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Ashbourne dance teacher Helen aims to help young performers reach their Peak

By Ashbourne News Telegraph  |  Posted: April 03, 2014

Helen Pattison is opening her new school at the Peak Gateway Leisure Club, in Ashbourne.

Helen Pattison is opening her new school at the Peak Gateway Leisure Club, in Ashbourne.

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A NEW dance school will soon be teaching youngsters their moves in Ashbourne.

Peak Dance Academy has an open day on Saturday, April 26, and is inviting people to go along.

Proprietor Helen Pattison said: "I'm really excited about this. It's something I've wanted to do for a long time.

"I hope that people will come along, have a cup of coffee, meet the team and ask any questions they have. They can even join in with a taster class, and really get a feel for what we'll be offering in the classes."

Helen began dancing aged seven and first performed professionally when she was just 13. At 16, she was offered a place to train at the prestigious Laine Theatre Arts, Epsom, where she gained teaching qualifications and the experience to have a successful career as a dancer.

She worked in London, throughout the UK and around the world, as a dancer, dance captain, company manager and choreographer.

Helen said: "All our staff are criminal records-checked and insured, and I'm a medical professional. When I'm not teaching I can be found attending emergency 999 calls for North West Ambulance Service in Manchester.

"I decided to base the academy at the Peak Gateway leisure centre as it's such a fantastic location, with great facilities."

The open day runs from 10am until 2pm.

Helen said: "At 10.15am, we're set up for pre-schoolers aged up to four years old, from 11am infants aged between four and seven, and at 11.45am we will show off the junior classes for eight to 11-year-olds. Finally, at 12.30pm, it's the seniors, which is suitable for anyone over age 12. The proper classes begin on Saturday, May 10.

"Children in the pre-school class can collect stickers every week and will receive medals once their sticker charts are completed. Older students can enter the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dance exams and, every year in November, we will hold a big award ceremony, with two scholarships to be won, for a year's free classes.

"We plan to offer a full range of dance, including imperial ballet, tap, modern, national, street and adult ballet and tap. Children's parties and first wedding dances are also on offer."

Further details are available at www.peakdance academy.co.uk or by calling Helen on 07530 286828.

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