Teachers

Chris Baldock is an experienced international choreographer and director adept at working across theatre, television, film and corporate shows.  His achievements as a choreographer build on his earlier success as one of the most in-demand dancers of his generation since his West End stage debut at the age of 11 in “Gypsy” starring Angela Lansbury. He performed worldwide on stage and television, working alongside stars such as Gene Kelly, Tom Jones, Sarah Brightman, Shirley Bassey, Elaine Paige and Barry Manilow to name a few. Chris choreographed the Ant & Dec Takeaway on Tour working alongside the award winning double act and choreographed for Pussycat Doll – Ashley Roberts. He also directed X Factor finalists Stereo Kicks for their premiere showcase in London.Within video Chris was hired by Sarah Brightman to choreograph and stage ten videos in ten days for her Harem DVD collection, filmed in Morocco. He worked with comedian John Bishop filming a Saturday Night Fever video and routine for his surprise Saturday Night Fever finale on the Sunshine Arena Tour. Chris was resident director on the hit musical Starlight Express and staged the show’s contribution for Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber’s 50th birthday at the Royal Albert Hall. He also choreographed a brand new production of Saturday Night Fever in The Netherlands and in Milan, Italy. Chris has a successful reputation within street dance. He co-directed the UK company of Bounce and he is currently the Artistic Director of the street dance show Blaze, working with the best dancers, breakers and choreographers from around the world. The show opened in London’s West End in 2010 before a successful and on-going world tour that has so far taken the show to the UK, Holland, Germany, Italy, France, Russia, Asia, Bahrain Dubai and Australia. Chris most recently choreographed ITV’s ‘Tonight at the Palladium’ working alongside Bradley Walsh and Barry Manilow.  

 

Sue Baldock first trained at the Angela Allport School in Essex, then gained a place at Laine theatre arts. On completing her training Sue’s career began at the famous Moulin Rouge in Paris. After a six-month contract, she went on to work for Dougie Squires in the 2nd Generation in Cannes, Miami and TV shows in Europe. After returning to England, she pursued a career in modelling for various sportswear companies including Head, Adidas, Nike, Triumph and Asics. Variably this employment took her to countries such as Germany, Italy, France, Russia and USA. Her TV credits include new Faces (Central TV), Top of the Pops (BBC1) Stars in their Eyes Special (Granada), The Queen Mother’s 90th Birthday Celebration London Palladium (BBC1), The Royal Variety, Drury Lane Theatre (ITV1), Happy Birthday- Happy New Year- London Palladium (ITV1). Other credits are assistant Choreographer on Russ Abbot’s Summer Spectacular at the BIC Bournemouth and Assistant Choreographer on Cell block H the Musical starring Paul O’Grady. Italia Conti Tunbridge Wells is now a huge part of her life now and she is so proud that the school has grown into the successful and warm-hearted environment it is today.

 

Fiona Appleton A.I.S.T.D/F.D.I. Trinity National Diploma In Professional Dance & Musical Theatre started dancing at the age of three at Tiffany Stage Academy in Clacton-on-sea. Whilst there she took part in the opening ceremony of Euro ’96’ at Wembley stadium and performed in shows at Sadlers Wells Theatre, Her Majesty’s Theatre and the London Palladium. She also competed in the Marjory Davis Star Tap awards and won 1st place in 1998 in the junior section and outstanding dance in 2000 in the senior section. At 16 she was awarded a full 3 year scholarship to further her training at Bird College and whilst there she played Jessie in ‘Matchgirls’ at The Stag Theatre Sevenoaks, was a featured dancer in the I.S.T.D Gold Tap demonstration DVD, and took part in performances at the Peacock Theatre. Upon graduating in 2003 she then went on to work as a session singer for various songwriters and also sang at various corporate events. Although she loved to perform, her passion was always to choreograph and now she gets to do that as a full time dance teacher and hopes to continue to inspire future generations for years to come. 

 

Isabella Baldock D.D.I. Tap Bella made her West End debut at the age of 11 in the hit musical ‘Billy Elliot” at the Victoria Palace Theatre, London. She has attended Italia Conti Associates, Tunbridge Wells since the age of 3 and at 16 years old successfully auditioned for Performers College, training on the 3 year Musical Theatre Diploma
course. She has performed in many shows for Italia Conti at the Assembly Hall and Performers College shows. She has performed at the Move It exhibition in London for Performers College on the main stage in 2017 & 2018. Bella performed as a featured dancer in the ‘Andrew Lloyd Webber Gala’ which took place in the Lueg Arena in Switzerland.Bella is an ISTD qualified teacher in Tap and we are very proud to have her ‘on board’ teaching our pupils.

 

Lucy Baldock A.I.S.T.D.  trained at Hylton Bromley school of Dance and Drama Merseyside from the age of 3 before taking a career in dance. She has worked in musical theatre both west End and UK tours including ‘Underneath the Arches’ ‘West side story’ and the Talk of London, also appearing in various summer seasons and Pantomimes. She has worked abroad in countries including Portugal Malaysia Jersey and Greece. Her TV appearances include LWT Barrymore shows, Summertime specials in Jersey and various adverts in Greece. After retiring from performing Lucy went into teaching which has always been her passion and has now been teaching for over 19 years and hopes to carry on teaching for many years to come.

 

Zoe Eyles DDI/DDE/BA Hons in Theatre. Zoe began dancing at the age of 3 and has continued ever since. She trained at Laine Theatre Arts in Surrey where she graduated in 2012 with a National Diploma in Professional Dance. During her training she appeared in a variety of productions including Just So, East End Tales and in her final year played the role of Donna Marie in Blood Brothers. After graduating, Zoe danced in several productions and went on to choreograph various shows including Sleeping Beauty, Robin Hood and Aladdin at the Angel Theatre in Kent and most recently ‘Nunsense’ at The Oast Theatre in Tonbridge. Alongside choreography, Zoe has developed a real passion for teaching. She has obtained her ISTD teaching qualifications and has completed her BA Honours Degree in Theatre at the Guildford School of Acting. Zoe is currently working on furthering her teaching qualifications and is delighted to be part of the team here at Italia Conti Associates having progressed from student to teacher.

 

Jane-Rebecca Marshall Whilst studying for her Degree in Music at the LONDON COLLEGE OF MUSIC, Jane-Rebecca Marshall gained her LLCM(TD) & ALCM in performing & teaching, graduating in 1990 with Honours. Jane-Rebecca started her career as a Soprano Soloist & Singing Teacher, working predominantly as a concert performer at many major venues including St. Georges Hanover Square (as Soprano soloist in Messiah on Handel’s birthday in his tercentenary year), St. Pauls Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, & Westminster Central Hall London, and  other Cathedrals including Rochester, Guildford & Newcastle. Jane-Rebecca created the role of “The Empress” in Priti Pantal’s opera “GULLIVER” IN 1994, and has also appeared in the roles of Queen of the Night (Magic Flute), Mrs Ford (The Merry Wives of Windsor), Despina (Cosi Fan Tutti), Constanza (Seraglio), Rosina (Barber of Seville), Countess (The Marriage of Figaro) & many Gilbert & Sullivan Operettas, to name but a few. Artistically, Jane-Rebecca has produced & directed routines that have been featured at Variety Shows at the London Palladium, Theatre Royal Drury Lane & Her Majesty’s Theatre London, as well as other Entertainment Venues in the UK. 

 

Nicki Martin L.S.D.E.  A.L.A.M. graduated from the Italia Conti School (London) in 2001 with honours, having trained professionally in performing arts for five years. It was there that she also gained her LAMDA Diploma and Teaching qualifications in Speech and Drama. Nicki has been teaching with us at the associate school since opening in 2001, along with many drama productions, she has guided countless pupils successfully through their LAMDA exams, and theatre school auditions. Nicki specialises in improvisational theatre, and gains excellent results with her pupils in their LAMDA exams, and acting skills. Along side working at Italia Conti, she is also LAMDA Speech and Drama coordinator at Cumnor House School in Danehill, and previously at Mayfield St Leonard's. Nicki's theatre credits include 'As You Like It', tour with the Royal Shakespeare Company.  Shea Khan in 'The Jungle Book'. The 'Royal Masonic Gala', and performing in the 'Millenium Concert' at St Paul's Cathedral. Nicki has also worked on several commercials at home and abroad, of which include 'Venco', 'Lockets', 'Kellogs' and 'Walkers Crisps'.  Nicki is so proud to be a part of the Italia Conti Team, with the opportunity to nurture and encourage the next generation of theatrical talent.

 

Jessica Nelson began dancing at 2 years of age and hasn’t stopped since! A child performer from an early age, she took part in pantomimes and productions around the South East. Jessica has been involved with Italia Conti since she was 9 years old and loved performing at the Assembly Hall theatre in our Conti shows – now she is proud to be a teacher for the lower school. She trained for her National Diploma in Musical Theatre, gaining a triple distinction. Jessica’s professional debut was for The Millennium hotels Group as a lead vocalist and dancer for an in house hotel production team in the Cardiff area. She progressed to the role of dance captain and assistant choreographer for the group. Following on, she toured with a vintage singing group called ‘The Jivettes’ playing at many theatres and events around the UK with a brief visit to Mallorca! You can book Jessica as a solo singing artist for corporates, parties and events as she has become well known in the community as a fabulous soloist. Her award-winning children’s entertainments company ‘Once Upon a Wish events’ provides themed children’s parties and family events in and around Tunbridge Wells. Jessica is a proud Mum of two to Oscar and Isla. 

 

Julia Rose A.I.S.T.D. began dancing at the age of 3yrs and entered full-time vocational training as a boarder at the Bush Davies School at the age of 11yrs, studying Ballet, Tap, Modern, Jazz and National Dance. She developed a passion for teaching and is a fully qualified Ballet Teacher with the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing and also teaches other disciplines including Tap, Modern and Progressing Ballet Technique. Julia has taught students and adults of all ages, from Babies to Advanced, for a number of schools across the South East, entering students for exams and choreographing for shows. She has been teaching Classical Ballet at Italia Conti Associates since 2004.

Connie Sampson started dancing as a young girl at Junior Performers which led her to audition at Performers College at the age of 16. She is currently in her final year of the 3 year Musical Theatre Diploma course. Recently, Connie has finished studying for her Modern and Tap DDE. During her time at Brentwood School and Junior Performers, Connie has appeared in many shows, including Fame and West Side Story, plus has performed on various stages, such as Her Majesty’s Theatre and Sadler’s Wells. Whilst at Junior Performers, Connie also had the opportunity to appear in two TV commercials.

 

Emma Sharnock Smith has been performing since the age of three and has appeared in many musicals and plays both amateur and professional. Theatre credits include Jenny Diver in The Threepenny Opera at the Lyric Apollo Hammersmith and the city centre theatre on Broadway and ‘Whistle Down The Wind’ at the riverside studios. TV credits include Capital City and The Bill. Emma has been teaching for Italia Conti at various times for over seven years and teaches LAMDA at Kent College Senior school, having been Head of Speech and Drama and the Prep School for many years. Emma has helped countless pupils with their Theatre School auditions and her pupils gain excellent results in their LAMDA exams, she is delighted to be back with the Italia Conti Team.

Liam Swattridge L.I.S.T.D. trained at Performers College in Essex graduating in July 2014 with a Diploma in dance theatre. He holds his Licentiate qualification in Tap, DDE in Modern and DDI in Ballet. Liam was part of the England team that took part in the IDO World Tap Championships in 2011 and 2012. He came 2nd place both years, in both the ‘Small Group’ and ‘Formation’ sections. He has also appeared on Sky 1’s ‘Got To Dance’ series 2. Liam has performed at Wembley in the FA Cup Final 2013 and appeared in the film ‘Cuban Fury’, released in 2014. He was a feature dancer in feature film ‘Make Way’ in 2018 and took part in the 10 year gala show of Tap attack. Other performance credits also include ‘Move It’ and the BBC Dance Proms.