Our Teachers have all taught at some of the U.K's biggest dance schools.
OUR CIRCUS TEAM
PROFESSIONAL AND FRIENDLY
Meet our team of highly skilled, professional teachers. All of our teachers are DBS checked, First Aid qualified, and have taught at schools all over the country, for the past 10 years.
Showkids Circus, Harpenden has been set up by Jessica Antelope Hill, who has over 10 years of professional dance and circus performance experience. Originally from Liverpool, she moved to London aged 17 to study at the world renowned Bird College, Sidcup where she gained a BA(Hons) degree in Dance and Theatre Performance and studied towards her teaching qualifications. Credits include: Tina Turner the Musical, Emerald Storm, Danny Foster and the Big Soul Corporation, Hairspray, 42nd Street, Paris Je T’aime – La Nouvelle Eve, Nostalgia – Benidorm Palace, Peter Pan, Rock the Opera, Cinderella, Aladdin, Celtic Journey, Alice in Wonderland and shows onboard Celebrity Cruises for QDos productions. Television appearances include Dancing on Ice, Alan Titchmarsh Show, John Carter of Mars, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Premier, BBC news for Peter Pan interview with The Fonz, the Lord Mayors Parade, and the St Georges Day Mayors’ introduction.
She fell in love with circus in 2011 and has been adding circus skills to her performance skills since then, working for Best Parties Ever for 5 years running and performing as solo aerialist onboard P&O Azura. She is now kept very busy working for many high end London based dance and circus companies which sees her performing at various high profile events all over London and all over the world.
The joy felt when watching the circus can only be mirrored by either…..going again, or learning the skills yourself! Showkids Circus has been set up to allow children to master different circus skills, such as those seen in The Greatest Showman! Skills such as juggling, hula hooping, acrobatics and aerial arts (hoop and silks) will be taught, and combined with dance to create elegant, flexible and rhythmic young performers. All skills will be taught with safety as our first concern, but with the added element of FUN!
Melanie trained from a young age at the Old Bakehouse Dance Studios continuing her training at The Arts Educational School, Tring Park, on a Music and Ballet Scheme scholarship and graduated July 2007 with a distinction. In 2007 she danced at the Linbury Theatre, Covent Garden in a Stabat Mater by Robert Cohan and earlier that year she was invited to work with Robert Cohan on a contemporary DVD. Her first job was with English Bach Festival Trust and in September 2007 she joined Vienna Festival Ballet and toured dancing the principal role of Sugar Plum Fairy. Since then, she has performed principal roles with the company in Sleeping Beauty, Coppelia, Nutcracker, Swan Lake and Cinderella. In 2008 she was chosen to be a body double dancing the role of the Dying Swan in a film ‘Godforsaken’.
Melanie is The principle of Kent Youth Dance Company and has danced principal roles in Sleeping Beauty, Swan Lake, Les Sylphides, Snow White, La Bayadere, La Fille Mal Gardee and Cinderella. She has choreographed many pieces for the company including Jazz, Contemporary, Flamenco and many classical pieces. In 2010 she was chosen to dance in Kenya with the Kijani Trust.
Christmas 2011, Melanie performed in Dubai at the Mall of Emirates, she danced the roles of Clara and Sugar Plum fairy. Early 2012, Melanie performed at The Place, London in a contemporary piece choreographed by James Loffler called ‘LFO’. Melanie now performs with Divine Company at different events all over the world as a ballerina, Stilt walker, acrobat and contortionist. She has danced in places including Abu Dhabi (Mother of the Nation Festival), Bahrain (International Bahrain Airshow), Toulouse (Launch of a new Airbus), Naples (Private Wedding), Prague (at the Presidents Palace) and Cairo to name a few.
She is very highly skilled and a fantastic teacher and we are very excited to have her on board to help teach at this year’s Easter School.
Stilt Walking/Acrobatics/Ribbon Dance
Em-J Smith trained at Stella Mann Performing Arts college and has worked professionally as a dancer, model, actress and stiltwalker since graduating.
She was a dancer in one of the biggest Tpuring Circus, across Europe, Circus Krone and also at Bloomsbury Big Top. Em-J has travelled the world on Royal Carribbean cruise ships working with DreamWorks Productions.
Being extremely competent in Stilt Walking, this skill has taken Em-J to many exotic places to perform, including luxury malls in the Middle East and Royal Palaces in Europe. She will also appear in the remake of Disney’s Aladdin out soon as the stiltwalker in the parade!
There are many strings to Em-J’s bow and she has appeared as an actress in many productions, including being a scare actress in Londons scariest maze at The London Dungeons. She also does hair and wig styling and this is yet another skill that has enabled her to travel the world. She is now part of several corporate agencies based in London and is kept very busy working for these.
We are very lucky to have her as part of our team at Showkids Circus.
The joy felt when watching the circus can only be mirrored by either going again, or learning the skills yourself!