Rosie Whitney-Fish, Founder & Chief Executive
Rosie is an experienced arts professional with a resumé spanning twelve years. Working throughout England and internationally, she has managed programmes for national arts organisations and independent artists. Rosie has developed strategies and visioning for local authorities, housing associations and arts organisations. Rosie has successfully fundraised via the Arts Council, Heritage Lottery Fund and charitable trusts. Rosie holds an MA in Dance-Theatre from Trinity-Laban. As a Choreographer, Rosie’s work has been supported by Barbican, Create London, Arts Council England, Cultural Olympiad and Big Dance. Rosie has produced dance projects and programmes for Rambert, East London Dance,Southbank Centre, Lillian Baylis, and Sadler’s Wells. Her commercial work has seen her touring to Australia, Asia and Europe for television, theatre, film, fashion and commercials. Rosie founded DanceWest in 2015, she was nominated for a Hammersmith and Fulham Civic honour in 2018 and Contribution to the Community in 2018 for United in Hammersmith. Rosie was nominated Inspirational Community Dance Practitioner and Outstanding Dance Programming Award by One Dance UK -the sector support organisation for the UK. ‘As a consequence of Whitney-Fish’s tireless work this festival has taken solid root. West London and the wider dance community owe her a considerable debt of thanks’. Luke Jennings, The Guardian.
Maria Yacoob, Bolder not Older Project Manager
Maria has had a twenty year parallel career in journalism as a magazine editor, features and copywriter. Maria is an experienced Dance Teacher and has worked for DanceWest Teacher on the Bolder not Older and Dancing Books programme for two years. She has taught dance at Pineapple Studios for 16 years and led post-show classes for Sadlers Wells as well as teaching dance in mainstream education from nursery to secondary level.
Ania Straczynska, Classes & Schools Coordinator
Ania has previously worked as Administrator, Education and Marketing Assistant for several organisations including Chisenhale Dance Space and Siobhan Davies Dance Studios. Outside of her role Ania is an Independent dance artist and MFA student of Choreography at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance. She creates work for theatre and gallery spaces, while as a researcher looks closely at interdisciplinary arts.
DanceWest Teaching team
We have a team of talented of professional dance teachers and teaching assistants. DanceWest has a strict safeguarding policy all of our team are qualified teachers with a valid enhanced DBS, liability insurance.
Sonia Illescas is an experienced Dance teacher and Choreographer specialising in Movement adaptation. She enjoys providing dance training to any-body and every-body, regardless of age and or abilities. For the past ten years Sonia has been teaching the principles of Ballet and Contemporary dance technique to older adults with and without disabilities. Sonia also has experience of delivering projects for vulnerable adults with particular needs with different conditions including: Dance for Dementia (English National Ballet, Age UK & Alzheimer's Society) Dance for Parkinson's (Rambert), Stroke recovery (London Hospitals) and Amputee outpatients (Queen Mary's Hospital).
Charlene Low is a choreographer and dance teacher. She specialises in delivering inclusive dance for those with learning disabilities, PMLD, the elderly (Active and those with dementia). She also teaches, children (from toddlers to teenagers). Charlene She trained at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance alongside her training in coupled with 10 years of Shoalin Kungfu. As a choreographer she delivered work for Unicorn Theatre, CandoCo, East London Dance, Entelechy Arts, Protein Dance, South Bank Centre and was also awarded Arts Council England funding for her own work.
Corinne Meredith is an experienced dance artist working with the community. She currently works as a teacher on the Royal Academy of Dance’s RADiate programme and Dance Ability at Trinity Laban. Corinne works inclusively with children and adults and on intergenerational projects. Corinne is also a Project Associate on the National Theatre’s Public Acts programme and the Creative Support Artist for the National Youth Dance Company at Sadler's Wells.
Yanaëlle Thiran has been teaching creative contemporary dance for DanceWest since 2017. She is a regular dance teacher at The Place.Yanaëlle is passionate about using dance to understand other disciplines. Yanaëlle has taught choreography workshops Siobhan Davies Dance Studios and abroad in Greece. In 2016-2017, she was invited as a guest lecturer at the University of Westminster.
Mohammed Turay is an experienced youth worker with a passion for performing arts. He is a well-loved teaching assistant on the DanceWest Move It Mondays programme, as well as being a youth worker for Action on Disability and a drama teacher at Lyric Hammersmith. He is a teaching assistant in a West London primary school and a football coach. Mo is the assistant on DanceWest’s inclusive dance programme.
Emma Bellerby is a contemporary dance artist specialising in working with children and young people in community and education settings. She began her professional training at the Northern School of Contemporary Dance in Leeds and went on to study at the Royal Academy of Dance before completing a Masters in Choreography at Trinity Laban. Emma has performed and toured work across Europe as well as producing numerous outreach projects for children and young people in areas of extreme poverty in Africa, Asia and South America. Emma has extensive experience of teaching dance in London schools and passionately advocates for children and young people's right to dance, art and culture. She currently produces family events for the Royal Opera House and previously managed the Associate Schools programme at Sadler's Wells.
Kate Finegan completed her training with a BA (Hons in Dance Theatre) from Laban then worked as a freelance dancer in regional contemporary dance companies. After many years teaching contemporary technique and choreography in higher education, Kate now works in a freelance capacity specialising in contemporary dance and creative movement for all ages, as well as regular project coordinating for community dance events, including dance platforms, flashmobs and boys dance. Specialising in Dance for Health, particularly for the frail elderly, those with Dementia and Parkinson’s means Kate regularly teaches dancers from 3 years old to 96 years old.
Hanna Wroblewski is a choreographer and dance teacher who works across the UK and Germany. She has an extensive teaching experience having taught dance internationally for over 15 years while establishing herself as a solo performer. Her solo work has been shown at venues across the UK. Hanna is delivering public and private Yoga classes across South West London.
Simone Sistarelli is a dancer, performer, dance teacher, musician, composer and accompanist for dance classes based in London.
Born in Italy in 1992, he dedicates his life to the Hip Hop Culture.He started studying dance when he was 10. Since then, he mastered Popping as his main Hip Hop dance technique.He also holds a BA Degree in Contemporary Dance from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in London. Simone has been awarded for his contribution to the community by the Universal Hip Hop Museum. He is now doing an MSc in Dance Psychology at the University of Hertfordshire, looking at the scientific relation between Dance and PD.
Laura Dredger graduated from Laban Centre with a BA (hons) Dance Theatre. Following this she focussed on choreographing and presenting her own work, specifically solos and duets that attempted to find authentic movement, exploring emotion and feelings through personal experiences In 2012 she completed her Pilates mat work teacher training and in 2015 gained her Masters in Movement Direction and Teaching from Central School of Speech and Drama. She has been a visiting lecturer/facilitator at The Royal College of Music, Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, Identity School of Acting, London College of Music and London Studio Centre. Laura has worked as Movement Director for National Youth Theatre, Arcola Youth Theatre, Reach Out Theatre Collective and Jane Packman Theatre.
Ryan Munroe trained at London Contemporary Dance School graduating in 2013. Since then Ryan has taught dance for Italia Conti, Barbican, in schools and the community. Ryan is a passionate teacher and choreographer.
Emily Neighbour is a community dance artist working in a wide range of settings across Surrey and West London. She graduated in Dance Studies from the University of Roehampton in 2016 and has since lead contemporary dance and creative movement sessions for all ages. Emily is a lead artist on the Dancing Books programme and co-leads the Saturday Family and Creative Dance programme for DanceWest
Caroline Rutzler is a dance education specialist, with over 20 years experience at primary, secondary and degree level. She has 15 years experience as an examiner of A’ Level and GCSE dance. Caroline is a qualified pilates teacher and specialised in rehabilitation of professional dancers.
Eleanor Mack has worked alongside Green Candle Dance Company, assisting sessions for people living with dementia and their companions. Eleanor is an assistant artist with Resonate Arts - a reminiscence arts project for people with dementia and their families. Eleanor also makes theatre and has worked as an actor with Young Pleasance Company. Eleanor is an assistant on the Saturday Family Dance programme for DanceWest and Dancing Books.
Maria Yacoob is an experienced teacher in contemporary, jazz, ballet and acrobatics, and a lead artist for DanceWest on Bolder Not Older, and Dancing Books. She has taught open classes at London's Pineapple Studios for 16 years, led post-show classes for Sadlers Wells, and taught in mainstream education, from nursery up to secondary level. She has worked as a choreographer on large-scale community dance and opera productions. "Dance has brought me joy throughout my life. It is great that my work allows me to spread that joy to dancers of all ages."
Danielle Teale is a leading dance artist and highly sought after in the field of community dance and dance for health. She has delivered a wide range of creative dance opportunities including teaching, choreography, support & mentoring, CPD, project management and consultancy, research and evaluation. With over twelve years of rich and varied experience from youth dance to dance for Parkinson’s; Danielle is recognised for providing high quality artistic experiences for all people. Danielle is a distinctive, practical and versatile dance artist and her empathic approach to dance delivery places the enjoyment and achievement of others at the core of her work.
Ella Fleetwood is passionate about community dance and teaches across a wide range of settings. Ella loves to bring dance to anyone and everyone, with play at the heart of her practice. Ella trained on the CAT scheme at The Place and graduated from Laban in 2016. Ella leads the Contemporary Classes for young people 7-11 years and co-leads the Saturday Family and Creative Dance programme.
Beth Ackroyd trained at the University of Roehampton gaining a BA (Hons) in Dance Studies in 2019. Beth has a wide range of experience working with people of all ages in various community settings and within the private dance sector. Beth has worked with organisations including Danielle Teale Dance, One Dance UK, People Dancing, Pre-Amici Dance Group and Royal Opera House. Beth is about to begin an MSc in Dance Science at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance.
Jessica Bulaitis has extensive experience leading creative and contemporary dance in school and community settings. She has worked in Primary and Secondary schools as Head of Dance and Creative Arts Lead developing and implementing the dance curriculum across the whole school and creating and delivering projects, partnerships and productions. She was shortlisted for a One Dance UK Award for Outstanding Primary Dance Teaching in 2018. She has also taught Ballet for many years at dance schools. Jess has now returned to working as a freelance dance artist, working for various organisations across London including Sadler’s Wells and DanceWest. Jess graduated from Roehampton University with a First Class BA (Hons) in Dance Studies and holds the Diploma in Dance Teaching and Learning (Children and Young People) from Trinity Laban as well as QTS and the ISTD Diploma in Dance Education. She was also one of the Royal Opera House Bridge’s ‘Leaders for Impact’ this year.
Gemma Parrott trained at Roehampton University, gaining a BA (Hons) in Dance Studies. After graduating, Gemma performed with companies including Skip Theatre, The Maidenhead Operatic Society, and as part of the Cultural Olympiad under Rosie Whitney-Fish. She has also taught dance in primary schools in Berkshire and Buckinghamshire. Gemma has co-developed Mums Movement with DanceWest, and looks forward to using her experience as a mother and a dancer to enrich the programme.
Parbati Chaudhury is a London-born and based performer-teacher-maker specialising in kathak, whose training continues with Urja Desai Thakore. She regularly features in Pagrav Dance Company, Akademi and Kadam productions, and performed in Amina Khayyam Dance Company’s SLUT at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2017. In 2015, Parbati was the winner of two national youth dance performance awards: Akademi’s Kathak Solo Category of Yuva; and Milapfest’s Yuva Nritya Ratna Award. As a teacher, Parbati leads kathak classes across the city independently, for Pagrav, Siobhan Davies Dance, and Srishti.
Ria Utteridge has taught dance and performance for the past 10 years for a range of groups, primary, secondary and sixth form, adult groups, community groups, professional dancers and non-professional performance groups, for young people in secure units and for students with severe disabilities, using a range of styles - Contemporary, Street, African, Haka, Physical Theatre and Ballet. Choreographing and devising work with students and enabling students to create and explore their own choreographic skills often working towards a performance goal. As a dancer Ria graduated from London Studio Centre with a BA (hons) in Dance Theatre specialising in Contemporary dance, winning an award for best performer on the Intoto tour. Since 2007 Ria has toured Europe and the UK performing a diverse range of work.
Marina Guarneri was born in Rome, Marina trained at Scuola di Danza Tersicore in Ballet, Contemporary and Jazz Dance. As a dancer Marina performed internationally before relocating to London in 2010. Marina has choreographed for the opening ceremony of the Aquatics Centre during the 2012 London Olympics, Got to Dance and several award winning productions. Marina’s aim is to create a supportive environment that improve her student’s movement quality and body awareness, while working on technique and musicality.
Lauren Philycia is a PGCE dance graduate from University of Brighton. She is a teacher for The Movement Factory and DanceWest. Lauren was the Head of Dance for Frances Bardsley Academy for Girls. Lauren has won The ‘In Motion Award’ for excellence in Choreography and Performance from The University of Northampton and has performed for Dance4 GTP Dance Company under choreographer Robert Clark.
Holly Wilmot is a dancer and teacher specialising in contemporary dance. After graduating in 2012 with a BA (Hons) from York St John University, she continued her training as a member of Springs Dance Company’s apprentice programme, Elevate. Since then, she has worked as a freelance dancer performing at The Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Fresh: North East, ICON and Resolution. She also works as a performing arts practitioner for Artis Foundation and teaches dance is schools for Springs Dance Company.
Amy Robinson trained at Roehampton University gaining a BA Hons in Dance Studies before going on to complete an internship at TrinityLaban conservatoire. She now works as a Contemporary Dance Artist choreographing, and teaching technique and creative dance on behalf of TrinityLaban Conservetoire, Greenwich Dance, Royal Academy of Dance, East London Dance, and Chisenhale Dance Space. She has previously choreographed youth dance works for Bonnie Bird Theatre (TrinityLaban), The Painted Hall (Greenwich), Eltham Palace and The National Maritime Museum with Greenwich Dance and contributed to Big Dance (Trafalgar Square).
Lily Detmerr trained at The London Contemporary Dance School and has over 15 years experience in teaching and dance education. She is currently a Pilates teacher with Body Control Pilates and various studios across London. As well as working with dancers, Lily specialises in pre and postnatal care and fitness.
Annie-Lunnette Deakin-Foster is a passionate contemporary dance theatre choreographer, maker and movement director and is a co-founding member of award winning company, C-12 Dance Theatre. Annie-Lunnette is currently working with Clean Break on Artichokes’ Processions 2018 project, as well as working on play The Court Must Have a Queen by Ade Solanke to be presented in The Great Hall at Hampton Court Palace throughout the summer season.
Angeline Morgan-Welsh is a community dance artist with a wide range of experience including parent and toddlers, early years, school children, adults and over 60s. She has worked with dance inclusive projects and currently works for Trinity Laban’s Dance Ability team which provides creative dance classes to children with complex needs or disabilities. She has a post graduate diploma in Community Dance from Trinity Laban, and was recently accepted onto OVUTURE a national training programme under Matthew Bourne's New Adventures dance company.
Sam Quy is an award-winning dance artist, tutor and choreographer. A child scholar of RAD and London Contemporary, Sam began dancing professionally aged eleven in London’s West End. She graduated with MA Dance (Distinction); PGCE and Arte Flamenco Specialisation (distinction) . Sam is the flamenco dancer on Strictly Come Dancing and has performed over the past decade in productions at London’s Royal Opera House, including DVD and 3d films of Carmen. She is author of Reading Dance in the Musical, was recently awarded HAFLS Tutor of Excellence.
Anna Watkins graduated from the Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance in 2005. Anna has been a dancer for Tavaziva Dance for 10 years - achieving the first longest standing dancer. Previously working with Motionhouse, Shobana Jeyasingh Dance Company, Neville Campbell, Pair Dance, MaxwellDanceProject and European Ballet. Anna was a dancer for ‘Dance in Focus’- collaboration between English National Ballet and dance photographer Chris Nash. As a teacher and choreographer has delivered various workshops from beginners to professionals and choreographed various curtain raisers across the UK. She taught continuously at Tring Park Easter Courses from 2011 - 2013. Anna has choreographed for CAT (Centre for Advanced Training) at Dance City, Newcastle since 2012 as well as technique classes for CAT at Dance4, Nottingham , Shuffle Youth Company, The Place, Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance, DanceEast, Ipswich CAT (Centre for Advanced Training), Suffolk Youth Company, Tring Park Associates, BalletBoyz Dancer's Course and various professional classes including Rambert Dance Company & Tavaziva Dance. Anna leads DanceWest’s Contemporary Dance classes for young people 11-16 years.
Brian Gillespie is a choreographer, dance and theatre artist who has created commissioned works and performances for: The O2 Arena, Pavilion Dance South West, Dance Film Festival UK, FLAUNT (USA), East London Dance, Emerge, Collabo14 (Avant Garde Dance - London and Bournemouth), Barrowland Ballet, Cloud Dance Festival, ICON, Cloud Dance Sundays, Big Dance UK, Dance Woking and more. Performance credits include: Sadler's Wells, London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, Summer Rites Pride in the Park, Barrowland Ballet, Avant Garde Dance, SUNS, ALIAS LDN, Geste Records, Laugh Dance, Columbia College Chicago, among others. Teaching credits include: Royal Academy of Dance, Pineapple Dance Studio, Studio 68 London, Visceral Dance Chicago, East London Dance. Brian leads DanceWest Youth Company and Inclusive Dance programme.
Kate Mummery trained at Northern School of Contemporary Dance and at The Place. Since graduating Kate has worked as a dancer, choreographer and teacher, performing with companies such as State of emergency, Tavaziva Dance, Avant Garde and Mimbre. Kate is also a qualified reps level 2 and 3 personal trainer and is certified by premier international training. Kate’s teaching and choreographic experience includes work for Rambert Dance Company, Random Dance, East London Dance, London Studio Centre, The Place, Dance City, Sadlers Wells and University of Cumbria.
Aaron Vickers has created, toured and worked with Jean Abreu Dance (as a dancer and rehearsal assistant), Ashley Warren, ZoieLogic Dance Theatre, Anthony Lo-Giudice, Vivien Wood, Marc Brew Company, Renaud Wiser Dance Company (RWDC), Alexander Whitley Dance Company, Phoenix Dance Theatre (where he worked with Christopher Bruce and Sharon Watson), Lynne Page, Peter Darling, Cathy Marston and James Cousins Company. Aaron has guest taught in various institutions including London Contemporary Dance School (LCDS), English National Ballet School, London Studio Centre, Urdang, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Royal Academy of Dance (RAD), Royal Holloway University and has taught both class and rep to companies including Scottish Ballet, Regionteater Väst (Sweden), Marc Brew Company, RWDC, Alexander Whitley Dance Company, PRODA (Norway) and James Cousins Company.
Natalie Dodd graduated Rambert School in 2013 with a First Class BA Honours Degree. Through the Northern School of Contemporary Dance, she completed a Postgraduate Diploma in 2016 and went on to gain a Masters Degree with Distinction, focused on Dance for Parkinson’s. Natalie has had the pleasure of teaching for establishments including Rambert School, Rambert (Company), Mark Bruce Company, Canada Water Studios, Musical Moving (Dance for Parkinson’s), London Studio Centre, Exeter College, The Place, Ballet Boost, Northern School of Contemporary Dance and an extensive number of children’s dance schools and adult classes around Surrey.