Teaching staff

Miss Yvonne Plester

Miss Yvonne Plester

Principal and owner

Miss Yvonne has been the principal of the school since 1986 and teaches all genres of dance.

Miss Yvonne was originally trained at the School under the direction of Miss Yvette Sargent and Miss Mavis Butler – both well recognized examiners and teachers. She has been trained in all subjects, and achieved all her major qualifications from the ISTD. A working knowledge through years of experience enables her to adapt her teaching methods to suit all ages and abilities, whether the pupil is dancing purely for pleasure, or aiming for a career in the industry.

By attending regular courses, her skills and knowledge are kept up to date, including the changing approaches to teaching pupils. Yvonne is also an approved tutor to coach pupils for teaching qualifications in the four branches of dance.

She has been the choreographer of Chesham pantomime for several years and is currently the trophy Secretary for the Chesham Arts Dance festival.

Alongside running her school Yvonne also works as a freelance teacher. She also sits on the White Hill Centre committee. The White Hill Centre is ‘the home of the dance school’.

Yvonne is a member of the Board of Management of the Elgiva Theatre, Chesham.

Miss Isabelle Russell

Miss Isabelle Russell

Assistant to Senior Modern

Isabelle trained with Sargent and Plester from a young age in Ballet, Tap and Modern.

Isabelle has completed DDI and DDE in Classical Ballet, Modern Theatre and more recently has studied the new ISTD Contemporary syllabus.

She has enjoyed developing her teaching skills under the guidance of Miss Yvonne and feels that this strong dance background has been a huge benefit in establishing her own Personal Training business. Isabelle adores teaching and wants to keep passing on her love of dance to others.

 

Miss Freya Turton

Miss Freya Turton

Singing coach

Freya was inspired to sing, act and dance from a young age and now works as a freelance musician and teacher in and around London.

She studied singing as part of her degree in Music at the University of Manchester achieving a 1st in her final vocal recital.

At the age of 11, she had a solo role on the West End in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s ‘The Woman in White’. Since University, Freya has performed roles in musicals and operas including Woman 1 in ‘Songs for a New World’, Mabel in ‘The Pirates of Penzance’ and The Novice in Puccini’s ‘Suor Angelica’. Freya also enjoys directing, having been assistant director for the world premiere of a new opera, ‘Mysterious 44’, and she has directed productions of Handel’s ‘Acis and Galatea’ and Gilbert and Sullivan’s ‘The Mikado’. Freya is a Choral Scholar at St Martin-in-the-Fields in London and regularly sings in other choral ensembles.

Freya learnt to dance at Sargent and Plester from the age of 4 and she is excited to return to teach the next generation. Her future plans are to pursue a professional career in Musical Theatre and Performance.

Miss Catherine Simons

Miss Catherine Simons

Drama and LAMDA Tutor

Catherine is a local teacher, director and actor who trained at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, obtaining a first class degree in Drama, Applied Theatre, and Education.

She has facilitated and directed theatre in contexts including; state and public schools across the county; within the criminal justice system, and directing children’s theatre. Catherine is a versatile and energetic performer who uses movement and dance in her work, and is passionate about making theatre for social change. Previously, Catherine has performed and produced shows at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival based around physical theatre and movement. Her most recent credits include, Assistant Directing the immersive theatre Beatrix Potter Tea Party, at the Guernsey Literary Festival. Catherine is also a musician and has tutored and directed at the National Youth Music Camps.
Catherine is keen for her pupils to see taking LAMDA exams as a way to build confidence in themselves and their art. She’s exceptional at teaching her pupils to use narrative, voice and movement to create high quality pieces for their exams. She explores drama as a way to express, energize, and engage with an audience.
Catherine is very excited to teach at Sargent and Plester and spread her love of drama and theatre.
Miss Katy Beckett

Miss Katy Beckett

Tap teacher, Junior Modern and Ballet

Miss Katy started dancing aged 2, and spent her younger years dancing in pantomimes, filming for children’s television, and also performend in Joseph and his Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat in the West End.

As she got older, she started taking her ISTD examinations in Imperial Ballet, Tap and Modern theatre.
In 2006 Katy started a two-year performing arts diploma at the North London Dance Studios and graduated in 2008. From here she went on to dance for Disneyland Paris in 2008 and 2009.
Once Katy was back in the UK, her training continued at Penny Meekings’ Dance college in Royston, where she gained her DDE teaching qualifications in Modern Theatre and Tap and her DDI in Ballet.
Alongside her training Katy taught classes at local dance schools to both children and adults.
In 2014 Katy took her teaching to Australia and New Zealand for 2 years, before returning home and teaching for schools across Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire.

Miss Amy Butterfield

Miss Amy Butterfield

Street Dance Teacher

Amy trained at London Studio Centre, and  is passionate about instilling confidence by creating a safe and supportive environment where students can express themselves.

She has taught at various studios, schools and colleges including Pineapple Dance Studios, Pineapple Performing Arts School, London Studio Centre and Italia Conti.
She performed with the international touring street dance show ‘Bounce The Streetdance Sensation’ ultimately becoming Resident Director. She was also a member of ZooNation.