About Us

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History

Established in 2011, L’Académie brings the highest quality dance and ballet tuition to the Inner West, assuring every student receives expert attention in a caring environment. We take great pride in offering a nurturing school for our students to develop to the height of their dance potential.

Classes are designed to suit everyone from those who just want to dance to the serious student. Whatever your child’s age or experience level we are sure to have a class to suit.

L’Académie offers RAD Ballet, Vaganova, Contemporary, Acrobatic Arts, Musical Theatre and Body Conditioning and is the parent school of Sugarplums for toddlers and pre-schoolers, which teaches the basics of dance in fun-filled group classes. Please use the tabs above to explore further or Contact Us today for more info on which class would best suit your child.


Teaching Philosophy

L’Académie ballet classes are based on the Royal Academy of Dance syllabus, the world’s leading organisation in classical ballet education and our teachers regularly attend all courses the academy offers.

Our staff are carefully selected and have an extensive knowledge of dance as both performers and teachers

L’Académie classes for Primary and above:

  • Value technique as a foundation for all forms of dance
  • Instil a sense of presence and dynamics in a dancer’s movement
  • Facilitate an encouraging environment, coupled with hard work and patience, which ensures students reach their full potential.

Sugarplums classes for ages 2 to 5:

  • Create a strong base for any dance specialisation
  • Emphasise learning skills that will be important in a child’s future development.
  • Are based on ballet technique and teach co-ordination, balance, rhythm and musicality.

All dance classes are taught in our fully equipped studios with professional Tarkett flooring, as well as fixed barres and mirrors.


Teachers

Teaching staff for 2020 are:

  • Kristyn Caley (nee Tindall) – Director & Principal
  • Sean Mahoney
  • Tamar Arzoumalian
  • Melisa Ribola
  • Ella Makovec
  • Cynthia Haynes
  • Jeremy Gates
  • Julia Furnas
  • Isaac Clark
  • Jessica Goodfellow
  • Jessika-Ann Eastlake

Kristyn Caley (nee Tindall) ARAD Solo Seal PDTD (Dip)

As the Director and Principal of the school she aspires to nurture and create a love of dance in the students entrusted to her care.

Career Highlights:

  • Kristyn completed her training with Tessa Maunder O.A.M and Karen Hudson in Newcastle and part-time with Tanya Pearson in Sydney (final year).
  • She was the recipient of the Royal Academy of Dance Isobel Anderson Award for Advanced and received her Solo Seal.
  • After competing in the Adeline Genée Awards in London, a Scholarship at the John Cranko School in Stuttgart, Germany was offered and accepted with a Diploma for her studies awarded two years later.
  • Kristyn performed and toured with the Stuttgart Ballet Company in Swan Lake, La Bayadère and Taming of the Shrew during the 1997/98 and 1998/99 seasons.
  • 1998 – 2005 she accepted soloist contracts in Germany at Theatre Nordhausen and Staatstheater Kassel under the direction of Henning Paar, Theater Vorpommern as a guest performer and soloist in Mainfrankentheater Wuerzburg dancing leading roles such as Black Swan, Sugar Plum Fairy and the Ballerina in Petruschka.
  • Performances in various choreographies by leading European artists, including Renato Zanella, Henning Paar, James Sutherland, Juri Vamos and Thorsten Kreissig were among some of the highlights of her career.
  • In February 2005, Kristyn was chosen as one of twelve applicants worldwide to be accepted by audition into the Professional Dancers’ Teaching Diploma at the Royal Academy of Dance headquarters at Battersea Square in London obtaining her professional teachers’ status.
  • After returning to Australia in January 2007, Kristyn has taught at various ballet schools in Newcastle, Sydney and Melbourne, including Ecole Ballet Studio’s Lindfield; Redlands Cremorne; Victorian College of the Arts; National Theatre Ballet School Melbourne; The Ballet Class Rose Bay; The Conlon College Turramurra; The Dance Spot Randwick and Diedre Bronner School of Ballet Ramsgate.
  • Kristyn is also an accredited teacher with The Australian Conservatoire of Ballet (Vaganova) and Acrobatic Arts.

Sean Mahoney – Contemporary & Acrobatic Arts

  • Sean is a graduate of Newtown HSPA, Brent Street School of the Performing Arts and has studied contemporary at the Victorian Collage of arts in Melbourne.
  • Some of Sean’s career highlights include The Assassins, Les Misérables, Universal studios Singapore and Japan as well as dancing with the likes of Deni Hines, Marcia Hines, Tina Arena and Kylie Minogue.
  • Sean has worked with the Australian Ballet School with Spartacus and the nutcracker and various productions with Opera Australia, Performances with Bodies. He has also performed on Princess Cruises, Peoples Choice Awards and Rhythm on Tap to name a few.
  • Sean is also a qualified extend barre instructor and acrobatics arts teacher Sean travels both nationally internationally as an Adjudicator.
  • Sean has choregraphed for high calibre schools across Australia with main focus on Contemporary and Lyrical dance.
  • Sean is currently in his final year of Bachelor of Social Work.
  • Mr Sean is a passionate, nurturing and caring teacher and excited to be a part of our L’Académie family, training our amazing dancers.

Julia Furnas – National Character

  • Yulia started her “road to dance” in Russia, at the age of 5.
  • At 19 she graduated with distinction as a ballet dancer from the State Choreography Academy in Voronezh, Russia, where she studied classical ballet (Vaganova system), character and folk dance.
  • Upon her graduation Yulia joined the “Russian Seasons” Moscow State Dance Company (the breakaway group from famous Igor Moiseyev Ballet). At the same time she became a student of the Balletmaster Department in Russian Academy of Theatre Arts (GITIS) and graduated with distinction, receiving a Master Degree as a Producer- Choreographer.
  • Yulia was a soloist dancer with the “Russian Seasons” for 12 years, travelling the world extensively, performing the dances of many styles: from the technical Russian and the wild energy of Gypsy to the passionate flamenco of Spain and the tangos of Argentina, from the footwork of Irish dances to the choreography of Broadway. Amongst only 12 dancers she was chosen to participate in the unique Japanese production of Stravinsky’s “Rite of Spring” butoh-style, choreographed by Min Tanaka.
  • During these international travels Yulia often was asked to give master classes at local ballet schools.
  • In 2005 Yulia moved to Sydney, where she taught National Character dance at the ballet and dance academies, prior moving overseas again in 2010, when she was teaching ballet and National Character dance in NY, USA and Manila, Philippines.
  • Yulia is happy to share her knowledge and expertise with students at L’Academie and promote the unique and captivating art of National Character dance in Australia.”

Cynthia Haynes ARAD – Ballet

  • Cynthia studied at the Scully Borovansky School of Ballet and the Royal Ballet School, London.
  • While living and dancing professionally in Paris, Cynthia continued her Studies with Gilbert Meyer and Raymond Franchetti of the Paris Opera.
  • On returning to Australia Cynthia began teaching career under the guidance of Nellie Potts at the Scully Borovansky School of Ballet.Went on to study Theatre Production at the National Institute of Dramatic Art (N.I.D.A). On graduation she became a Stage Manager for the Sydney Theatre Company.
  • At the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, in 2000, Cynthia was appointed Course Coordinator for the Access Centre and assisted to launch the very successful course, Rising Stars, for young musicians.
  • In 2005 Cynthia returned to teaching ballet at various schools on the Gold Coast and Sydney and continues to be inspired by the progress of energized young students who love to dance.
  • Miss Cynthia brings many years of overseas and local experience to L’Academie.

Jeremy Gates – Ballet

  • Jeremy started his dance career as a commercial dancer. He represented Australia at World Hip Hop Championships in the United States with Phly Crew and was a lead dancer in music videos, festivals, clubs and corporate events across Australia and on Chinese and National TV. It wasn’t until his late teens that Jeremy’s passion for ballet overtook all other forms of dance and he made the decision to pursue ballet as a career.
  • Jeremy graduated the Tanya Pearson Academy Full Time program and continued his classical ballet studies at the selective Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst in Mannheim, Germany.
  • He was trained in the French and Russian (Vaganova) techniques under the direction of Stuttgart Ballet’s famous ex-principal dancers, Prof. Birgit Keil and Prof. Vladimir Klos.
  • Jeremy then received a soloist contract with the Thuringian State Ballet in Germany and went on to dance lead roles from classical ballets and contemporary works in Romeo and Juliet, The Nutcracker, Paquita, Coppélia, Swan Lake, Cinderella, Waiting room, Keimzeit, Der Joker, 27, Piaf La Vie en Rose and more.
  • Jeremy retired from the company and returned to Australia to concentrate on his teaching career.
  • He has adjudicated classical ballet sections at eisteddfods and since January 2019 has been a resident columnist for Dancetrain magazine.
  • As a teacher Jeremy aims to help students grow as technicians, artists and more importantly into kind, genuine, confident, passionate and hard-working people.
  • We welcome the commercial and overseas experience Mr Jeremy brings to L’Academie.

Ella Makovec – Ballet & Lyrical

  • Starting ballet at the age of 3, Ella continued her love of dance at Balmain dance Academy (now Dance Development Centre), moving to Alegria Dance Studios in Wooloomooloo to complete her final RAD Dance Examinations; receiving a distinction in Advanced 2. Miss Ella trained in Martha Graham contemporary technique at Algeria Studios as well as training at Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre in 2017.
  • Completing her High school education at MLC School, Ella participated in school dance, touring to America- performing at Disneyland, Madame Tussauds and various dance studios in LA and New York. Finishing the HSC in 2018, Ella received two ‘Call-back’ nominations for HSC Dance, as well as being a part of multiple successful state finalist Wakakirri groups assisting in both choreography and performance.
  • Additionally, Ella has been working in childcare since 2016, working for The After School Klub at various schools across the inner west. This includes Wilkins Public school, Camdenville Public school, Stanmore Public school and Taverners Hill Public school.
  • Ella is currently studying Nursing/Midwifery in her first year at University.

Issac Clark – Acrobatics & Contemporary

  • Issac began dancing at age 6 after his fascination with the popular children’s TV show, HI-5 and the iconic Barbie film, Barbie and the Nutcracker.
  • At age 11, he met the principal dancer of the Scottish Ballet Company, Tama Barry, who then recommended that he travel to Sydney monthly, to attend classical lessons at one of Sydney’s most acclaimed schools, Ecole Ballet and Dance Theatre.
  • This began Issac’s dance journey, attending Summer Schools, private lessons with incredible teachers, working as an extra in Dance Academy the Movie, joining the schools spectacular as a principal dancer and auditioning for Sydney Dance Company’s Pre Professional Year.
  • Issac has grown with Sydney Dance Company for 2 years, understudying the professional company in seasons 1 & 2 during 2019.
  • Mr Issac brings a fresh and dynamic perspective to L’Academie.

Cody Clayton – Commercial Jazz & Musical Theatre

  • Cody’s love of dance began at the age of 3 in Forster/Tuncurry. Cody performed with the Featured Dancer Ensembles in the Schools Spectacular 2016-2018 and was also was a part of The State Dance Ensemble with the Arts Unit in 2018.
  • During 2018, Cody was offered an internship at Jason Colman’s Ministry of Dance Full time Program in Melbourne for 2019-2020 and also a $20,000 scholarship to ED5 International Full time Program in Sydney for 2019-2020. Cody accepted the offer at ED5 and moved to Sydney starting 2019.
  • 2019 was full of exciting opportunities for Cody. Performing in the film entitled “Ellie and Abbie and Ellie’s Dead Aunt” which will be played at Sydney’s Mardi Gras Film Festival next year, the “Save our Sons” Gala, The Voice (Semi Finals and Grand Finals), “Touched by Christopher“ Launch Event and Showtime Performer at Luna Park Sydney are some of the highlights

Jessica Goodfellow – Contemporary

  • Miss Jess is a professional contemporary dancer having just returned to Sydney after living and working as a dancer in Barcelona.
  • After commencing her training with Lane Cove Dance Academy, RG Dance and Newtown Performing Arts she completed her professional studies at Sydney Dance Company – Pre-Professional Year.
  • Her strengths include teaching contemporary, jazz, ballet and conditioning and her favourite skill to teach, is improvisation.
  • Miss Jess is passionate about passing on her knowledge and hopes to encourage all students to excel and find their genuine love for dance.

Guest teachers: Miss Christine Atkinson, Miss Karen Barker, Vi Lam, Brianna Leary, Strickland Young