© Tim Garrod

The Newman Dance Academy:

Sussex Dance Network are delighted to be partnering with Cardinal Newman Catholic School and Sixth Form College on developing The Newman Dance Academy. The Academy is an intensive weekly programme that offers young people professional dance technique and training alongside their academic A-Level and BTEC studies. Sussex Dance Network is programming and connecting local artists with the programme, providing teaching and choreographic opportunities.

If you would like to partner with us on an education programme we would love to hear from you. Please contact katie@sussexdancenetwork.co.uk 



Mathilde Navarro has a solid background in contemporary dance, as a student and as a participant in several collective projects, but also as a teacher and dance event’s organiser. As a graduate of Northern School of Contemporary Dance in Leeds, she has worked with over twenty choreographers, stage directors, artists, and collectives such as Alleyne Dance, Jane McKernan, and Pascal Merighi. She is a truly versatile artist that is highly driven in her domain.

She is currently undertaking a master’s degree in International Event Management as well as being a member of Doppelgänger collective in Geneva, which includes performing multidisciplinary cultural projects. Her career has taken her from Switzerland to the United Kingdom, via Sweden and Brussels, amongst others. Mathilde’s movement language focuses on floor work, release technique and improvisation through movement tasks to find new pathways to explore the body within the space. Class will be built around finding efficient ways in and out of the floor, as well as improving stability on your legs whilst travelling and changing levels.


GABBY SANDERS: Contemporary

Gabby is a Brighton-based contemporary dancer and teacher. She trained at Northern School of Contemporary Dance (2019) before then completing her Master’s Degree at London Contemporary Dance School via EDGE Postgraduate Company (2021). Gabby has been working closely with Ceyda Tanc Dance for many years, and became a professional company dancer in 2020. She also has danced professionally for companies including TRIBE// and Morvell Dance. Alongside her performance work, Gabby teaches dance locally and nationally, and is also Programme Manager for Let’s Dance (Registered Charity). Gabby’s workshop will be predominately Release-based, with particular emphasis on floor work and travelling. Gabby’s practice is heavily inspired by music, and she will play with rhythm and dynamics throughout, leading participants through an energetic and athletic class.



HAYLEY BLUNDY: Street dance

Hayley has been teaching street dance to adults and children, in and around Brighton and Hove for the past 14 years. Her passion lies in helping students connect with and get excited by the music and movements combined. “I live for those lightbulb moments where it suddenly clicks into place, for the energy in the room and for the smiles on my students faces at the end of a class.” Hayley’s choreography is bold, strong, sharp and uplifting with a teaching style that is friendly, relaxed and sometimes silly! In her class, Hayley will teach a routine that has a mix of both intricate and big moves, whilst encouraging self expression and team work.

Headshot of Ellie Bishop Williams.

ELLIE BISHOP WILLIAMS: Street, contemporary and commerical technique workshops x 2

Ellie has always been an active member of the local dance community and over the past 5 years has successfully realised her vision of creating a safe space for young female dancers to develop and express themselves through dance theatre. Ellie’s unique ability to empower teenage girls is key to the success of Project Female. Her teaching style is positive and encouraging whilst ensuring the dancers achieve their full potential.

What is unique about Project Female is the way that Ellie uses contemporary/hip-hop dance fusion to portray socially relevant subject matter using an iconic artistic style which results in pieces of dance theatre which authentically reflect young women.

MANA: Spiritual, healing life-force and possession of power x2 workshops

Headshot of MANA's Colette Kite.Headshot of MANA's Georgia Marshall.

MANA Dance Company was founded in July 2019 by female performers and choreographers Colette Kite and Georgia Marshall. The company aims to make contemporary dance more accessible so that dance can be a shared experience with communities coming together to express and reflect upon current issues. As young women who have already established themselves as strong, determined, and resilient; they create current work that illuminates the issues facing women, self-expression, identity, and the spirit of community. MANA provides an opportunity to inspire strength, resilience, creativity, and movement for change. The emerging duo explores this by incorporating audience participation, live music with rhythmic patterns and ritualistic/everyday movements.

Headshot of Yanaëlle Thiran.


Yanaëlle Thiran is Belgian dance artist currently based in Eastbourne. Since graduating from London Contemporary Dance School in 2015, she trained further at Art Factory International (Italy), graduated as a dance teacher from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, and completed an MA in choreography at the University of Chichester. Yanaëlle teaches contemporary dance and choreography workshops for organisations such as The Place, Sadler’s Wells and DanceWest. A co-founder of Company Concentric, she performs at British and international dance festivals. She also hosts and coordinates the company’s online classes and events.

THEO CANHAM-SPENCE: Movement PsychotherapyHeadshot of Theo Canham-Spence.

Theo Canham-Spence trained at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, graduating in Ballet and Contemporary Dance and is currently exploring the fields of Somatics and Movement Psychotherapy. Theo’s research interest currently focuses on the relationship between creative reflection and movement exploration. He has been dancing alongside Robyn as her solo support dancer since October 2018 performing on stages such as Alexandra Palace, Madison Square Garden and Roskilde Festival.


Photogrpah of Ester Natzijl on pointe.

ESTER NATZIJL: Multi-disciplinary performances

Ester Natzijl is a dancer, performer, puppeteer, theatre-maker and teacher. Following her training in Classical Ballet and Contemporary Dance at the Royal Conservatoire of Music and Dance in The Hague, she worked with several contemporary companies, including the Netherlands Dance Theatre and Introdance, touring all over the world. She received additional training in theatre and mime, gained her MA in Theatre Science from the University of Amsterdam and simultaneously created different multi-disciplinary acts and dance theatre performances.

Headshot of Betty Maguire.


BETTY MAGUIRE: Contemporary

Betty Maguire is an Independent Dance Artist based in Brighton. Betty trained at Northern School Of Contemporary Dance, graduating with first-class honors in July 2020. Since leaving training she has worked as a choreographer for GradLab with The Point. Betty is interested in performing and creating politically engaged dance theatre that empowers individuals and challenges social norms.


Headshot of Madison Burgess.


Originally from Canada, Madison Burgess is a dance artist, choreographer and teacher currently based in the South of England. Since graduating from York University’s BFA Dance program in 2016, and completing her MA in Performance at the University of Chichester in 2021, Madison has had the privilege of teaching many dancers across the globe, as well as dancing professionally and credited as “some of the inspiring talent flourishing in the Canadian dance community” – David Silverberg, Now Magazine. In Toronto, Madison has danced in original works and collaborated with choreographers including Susan Lee, Suzanne Liska, Jasmyn Fyffe, Carol Anderson, Victoria Gubiani, Krista Newey, Emily Rapley, Robyn Bedford, Kiera Shaw and Yanaëlle Thiran. During her time as a company member of Mapdance she performed in works choreographed by Gary Clarke, Ceyda Tanc, Jose Agudo and Noa Shadur. Currently, Madison is dancing with Lîla Dance Company understudying for their upcoming tour of The Hotel Experience, as well as working on a new project choreographed by Abigail Mortimer. Madison is also in the process of completing her Pilates Certification.


JOEL O’DONOGHUE : Flying LowHeadshot of Joel O'Donoghue.

Joel has worked as a performer for a range of internationally recognised companies and artist such as Pina Bausch’s Tanztheater Wuppertal, Luca Silvistrini’s Protein, Hagit Yakira, Ben Wright’s BGROUP, and Phillip Glass. He has also studied under and worked for capoeira master Ponciano Almeida. These different experiences have influenced his practice as both a performer and choreographer. Joel has performed his own works at a variety of established venues including Sadler’s Wells (Lilian Baylis Studio), The Place, and Tripspace. He was also commissioned to create a dance film for Ballet Boyz in 2020, which was premiered earlier this year. Joel’s movement practice stems from release technique and improvisation fused with aspects of capoeira, flying low/passing through, and physical theatre.

Headshot of Corrie McKenzie.CORRIE MCKENZIE: Contemporary and Improvisation

Originally from Edinburgh, Corrie graduated from The Scottish School of Contemporary Dance in 2018. During her training, she toured work internationally and nationally with the National Youth Dance Company of Scotland. In 2018/19 she started her Post Graduate training with MapDance, working with the likes of Jose Agudo, Liz Aggis, Anthony Missen and Didy Veldman. In 2019 Corrie was a company dancer for Harry Parr, performing in Resolutions Festival 2020. Corrie joined Flexer and Sandiland as an apprentice artist in 2019 and has worked on two of their recent R&D projects, including ‘Acting Our Age’ and ‘Imagining Otherwise’. Corrie is currently a company dancer for Sababa Co. and is also in R&D with Nikki Watson in collaboration with Ashley Peevor for ‘The Lost Opera’. Other artists Corrie has worked with are Theo Clinkard, Tamsyn Russell and Thomas Small.

 Creating a new work on The Newman Dance Academy

Elisha Hamilton HeadshotElisha Hamilton is a contemporary dance artist based in the South of England. After graduating from the University of Chichester with a First Class (Hons) degree in Dance, Elisha set up her company Elisha Hamilton Dance (EHD) and was selected as a choreographer for GradLab, an Arts Council funded project. Elisha’s work RETALE premiered at The Place as part of Resolutions Festival and was performed at several choreographic platforms across the UK.

Elisha toured internationally as a member of postgraduate company, MapDance, performing works by Shobana Jeyasingh, Lea Anderson, Hagit Yakira and Cai Thomos. Elisha’s MA audience participatory autobiographic work, Too Close to The Bone… premiered at The Blue Elephant Theatre and EHD’S latest work, Through Somewhere but Here… was used to support local GCSE students in the creation of their own duet/group work towards their assessments.

A headshot photograph of Oliver Robertson staring into the camera. He has brown hair tied back and is wearing a blue shirt. OLIVER ROBERTSON: Contemporary Floorwork

Oliver is a professional dancer at the James Wilton Dance Company. The workshop he’s teaching will reflect a typical rehearsal day for the company, including a contemporary floorwork class to warm up, followed by phrases, working on transitions into and out of the floor, and finishing with an excerpt of repertoire from JWD’s most recent stage piece “The Storm”.


AMY MORVELL: Creating a new work on The Newman Dance Academy

Amy Morvell dance image credit Dougie Evans

Amy Morvell is a contemporary dance artist based in the South of England and was an Associate Artist of The Point 19/20. In 2017 Amy set up her company Morvell Dance produced by Lîla Dance. As part of the company’s apprentice scheme, Lîla Dance supported Amy to successfully receive Arts Council Funding and create her production Turtle Dove. The work has since been toured to theatre venues across the south of England and internationally to Abundance International Dance Festival -Sweden.

Amy’s work is often inspired by the stories of others and how these stories shape their experiences of living, loving and aging. In 2019 as part of the Sussex Dance Trail (Sussex Dance Network) Amy created her work Nice to Meet You. The work went on to be performed at Eastleigh Unwrapped Festival (The Point). Alongside dancing in her own work, Amy also dances professionally for companies; Lîla Dance in The Hotel Experience and rehearsal direct their outdoor work My BitElla&co (Ella Fleetwood) in #NoFilter, Wessex Company in PRANA (Laila Delalio & Hannah Martin-Reilly) & Katie Dale Everett Dance’s Empa. 


Katie and Rebecca Dale-Everett are the producers and creatives behind Kabecca Films, a platform from which they generate thought-provoking short films and outreach projects that explore film and dance as both a choreographic medium and tool to creatively share other people’s experiences.

Their first short Digital Tattoo: Artefact 1 was acquired for online distribution by Channel 4’s Random Acts and their second film Twenty, Forty, Sixty has been screened internationally to great acclaim. They have recently completed their latest film Gillian, funded by Arts Council England, that will form part of a mini short film series that aims to increase the representation of sixty-plus women onscreen and celebrate and explore their relationship to dance and the impact it has had on mental and physical wellbeing.


Gabrielle is an independent artist based between Wiltshire and Brighton. She graduated from the Institute of the Arts Barcelona in 2018, and was part of the postgraduate company Mapdance based at the University of Chichester in 2019/2020. She is currently working with Flexer & Sandiland on Imagining Otherwise and collaborating with upcoming choreographer Orla Connoly.

Gabrielle’s practice has influence from her travels and connection with the east. She is interested in finding presence and awareness through movement and is researching how we can stay in this state of flow throughout our daily lives.


Lottie is a Freelance Dance Artist & Educator based in East Sussex. She began her training on The Place’s CAT programme, before continuing her studies at London Contemporary Dance School where she performed in works choreographed by; Renaud Wiser, Lauren Potter and Hannes Langolf.

Upon graduating Lottie has become a Newly Qualified Teacher and has taught dance within schools across East Sussex; and has recently established herself as a Freelance Teacher. Her new lottie.dance classes seek to offer accessible and fun contemporary movement classes to all young movers within East Sussex.


Boneco started Capoeira in 1983, in the favelas of Fortaleza, which at that time there was a young people project which delivered all sort of activity for children and young people in his area.

Boneco became a Capoeira practitioner in Fortaleza Brazil, then his all brothers and sister also started doing it as well. For many years the Sousa Family has been dedicated to the art form of Capoeira. Today as immigrants in the Uk, Boneco and his family promotes Capoeira in the Uk delivering activities for communities organisation, young people, and special needs groups. In Brighton, Boneco works as an associate lecturer at University of Chichester in stage/film combat and also Boneco’s work in Capoeira is totally dedicated to help people’s life style by applying different ways of exercises and trying something new in to their life.


Rosa is a Brighton based contemporary dancer, performer and producer whose practice is influenced by improvisation, anatomy and a playful approach to enjoying dance and movement.

The session will focus on our natural ability to move; starting slowly with breath. From this foundation, we will gather energy and momentum to dive into expansive joyful movement phrases.


Leanne Vernon teaches Commercial dance; which refers to dancing by pop artists and in music videos.

Commercial dance is a super fun style of dance to learn, very upbeat and entertaining. Leanne’s classes are a great way of keeping fit and boosting self confidence whilst having fun and being sassy!


Cristina will lead an energising and playful class, with a combination of improvisation, sequences and creative tasks. In a safe and non judgemental space, individuals will have the chance to play with and explore the creative and physical possibilities in the body.

Cristina has a long history in dance and movement practices. After graduating in 2014 from Northern School, she co-created dance theatre company The Hiccup Project, creating work with accessible and universal themes, touring nationally and teaching in a wide variety of environments, with an emphasis on building confidence and encouraging pleasure in movement. Cristina now works freelance as a teacher, choreographer, facilitator and dramaturge with a passion for creating supportive spaces for artists to flourish.