ABOVE - GIFFORD DANCERS PERFORM AT LIVERPOOL M & S ARENA IN THE GRAND FINAL OF THE LARGEST GROUP DANCE COMPETITION IN THE UK!
As a dance academy we are a little different and like to be flexible in our thinking. We do not always stick to the same rigid schedules and so far every year since Gifford Dance started we have offered our dancers new, challenging and varied experiences compared to the year before.
If an opportunity arises that we think dancers would enjoy, helping with confidence and learning, then we take it and try to open these adventures up to those they would most benefit.
Most recently, we have taken dancers to perform at Disneyland Paris, we did our first weekend at Elite Dance Championships (with another coming soon), entered new national competitions progressing to the finals (and winning!) set up the Professional Programme for those wishing to take their training to the next level and so much more. We are also organising new workshops with guests in the profession as well as trips to aid learning. We are due to perform at the Grand Prix at Sliverstone in Summer 2021 and we can't wait! In addition we have our annual show, performances at local fetes and our Summer school as well as all the regular classes and competitions etc etc. Hopefully you get the idea! There is always a lot going on and dancers work as a team on their group routines where every individual counts and plays an important role. We also offer solo competitions too. Make sure you take a look at our competition page to appreciate just how fantastic our dancers are!
Each and every dancer that comes to us gets first class teaching from fully qualified coaches and you can see more about this below.
We often refer to our ‘GDA family’ and this is how we see ourselves. Everyone connected with the academy becomes an honorary ‘Gifford’. Not only do the students make valuable and life long friendships through the dance school, but the parents often do as well. We hold regular events which are often fundraisers to support the dancers, allowing us to invest in equipment and costumes. In the past these have included the fabulous Christmas ball, coffee mornings, discos, a Disney event, bbqs, cake sales, movie nights and parties to name but a few, some of which now happen annually. We rely on the help of the parents/carers to make events like this happen and we never cease to be amazed at the generosity and support received. Everyone gets on so well, looking out for each other and GDA offers a friendly, welcoming environment for all. We even organised a parents/helpers dance routine and classes and the excitement this generated continues, so we'll definitely have to do it again! We try to keep all our events very family orientated putting the dancers at the centre of all we chose to do. This is incredibly important to us.
GIFFORD DANCE ACADEMY
Britain's Got Talent 2019
Since a very early age, the 'Gifford Girls' have loved to dance and over the years, being encouraged to perform has increased their confidence in many ways beyond the dance floor. The sisters have won countless medals, titles and trophies as partners and know how to keep themselves very flexible.
As well as being professional dancers, choreographers and teachers, both Rebecca and Lucie are accomplished acrobatic gymnasts. They have had the honour of being the regional champions at the highest grade and have reached national level on multiple occasions. However, although they the love lifts, tricks and tumbles, you will not find more qualified dance teachers than Rebecca and Lucie to help you concentrate on technique and to aid those thinking of a professional career in dance.
The sisters are keen to pass on their knowledge and to encourage others to discover what they are capable of. They have an enthusiasm and energy that most would envy and a natural way with children. Young people respond well to the girls as they enjoy their classes, learn and achieve.
At GDA we love nothing more than a dance show and believe in giving parents a chance to watch routines that have been prepared so they can see how their child is progressing. It does the kids good too to show off what they can do!
REBECCA graduated with a FIRST CLASS honours degree in dance and professional practice and studied at the critically acclaimed number one institution for contemporary dance in the world, Trinity Laban Conservatoire in London. There she has attained a postgraduate diploma in community dance. Her time at Laban has been a real privilege, giving her the opportunity to progress even further as a professional dancer and to learn from some of the very best. Rebecca is also a level two British Gymnastics coach.
LUCIE has also attained a FIRST CLASS honours degree in dance and professional practice. She is a very strong dancer well suited to hip-hop and street dance and in contrast, she is a beautiful contemporary dancer, proven when she won 'Best In Show' at Destination Dance 2020.
The sisters filmed with Britain's Got Talent on three different series, following an invitation to do so, and Rebecca was one of the dancers on the big Bollywood movie De De Pyaar De in 2019. The sisters' choreography is new and challenging and has already won Gifford Dance a place in the final of the largest group dance competition in the UK, where they won the adjudicator's award at Liverpool M&S Arena. They have performed at Blackpool Opera House on multiple occasions along with their students, danced alongside the 'Big Band' at Birmingham Symphony Hall and performed with some of their dancers at Disneyland Paris.
Having grown up in Stotfold (and being the sixth generation in their family to live here) the girls are now enjoying giving back to, and playing a part in, the local community to which they belong, as well as expanding farther afield. They are branching out with national competitions, working on behalf of large international organisations leading workshops, teaching, choreographing for external groups and shows, performing across the country and travelling with their dance company too. They are looking forward to performing in Amsterdam this Summer, before taking the International Gifford team to dance championships in Spain in October.
Bachelor of Arts with First Class Honours
in Dance and Professional Practice as well as a postgraduate diploma in Community Dance from Trinity Laban Conservatoire.
IF YOU WANT TO SEE MORE THEN WHY NOT LOOK US UP ON YOUTUBE OR INSTAGRAM
Marta Beccatini leads our Professional Programme. Having trained in Spain, Italy and England in Contemporary, Flying Low, Contact Improvisation, Ballet and Rhythmic Gymnastics she is a fantastic dancer and a wonderful asset to our team. She has lots of experience in the industry, having worked with some big names such as the DETI (Dance Educators Training Institute, USA), Tanztheater, Phoenix Dance Theatre, Motion House, Word Dance Movement and many more giving her a wealth of knowledge to pass on
The wonderful Margarita Cook leads our ballet sessions. Margarita started ballet when she was 7 years old. She studied professionally in the Higher Private Professional Dance School “NIKI KONTAXAKI” – NIKOLETTA’S BAKALI” in Greece for three years where she trained Russian system ballet and contemporary dance (mostly Limon technique).
Since achieving her Diploma as a dance teacher for both Ballet and Contemporary dance, she has gone on to accomplish a masters degree in the UK in “CHOREOGRAPHY & DANCE PERFORMANCE.”
She has worked as a ballet teacher in both Athens and London and is proud to have placed fourth in ballet at the International Dance Competition in Greece. She has taken part in many professional productions and we are extremely fortunate to have her as part of our team.
This Is Us! Gifford Dance Showcase 2020
Some of our Classes in Action
Performing at Disneyland
Britain's Got Talent 2019
We enjoy our classes!
Rebecca and Lucie are also competitive gymnasts
Blackpool Opera House
Rebecca and Lucie also run SSA Dance
Practice makes perfect
Dancing at Disney!
Filming at Britain's Got Talent
This is us!
Britain's Got Talent
Trying on costumes
Tricks and Tumbles
Performing at Fetes
Rebecca and Lucie at Nationals
We are keen to focus on these areas