All teachers and staff at Swansea Ballet School are fully vetted by DDC Ltd. (Due Diligence Checking) and hold Enhanced CRB / DBS certfication.
MR JAMES ANTHONY CUNLIFFE (DIRECTOR)
James has been involved in theatre and the performing arts from a very young age and presently owns several theatre schools and other related businesses in South Wales and in the London region. James has worked in the primary education sector, and has a large amount of experience working with children as teacher, coach and other supporting roles.
James is also the owner and founder of the ‘London Boys Ballet School’ and the 'London Ballet School' located in Islington. This unique school has seen national media coverage and has recently received the Dance School of the Year Innovation Award 2016 from Anne Walker MBE. The judges were Jonathan Gray (Dancing Times) and Angela Rippon OBE (TV presenter). Wayne Sleep OBE has recently accepted the position of school Ambassador.
Owner of an online Dance shop, dance clothing brand and numerous other industry related projects, James has been immersed in the performing arts world for many years.
MRS SHEILA CUNLIFFE (FOUNDER / HEAD OF BALLET)
Sheila Cunliffe comes from a strong theatrical background. Her mother was a singer and younger sister Kathryn was a professional dancer, choreographer and now teaches in her own theatre school in Melbourne. Sheila was born in Wigan, Lancashire and after training in a local dance school she travelled to both Swindon and London to further her teaching qualifications. Family commitments brought her to Swansea where she then decided to open her own dance school. Her first love is classical ballet. The high standards of ballet at the school, the importance placed on ballet training within the curriculum and the school's reputation for ballet locally are a reflection of this passion.
A.I.S.T.D Ballet, Dip. / A.I.S.T.D Adv. Modern
MRS LIZZIE HUGHES (MUSICAL THEATRE / TAP)
Lizzie began training and performing from a young age in her hometown of Swansea, at Counterpoint School of Theatre Arts. At age 16, she gained places at 9college’s with three scholarships. She went on to train professionally at ‘The Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts,’ where she graduated with Honours.
Upon graduating Lizzie immediately began performing professionally, sometimes travelling the world in many different productions such as; ‘Mamma Mia’ in London’s West end, Snow White in ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarves’ peforming alongside Warick Davies and Priscilla Presley in ‘The New Wimbledon Theatre’ and another highlight, being directed by the incredible Baayork Lee in ’A Chorus Line’ with theTel Aviv company. Lizzie has also made many TV appearances, dancing for such artists as Ceelo Greene, Paloma Faith, Ollie Murs, Take That and Muse.
Lizzie is absolutely thrilled to be back at Swansea Ballet School as a teacher and feels lucky to be able to teach such enthusiastic, talented children and pass on all her professional knowledge and experience.
MS SAMANTHA BOSSHARDT (BALLET TEACHER)
Samantha trained at London Studio Centre where she attained a First class BA(Hons) degree in Classical Ballet. Once graduated, she joined Vienna Festival Ballet, performing Classical Ballets such as Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty, Nutcracker, Coppélia, Snow White and Cinderella. She then moved to the Czech Republic to join the Moravian Ballet Theatre performing a wide range of Ballet Repertoire; her highlights include Don Quijote, Romeo & Juliet and Spartacus. Samantha has taught all around the UK and is delighted to teach at Swansea Ballet School.
MRS JULIE HOBDAY (CONTEMPORARY DANCE TEACHER)
Julie graduated (BA) from the University College Bretton Hall in Leeds and has a Scottish Masters of Arts (MA) in Dance Studies from Laban, London.
Completing her PGCE in Dance at Bedford College, she has worked within education (dance) for 23 years, formally Dance Coordinator for Gower College.
Julie freelances for RWCMD, GAMTA, Bridgend College, Bishop Gore School, Bae Balan and is artistic director for WGYTC/CYDC.
A senior examiner for ‘A’ level dance who also holds roles such as coursework advisor, subject advisor and provides BTEC and ‘A’ level CPD training for teachers. Alongside her work in dance education, Julie is also a qualified Pilates teacher with over 15 years’ experience.
We are delighted to have Julie Hobday as part of the Swansea Ballet School team!
BA, MA, PGCE
MRS HELEN CUNLIFFE (TAP & MODERN ADVISOR)
Helen trained at Counterpointe Theatre Arts and found that she had a particular enthusiasm and aptitude for tap and modern dance. As a result she commuted to London and Swindon to gain her tap and modern qualifications to Advanced level. Subsequently she gained her Associates in both tap and modern dance. In addition to teaching, Helen organises the school's finance and adminstration department. She works particularly well under pressure which is a great asset when she steps into the role of stage manager during the school's theatre performances!
A.I.S.T.D Modern / Tap
MS TAYLOR ROWDEN (ISTD BALLET TEACHER)
Taylor has been dancing since the age of 3 years and at 16 relocated to train professionally at Kate Simmons Dance in Warrington.
Taylor holds both a Level 6 Diploma in Dance and a full ISTD teaching qualification in Classical Ballet. Taylor has worked worldwide, including the Caribbean, India, Greece and Malta. Taylor is now very much looking forward to teaching at Swansea Ballet School
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MS CARLY RHYS JONES (PILATES & BALLET TEACHER)
Carly started dancing from a young age as a student of Counterpoint School of Performing Arts. She trained at Performers College and then The Urdang Academy London, graduating with a Diploma in Professional Dance and Musical Theatre. She thoroughly enjoyed her career as professional dancer performing in many parts of the world. Carly is a qualified Personal Trainer, Pilates and Fitness Instructor with many years of experience, specialising in women’s health. She has taught in gyms all over South London as well as running her own Personal Training company. Carly is very excited to be back teaching at Swansea Ballet School.
MS EMMA WILSON (GUEST TAP/MODERN CHOREOGRAPHER)
Emma began her dance training at the age of 3 with the Shirley Rees School of Dancing, studying ISTD Tap and Modern. After completing her A Level in Dance, Emma continued her dance journey by studying Contemporary Dance at Bath Spa University. Emma realised that teaching Dance was where her passion lied and did a PGCE in Post Compulsory Education at Gower College before accepting a post at Penyrheol Comprehensive School where she launched a successful after school dance programme and has choreographed their annual school production.
MRS CLAIRE JONES (DUTY MANAGER / SCHOOL SECRETARY)
Claire is our school secretary. She has two children, Millie and Niamh. They have both attended Swansea Ballet School since they were three years old.
Professionally she works within HR and is also a qualified Bookkeeper.
MRS KATHRYN STEVENSON (SATURDAY SCHOOL SECRETARY)
Kathryn is our school secretary. She has two children, Emily and Tom. Emily has attended Swansea Ballet School since she was three years old.
Professionally she is a HR Manager working in Manufacturing.
MRS SARAH BROMHAM (SCHOOL CHAPERONE)
Sarah is our school Chaperone. She has two children, Hannah and Daniel who both attend Swansea Ballet School.
She has many years’ experience of working with children in various capacities, including Primary school teaching.
FRED CUNLIFFE (SCHOOL PHOTOGRAPHER)
Many of the photographs you see on this website have been taken by Fred who has been on the team since the school first opened over 38 years ago. This does have something to do with the fact that he is the founder Miss Sheila’s husband. Without his support over the years in the school, theatre and at home, I am sure Counterpointe wouldn't be the school it is today!