Dance College Whitstable continues the ethos of the Deborah Capon College, providing a much needed opportunity for vocational courses in both theatre and teacher training, with a focus on the individual student.
Students come from not only the local community and around Kent but also all parts of the UK and abroad to study for their qualifying examinations.
Students from the College have gained much success in both the theatrical field and the teaching profession, either by dancing professionally or by setting up their own schools in the UK and abroad.
Miss Elizabeth A Harrison
FISTD & Examiner
FISTD Faculty Vice Chair
Kathy Wiggans FISTD
Principal of Dance College Whitstable
Kathy attended dance lessons from the age of three at Miss Walker’s Dance School in Whitstable.
From the age of seven she was a pupil at the Deborah Capon Dance School, studying ISTD Modern, Tap, National and Ballet. During this time she also competed in festivals culminating in wins at the All England Dance Festival in National Solo, National duet and Modern Duet.
Her vocational training continued with Deborah as the school expanded to offer Associate qualifications: which Kathy gained, along with Advanced dancing exams, in Modern, Tap and National. She was delighted, on completion of her training, to be asked to join Deborah to work full time in the College. She was responsible for Modern, Tap and National, through to Associate level, including vocational exams up to Advanced 2 level.
From 1996 to 2013 Kathy has trained full-time students in Modern Theatre and Tap to Advanced 2 level, as well as DDI and DDE in both genres. She also coaches teachers, specialising in Tap, to Fellowship level.
Following the junior school, Dance Whitstable, also relocating, Kathy continues to teach there three evenings a week and the students regularly gain teaching experience at it’s new venue. She lives nearby with her husband and 2 daughters.
Recently, Kathy was invited to join the board of trustees for The Gordon Edwards Charitable Trust. The Trust aims to assist talented dance students, whose parents have to make financial sacrifices to maintain their son/daughter at college. It’s patron is Gillian Lynne CBE.
Since January 2014, Kathy has been the Principal of Dance College Whitstable. The ethos of the Deborah Capon College has continued, with the emphasis on excellent training for the individual.
Miss Elizabeth A Harrison – FISTD & Examiner
Having established herself as a respected examiner, Miss Harrison combined this with performing and choreography throughout her early career. She was trained for many major examinations by such names as Joyce Percy, Janet Cram, June Rycroft, Moyra Gay and Helen Wingrave.
From 1980 through to the present day she has taught ISTD Modern, Tap, National and Ballet at major colleges, such as Arts Educational, London College and The Centre. She also was Principal of her own successful Harrison College for many years.
After gaining an MA in Dance Studies from Laban, she joined the Deborah Capon College, as Head of Ballet. She remained there till it’s closure in 2013.
Miss Harrison continues to examine and coach for the ISTD worldwide. However, in 2017 Miss Harrison retired from teaching at the college on a weekly basis. Dance College Whitstable are delighted she will remain as a mentor for teachers and students, and is still available for coaching Licentiate and Fellowship candidates.
Tereza Theodoulou – FISTD Faculty Chair
Tereza is a guest teacher at the college. Tereza began her training with Joy Spriggs in North London, ultimately achieving Fellowship status with Distinction in Modern Theatre and Tap.
In America, she studied at the Alvin Ailey School and further explored the rich diversity of Jazz and Tap at various studios in New York. Revisiting in 2011 to compare teaching methods with those in the UK.
As Co-Founder and Choreographer of the Musical Theatre Company, ‘Overtures’, Tereza created and performed in numerous productions. She has also worked with the British Theatre for the Deaf, culminating in a workshop presentation of “My Fair Lady” at the Edinburgh festival.
Teaching experiences include: Laine Theatre Arts, London College Bedford and The Deborah Capon College for over twenty years specializing in Jazz and ISTD Teaching Qualifications for Modern Theatre at DDI and DDE levels.
She is currently teaching Jazz technique at Bird College delivering the Trinity College Diploma in performing arts and Musical Theatre and the BA Honours Degree in Performing Arts and Musical Theatre.
Tereza is a freelance tutor for status exams specialising in Licentiate and Fellowship coaching. Tereza is a member of the creative teams that have developed the Jazz Awards, Grades 4, 5 and 6 Modern, Bronze, Silver and Gold Tap Awards. She has been intrinsically involved in the creation of the revised Advanced 2 Modern Syllabus and most recently has completed the revision of the Advanced 1 Modern Syllabus.
Tereza is Chair of the Modern Theatre Faculty and has been a member of the International Development Committee and lives with her husband and two daughters in Kent.
Stephen Joseph- AISTD
After completing 3 years training at Laine Theatre Arts, Stephen embarked on a varied professional career covering aspects of dance employment including: cabaret, hair shows, television, theatre, trade shows, sports fashion shows and videos. Within this period he worked with major artists and choreographers worldwide.
As a freelance teacher and choreographer, he has transferred his experience and knowledge from working professionally, into teaching at colleges enabling him to tutor students to a high performance standard. He has taught free Jazz classes and been part of the ”Showtime” team at Deborah Capon College for nearly 20 years. He will continue to deliver these classes at DC Whitstable.
Gwen Stevenson – FISTD
Originally from Aberdeenshire in Scotland Gwen moved to East Grinstead in 1984 when she was thirteen years old to train professionally at the Bush Davies School of Theatre Arts.
She continued her training as a student at the West Street School of Classical Ballet in Covent Garden. During her time at West Street Gwen trained in various classical styles of ballet including Vagonova, Cecchetti and RAD. She went on to complete her Teaching Diploma in Classical Ballet at the Royal Academy of Dance before returning to Scotland in 1992.
In the early part of Gwen’s career she ran her own dance school, producing and choreographing school productions, hair shows, local charity shows and pantomimes. She then went on to work as a freelance teacher after the birth of her daughter in 1998.
In 2004 Gwen moved to Kent where she formed close ties with The Deborah Capon College. Her work at the college involved training full time students and teaching in the junior school. In 2007 Gwen was awarded Fellowship status in Imperial Modern Theatre and in the spring of 2008 was delighted to be involved in the launch of the new Advanced 2 Modern Theatre Syllabus at the Scottish Congress in Glasgow training the students from Aberdeen.
Gwen has taught at Evolution Dance School in Aberdeenshire for the last nine years specialising in the professional and vocational training of Ballet and Modern Theatre students up to Advanced 2 level. Gwen is an accredited tutor with Deeside Dance Centre in Banchory for all units of the DDI and DDE qualifications and she is also a mentor for the RAD CBTS.
The College is situated in pleasant residential area of the small, coastal heritage town of Whitstable. The town is famous world-wide for its Oyster Farms, fishing and water sports.
Whitstable is easily accessible by both rail and road. The College itself is a 10 minute walk from Whitstable rail station, served by frequent trains to and from Victoria and the High Speed link to St Pancras. Just six miles to the south lies the historical, cultural and commercial city of Canterbury.