Dancers excited to be on Elite

DYKE House Academy’s exciting dance programme has now got five new scholars after making the right moves on stage.


RECRUITS: The new dancers at Dyke House with coordinator Lisa Wilson

DYKE House Academy’s exciting dance programme has now got five new scholars after making the right moves on stage.

The Elite Dance, part of the Academy’s Elite Development Squad scholarship scheme, has promoted Year 8 boy Max Penfold to the top tier as well as handed places to Year 7s.

Isabelle Boagey, Tionne Wyness, Mollie-Mae Jukes and Georgia Cottnam have all come through a three stage audition to be given spots on the top two tiers of three level programme.

There are 20 dancers in total at Dyke House, across the different age groups, and the aim is to help them develop their talent alongside academic studies, while still attending their respective dance schools they attend.

Lisa Wilson, the coordinator of Elite Dance, said: “They all impressed over the course of the three-day process with their diverse styles of dance.

“This year we have introduced them to strength and conditioning, made it more sport specific to them in many respects.

“They will get their own programmes to work to and it will be related to dance. We aim to put workshops in place, with top class choreographers. We are looking forward to working with them.”


Isabelle Boagey, 11, Eskdale Academy, Watson Academy

“I proved I was capable of doing things the teacher wants us to do. I came runner-up champion in the North of England in tap and recently was sixth in the modern in west riding Yorkshire. I would like to take part in shows in the West End, having started to dance when I was just two.”

Tionne Wyness, 12, Throston Primary, Nadine’s Dance Company

“In 2017 I won a scholarship at Urdang Academy in London, which is an independent performing arts school. I did nine weeks there and performed a show of all different styles. I went down every other weekend. 

“I have also done English youth ballet, in a pantomime of snow white and taken part in the Christmas Carol. I would like to be a professional dancer on the West End.”

Mollie-Mae Jukes, 11, St Aidan’s, Val Armstrong

“I am very passionate about dance and would love to be the best I can be. I am three times world champion after Barcelona, two in acro and one in modern. I have been dancing since the age of four. I was in a film, Ruth, I had to go to auditions, and it is out later this year.  More films and appearing in the West End are the aims.”

Max Penfold, 13, Sacred Heart, Val Armstrong

“I really enjoy dancing and it has given me a lot of confidence. I am the world tap champion after competing in Germany and Barcelona. I just want to keep going and get better and better. I have won the British Tap Championship and English Song and Dance Championship too.”

Georgia Cottnam, 11, Holy Trinity, Seaton Carew Dance

“In October I came second in lyrical solo in a regional competition. I have wanted to do well and enjoy it ever since I started dancing when I was 18 months old. I have performed in pantos, shows and in winter festivals.  I would like to be a dance teacher and I would love to inspire others.”