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Academy

The Academy has a dedicated Student Support team all of whom have had DBS checks, Child Protection training and hold Professional Chaperone licenses.
Jane Tucker
Born in West Yorkshire, Jane undertook her early training with the Northern Dance Centre and completed it at Central School of Ballet and Northern Ballet School where she performed and toured with Manchester City Ballet.
Tony started dancing with the Harehills Youth Dance Theatre and went on to dance with the National Youth Dance Theatre. He trained at the London School of Contemporary Dance and the Northern Contemporary Dance School. On leaving he joined Phoenix Dance Theatre and was founder of ABCD Company (Artists Beyond Contemporary Dance).
Douglas trained at London Contemporary Dance School in 1982. He joined Phoenix Dance Company in 1987 and spent four years with the Company. After taking a nine-year break from performing, Douglas returned as a guest dancer in RJC’s Krazy Spirit in 2000 and choreographed left-a-lone for RJC’s Soma 2003 tour. Douglas re-joined Phoenix in December 2003 and performed in Henri Oguike’s Signal and Maresa von Stockert’s Polystyrene Dreams in Phoenix’s UK and German tours.
Cara trained with London Junior Ballet where she won a competitive scholarship in her graduation year, and was a Cecchetti Scholar for four years, winning the senior division at the Cecchetti Mabel Ryan competition in 1999. At age 16 she joined Northern Ballet School in Manchester on the Classical Ballet focus where, in her final year, she decided to concentrate on teaching as a career and so stayed for an additional year to obtain teaching experience.
Viki Westall
Viki was born in Alderley Edge, Cheshire and began ballet lessons at 5 years old, progressing to White Lodge at 11 and then continuing her training at the Hammond School, Chester.
Yoko Ichino
Born in Los Angeles, Yoko studied with renowned ballerina Mia Slavenska and began her professional career in 1972 when she joined Joffrey Ballet II as an Apprentice. What followed was a career that spanned three decades. Yoko has danced with the Joffrey Ballet, Stuttgart Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, National Ballet of Canada and Ballett der Deutsche Oper Berlin, as well as appearing as a Guest Artist for over 22 companies across the world. She has partnered some of ballet’s greatest dancers including the world famous Rudolph Nuryev.
David Nixon, OBE
David Nixon has been Artistic Director of Northern Ballet since 2001. David trained as a dancer, first in his hometown of Chatham, Ontario and then at the National Ballet School of Canada where his training began in earnest. It was during his time there that he first became interested in choreography, helping to revive a choreographic workshop with the approval of school director Betty Oliphant. After further training in Europe he returned to Canada to train with Erik Bruhn and the great Russian teacher, Eugene Valukin.
“ 'Yoko's teaching methods didn't just develop my technique, they changed my way of thinking and prepared me both physically and mentally to face the challenges of a career in dance.'
Photo Martin Bell
Inspiring the dancers of tomorrow, the Northern Ballet Academy embodies a 21st Century approach to training. Under the direction of David Nixon OBE and Yoko Ichino, students receive the highest quality training that captures the talent and imagination of individuals and nurtures their passion for dance, creating balanced and healthy dancers who excel in technique and knowledge. “

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