Carmel Amelia Horsfield - Principal

Carmel was trained at the highly respected Carole Oliver School of Ballet in Ballarat. After 16 years of training and performing with the school she began teacher training with Carole Oliver for the Cecchetti Associate qualification. Carmel also completed her Diploma of Education at Ballarat University with a major in Physical Education. After a number of years teaching and training in Melbourne she opened the Carmel Amelia School of Dance in Woodend in 1991. 

The Carmel Amelia School of Dance now offers the best training in the region. Student successes and awards have been many with students moving on to further their training at The Australian Ballet School, The Royal Ballet School, The Victorian College of the Arts, New Zealand Ballet School and winning State and National Awards. Carmel is proud of the lifelong benefits that training with her school imparts to students and many former students are now pursuing careers in dance and related industries.
Costume design has also been an interest, with the school having gained a reputation for stunning costuming. Carmel continues to further her dance teacher training with  Cecchetti Ballet Australia and has trained many students to also become teachers. She believes that professional development, self improvement and self evaluation should never stop if a teacher is to offer the best to their students. Imparting a sense of joy in dance is they key!

Classical Ballet teacher and Director

Madeleine Legge

Madeleine began dancing at the age of 7 at the Carmel Amelia School of Dance. She was a student there for 9 years until in 2003 she successfully auditioned for The Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School. She spent a year there finishing her school studies and dancing full time and at the end of 2003 was awarded a place at The New Zealand School of Dance (NZSD) in Wellington. 

After 3 years of full time dance she graduated from NZSD with a Diploma in Contemporary Dance Performance and a position at the well known contemporary dance company Black Grace. She performed with Black Grace from August 2006 until June 2007, including a National Tour of New Zealand in the dance work ‘Amata’. 

After declining to renew her contract in June, Madeleine, returning back to Australia to pursue a newfound love of choreography and teaching, joined the teaching staff at The Carmel Amelia School of Dance.

Contemporary, Lyrical & Ballet teacher

Ashleigh McKimmie

I started dancing at age 4 with the Carmel Amelia School of dance, and I was accepted into the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary school when I was 15. In 2010 I participated in the International Cecchetti Competition that year held in Manchester, United Kingdom. I was the overall winner of the competition, winning the great honour of the Enrico Cecchetti award. In 2012 I was accepted into the English National Ballet School in London, UK, where I started my professional training. In my two years with the school, I was inspired by many incredible teachers who showed me the skills I needed to make it in the industry. I graduated the English National Ballet school in 2014 with a contract to join The Royal Ballet in London, where I worked for one year performing in productions such as Swan Lake, Manon, La Fille Mal Gardee and Don Quixote. After my year with The Royal Ballet I joined the Estonian National Ballet where I worked performing many different roles and many different ballets. My Career highlights would be performing one of the two Big Swans in Swan Lake with the Estonian National Ballet, performing Pas D’Action in La Bayadere with Estonian National ballet as well as traveling around America, Asia, Russia and Europe performing with both the Royal Ballet and the Estonian National Ballet companies. Currently I have just finished performing with West Australian Ballet on their production of the Nutcracker in Perth.

 

I hope to pass on my experiences and share my knowledge of the ballet industry with aspiring young dancers. I aim to give my students the skills and knowledge to help them make their dreams in ballet, and life, a possibility in an encouraging and positive environment. I want to inspire young dancers and encourage them to see that anything is possible with a little hard work and determination.

Classical Ballet and private coaching

Hannah Bertram

Hannah Bertram has professionally trained in many areas and genres of dance for over 16 years, including Ballet (RAD,Cecchetti and Vaganova), Jazz, Contemporary, Acrobatics, Hip Hop, and Tap. Hannah also originally began dancing at the age of 3 at the Carmel Amelia School of Dance, where she received Honours on all her Cecchetti Classical Ballet exams. 

Hannah holds her Cecchetti Classical Ballet Associate Certificate & Certificate 2, 3 & 4 in Dance and Performing Arts and is continuing her teaching status exams and training.. She has trained with Ms Christine Walsh at the Australian Conservatoire of Ballet and at the Victorian College of The Arts working with some of Australia’s most recognized and respected teacher, choreographers and dancers. She has danced in many professional ballet productions at the State Theatre of Victoria in ballets such as Romeo and Juliet, Sleeping Beauty as well as everybody's favorite Swan Lake. Hannah has been teaching for 3 years for numerous dance schools in Victoria and offers years of performance and competition experience including performing all over the state in numerous modern productions. 

Hannah is very excited to be back at The Carmel Amelia School of Dance and loves to bring smiles to all the student’s faces, while training them technically and safely. Hannah has now followed her passion to share the joy of dance through her teaching, and loves working with children and helping them achieve their goals and dreams.

Classical Ballet, Character, Hip Hop & Jazz teacher

Shaelyn Hughes

Shaelyn has trained in performing from a young age. She is trained in Voice, Acting, Musical Theatre, Broadway/Commercial jazz, Ballet, Contemporary/Lyrical, Tap, Acrobatics, Hip-Hop and Pilates. In 2016 Shaelyn graduated with a Diploma of Musical Theatre at Kelly Aykers Fulltime Dance, where she was also awarded the full scholarship. In 2017 a Certificate 4 in Mat Work Pilates Instruction was added to her skills.

Shaelyn made her professional musical theatre debut in the 2012 production of Billy Elliot the Musical at Her Majesty’s Theatre, Melbourne. Shaelyn’s TV credits include featured dancer in the ICC Cricket World Cup (GEM), dancing with the Stars promo (Channel 7) and the lead daughter in the comedic Laminex’s TVC commercial.

Shaelyn has a huge passion and eye for chorography and the creation of performance works and she also participates in adjudicating many dance competitions around Victoria. Shaelyn has gained insight from the creations of many wonderful choreographers in the industry and has taught at various schools around Melbourne in many genres. Her work includes choreographing a music video clip, showcases & competition solos along with VET work in which she recently received a choreographer’s award in Sydney.

Shaelyn is rewarded when she brings her pieces to life and sees all of her students shining on stage or in class.

Jazz, Tap & Hip Hop

Lucy Brigg

I have been a student with the Carmel Amelia School of Dance for 17 years.  My dancing has included the genres, classical, jazz, tap, contemporary and hip-hop. During this time I have completed Cecchetti exams from Grade 1 to Advanced 1. I have performed in the end of year annual concerts, and from the age of seven have participated in troupe and solo competitions.

This year will be my second year of teaching, and will be an opportunity to meet more new faces, something that I am looking forward to. I've always been dedicated, passionate and felt a warmth of belonging throughout my dancing years, with all my teachers encouraging my determination skills, while guiding me through my weaknesses. My wish is to follow in their footsteps and pass on this knowledge into my classes. I love to make my lessons a happy time, where you can meet new friends, while learning new skills through the pleasure that dancing brings.

I have danced with the Expressions Dance Company's performance of Carmen Sweet while they were on tour of Australia in 2015. I also participated in Victorians School Spectacular in 2013 at Hisense Arena.

Tap, Jazz & Classical Ballet teacher

Amelia Eddy

Beginning dancing at three years old Amelia has always had a passion for dance. Throughout her time at Carmel Amelia School of Dance, Amelia has learnt ballet, jazz, hip hop, song and dance, and contemporary disciplines. Classical ballet is what Amelia enjoys most and she still attends senior classes and has completed her Cecchetti ballet exam levels from Grade 2 to Advanced 2, receiving Honours for all levels. 

 

Amelia was selected for the Cecchetti Scholars Program held at the Ministry of Dance for several years learning from a variety of teachers including Colin Peasley.

 

Amelia has always loved sharing her passion for dance with the younger students through her lead roles in the concerts. Having taught for two years now, Amelia finds it extremely rewarding to see the students develop their technique and is reminded of how dance classes are such a fantastic way to enrich one's life through making friendships, applying discipline and focus and developing important life skills.

Classical Ballet

Rachael Peters

Rachael discovered her love of performing at a young age training in various styles of dance from Jazz, Hip Hop, Contemporary, Ballet, Acrobatics and Tap. At the age of 13, Rachael was a part of Fox8 TV series ‘The Ultimate School Musical - Fame’ under the direction of Kelly Aykers, Anthony Callea and Eddie Perfect.

Rachael graduated from Kelly Aykers Full Time Dance in 2016 with a diploma of Musical Theatre and also completed the ‘Show Business’ intensive course in 2017 focusing on her passion for commercial dance under the direction of Marko Panzic. 

Her performance credits include a dancer on the soon to be released film “The Very Excellent Mr. Dundee”, ‘You Tube Fanfest’ and ‘Brandcast’ performances at the Qantas Credit Union Arena (Sydney), the ‘ICC Cricket World Cup’ (Melbourne) opening ceremony as well as various commercial events in Melbourne.

Rachael has been teaching both Jazz and Hip Hop since 2016 from juniors through to seniors in both open classes and exam style classes as well as teaching within a full-time institution. She loves to inspire, encourage and motivate her students to be the best performer they can be and help each student find and develop their confidence and belief within themselves. 

Jazz & Hip Hop

Danielle Whitfort

Danielle began dancing at age 3 at Edwards Dance Studio, in her local town of Seymour, Victoria.
Over the years she has trained at the Carole Oliver School of Ballet, Carmel Amelia School of Dance, Jane Moore Academy of Ballet and the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School. Danielle graduated from the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School in 2015 and went on to further her training at the Melbourne City Ballet Company. 
Danielle is currently a Junior Artist with Melbourne City Ballet Company and has danced leading roles in both classical and contemporary works with the company.
Some career highlights to date have been: 
•representing Australia by competing in the Cecchetti International Ballet Competition in the USA in 2014
•training with the Royal Winnipeg Ballet in Canada on a scholarship in 2015. 
•achieving the Gold medal at the Victorian Cecchetti Medals Awards 2015. 
• completed her Advanced 2 Ceccehtti exam achieving 100% Honours.

Danielle is one of the teachers for the Carmel Amelia School of Dance's High Performance Program and hopes to inspire talented young dancers to also reach for their dreams.

 

Classical Ballet teacher

Jessica Yeend

Jess began dancing at the age of 3 with Carmel Amelia School of Dance. She has continued her journey with the school for over 20 years, not only as a student but as a teacher. Jess commenced with ballet, and as she grew older she began to find her passion in other genres including jazz, tap, contemporary and hip hop.

Jess completed her Cecchetti exams from Grade 1 up to Advanced 1, and hopes to continue learning and growing to educate her students. She has performed in many concerts and showcases over the years, increasing her knowledge in other genres and broadening her experiences. Jess’ love for dancing also saw her travelling the country competing, whilst developing life long friendships.

Jess has been training and teaching for over 10 years. She teaches a large variety of genres, from ballet to tap, with different levels ranging from 3 year olds to adults.

Jess hopes to share her passion with her students, not only showing them how rewarding dedication and hard work can be, but also the life long lessons and friendships which can be made along the way.

Jazz, Tap & Ballet

Ellen Robinson

After moving to Wodonga in 2011, Ellen was the Tap Principal of Border Danceworks studios and was the choreographer for many productions and theatre companies. Ellen then trained extensively full time at Dance World Studios in Melbourne and graduated with her Advanced Diploma in Elite Performance. Once completed, her passion was to pursue her love of teaching. She continued to train and up skill her professional development by training at NICA and Acrobatic Arts. She continued teaching in a vast array of Dance styles at many well accomplished Melbourne schools. Ellen has been trained by Acrobatic Arts and at the National Institute Of Circus Arts. Commencing with beginners, then last year Ellen was proud that she had one of her teams go to Nationals and place first out of Australia. The girls and boys that she has trained have learnt their skills the safest way and without any injuries. Some of her personal specialties are in aerials, tumbling, balancing, flexibility and limbering. Although Acro & Circus has been a huge part of her recent teaching and training, Ellen also loves to share her expertise and knowledge in all dance styles including Jazz, Tap, Lyrical and Hip Hop.

Acrobatics

Stephanie Bertalmio

Stephanie began dancing in 1998 at the Carmel Amelia School of Dance. She has been a valued student for over 20 years taking classes in ballet, jazz, tap, contemporary, hiphop, lyrical and acro. Stephanie joined the teaching staff in 2018 as the Strength and Conditioning teacher. Stephanie has a Masters in Secondary Health & Physical Education Teaching along with numerous other qualifications that demonstrate her passion for fitness. 

Strength & Conditioning

Emily Sharp

Emily’s love for dance began at the age of 5 when she started taking jazz classes and has continued to grow stronger ever since! 

She has trained in a wide variety of genres including jazz, classical ballet, contemporary, lyrical, hip hop and acrobatics. Emily has competed in numerous dance competitions throughout Victoria as both a troupe member and as a soloist and has completed both Southern Federation of Dance and Cecchetti Ballet examinations. 

Emily has recently completed two years of full time dance at Kelly Aykers Full Time Dance. In 2018 she obtained her Certificate 4 in Dance Teaching and Management and continued on to study the Dancers Elite Course in 2019.

Emily has found a true love for teaching the next generation of dancers the art of dance and has a particular love for choreography. Her strong love for all things dance and performing is infectious and her fun loving nature and passion for excellence ensures every class is enjoyable while students work hard to achieve their goals. 

Contemporary, Lyrical, Jazz

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