Kindy Dance Time® takes great pride in our carefully selected teachers, who are not only highly experienced, but also possess a more important quality – the unconditional love of children. Our teachers regularly attend Professional Development workshops in the areas of Creative Dance, Music, Drama, Teaching Methodology and Early Childhood Development to update their knowledge and to provide the best tuition for your child.
Lara began her dance training with her mother, Terri Charlesworth OAM, CitWA, and from a young age she travelled extensively studying at many major dance institutions throughout the world. In 1981 Lara successfully auditioned for the Victorian College of the Arts, where she trained for two years. Later at age 15 she was accepted into the Australian Ballet School where she once again trained under Terri. In 1985 she was awarded a scholarship to attend L’Academie de Danse Classique Princesse Grace in Monte Carlo, studying under Marika Besobrasova and many other world-renowned dance teachers.
From 1986 Lara was chosen to perform professionally with the Ballet de Monte Carlo and L’Opera de Monte Carlo, performing throughout France and Italy. After settling back in Perth, Lara performed in numerous guest performances in WA, however her dancing career was cut short due to major back injury.
It was a natural progression for Lara to follow in her mother’s footsteps and embark on a dance teaching career. After teaching Classical Ballet to younger age children, she was quickly promoted to Senior Classical Ballet Teacher for elite training programmes including the Graduate College of Dance and later the Junior Professional Course, Charlesworth Ballet Institute and Youth Ballet WA. From 1991 to 1996 Lara was also Assistant Director of the Terri Charlesworth Ballet Centre where she managed the ballet school and expanded it to 12 locations. To this day Lara is a Senior Classical Ballet teacher and examiner for the Charlesworth Ballet Institute and Youth Ballet WA.
With over 25 years of dance teaching experience to children of all ages, Lara has worked very closely alongside her mother Terri. She has had extensive professional development training in Classical Ballet teaching, specialising in the Vaganova method, including international teacher training tours of the Vaganova (Kirov) Ballet Academy in St Petersburg, GITIS Teacher training school in Moscow with Evgeny Valukin, the Hamburg Staatsoper Ballettschule and other leading dance schools throughout Europe. Lara has also attended numerous Vaganova based teacher training courses in Australia including those conducted by Irina Kolpakova and Lubov Nikonenko. Her dance studies have also included teaching methodology, Dalcroze, anatomy studies, music theory, dance history, Laban Movement Analysis, contemporary and creative dance, prevention and care of injuries, and much more.
In 2002, with two young pre-schoolers of her own and recognising her passion for a quality dance programme suited to the early childhood years, Lara undertook the intricate development of the Kindy Dance Time programme and commenced teaching it in WA. In 2004, with a passion to provide a quality dance programme for children aged under five, she became Director. Lara has striven continually to maintain the relevance and wholly intrinsic value of all Kindy Dance Time classes which she passes on to all of the current employed Kindy Dance Time teachers and Franchisees in regular training sessions.
In 2012, Lara welcomed her third child – a daughter – into the world. She continues a teaching role as Senior Classical Ballet for Elite Students at the Charlesworth Ballet Institite and is the Franchisor of Kindy Dance Time. In 2016 Lara was named a finalist in the National AusMumpreneur Awards for Service Business and in 2020 was one of 8 shortlisted for the Telstra Business Women’s Awards.
Nel began her dance training at a young age studying Classical Ballet, Tap and Modern techniques and continued through her university years in the UK. During this time she performed in many dance productions and was the recipient of several dance awards, including the Bishop Prize for Dance at the University of Bath. Nel also studied piano and violin, undertaking Royal Academy of Music performance and theory exams, orchestral percussion, and has been involved in various choirs and choral societies as a soloist and group singer.
Establishing her career as a Professional Linguist at the Foreign Office in London, Nel also maintained her passion for dance and endeavoured to keep dance as a part of her adult life, regularly attending classes at Pineapple Studios in Covent Garden. Now as a mother of two and having settled in Perth in 2010, she taught and facilitated music sessions for 0-5 year olds, proving to be very popular with children and parents alike, and joined the teaching team of the Charlesworth Ballet School in 2013. We were thrilled to announce in November 2011 that Miss Nel was joining our Kindy Dance Time team. With her warm and engaging personality and oodles of enthusiasm to share her wonderful knowledge and passion for dance and music, she continues to capture the hearts of our gorgeous Kindy Dance Timers!
Jude began her dance training at six years of age, studying many varied styles including Classical Ballet, Jazz and Tap dance. Her love of children led her into a career in early childhood. With a Diploma in Social Science obtained from Meeralinga, Jude has worked with young children for over 30 years. She incorporated her love of performing arts by creating and implementing dance and music sessions for children aged 2-6 years in weekly developmental programmes. She has also enhanced her education in early childhood development attending a variety of courses on growth and play, learning, and music.
In recent years, Jude developed her dance, music and teaching skills attending Dalcroze workshops taught by, amongst others, Joan Pope OAM. She has extended her repertoire in working with children to include hosting children’s parties based around dance, music and fun! Jude also holds a Diploma in Nutrition and is a mother of two grown-up children. Our most experienced teacher, Jude began teaching for Kindy Dance Time in 2005 teaching six days a week and endearing herself to thousands of students. After spending a year off, Jude returned to Kindy Dance Time’s wide-open arms in 2017!
Lauren has had a passion for dance since she was very young and at age six began her dance training with Brian Hewitt, ARAD. M.B.B.O. Adv. Dip PDTC. She then continued her ballet classes with Kim Baker at the Terri Charlesworth School of Ballet.
Being exceptionally talented she was accepted into the elite full-time programme of the Graduate College of Dance at Swanbourne SHS at 12 years of age. Under the Direction of Terri Charlesworth, OAM. CitWA, Lauren was taught by Lara Gandini, Beth James, Joan Pope OAM, Luba Nikonorenko from the Kirov ballet and many other leading dance tutors. Her studies encompassed many styles including Classical Ballet, Character Dance, Contemporary and many theoretical dance subjects.
During her training there in the mid 1990’s Lauren was also selected to perform in many productions including Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker and the spectacular Gala performance “Stars of World Ballet” at the Burswood Theatre. She was very fortunate to perform alongside and learn from ballet principals such as Sian Stokes, Steven Heathcote, Jacinta Ross, Alan Alder and Jayne Smeulders.
Lauren’s dance teaching experience spans a varied age group from two to 18 years of age and she also currently teaches for the Charlesworth Ballet School. With two young children of her own Lauren began teaching for Kindy Dance Time in 2012. She has established herself as a very popular teacher and we are so delighted to have Lauren and all of her wonderful experience, passion and dedication on our team.
Our gorgeous Miss Rachel commenced dancing at a young age and it has been a major part of her life ever since. She trained in Jazz, Tap & Classical ballet in the RAD and CSTD Syllabus achieving high grades in her examinations.
Rachel competed in dance competitions in her teenage years receiving many awards. She also completed and passed her student teacher’s exam.
After completing Year 12, Rachel attended a short course with the Victorian Theatre Company. She then travelled extensively, obtaining many international dancing contracts throughout the world.
In between dancing contracts she worked professionally as a dancer and dance teacher in Perth and performed in corporate and stage shows, major A list events, cabaret and fashion, including being contracted as a West Coast Eagles and Perth Wildcats dancer for over 10 seasons. Rachel has also experienced much work in modelling for TV commercials, print and mixed media shoots.
Now with two young pre-schoolers of her own, Rachel is absolutely thrilled to be a part of the Kindy Dance Time team and share her love and passion for dance with our little ones!
Zeffie commenced Classical Ballet under the instruction of Terri Charlesworth OAM, CitWA. During her training at Ms Charlesworth’s ballet college, Zeffie was also taught by many international world renowned teachers, including Yuri Vasilkov and Lubov Nikonorenko from the Kirov Vaganova Ballet in Russia, Terri Charlesworth and Kindy Dance Time’s very own Director, Lara Gandini.
A very talented dancer, Zeffie later furthered her dance training by successfully being accepted into the West Australian Academy of Performing Arts, Advanced Diploma in Dance course. She was chosen by her peers as the most improved student in her graduating year and she continued to study at the academy for another year to successfully complete her Bachelor of Arts. She was taught by many international choreographers and teachers including Kim McCarthy, Diana De Vos, Andries Weidmann, Sue Peacock and Justin Rutzou. During her studies, she was also exposed to numerous styles of dance including Contemporary, Spanish, Character and Improvisation.
Later, Zeffie danced professionally with the West Australian Ballet in their productions of Giselle, Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty. She has also performed and helped to create Ashleigh Berry’s 2012 Fringe Festival dance production “Occupied”.
After taking an interest in fitness, Zeffie studied to become a personal trainer completing her Certificate 3 and 4 in Personal Training. She was training over 35 clients a week and taking group fitness classes but dance has always been her passion.
With 10 years teaching experience at different dance schools and high schools across Perth, Zeffie now has two young children of her own. She is an enthusiastic, fun and popular teacher who is thrilled to be able to share her passion for dance with our Kindy Dance Timers!
Shonty started commenced dancing as a young child and it has been an important part of her life ever since. She trained in various dance styles, developing a love in particular for Jazz, Tap, Ballet, Acro and Hip Hop.
Shonty participated in numerous dance competitions in and around Perth, while also successfully completing her CSTD and RAD examinations, and continued dancing into her adult years. Her love of working with children lead her to obtain her Cert III and IV in Education Assistance, before beginning her studies at university for her Bachelor of Education degree.
Now married with three beautiful children ages 10, 7 and 3, who all share the same passion and love for dance, Shonty is excited to combine her great passion for education with her love for all aspects of dance as part of the Kindy Dance Time team. We are sure that, with her joy and enthusiasm for dance, Shonty will engage our little dancers and ignite their excitement at exploring the world of dance. We are thrilled to have Shonty join our team, teaching from Term 1 2020!
Kirsty fell in love with dancing at a young age. Her Scottish heritage saw her start with Highland Dancing, and later she began training in Ballet, Tap, Jazz and Modern through the ISTD Syllabus, achieving Honours in many of her dance examinations and receiving studio awards for Tap. She later moved on to focus on Hip Hop and Contemporary.
As a child Kirsty was selected for elite performance groups and excelled in singing, acting, and musical theatre, alongside her dance training. In her teens she was invited to become a Junior Teacher, following which she spent seven years teaching full-time at various large performance companies and attended University.
Kirsty has a Batchelor of Social Work and specialises in youth and family counselling. Her love for the stage has been fulfilled for the last 12 years fronting popular cover band FLYTE who held residencies at many of Perth’s largest live music venues.
Now a mum of two beautiful babies, her passion for facilitating a love for the arts in children has grown, and she is thrilled to be part of the Kindy Dance Time Team. We are so excited to have Kirsty join our team and we know that our little ones are going to have a ball with her!
Julia began her training as a dancer at the Darwin School of Ballet Cecchetti studio. Her time under the tutelage of ‘Madame’ Lili Vita became the foundations of her own teaching approaches and fueled her love of the art form, the significant value it offers to our lives and an appreciation of all dance genres. She went on to study a Bachelor of Arts in Dance at Adelaide University, under David and Simi Roche. After graduating, Julia, along with resident Darwin choreographer and long-time friend, Joanna Noonan, established the Juniper Tree Dance Company in 1981, a youth-focused dance collective.
In 1995 Julia travelled to the United States to undertake an Independent Study Program with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Centre in New York. Since her return to Australia, she has strived to give back to her community, inspired by Madame Lili. Having attained a Graduate Diploma in Secondary Education through the Charles Darwin University, she went on to work in Northern Territory schools dance programs, as a studio teacher/choreographer at Darwin School of Ballet (1998-2019), as facilitator for Ausdance NT workshops, as a Dance Animateur at Tracks (2003-2008), as a local performer with Sunameke, Tracks Dance, SLIDE Youth Dance Theatre, Gary Lang and Kilos Kultura, as a part-time choreographer, mentor, performer and creative consultant for SLIDE Youth Dance Theatre (2011-2020), and in a long-term position as Dance teacher at Darwin High School (2001-2019).
Julia is passionate about Contemporary dance, Classical Ballet and the rhythms of Pacific Island dance, but don’t be surprised to see her groove with Hip Hop or bounce with some Bollywood styles either! With a particular interest in youth, Julia promotes dance as a pivotal tool to empower young people to excel in their lives and stimulate a way of ‘being’ in the world.
In 2020 Julia took a step back from her roles at Darwin High School and Darwin School of Ballet, making a sea-change move from Darwin to Perth with her family. She is excited to learn new skills and we are thrilled to have her join the Kindy Dance Time team. We know that out Kindy Dance Time families are going to love her engaging, warm and fun personality!
Kym began her dance training at a young age and studied Jazz, Tap, Classical Ballet and Contemporary. She competed in many competitions, winning a number of awards, and completed exams in the CSTD syllabus. She continued dancing through her university years and completed her CSTD Diploma of Dance Teaching (Theatrical).
Kym studied a Bachelor of Science (Physiotherapy) and worked at The Centre for Cerebral Palsy (now The Ability Centre) where she also developed a dance program for people with disabilities. She taught at a number of dance schools in Perth until moving with her husband to Newman in the North West of WA.
Eager to share her love for dance with the people of Newman, Kym started her own dance school there which quickly grew to a school of over 300 students teaching Modern, Hip-hop, Ballet, Tap, Contemporary, Acrobatics and Aerial dance. She went on to complete her Acrobatic Arts Teacher Training and also her IPDFA Pole dance instructor training.
Now with two young children of her own and having returned to Perth, Kym is looking forward to continuing to share her love of dance with our little dancers and we are thrilled to have her as part of the Kindy Dance Time team.
Chloe started Physie (Physical Culture) at a young age in Sydney, NSW, where her love for dance grew immensely. She established her career as a Flight Attendant, but maintained her passion for dance whilst flying around Australia!
When Chloe moved to Perth in 2013 there was one thing missing and that was her Physie, which was hard to believe when BjP Physie had been in Australia (on the East coast, at least) for over 125 years! So, Chloe set up and began running her own Physie Club, Westcoast Physie. She has competed at National level for over 10 years and has taught 16 National Representatives in the last 7 years. Chloe loves nothing more than watching those in her club thrive and grow, in both their physie skills and in their confidence. She is a smiling and friendly face for all, and each week she is there ready to believe in everyone who walks through her clubs doors.
Now a busy mum of 2 and step-mum of 2, Chloe is thrilled to be sharing her passion for dance and desire to inspire others to explore the wonderful world of dance with our Kindy Dance Time families. We know that, with her warm and engaging personality, she is sure to be a big hit!
Alana’s love of dance began at an early age. She studied various styles including Jazz, Tap, Classical Ballet, Acrobatics, Singing and Drama. In her teens she successfully auditioned for her first professional role dancing for the State basketball team. She also became an Assistant Teacher for her dance school and was heavily involved in choreographing and teaching students at her High School for special events and performances. In 1996 she was asked to be one of 5 dancers cast in the Musical ‘Carousel’.
From there she completed her Cert. 3 in Community Services, working with young children from 0-5yrs, and then moved onto studying for a Bachelor of Education-Primary. Throughout her 4 years of University, Alana elected in addition to study Dance, Performing Arts and Working with Special Needs.
After completing her Degree, Alana worked both overseas and back in Australia in various roles dedicated to facilitating programmes for young people, including those with special needs, which enabled her to combine her two passions of working with children from a diverse community and dance.
Alana’s first experience of Kindy Dance Time several years ago was as a parent bringing her daughter to classes with our Director where both she and her little one relished their dancing time together. Having loved the whole programme all those years ago, Alana is excited to be back in the Kindy Dance Time fold. We are thrilled to have her join our team to share her knowledge and passion with our lucky Kindy Dance Time families!