IDTA Street Dance Associate and JP Pilates Barre instructor qualifications Jenny now teaches at the Jason Thomas Foundation College in Cornwall and trains 4 street crews.

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KATE BASSETT

Following her training at Stages Performing Arts Kate graduated from London Studio Centre in 2007 with  a BA Hons degree in theatre and dance.  Since this time Kate has been touring internationally starting at sea working in theatre casts onboard Celebrity Cruises, P&O Cruises and Costa cruise lines.​  Kate returned to the UK and began touring Germany with the prestigious ABBA tribute show 'ABBA Mania' and 'ABBA Gold'.​Whilst in the UK Kate has a number of exciting projects and performs with various shows and bands at venues such as 'The Savoy Hotel', Quaglino's Mayfair, Park Chinois, Pizza Express Live, UK National theatres, Warner Leisure Hotels, Music Festivals, Weddings, Parties and Corporate events. She also performs as a soloist with her own vintage Band 'Betty and The Retros' and 'Gatsby's Jukebox'.  Across West Sussex and the South East, Kate also brings her own themed shows to Care entertainment programs in Retirement Homes and Residential centres supporting younger adults with learning difficulties and mental health conditions. 

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SOPHIE BASSETT

Sophie attended classes at Stages Performing Arts from the age of 9 studying all genres of the performing arts.  Due to her outstanding examination achievements Sophie chose to continue her studies at Chichester College where she attained her DDE MODERN, DDE TAP and DDI BALLET (soon to be DDE).  Since completing her training Sophie has taught for many local schools including Stages and has a 100% ISTD examination pass rate.   Sophie co-owns her own dance academy  as well as  Sophie's Barre having completed her JPilates BarreFit qualification.  As well as this Sophie runs after school clubs and has choreographed performances for dance schools in Disney Land, West Sussex and the West End.

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MEGAN BEW

Megan started her training at Stages Performing Arts when she was 7.  During this time Megan appeared as the youngest member of the professional ensemble in Cinderella at the Hawth, Crawley (QDOS).  After successfully studying all genres of the Performing Arts Megan then went to The College of Richard Collyer where she continued to study dance alongside her academic subjects.  Following this Megan secured a place on the Foundation course at Performers College where she also went on to complete the 3 year level 6 professional diploma.  Since graduating from Performers in 2017 Megan has been appearing in Disney's Aladdin the musical as featured ensemble in Hamburg and Stuttgart. 

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CHRISTOPHER BLACK

Originally from Surrey England, Christopher began his training at Stages Performing Arts at the tender age of 3!  From here he attended Bird College where he studied a BA Hons degree in musical theatre. Graduating in 2010 Christopher's career has taken him to many places. He has performed in 32 countries across 5 continents. He made his West End debut performing in Sinatra at the London Palladium. He has performed in European Tours and worked on such shows as Hairspray, Saturday Night Fever and Chicago. In 2015 Christopher turned his focus to teaching, working tirelessly to prepare the next generation of performers for life in the industry. Whilst co-owning his own dance academy, he also works for the prestigious Beckenham Ballet Academy in Kent and Tiffany Theatre College based in Essex as a full time Ballet Teacher.

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JAMES BLACK

James attended Stages Performing Arts from the age of 3 studying all genres of performing arts.  At the age of 16 James went to the Urdang Academy in London on a scholarship and graduated in 2015 with a level 6 diploma in dance and musical theatre.  Having performed in excess of 50 countries over 5 continents with Cunard and P&O Cruiselines as featured ensemble James is back teaching at Stages whilst continuing to perform.  Theatre credits include Cinderella, Reading, ensemble (Imagine Theatre), Cinderella, Plymouth, ensemble (QDOS), Aladdin, Dartford, ensemble (QDOS).  Television credits include BBC Strictly Come Dancing as a featured dancer, SKY One Got to Dance, Dance Illusion,  SKY One The Best Fifa Football Awards, featured dancer, Seat advert (UK) and Samsung advert (global).  James other credits include Priscilla corporate Germany and London, Tropic Skincare Birmingham, ASOS Puma model on-line.

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LIZZY BROWN

Lizzy joined Stages in 2005 taking all classes in performing arts.  In 2009 she appeared in Cinderella Pantomime at the Hawth as part of the professional ensemble (QDOS).  Lizzy then went on to achieve a place on the Foundation Course at Millennium Performing Arts.  During this time Lizzy performed as part of the 2012 Olympic Closing Ceremony in Stratford.  Other credits include backing dancer for The Blunder Brothers in 2012 and 2014.  Throughout all this time Lizzy has also appeared in many ensembles as part of GAPS (Gatwick Airport Pantomime Society) raising vast amounts of money locally for charity.  Although Lizzy thoroughly enjoyed all her amateur and professional performance opportunities in 2013 she secured a position with British Airways and has continued to travel the world ever since.

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CLARE FENTON

Clare began her career at a young age at Stages Performing Arts studying all genres, she continued at Stages whilst attending The College of Richard Collyer and then furthered her training at Laban graduating with a BA Hons in dance theatre.  During this time Clare performed for 3 years as a cabaret dancer at the Surrey Hills Hotel.   Clare then spent several years as a dancer performing on Cruises with Costa and Celebrity cruislines in the Mediterranean and Caribbean.  On her return to the UK Clare completed her DDE tap and modern at Anthony Clifford Studios and proceeded to continue and increase her teaching practise including Stages where she was warmly welcomed back in to her role as Head of Dance.  Clare has also very successfully taught after school clubs at Blackwell Primary School, Estcots Primary School, The Mill Primary Academy, The Meads Primary School, Three Bridges Junior School and Northgate Primary School.  Currently on Maternity Leave Clare has also taught at Bojangles Dance in Lichfield.

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KARL GREEN

Karl joined Stages in 2010, working professionally with them in the Hawth Theatre’s pantomime of Cinderella (QDOS). He continued training at Stages as well as Hayward’s Heath College receiving an A* in Dance A level and a distinction in Dance BTEC.  Karl went on to Train at Paul McCartney’s school LIPA in Dance and Musical Theatre. During his time here he worked professionally as a voguer for “The House of Suarez” across the north and headlined Liverpool Gay Pride. From here Karl furthered his training at the University of Chichester receiving a 1st in contemporary dance.  Since graduating he has worked with contemporary companies such as Lîla Dance, EvokeMotion Dance Theatre and was also invited to professional classes with Matthew Bourne.  Karls credits include “The House of Decay” voguing on tour behind some of the best known RuPaul’s Drag Race Queens and Sink The Pink.  From here he went on to working on P&O Cruise Ships as a dancer and aerialist where he performed in the original cast of “Astonishing” created by Stephen Mulhern and Johnathan Wilkes. His current contract sees him performing in Europe as part of the “Dream Follies” as a classical show boy  before joining P&O again to dance and travel the world.

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KAYLEY HARRISON

Kayley joined Stages Performing Arts in 2001 where she took all classes in performing arts.  Following 2 years at sixth form during which time she appeared as professional ensemble in Cinderella at the Hawth (QDOS) Kayley achieved a place on the Foundation Course at Performers College.  From here Kayley studied at London Studio Centre and graduated in 2015 with a BA Hons in Dance Theatre.  Kayley's credits include 2012 Olympic Closing Ceremony, BBC The One Show, Tap dancer, Arlene Phillips,  Damn Yankees, dancer, Matthew Krzan, Wimbledon Theatre, Alice In Wonderland,  Rebecca Howell, Wimbledon Theatre, Showcase dancer/actor, Ashley Nottingham, Sadlers Wells, Sea Cruises UK Ltd, dancer, Costa Cruises, production dancer. 

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LAUREN HUFFMAN

Lauren Huffman (Marshall) initially trained at Stages Performing Arts Horsham branch from the age of 10.  After moving to the Crawley branch she studied all disciplines and was competitive in the Freestyle world, where she won many titles with partner Mark Parton. On leaving Stages at the age of 17 Lauren continued her studies at the Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts in London. Since graduating Lauren has performed to over 1,000,000 people across all 7 continents. Working as a Lead Vocalist Lauren completed multiple contracts for Headliners Theatre Company (P&O Cruises) Grayboy Entertainment (P&O Australia, Qdos Entertainment (Celebrity Cruises and Cunard) and most recently, Playlist Productions (Carnival Cruise Lines). Now residing in the US, with her husband, Kevin, and daughter, Maisie, Lauren is the Casting Specialist for the international agency Six O’Clock Studios, and has clients successfully working all over the world.  Additionally, she runs the Musical Theatre program at South Carolina’s top Arts Academy and teaches Lyrical, Voice, Ballet and Jazz. She is also teaching audition prep and workshop courses as well as choreographing their Spring Musical at the University of South Carolina. Stages was such a great foundation for Lauren and her career and she absolutely welcomes any Stages alumni with open arms to her London auditions, which take place every year. She wouldn’t have had the opportunities and success in Musical Theatre, if it hadn’t been for Stages Performing Arts, and all of her teachers there.’

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DANIELLA HUTCHINS

Daniella joined Stages Performing Arts in 1996 at the age of three taking classes in all disciplines achieving outstanding examination results with the ISTD throughout her time at the studio.  Daniella also competed and became a Championship dancer in her own right winning many titles over thirteen years.  At the age of sixteen Danielle attended Chichester college to further study dance and performing arts graduating in 2012 with her DDI teaching certificates with the ISTD in ballet and modern and a BTEC Diploma in dance. Whilst at Chichester Daniella competed in the National Rock Challenge winning the regional heat going on to become runners up at the National Finals.  On leaving Chichester college Daniella undertook local teaching work before returning to her roots as a teacher at Stages.  At the age of only fourteen Daniella appeared in Cinderella (QDOS) at the Hawth as professional ensemble and was understudy Cinderella performing on Christmas Eve!  

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ANIKA LEFEVRE

Anika attended Stages Performing Arts from the age of 3 where she studied all disciplines including ballet, tap, modern and freestyle taking her exams with the ISTD.  During this time Anika performed in many prestigious venues including Disneyland Paris, Saddlers Wells, Her Majesty's Theatre and the Royal Albert Hall.  At school Anika studied GCSE dance and music,  A level dance, Theatre Studies and Performing Arts and was chosen to dance infront of the queen on her visit to Crawley!  Anika was accepted in to three college, Birds, Millenimum and Chichester however took the decision not to follow this path but instead decided to become involved with amature societies including Acttwo, SCA Productions, NSMP, HHOS, Bersted Arts and GAPS and is now a full member of COS musical theatre. Anika has played many featured and supporting roles in Calamity Jane, Fiddler on the Roof,  Red Hot and Cold, Pirates of Penzance, Legally Blonde and Hairspray.  Anika has also appeared in many pantomimes including Dick Whittington, Red Riding Hood, Jack and the Beanstalk, Snow White and Robin Hood.  Taking her love of theatre forwards Anika now choreographs and directs productions. 

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JENNIFER MATCHETT

Jennifer joined Stages Performing Arts in 2009 at the age of 9 and studied all disciplines to examination level with the ISTD. Following this Jennifer was accepted in to Chichester University where she graduated in 2018 with a First Class Degree in Musical Theatre.  Jennifer is currently working for Parkdean resorts as a vocalist and has the following credits: La Boheme, extra, BBC Children In Need, actor, Tulley's Farm Shocktober Fest, actor, Lapland UK, Cinnamon the Elf, Mother Christmas's Kitchen, Chessington World of Adventures, actor and entertainments team.

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MARK PARTON

Having spent his childhood practically living in the studios at Stages Performing Arts, Mark embarked on his professional training aged 16, gaining a DaDa funded diploma place at The Urdang Academy. Whilst in training, Mark workshopped both ‘Mary Poppins’ and ‘The Witches of Eastwick’ as a tap dancer, as well as appearing at Breakin’ Convention (Sadlers Wells) and Move It! (Olympia). Credits whilst training: Che (Evita), Jack (Into the Woods), Benny Southstreet (Guys and Dolls). Professional credits: Director/Choreographer - Geek! A New Musical (Tristan Bates Theatre, London), Featured dancer in the London 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony, Singer/Dancer (M/S Norwegian Sun), and numerous corporate gigs across the world (Qatar, Sweden, USA).

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CHARLOTTE RODRIGUES

Charlotte (Lottie) joined Stages Performing Arts Horsham branch in 2001 and then later transferred to the Crawley branch where she continued to study all aspects of performing arts.  From here Lottie went to The College of Richard Collyer where she studied dance A level.   Making the decision not to go on to an independent dance college Lottie began auditioning and achieved her first contract with Disneyland Paris as a performer and character.  Lottie's other credits include travelling the world with Norwegian cruiselines working for Nickelodeon and with Royal Caribbean Curiseline working for dreamworks.

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KATEY RODRIGUES

Katey has been dancing for 25 years and was lucky enough to spend 8 of those years from 2001 being trained at Stages Performing Arts Horsham and Crawley branches.  Following this Katey went  to Chichester College where she trained in Ballet, Tap and Modern gaining her DDI's to become a qualified ISTD teacher. Katey taught at Stages for 2 years which she absolutely loved and was lucky enough to teach children as young as age 3 up to the adult.  Katey then made the decision to continue with her performing career and moved to Cyprus for 2 years where she was Dance Captain at 4Front entertainment appearing in many shows.  Today Katey still teaches and performs as much as she can!

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JILLIAN SHADBOLT

Jill is an ISTD qualified teacher in Modern and Tap.  Her training  began at the age of 5 with Caroline Black at Stages Performing Arts.  An original member of the studio, Jill studied all disciplines of Dance, Drama and Singing but discovered her true passion was for dance.   At the age of 18 Jill secured a place at Brian Rogers Performers College where she studied a level 6 diploma for three years in dance and musical theatre  which  led on to performing at top London hotels.  On leaving Jills first job was as a dancer on  a Carribean Cuise line.  Following this Jill  became the resident Dance Teacher at Elite Dance School teaching Jazz, Modern, Tap, Street and Salsa.  Jill now teaches at the Horsham branch of Acttoo Academy and has been there since it first opened its doors back in 2005.  Working at Acttoo has afforded Jill the opportunity to work not only as a performer but as a choreographer on many shows including CopaCabana, Jungle Book, Hairspray and most recently Wizard of Oz. 

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CHLOE SPARROWHAWK

Chloe began her training at Stages at the age of 4 in all disciplines.  At 16 Chloe attended The Brit School where she studied BTEC and A level dance then in 2015 secured a place on the foundation course at Bird College progressing on to the BA Hons degree course in Dance and Musical Theatre where she will graduate in July this year.  Chloe's credits whilst in training include: Tulley's Farm Shocktober Fest, actor, BBC1 Comic Relief, dancer, Guiness World Records, Universal, dancer, BBC1 Children in Need, Richard Vallentine, dancer.  Chloe has also performed in several in house productions whilst at Bird College including Made in Dagenham as Lisa Hopkins.

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SAMANTHA THORNTON-RICE

Samantha Thornton-Rice began her training as an original member of Stages Performing Arts Horsham branch and after transferring to Crawley where she studied all genres went to Northbrook Metropolitan College achieving a National Diploma in Musical Theatre and a Foundation Degree in Acting.  Following a further three years training Samantha graduated from East15 Acting School fin 2013 with a BAHons degree.  Credits include three years of professional touring theatre performing A Christmas Carol in Germany with American Drama Group - Europe - playing Belle and Martha Cratchit among other roles. Short films; The Polaris Legacy and Piss Twist (BFI Future Film) and last year she completed her first independent feature film playing the role of Poppy in Soul Reaper. When Samantha is not acting she is teaching performing arts to children aged 4-12 and finds it a good way to still feel like she is in the performing world.

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LOLLY WILLIAMS

Lolly was an original member of Stages Performing Arts Horsham branch and after transferring to Crawley where she trained in all genres of performing arts went to Italia Conti, London where she graduated in 2009 with a three year professional diploma.  Lolly's credits include support dancer, Brit Awards 2007,  support dancer for The Kylie Minogue show 2007, Picnic at Hanging Rock, Chichester Minerva Theatre, Imra, Bob Thompson, TIE Shakespeare Productions, London, Hermia, Sweeney Todd, Wimbledon Theatre, Mrs Lovett, Singer/Dancer Thomas Cook Productions, Katy B and Pendulum backing dancer, Singer and Choreographer for Viva Productions 2011-2014, Lead vocalist, Magic of Motown, Shooting Star Productions, Mallorca, Vocalist Iberostar Show Team.  Lolly is currently a Singer/Dancer and Vocal Captain for Carnival Cruise Lines, Playlist Productions USA and Worldwide.