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 is now Assistant Head Teacher in charge of Community at Brighton College, Al Ain in the UAE having stepped down from his previous role of Director of Performing Arts - 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 Saville

    • IDTA Pre-Associate Tap 1 & 2
    • IDTA Pre-Associate Ballet 1 & 2
    • IDTA Pre-Associate Theatre Craft 1 & 2
    • IDTA Pre-Associate 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 all of her IDTA Pre-Associate exams and managed to achieve 90 plus marks for each exam - outstanding results! As well as this, Raegen has been aknowledged by the IDTA for her outstanding work in Advanced Tap.

  • Jasmin Headshot

    Dance and Musical Theatre Teacher - Jasmin Connell

    • BA Hons. (Performing Arts)
    • IDTA Pre-Associate Modern Jazz 1
    • IDTA Pre-Associate Tap 1
    • IDTA Pre-Associate Theatre Craft 1
    • IDTA Pre-Associate Ballet 1
    • IDTA Level 3 Teaching Diploma in Theatre Craft

    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 a very dedicated teacher and leader of Musical Theatre at Studio 10 and has lots of great ideas to bring to our MT classes!

  • Kelly Temporary

    Dance & Pre-School Teacher

    Kelly is our newest permanent addition to our teaching team at Top Hat Studios. Kelly is a wonderful performer and an expert in all things baby & toddler with many Mams and Dads referring to her as 'The Baby Whisperer'. Watch this space for exciting things happening in our pre-school section of the school.

  • Hayley

    Receptionist and Administration Assistant - Hayley Hadden

    Hayley is a returning JBD dancers after a 13 year break from Studio 10. Performing is a passion of hers and in her time with us she described herself as 'never the best dancer' but thinks you can still 'perform' even if you're not the most skillful dancer and a smile can make up for the mistakes.

    Highlights of her JBD career include wearing a rainbow catsuit in 'You Can't Stop The Beat' how she wishes she had that figure now! Performing on stage led to a love of all things theatre - she did A-level drama as a result.

    Hayley has always thought of Studio 10 as her dance family and is so pleased to be back.

  • Shaun

    Facilities Manager - Shaun Clarey

    Shaun joined our JBD team as Facilities Manager in Summer 2023. Although Shaun has been an unofficial member of the team for a long time, helping with show get ins, prop making and helping us move into our new home to name just a few things! Shaun will be in and around Top Hat Studios keeping things clean, safe and shipshape!