Excellent Royal Academy of Dance ballet examination results were achieved in the summer 2017 session with all 41 students gaining Merit or Distinction.
Former student, Oscar Ward, has secured a contract with Opera Nationala Bucuresti. Oscar also reached the final of the BBC Young Dancer Competition 2017, which was screened in March. In December 2016 Oscar competed in the Genee International Ballet competion in Sydney, Australia. Before leaving for Bucarest Oscar was awarded the Solo Seal, which is the highest and most prestigious award offered by the Royal Academy of Dance.
Oscar trained at Leonard School from the age of seven and then completed his vocational training at Ballet West in Scotland where he also gained a BiA Hons Degree.
Paige Curzon has successfully auditioned for the KS Dance School and will be continuing her vocational training at the Cheshire-based school from September 2017. Paige gained Distinction in all the RAD Grades, Higher Grades and Vocational Grades up to and including Advanced 1.
Rebecca Gale has secured a place at Lincoln University where she will be studying for a Degree in Dance. Rebecca trained at Leonard School from the age of three and gained Distinction for all her RAD Grades and Higher Grades examinations.
Leonard School of Dance Performs for the Queen
Nine Leonard School of Dance students, Grace Bolton, Paige Curzon, Rebecca Gale, Charlie Howard, Carla Jones, Sophie Lawrence, Alex Markland, Anya Mistry and Tassia Sissins, together with Director, Helen Leonard, represented the Royal Academy of Dance in The Patron's Lunch Parade which took place on The Mall on Sunday 12th June 2016.
The Parade was broadcast live on BBC 1 and involved a cast of over 1,500. With choreography from Artistic Director of the Royal Academy of Dance, Lynn Wallis OBE, the parade featured a procession of live bands and dancers who performed themed routines based around the decades of Her Majesty's reign from the 1950s to the present.
Leonard School of Dance represented the 1970s and this segment was inspired by animals, environment and agriculture and the Queen's love of the countryside.
The Queen is Patron of over 600 charities and organisations of which the Royal Academy of Dance is one such organisation. Leonard School of Dance is a Royal Academy of Dance school and was asked to submit an interest in taking part. After several week's wait it was announced that Leonard School of Dance had been selected out of hundreds of applicants to participate in this once-in-a-lifetime event.
On the same day, Michelle helped to organise a Pop Up Dance Floor in Birmingham New Street Station. One of our Grade 3 students, Abigail Huxley-Binns, was selected to perform, also as part of the Queen's 90th Birthday Celebrations.
Life Membership of The Royal Academy of Dance
In September 2015 Helen Leonard was awarded a Life Membership of the Royal Academy of Dance in recognition of her ongoing commitment and dedication to the RAD.
Royal Academy of Dance Regional Advisory Committee
Michelle Widdison was elected onto the Royal Academy of Dance Regional Advisory Committee for the Midlands and East England at the AGM held on Sunday 16th November 2014.