Performance Academy

Click here to download Performance Academy Information Pack, including term dates


Theatre Royal Wakefield Performance Academy from Amy Charles on Vimeo.

What is Theatre Royal Performance Academy? Theatre Royal Performance Academy and Performance Academy Kidz are Saturday performance training programmes for young people aged 5-18 years in Wakefield and Pontefract.

Performance Academy is a three-hour Saturday musical theatre programme for 7-18 year olds in Wakefield and Pontefract. Participants are trained for an hour each in singing, dancing and acting. Theatre Royal Wakefield hosts our annual Academy showcase, Sing! Dance! Act! Participants are also invited to audition for our summer musical, the annual panto and to take part in other opportunities.

Performance Academy Kidz! is a 1.5 hour Saturday session for 5-7 year olds in Wakefield and Pontefract. The sessions support the use of imagination and play using drama, dance and song. We will aim to build confidence and develop performance skills in readiness for the Performance Academy.

Performance Academy Pontefract @ Carleton Community High School

Saturdays: 10am - 1pm (terms are 12 weeks long)
£295 per term
Financial Support Available.

Performance Academy Kidz! at Pontefract @ Carleton Community High School

If you have a young child aged 5 - 7 years then sign up now.
Saturdays: 11am - 12.30pm
£150 per term
Financial Support Available.

Performance Academy Wakefield @ Wakefield College Waterton Building

Saturdays: 2.30pm - 5.30pm
£295 per term
Financial Support Available.

Performance Academy Kidz! at Wakefield @ Wakefield College Waterton Building

If you have a young child aged 5 - 7 years then sign up now.
Saturdays: 2pm - 3.30pm
£150 per term
Financial Support Available.

For information about financial support please click here.

Our next taster sessions are Saturday 11 March 2017 for Pontefract Academy and Wednesday 15 & Wednesday 22 March 2017 for both academies.

Performance Academy Wakefield is currently full but please get in touch to join the waiting list.

To register for your FREE taster session, to join a waiting list or for more information please contact Gavin or phone 01924 330 060.

*New* Performance Academy Bitesize

7 - 11 year olds
Monday 10, Tuesday 11 and Wednesday 12 April 2017

More information here, to register your interest please email Gavin Leonard.

The Tutors

Louise Denison - Academy Principal

Louise trained in Leeds and London in all aspects of dance and the performing arts. As a professional performer she worked throughout the country in musicals, pantomimes and cabaret, before being asked out of the blue to choreograph her first show at York Theatre Royal. This led her to work on their highly successful pantomimes and with York Rep. She has since directed and choreographed hundreds of shows and has worked extensively with Theatre Royal Wakefield, choreographing our hugely popular pantomime and writing and directing for Wakefield Youth Music Theatre. A freelance dance teacher, Louise is also Artistic Director of Damuus Dance Company and Resident Choreographer at Scala Perfoming Arts.

Jim Lunt - Musical Direction

Jim spends his year working in various theatres across Yorkshire conducting musicals. He also co-wrote the music for a children’s Christmas musical The Grinch Who Stole Christmas, and has written TV jingles for two well known breakfast cereals! In addition, Jim works as a musical arranger – recent work includes shows for Page & Moy cruise liners and BBC Radio Four drama. Jim is actively involved in delivering Creative Partnerships projects, and is passionate about working with young people as a resident tutor at Theatre Royal Wakefield’s Performance Academy.

Eve Headley - Dance

Eve has over 15 years experience of teaching and choreography, is an associate of the IDTA (International Dance Teachers Association) and adjudicator for dance festivals. Eve's professional performance credits include dancing for The Ken Dodd Show, ensemble for many pantomimes (Qdos and First Family) and backing dancer for Debbie Gibson. "I have a passion for both teaching and performing. I love what I do!".

Natalie Davies - Singing

Natalie has been involved in musical theatre for the last 10 years and in that time she has performed in over 70 musicals, working onstage, as a pit musician and as musical director. Originally from Birmingham, Natalie completed her undergraduate degree and also obtained a masters degree in Music by Research and Composition at University of Huddersfield. Natalie works as a private vocal coach as well as running group workshops and choirs. For two years she taught with Music and the Deaf in Huddersfield, teaching piano and helping out with the National Deaf Youth Orchestra. Natalie is currently studying level 1 British sign language and one day hopes to set up a sing and sign group. 

Natalie Bellingham - Kidz / Drama

Natalie is a performer, deviser and Co Artistic Director of touring company Uncanny Theatre (www.uncannytheatre.co.uk). Natalie has trained both in Europe and the UK and enjoys making and watching visually arresting, exciting theatre. She has a wealth of experience in clowning and works frequently with companies such as Faceless Company, Tell Tale Hearts Theatre Company, West Yorkshire Playhouse, Lawrence Batley Theatre and the Yorkshire Sculpture Park.

Jenny Jones - Learner Support Worker

Jenny Jones studied Drama at De Montfort University before graduating in 2012. Since then she has worked as a freelance workshop facilitator and teacher, working in both schools and youth theatres. She has supported work on a number of projects for the Theatre Royal Wakefield such as Show Me the Funny, Oliver! and the Performance Academy showcases.

Beth Hudson - Kidz & Drama Tutor

Beth has been a primary school teacher for four years, working with the full age range of 4-11 years old. She has a passion for music and theatre, running a successful choir at her school who have staged their own productions including Joseph and his Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat and The Wizard of Oz. She has starred in numerous productions and has also worked with the West Yorkshire Playhouse.

Heidi Webster - Dance

Heidi studies and teaches at the Caroline Atha School of Dance alongside her studies for a Theatre and Performance degree at the University of Leeds. She started dancing at the age of four and is extremely passionate about the arts. She is an Associate of the IDTA (International Dance Teacher's Association) and is working towards more teaching and performance examinations. Heidi has performed in various shows at the Theatre Royal Wakefield, including the youth projects, pantomimes and the anniversary gala. Theatre has been a huge part of her life. She would love to help others achieve highly, and to enjoy performing and learning as much as she does.

Sing! Dance Act! - Around the World in One Night
Pontefract Performance Academy Showcase

A chance to see some of the most talented young performers in West Yorkshire as Theatre Royal Performance Academy Pontefract hits the stage for their annual showcase.

Are you ready? Then off we go! Off on the adventure of a life-time! Our passports and an empty small brown battered suitcase in hand. We will be inspired by cultures around the world, try our hand at new languages and approach the wildlife with caution! By the time we arrive home our suitcase will be filled to the brim with new experiences and memories to last a lifetime. On our whistle-stop tour our singing, dancing and acting groups have responded to what travel and exploration means to them, inspired by some of the best musicals around.

Friday 24 & Saturday 25 February 2017, 7.30pm
Tickets on sale here.

If you want the opportunity to perform on our stage in the Performance Academy Showcase then you can join our Performance Academy Pontefract or Performance Academy Kidz today. If you are interested in joining our Performance Academy or need more information please email Gavin Leonard.

Please click on the document below to find out more about Performance Academy and Performance Academy Kidz:
Performance Academy Frequently Asked Questions.

Please click on the document below to find out more about
2016 Academic Year Prices and Direct Debit Form

To find out more contact Gavin Leonard on 01924 330 060. To book your place call the Box Office on 01924 211 311.