Astrid Gollcher FISTD, ARAD, RAD T.Dip
BA(Hons) Dance Education, B.Communications(Hons)
Christiane Borg Manché RAD RTS
B.Com(Hons), Cert. HE Dance Education, Balanced Body® Mat Instructor
Astrid started dancing at the Lillian Attard Ballet School, furthering her dance studies in classical ballet, modern and Spanish attending various courses in Malta, UK, Scotland and Italy throughout the years gaining internationally recognized qualifications. During her dance training Astrid was taught by various local dance teachers, and top foreign examiners and lecturers. She successfully attained her Advanced 2 certificates in Classical Ballet, with a Merit, and Modern Dance, with a Distinction. Astrid’s teaching qualifications include a teaching Diploma in Classical Ballet (RAD) and Fellowship, which is the highest teaching qualification of the ISTD, in Modern Theatre.
She has been teaching dance for the past eighteen years, in which besides furthering her dance teaching qualifications, she has also produced and choreographed frequent productions, as well as entering numerous students for dancing and teaching examinations. Astrid has also acted as Mentor for the RAD Teaching qualifications, and is also an ISTD Approved tutor for the new Modern Teaching Qualifications entering students for their FDI and CDE in Modern Theatre.
Astrid gained two dance qualifications in 2009‐ a BA (Hons) in Dance Education & Fellowship in Modern Dance. Astrid is the first Maltese dance teacher to have completed these qualifications. Astrid’s dissertation focused on the local dance teaching scenario in Malta. Her tutor for the dissertation was Dr Scilla Dyke MBE. The study focused on three key issues namely personalised learning agenda, the requirement for collaboration between educators, and dance providers through the creation of a professional learning community, and the potential role of ICT in relation to dance in Malta. The study also explores the rationale and pedagogy for the creation of a Foundation Course in dance in Malta, placing it in a wider UK provider context.
Astrid aims to educate dancers through artistic, aesthetic and cultural education providing a holistic professional dance education and developing versatile, individual dancers.
Christiane started her dance training at the age of 4 at the Lillian Attard Ballet School, and then moved on to further her dance training in Classical Ballet, Modern and Spanish. Upon completion of her dance training Christiane enrolled on the certificate level of the BA (Hons) Dance Education, and successfully gained her Teaching Certificate in Dance Education making her eligible to further her studies towards a BA (Hons). Christiane has been teaching dance for the past eleven years in various dance schools including Dance Academy, Artemocion and The Art Factory in Gozo, and working as a freelance dance teacher with other local dance schools.
Christiane is a registered teacher with the Royal Academy of Dance and is an active member of the Cameo Folk Group, representing Malta at various conferences and incentives both locally and overseas namely UK, Ireland, Italy and Portugal. Christiane travels to the UK frequently attending various courses led by top RAD examiners and lecturers, focusing on the RAD classical ballet syllabus, at graded and vocational levels. She has just returned from the UK where she attended the first course at the RAD Headquarters for the New Advanced Syllabi
She has also recently completed her Pilates Instructor Course with Balanced Body in the UK. As a dance teacher, an in-depth knowledge of Pilates helps in providing the students with a range of tools to become more aware of their alignment and protect them against injury.
Christiane is an organizer of Living Dance. Living Dance was set up to give dance students in Malta the opportunity to experience vocational dance training through a creative, fun environment, with highly qualified and experienced foreign and local artists. It provides dance students, dance teachers and faculty the opportunity to interact with other dance artists and create a network of collaborative artists.
LIVING DANCE was set up in 2008 and organises dance courses for students from all dance schools, giving them the opportunity to be taught by an expert team of local and foreign teachers, making friends and sharing experiences with fellow dancers from other schools. LIVING DANCE Residential Dance Courses aim to help dancers strengthen and improve their technique, as well as giving them a taste of life as a full time dance student.
Tamara Micallef has been dancing from the tender age of five. She was born and raised in Malta, where her dance training in various styles commenced and grew to become her passion.
Her dance roots started in Malta with RAD ballet at Daphne Lungaro School of Dance and continued to Cecchetti ballet at Tanya Bayona Princess Poutiatine School of Ballet and 'The Dance Workshop' where she achieved her Advanced Cecchetti ballet with Honours under the direction of Theresa Lungaro-Mifsud. Her jazz excelled under the direction of Janet Vella, which was rewarded by being given the main role of 'Snow White' in one of the school's annual productions. Tamara has received various awards for her talent in both classical and modern dance. She has attended various courses both locally and abroad at well known schools such as 'London Studio Centre' and 'The Arts Educational School Tring', giving her the chance to work with various choreographers and directors. She also formed part of the team 'Bravi' a local TV show where 30 students studied and performed for musical theatre over a number of months.
At the age of 17, during 'Dance Power' that showcases all the local dance schools, Tamara was invited to attend the 'Schumann Academy of Dance' in Sicily. Here she taught RAD ballet as well as trained daily, which helped her expand her experience in contemporary dance at a high level, working with Giusi Santagati. In 2005 she started her vocational dance training at Kate Simmons Dance Ltd, UK. Here she studied under the direction of Kate Simmons, Gillian Hurst, Sharon Watson, Tracey Baxter, Tracey Moss, and others. After 3 years of training in all styles, from ballet, jazz, spanish,contemporary to singing and more, she achieved her National Diploma in Professional dance, as well as her Certificate in Dance Education, Cecchetti Ballet, Intermediate Tap, IDB1 Spanish Dance teaching, and Advanced Modern. Tamara also performed with 'Allegrodance', the student dance company that toured the North of England, as well as in the annual performances. Her main ballet roles included 'Hermia' in Midsummer Night's Dream, and 'Katherine' in the Taming of the Shrew. She also performed in jazz, tap, spanish, musical theatre and contemporary during the shows. During the three years she was awarded, Best all round dancer, Most Promising Contemporary dancer and 1st place in Senior Choreographic Competition.
Since graduating, Tamara worked as a dancer for Belinda King Creative Productions, dancing in 'Ray of Light', a tribute show to Madonna in Portugal and Open Wide Coastal Ltd. in the show 'Christmas Seaside Special', before joining Carnival Cruise Lines in 2010 and their professional team in the shows 'Voila Paris' and ' Midnight Express'.
Tamara says that the best part about teaching is that she is able to take all she has learnt and experienced from studying and working in the various countries and helping dance students prosper in this disciplined art of dance. Seeing results and joy in the students makes teaching very rewarding.
Tamara Micallef CDE, IDB1
National Diploma Professional Dance
Sandra began her training at the Princess Poutiatine Tanya Bayona Academy of Ballet, and pursued her major examinations in classical ballet, modern dance and flamenco at the academy. Sandra specialized in Contemporary Dance, performing extensively both locally and overseas as founding member and acting rehearsal director of Contact Dance Company (1999 – 2004) under guidance of Francesca Abela Tranter. Sandra choreographed Recited Spaces, which was performed by Contact Dance Company in Malta, Hungary and Tunisia in 2004.
Sandra has performed with Theatre Anon, as well as choreographed and performed Mozart’s Grab Musik as part of the Passiontide Festival. In 2007 Sandra performed with Renzo Spiteri – Dance Meditation – as part of the Sacred Arts Festival organized by St. James Cavalier.
In 1998 she began teaching modern/ contemporary dance in various local musical theatre, drama and dance schools. To further her professional development Sandra continues to dance actively. Last summer Sandra attended a contemporary course in the UK at a leading contemporary dance school, and this year she features in a contemporary dance video as part of the dance company WIRELESS which is to be premiered for the public shortly. Sandra is also reading for a Masters Degree in Performance Studies at the University of Malta.
Sandra is responsible for contemporary dance at Incite Motion.
Jason trained as a Pilates instructor in the UK at the Body Control Centre in London. Besides undergoing intensive training under the observation of various foreign tutors at Body Control, he also did his teaching practice at Body Control itself as well as London Studio Centre and Northern Theatre Arts school.
Jason has been teaching Pilates locally on a regular basis since 2006, in group settings and one to one private sessions. Jason teaches regularly at numerous dance schools, including Incite Motion, mainly dancers, and at the National Pool Physiotherapy Clinic where he taught a local water polo team. Jason also has private clients, whom he coaches as a group or one to one, in a home set up. He also offers rehabilitation Pilates whereby he works closely with local physiotherapists who refer clients suffering from injury. As part of his professional development Jason attends Pilates centre in London and takes part in Student days and development weekends whereby they learn new skills and techniques as well attend refresher courses with reputable and talented instructors.
Jason is also a fully qualified PADI IDC Staff Instructor, and currently manages his own scuba diving school. Jason is also a great drummer, and formed part of the group no strings attached. In 2000 Jason formed another local band called Etnika. This project aimed to revive the Maltese musical heritage through traditional and original compositions, stories and also the building and playing of old traditional instruments.
Jason has played all over the globe in well known concerts such as the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland, Denia and C.di Santiago Festivals in Spain, Venice arts Festival and many others.
Sue started her dance training at the Brigitte Gauci Borda School of Ballet in 1998 at the age of 9, specializing in Jazz and eventually Hip Hop, under the direction of Jes Sciberras and Kristina Schranz. In 2001 MS Vassallo won the award for ‘Best Jazz Technique.’ In 2006 at the age of 18, she was asked to join the teaching faculty of Brigitte Gauci Borda School of Ballet, teaching Jazz and Hip Hop. Her teaching experience includes Jazz Theatre Dance to the senior students at Drama Troupe, choreographing many musical numbers for various shows and ‘LAMDA’ examinations from 2007 -2010.
In 2007, Sue choreographed and performed a Hip Hop number at the ‘Barcelona Costa Brava International Dance Festival’ in Spain. In summer of 2008 she attended an intensive dance course ‘Broadway A Tropea’ in Italy, performing in Teatro La Pace after taking professional dance classes with the famous Hip Hop choreographer LUAM and other teachers from Broadway such Terry Beeman and Michele Assaf. In 2009 Sue accompanied a group of students to Bari, Italy for the ‘World Dance Movement’ organised by Michele Assaf of ‘Broadway Dance Centre NY.’ Sue was presented with an award for Hip Hop and was invited to perform one of her Hip Hop choreographies together with her students on the Final Performance Night. Sue’s choreographies have appeared in: opening act of The Diet Coke Fashion Awards 2011, The Goldwell Hair Awards 2006, Junior Eurovision in 2006 and 2007, the ending credits of popular TV Soap ‘Becky’ 06/07, Istrina, Ohloq Tbissima, Saturday Night and Hadd Ghalik.
In 2010 Sue was asked to choreograph and perform for the shows of Hip Hop icons JA RULE and FLO RIDA at Sky Club. Sue also choreographed and performed a hip hop number together with students from ‘BGB’ in ‘Dance Power 4.’ The same choreography was entered in the ‘Malta International Dance Festival’ and placed 3rd.
In April 2011 Sue’s choreography won first place in the ‘Malta Got Dance Selatin Kara Competition!!’ The prize being a private course with Selatin himself in summer 2011 and performing the winning choreography as well as the choreography Selatin taught them, at the Bay Music Awards in December 2011.
Sue is currently working towards her Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (ISTD) Jazz examinations and a Diploma in Dance Instruction (DDI) with Ms. Astrid Gollcher Sapienza (FISTD, ARAD, RAD T. Dip, BA (Hons) Dance Education). Sue sat for The Musical Theatre exam with The London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA) for which she received a Distinction.