GEMMA STEINGOLD

My love for dance started at the age of 3,when I was taken along with a neighbours child to my local dance school in East London. It wasn't for her, but me, a duck to water! It was The Jaqueline Bushell School of Dance, and it was here I took classes in ISTD Ballet, Modern and Tap dance. It was quite a traditional school, and exams were a main focus, but I did compete in a large amount of competitions, in groups and solo, as well as festivals and shows at local theatres. As time went on, I found a keen interest in other areas of dance and performing arts including musical theatre, so it was decided I needed to move on to an extremely popular stage school in the area at the time which was The Peggy O'Farrell Stage School. I started here at age 9.This school was very well known for theatre, TV and film work, and many students appeared in West End performances. When I was 11,I had the wonderful experience of doing my first pantomime at The Hackney Empire, with celebrities, Pauline Quirke, Linda Robson, Peter Duncan and Brian Hubbard. The next Christmas, it was panto at The Shaw Theatre, in London s Euston, which was Cinderella. The cast included Dorothy Atkinson, who was starring in London 's Burning, and "The Flying Eye", radio dj, Russ Kane. O'Farrell was a school based on performance, so no exam work was really involved, so at the age of 13,realising this really was my chosen calling/career, I auditioned for part time schooling at The Italia Conti Academy for Performing Arts, at the Barbican, Central London. After being accepted, I spent all my weekends there in Central London studying, Jazz, Modern, Drama, Singing, Song and Production and Lyrical dance. I also joined their theatrical agency and gained some small theatre and TV roles. At the age of 16, having left Contis, as they only took part time up to that age, I was auditioning to go into private dance colleges. I gained good grades academically, which made things easier, so I auditioned for many including Doreen Bird and Tring Academy. However, it was London Studio Centre I really wanted and I was lucky enough to get in and do my performing arts/ musical theatre diploma. From here I went on to City and Islington College to further my qualification in Choeroegrapy and Singing Technique. Through this college, I was also able to expand my contemporary field, and even performed at the famous Sadlers Wells Theatre. Whilst auditioning for theatre and film parts, I became a member of Pineapple Dance Studios, Covent Garden and after establishing good rapport with staff there, was offered a job as a receptionist/shop staff and many a time was a cover teacher for dance classes and assisted at the stage school on a Sunday. And yes, I was there working with Louis Spencer, who is exactly as you see on the TV!! Extra work for TV and Film followed, with small parts on Family Affairs, The Bill, Dream Team and Casualty. As time went on I found that teaching was a good vocation for me, and started to tutor at stage schools around my area in Essex. My main fields being, musical theatre, drama, commercial and Street. As a side line, I also joined Popstarz Parties as a children's entertainer and corporate events host, which was hard work but great experience and amazing fun! After having my son in 2011, I decided to take a back seat on the entertaining, and focus on my teaching, and after joining Danceworld in 2013/14, felt like I'd found a second family! I am thrilled to be part of such a wonderful team and look forward to many more years to come!