Ruth Armstrong FISTD

Ruth Armstrong FISTD

Various dance classes

Various dance classes

Ruth began her training at ‘The Pauline Howard School of Dance’ under the guidance of the late Pat Ellis and Pauline Howard. She continued to further her studies at ‘Laine Theatre Arts’ and graduated with ISTD Associates in Modern, Ballet and Tap and LTA Musical Theatre Diploma.

Following her training Ruth spent several years working as a freelance teacher and choreographer whilst returning to teach alongside Miss Pat. In1999 Ruth joined the Dance Faculty at ‘Tring Park School for the Performing Arts’ (formerly Arts Ed Tring) where she currently teaches Jazz, Modern and Tap and is a regular choreographer for Junior and Senior Dance Productions. In addition she has been instrumental in devising new work for Tring Park’s Outreach programme which encourages the access to dance in Primary Schools in Hertfordshire and surrounding areas.

In 2005 Ruth attained ISTD Fellowship status and was invited to become a Dual Examiner for the Modern and Tap faculties. She is a regular guest teacher at several events including ‘Move IT’ and the ISTD ‘Janet Cram’ Modern Awards and lectures for both faculties at UK and International Courses. More recently Ruth was invited to join the Modern faculty creative team and she has been proud to have recently created optional Amalgamations for the Bronze, Silver and Gold ISTD Jazz syllabi.

Ruth was delighted to see The Pauline Howard School pupils merge into The Gielgud Academy allowing Miss Pat’s legacy to live on.

Michelle Walkhouse FISTD

Michelle Walkhouse FISTD

Michelle trained at the Bush Davies School and Elmhurst School.

As a professional dancer her credits include  The Lido in Paris where she was a Bluebell Girl and understudy to the Principal Soloist and the Flying Ballet number.  She also toured Europe and the USA with The Lido tournee as principal understudy.

On the Princess Cruise Lines she danced in a cast on board ships cruising worldwide on over 10 of their fleet. She then was appointed Fitness Manager of the ships.

After her performing career, Michelle qualified as a dance teacher and holds her Licentiate ISTD. She has taught at the Edmonton & Vegreville Schools of Ballet in Canda, the Chelsea Ballet Schools, the Sandra Powell School of Ballet in Horsham and Jean Butterworth School of Dance, Worthing where she teaches  ISTD modern and tap.

Michelle is thrilled to be a member of the Gielgud Academy faculty teaching modern and tap.

Hannah Gardner AISTD

Hannah Gardner AISTD

hannah gardnerHannah trained professionally at Laine Theatre Arts, graduating with a National Diploma in Musical Theatre and her ISTD teaching qualifications in ballet, modern theatre and tap. Her stage credits include ’50 Years of Stage and Screen’ (singer), ‘Is There Life After High School?’ (Ginny), ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ (Hodel), ‘Kiss Me Kate’ (Lois Lane) and ‘Nunsense’ (Sister Mary Leo). She can also be seen in the feature film ‘Confetti’ as a dancer and a ball girl, alongside Martin Freeman, Jessica Hynes and Jimmy Carr!

Now working full time as a teacher, Hannah has also broadened her academic knowledge of dance and theatre, gaining a BA Hons in History in 2010, followed by a Masters degree in 2011, both from the University of Sussex. She wrote her undergraduate dissertation on ‘A Social History of British Ballet’ and her Masters on ‘The Development of Modern and Contemporary Dance in Britain’, and hopes to study for her doctorate in the future.

Hannah teaches pre-primary and primary and basic ballet at GAPA as well as Jazz and she also currently teaches technical and lyrical jazz at the MGA Brighton Academy, Brighton’s first vocational college of performing arts. Hannah also works freelance as a choreographer for local operatic and musical theatre societies, most recently choreographing ‘The Wizard of Oz’, ‘The King and I’ and ‘Sweet Charity’ for HHOS.

Hannah is married to New Adventures dancer Phil Jack Gardner and is kept on her toes by their two sons.

Laura Veazey AISTD DDI

Laura Veazey AISTD DDI

laura veazeyLaura Veazey trained at Tring Park School of Performing Arts from 2002-2011. During her training at Tring she performed in over ten Tring Park productions and she also performed with NYB (National Youth Ballet) at many venues including Sadlers Wells, Theatre Royal Drury Lane and Birmingham Hippodrome. The ballets she performed in include Alice in Wonderland (choreographed by Wayne Sleep), The Old Man of Loch Nagar (written by the Prince of the Wales and choreographed by Drew McConie) and The Four Seasons by Frank Freeman.

After graduating from Tring Park Laura worked as an intern at English National Ballet Company and then joined Gielgud Management as an agency assistant in 2011 and Gielgud Academy as both office administrator and teaching assistant. Laura has also been training at Chichester College since 2013 on the ISTD teacher training course doing the DDI (Diploma in Dance Instruction) in Ballet and Modern and was successfully awarded the qualification in 2014.

Photograph by Suzanne Gielgud

Matt Hill AISTD DDI

Matt Hill AISTD DDI

Matt is a qualified ISTD teacher, having gained his Diploma for Dance Instruction (DDI) in both Tap and Modern. He has taught at Pineapple Dance Studios, London and is now delighted to be joining the GAPA faculty and GAPA is thrilled to welcome him back.

Matt trained at GAPA between 2011-2013 where he took his major vocational dance exams and was awarded the Senior Boys ballet medal and the Pat Ellis award for modern and tap. In 2013 Matt joined Tring Park School for the Performing Arts on their 6th form Musical Theatre Course. On completion of the course, Matt was offered a place at Bird College on their 3-year BA(Hons) Musical Theatre course and is currently in his 3rd Year of training.

Matt has been a member of TapAttack since 2011, a specialised tap group in the UK that fuels the England Tap Dance Team. Matt is a 5 times World Tap Champion in solo, group and formation categories. Matt has been out to Boston, USA and Dubrovnik, Croatia to tap festivals to train with the elite tap dancers in the world. Matt is a part of Avalon Rathgeb’s ‘Old Kent Road’ company.

Matt has appeared in Got To Dance (Opening Title Sequence, Sky1); The One Show (Special Guests, BBC), Dancer for Alternative Hair Show 2016 (Anne Veck Salon); Exile 2013 by Hurts (Music Video); Dance Proms (Royal Albert Hall); and Corporate events for Mercedes, McDonalds, Vodafone, Alton Towers.