Meet the Team

  • Joanne Banks Portrait Image.

    Managing Director - Joanne Banks

    • FDA (Dance Teaching)
    • AIDTA (Tap, Theatre Craft, Ballet, Modern Jazz)
    • IDTA Dip. Dance Exercise
    • IDTA Dip. Anatomy and Physiology
    • IDTA Dip. Gymnastic Dance Teaching
    • NCFE Exercise Studies

    Joanne Banks began dance classes aged 3 in Chilton, Co. Durham. She later trained with The Amanda McGlynn Academy of Performing Arts in Middlesbrough before completing a BTEC in Performing Arts at New College, Durham. She later joined the National Youth Music Theatre (NYMT) where she trained vocationally, working in musicals as a performer and assistant choreographer. Joanne gained her first dance teaching certificate in Tap dance with the IDTA. In 2008, Joanne completed a Foundation Degree in Dance Teaching at Bucks New University.

    Over the years Joanne has not only trained many hundreds of students at her own school but has choreographed many hundreds more in local, regional and national musical theatre productions. Some of Joanne’s choreographic credits include: ‘The Late Sleepers’ for the NYMT, ‘Oliver’, ‘Bouncers’, ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’, ‘Little Shop of Horrors’,‘42nd Street’, ‘Fiddler on the Roof’, ‘Fame’, ‘Me and My Girl’ and ‘Wizard of Oz’.

  • Kay Clarey

    Director of Dance - Kay Clarey

    • AIDTA (Tap, Theatre Craft, Ballet)
    • IDTA Dip. Anatomy and Physiology
    • IDTA Dip. Gymnastic Dance Teaching

    Kay Clarey is the Director of Dance and as such is an integral and instrumental member of the team at Studio 10. She has trained with Joanne Banks since she was 8 years old and has worked her way through the IDTA Theatre Grade, Performer and Teaching examinations and now holds Associate qualifications in Tap, Ballet and Theatre Craft. Kay is a talented and dedicated teacher and leads the majority of classes at Studio 10.

    Kay has a wealth of knowledge and experience teaching dance at both Primary and Secondary school level. As well as coaching After School Clubs and offering Curriculum Support, Kay is also well-versed in GCSE Dance.

    Kay has performed with the NYMT, Dionysis Theatre Company and Qdos Entertainement. She has worked as a Choreographer for a number of local productions and Assistant Choreographer for Dionysis Theatre Company. Kay continues to expand her own skills by continued professional development with Joanne Banks and the IDTA.

    In 2012 Kay became a business partner in The Joanne Banks Dancers.

  • Simon Bridge Portait

    Director of Development - Simon Bridge

    • BA Hons. (Performance)
    • PGCE (QTS Secondary)
    • London College of Music Dip. Musical Theatre

    Simon Bridge has been involved in Theatre since he was a teenager. He studied on the BTEC Performing Arts at New College, Durham before completing a BA (Hons) in Performance at Northumbria University.

    Simon has worked extensively as a professional actor, singer, musician, director and teacher. Simon has a comprehensive knowledge of all facets of the world of Theatre and Performing Arts and has directed more productions than he cares to try and count. As a qualified secondary school teacher he has worked as a Head of Creative Arts, in charge of Drama, Music, Dance and Art. Simon is a dynamic and charismatic teacher who promotes theatre in all its forms and is passionate about singing and musical theatre. Simon has recently been appointed Director of Performing Arts at Brighton College, Al Ain in the UAE - so for the majority of his time he plies his trade in rather warmer climes.

  • General Manager - Julie Tyers

    Julie Tyers has been involved with The Joanne Banks Dancers since their conception in 1990. Back then her role was that of a parent as her two young daughters joined the dancing school and enjoyed their many classes.

    Julie is a vital part of the team at Studio 10 with her extensive knowledge of child protection, health and safety, data protection and other administrative policies. Julie took over from Chris Banks as the General Manager at Studio 10 in 2013 and takes pride in her role showering all pupils with her guidance and care.

  • Raegen Headshot

    Dance Teacher - Raegen McCourt

    • IDTA Pre Associate Tap 1 & 2
    • IDTA Pre Associate Ballet 1
    • IDTA Theatre Craft 1
    • IDTA Modern Jazz 1 & 2

    Raegen has been a pupil of The Joanne Banks Dancers since she was about 8 years old and considers herself a loyal and enthusiastic JBD! Raegen is a fabulous dancer and teacher, with bags of energy and commitment. Raegen continues to work extensively in the local schools community, delivering both after-school clubs and curriculum support.

    Raegen completed her IDTA Pre-Associate Part One exams and managed to achieve 90 plus marks for each exam - outstanding results!!

  • Jasmin Headshot

    Dance and Musical Theatre Teacher - Jasmin Brown

    • BA Hons. (Performing Arts)
    • IDTA Pre-Associate Modern Jazz 1
    • IDTA Pre-Associate Tap 1
    • IDTA Pre-Associate Theatre Craft 1

    Jasmin holds a Degree in Performing Arts from Cumbria University. Jasmin has proved herself an invaluable member of the JBD team - turning her hand to many tasks both as a Dance Teacher and as Tech Support!

    Jasmin has been teaching in the wide range of classes held at Studio 10 and also working with many of the local schools doing After School Clubs and Curriculum Support classes. Her energy and enthusiasm for her work is outstanding and she can always be relied upon to support others and be on hand.

    Jasmin is very excited about taking on the role of Musical Theatre Teacher at Studio 10 and has lots of great ideas to bring to our MT classes!

  • Yasmin Headshot

    Head Receptionist and Assistant Administrator - Yasmin Bowron

    Yasmin Bowon has been a long-serving student at The Joanne Banks Dancers. She is no stranger to 'behind-the-scenes' at JBD as she has chaperoned for our annual summer shows and for our pantomime team at Darlington Civic Theatre, for a number of years. Yasmin joins the team in September 2017 as Head Receptionist and Assistant Administrator, as Christine Hurn steps down and enjoys a well-deserved retirement.

    Yasmin is a fun-loving and enthusiastic member of our team and her energy and love of life brings a smile to all our faces!

  • Donna Headshot

    Receptionist and Assistant Administrator - Donna Atkinson


    Donna Atkinson is JBD's Administrative Assistant and Receptionist. Donna was one of the original JBD pupils back in 1990 and enjoyed being part of JBD shows and events and an Assistant Teacher back in the 90's. An amazing tapper in her day she once danced a solo Tap routine in one of our productions.

    She is a valuable member of our our Chaperone Team and was part of the company of 'A Night To Remember' with her daughter Ava.

    Donna is a fabulous asset to The Joanne Banks Dancers and our customers are guaranteed to be greeted at reception by Donna's beautiful smile and infectious laugh.

  • Molly Headshot

    Apprentice Dance Teacher - Molly Fawcett

    We are delighted to welcome the newest member of our dance team - Molly Fawcett! Molly joins the JBD staff as an Apprentice Dance Teacher having already been part of the school for a number of years as a pupil.

    Molly's family have a long-standing association with JBD as both her Mum and Gran were in involved with us as far back as our formation in 1990! We are sure Molly will be a great asset to JBD with her positive attitude and energy and wish her all the best in her new role. x