Whiteside’s School of Dance is a well established Dance School based in Smallfield, Surrey. Originally formed in 1988 as Burstow School of Dance, it became Whiteside’s School of Dance in 1999 after current principal, Sarah Whiteside, took ownership in 1997.
One of the largest dance schools in the Horley area, Whiteside’s pupils range in age from 3 to adult. Whiteside’s School of Dance is a dedicated Monday to Friday dance school open to those wishing to dance as a hobby as well as those who wish to complete the ISTD graded examinations. Whatever the ambition or ability of the pupil, we have suitable dance classes available where every pupil is valued and treated equally.
The main aim of the School is always to introduce the art of dance, musicality and performance to local children/students. We provide the opportunity to attend dance classes with highly qualified and experienced dance teachers/choreographers. The opportunity to become good, all round accomplished dancers, fully prepared for their exams, to confidently audition for panto, shows, vocational dance & theatre colleges.
The School is very proud of its reputation for good discipline and high standards, but still remembers that dance should be fun. There is a great rapport between our teachers and pupils.
Every two years Whiteside’s School of Dance produce a fully costumed high quality show at a local theatre. There is a presentation ceremony afterwards, where students hard efforts are awarded with a number of Trophies for different accolades. In 2016 our show at the Hawth, ‘What a Night’ was a huge success. Every member of the school was involved and all thoroughly enjoyed their time there. Our street boys added something special to this show but generally all pupils looked fantastic in their huge variety of costumes, dancing beautifully to very appreciative audiences. Our next show was on 1 December 2018, entitled ‘Dance through the Decades.’ This show was 72 snippets of dance from the 1920s up to the present day and was divided into the appropriate decades. We have had amazing praise for this show – the quality of the dancing, the choreography, the enthusiasm and enjoyment of the pupils, the extraordinarily high standard of the street and the wonderful costumes. We are very proud of all the pupils for their hard work and effort during 2018.
There are also regular performance opportunities, including choreography competitions and local shows. We were invited to dance on the BBC Strictly Come Dancing UK tour, in which over 50 pupils participated and in 2015 we won first places in the So You Want To Dance competition in Burgess Hill (and were runner up for the whole competition with our street number.) In 2016 we successfully entered So You Want To Dance again – testing the water of dance competitions. These successes led to Sarah and Abi, our street teacher, deciding to form competition teams.
Konnect and Konnect Minis were formed in 2017. Pupils from the street classes were invited to join these new competition teams for extra training, and from October 2017 we have entered the world of dance competitions. Under the tuition and guidance of Abi Brooke and Sarah, these teams dance to a very high standard and are achieving great results. Lyrical, contemporary and jazz dances have also been entered for competitions with amazing results.
Check out our Recent Events pages for full stories and all the pictures.
We try to make it to London to see a musical or ballet from time to time – nothing like being inspired by the professionals!
Whiteside’s School of Dance always has lots going on. There are always many events that pupils can participate in alongside the ISTD Ballet and Modern Dance Examinations. The exams are, of course, not compulsory and some pupils move up to the next class once they have reached the required standard.
Dancing should be FUN, although always disciplined. We think we have that balance just right!