The school offers children’s and vocational examinations in both ISTD and RAD twice a year, with one session at Christmas and the other at Easter. These examinations are open to all students who are assessed by the Principal before being entered to ensure they are ready. In the lead up to the examination the school holds six compulsory ‘coaching classes’. These classes help prepare the students to the required examination level, of which the school boasts a 100% pass rate.
The school appreciates the benefits of external training and encourages those with certain flair and ability to apply for the Imperial and Royal Societies outreach programs (JA/MA/PVP etc). These children are also given the opportunity to compete in local and regional Eisteddfod festivals. This helps these children develop their technical abilities, but arguably, more importantly, helps them develop their performance skills. It also gives them the opportunity to dance alongside other talented children from local schools, giving them a wider awareness of what is out there, especially as students are reaching Regional and National finals.
We offer classes starting from age 3 all the way up to adults!
Classes include – Ballet, Tap, Modern, Jazz, Hihphop, Pointe Work and Pilates.
The Stapleton School of Dancing was founded in 1942 by Miss Pat Short. Under Miss Short’s direction many successful students and teachers were produced, including William Tuckett (a Royal Ballet Company dancer and choreographer). Upon retiring in 1990, ex-pupil Miranda Beard took over the school from Miss Short and introduced Modern and Jazz to the existing line up of Ballet and Tap. This increased the number of students within the school and allowed them to study new forms of dance. Following the success of the school Samantha Axford joined Miranda as co director in 2009.
Having been at the helm of Stapleton School of Dancing for a truly amazing 25 years, Miranda took the decision to step down as principal in April 2014, as juggling home life, children and the responsibility of the successful dance school had spread her attentions too thinly.
After Sam’s marriage she and her husband decided that both their hearts and future lay in Ireland. Together Sam and Miranda took the decision to hand over the Stapleton School of Dancing baton to the current principal Amy Norcombe who is also an ex-pupil and taught for the school. Miss Amy shares the same values and ethos as Miranda and Sam and she brings great energy and a keen interest in young pupils, knowing how hard it is to nurture children in our ever more pressurised world.