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Success Stories

I had been attending PPAS on and off since I was 5 years old (I’m now 24) I can still remember the times when I was there, performing in shows alongside Sisco Gomez “So You Think You Can Dance” Judge and Mark Calape from “Aninmaix”, who really inspired me as a young boy to want to dance. I came back to PPAS at the age of 16 which was one of the greatest decisions I ever made as I met friends for life and created so many incredible memories and performing opportunitys ranging from charity events, west end stages, barmitzfas and performing at the Edinburgh fringe festival with two great productions PCUK and SOLDIER.

I can proudly say that I now teach Drama and dance at PPAS and have been for the last 4 years. teaching was never really something I thought I could do but Maggie Paterson gave me the opportunity after assisting for a year and now I love teaching all ages and seeing people progress.

My professional credits so far include The role of Wolf Boy in the Universal Film Wolfman alongside Anthony Hopkins, Cradle to Grave with Peter Kay, Casualty, Lead role of Alex in Ibiza Undead, lovesick which is available on netflix and currently filming a new BBC drama called “Informer”

Jordan Coulson – Age 24

Rylan attended PPAS for 2 years from 2006-2008 as a recommendation from a friend. Since leaving PPAS, Rylan has gone on to succeed in a successful modelling career (D&G, Prada, Louis Vuitton) and most recently has become a familiar name on Television and in the music industry. After spending a year as part of Spanish boyband “4Bidden” , Rylan is now a houshold name through X factor and winner of Celebrity Big Brother 2013!

I remember when I first joined PPAS I was shy, unconfident and nowhere near the level of talent I was working alongside. After just a term at PPAS working with Pineapple ‘legends’ such as Maggie Paterson, Fleur Murray and Daniel Thomas, the improvement in my so called ‘hobby’ became a career choice. Since then I was an X Factor 2012 Semi finalist, with a sellout UK arena tour and European 2013 Tour, Celebrity Big Brother Winner 2013, Big Brother’s ‘Bit On The Side’ Presenter and a This Morning Presenter. I loved my time at PPAS , the teachers made me realise that you can achieve anything if you work hard enough. The Team are so amazing and its an honour to be able to say i come from such a professional and supportive establishment

Rylan Ross Clark Singer/Songwriter – Age 25

I joined PPAS at the age of 6 years old and have never looked back. My first show with PPAS was at the mermaid theatre ‘pineapple goes west’ and I remember I played Molly in the ‘Annie’ number. My confidence just grew and grew as the terms went by. My dancing, singing and acting skills went from strength to strength in such a short space of time. The teachers at PPAS gave me so much self confidence and instilled in me a sense of determination to reach for my dreams. At the age of 10 I was performing in ‘Carousel’ in the west end along side Lesley Garrett. In 2010 I was offered the Yusuf Islam tour which culminated at the Albert hall, a dream come true. As soon as I finished the tour, I went into rehearsals for ‘Oliver’ at the Drury Lane Theatre. Performing live on the x factor was such a great buzz!

I have continued my training at PPAS throughout my professional career and would like to thank Maggie for all her support. She has never missed one of my shows! Her dedication to all her students and to the performing arts industry is so amazing. I am so proud to be part of PPAS and look forward to my future training with her. I know that I am well on my way to realising my dream of performing professionally as an adult thanks to Maggie and all the staff at PPAS.

Lauren Ellington – West End Carousel, Oliver and 13 Finalist Open mic 2015

The training and opportunities that were offered here were invaluable, and the supportive atmosphere encouraged everyone to develop into strong and confident performers. I am now training at the London Studio Centre in the hopes of achieving my goal of becoming a performer, and I honestly can say that I would not have got there without my experiences at PPAS. I hope to never lose contact with the teachers and friends I have made, as have many treasured memories with them and cannot thank them enough for everything they have taught me. I couldn’t have enjoyed my time at PPAS any more, and needless to say, I miss it so much!

Katrina Dix – Age 18

My first experience of PPAS was when I decided to do their street dance summer school in August 2012. It was only for one week, but it showed me what I could achieve with professional dance training from some of the best choreographers and dancers in the UK. I was offered a scholarship to the PPAS Sunday school, and my life has completely changed. I have gone from doing school fetes, to now working in West End Theatre. I have performed in PPAS shows, Pantomimes and at the Ideal Home Exhibition, as well as getting a part in Matilda the Musical, at one of my first auditions arranged by PPAS. I have been offered a place at a top performing arts school, and I know this would not have happened if I had not come to PPAS, a little over a year ago. If you need confidence building, care, encouragement as well as top training, then I cannot recommend anywhere else, but here. Thank you Maggie, Fiona and team for your dedication and constant support for all our dreams.

Kalifa Burton – Age 13

I was lucky enough to be with P.P.A.S for nearly 9 years and it taught be so much not only as a performer, but I grew a lot as a person. I was surrounded by people who believed in you and your talents and pushed you to new levels where I massively grew in confidence and improved throughout the 3 disciplines. Not only the great training and a new attitude towards professionalism in Performing Arts that P.P.A.S gave me, but also the many many performances and shows I had the opportunities to take part in became a big part of my life as i grew more and more attached it became to mean far more importance to me than a “Sunday School”. I committed to P.P.A.S for many years, and I can honestly say having not been there I very much doubt I would be in full time training now. The training at P.P.A.S was my first push towards the professional side of the performing arts, however the enjoyable factor was just the best for me…I couldn’t get enough of it, Sundays weren’t enough! I was then lucky enough to gain a place on the BA Hons Degree at The Urdang Academy, and I am very happy to have taken so much away from one place over the years. I am so fortunate to have met some fantastic people, both teachers and a close group of friends who I still to this day keep in touch with! Being at a full time vocational school and not attending P.P.A.S anymore, I still look back at the brilliant years I had there and I couldn’t have asked for anything more. I still pop my head in now and again and enjoy a positive place that still makes me smile from ear to ear and brings back so so many brilliant memories.
Thank you so much to everyone who was a part of making those years so special for me, and good luck to anyone who is about to begin on the P.P.A.S journey

Verity Rivett – Age 19

I started at Pineapple Performing Arts School in September 1999 at the age of 12. Over the years, I’ve progressed through the Junior School, Senior School and eventually on to the Adult course. I feel like I grew up at PPAS and I will forever be grateful for everything I learnt and for the many performance opportunities I had, regularly performing in London theatres, on national television and at massive events such as Proms in the Park. PPAS has been such an important part of my training and gave me so many skills that would prove to be essential as I embarked on full time training. In September 2009 I went to Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts where I completed the full time MA course in Musical Theatre. Since graduating in September 2010, I have been fortunate to secure representation with an Agent and am now auditioning in the industry. I am also very proud to be part of the PPAS Drama faculty and teach regularly at the school every Sunday.

Adam Shorey – Age 26

Lois was 2 years old when she began training at PPAS. She had not long been walking and had already started ‘krumping’!! She was soon picking up dance routines and performed age 2 at Stratford circus for the PPAS show ‘atTENtion’. She continued her training over the next 2 years and began working professionally aged 4. Her TV credits include playhouse Disney and Nick jr as well as commercials for the USA She was one of the successful candidates chosen by Arlene Phillips for the ‘Wizard of Oz’ at the London palladium as a munchkin.

Lois has grown up to be a confident and disciplined child who loves attending her Sunday classes at PPAS. Without the expertise and dedication of Maggie and her colleagues she would not have the pleasure of performing in the west end at such a young age and be so confident and secure to do so. She has described the opportunity as a “dream come true”. PPAS is an amazing school to be part where every kid has the opportunity to learn in an environment full of fun and encouragement.

Mirelle Ellington – Mother of Lois

Pineapple Performing Arts School was the only regular dance training I received. I joined at the age of 11 and during my time there I performed with the school in numerous shows working with some amazing teachers and choreographers. My training at PPAS enabled me to start working professionally from the age of 15. Since then I have danced/choreographed on two world tours and worked for names such as Florence & the Machine, Liam Gallagher, Roxy Music, Vodafone, Lexus, Nokia, Adidas, Gucci, Chanel, Sky One, Strictly Come Dancing, The David Letterman Show and many more. Without the incredible PPAS team and the high calibre of tutors they employ, non of this would have been possible. Thank you for a brilliant 4 years! J x

Jade Sullivan – Age 21

Gemma joined PPAS as a contemporary dance student and whilst a pupil at PPAS Gemma discovered her passion for ‘Street dance’ and every style under that umbrella.Since leaving PPAS she became a member of prestigious Hip Hop Dance Companies Boy Blue Entertainment & Boadicea.As a member of both companies Gemma has added many prestigious credits to her CV including: Dance Captain & Dancer London 2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony (Olympic Park, Stratford)Assistant Choreographer – Stooshe – MOBO Awards, Children In Need / Alexandra Burke – All Night (Music video), Dancer – Rita Ora – Kimberly Wyatt – Lemar, Hip Hop Theatre – LEGACY (Dance House, Ipswich) / OVER THE EDGE (Barbican) / BREAKIN’ CONVENTION (Sadlers Wells)Actress – McDonalds Commercial / One Man Walking (Short film [Channel 4])Got To Dance 2012 finalist – Boadicea (Sky 1)! ”

Gemma Hoddy

Raphaella was first selected by her drama teacher for the PPAS Metropolitan Police course when she was just 13, and then joined Fame a year later. She attended PPAS from 2004-2008 where often she represented the school in their many singing, acting and dance troupes, including Y@P- Street Dance Weekend Championships, Olympia’s ‘Move it’, and the Covent Garden turning on of the Christmas lights. Since leaving PPAS, Raphaella has signed to a production label and is writing and recording her debut album. which is anticipated for release in 2011.

I’ll never forget my time at PPAS- the manic rehearsals half an hour
before a show- hairspray, makeup and clothes flying everywhere, and the amazing teachers and friends I made. PPAS gave me the confidence to believe in myself both as a performer and as a person. Being there from the age of 13-18, it really felt like a family who I grew up with, and I’ll always feel at home whenever I go back

Raphaella Mazaheri-Asadi – Age 22

Born in London, Scott started his career in the entertainment industry at the age of sixteen when awarded a scholarship to Pineapple Performing Arts School after completing the MET Police week course. Scott then went on to gain three distinctions in Musical Theatre at Hertford Regional College. He was invited back to Pineapple Performing Arts to teach dance whilst being apart of four different dance groups! Scott has since appeared on Top of the pops, Blue Peter BBC’s Proms in the Park, MTV’s LYNX BOOM CHICKA WAH WAH RALLY in Miami and 52nd Grammy Awards with BEYONCE in Hollywood, Los Angeles to name a few.

Having performed his own material live at THE ORIGINAL SONGWRITERS in London and on BBC RADIO 1XTRA, Scott had his first taste as a recording artist with song he wrote ‘Never Leave Me Alone’ on the WARNER MUSIC release which reached No.2 in the Garage charts, the song also featured on many compilation albums including ‘The Number 1 Garage and Bassline album’, ‘PURE GARAGE: REWIND BACK TO THE OLD SKOOL’…. Scott then made his West End debut in The Take That musical ‘Never Forget’, having been part of the original cast on the UK Tour in 2007. He then went on to star in ‘FAME The Musical’ and is currently in ‘Thriller Live’ Michael Jackson Musical West End.

“I would like to thank Maggie for the opportunity she gave me and her continued support!”

Scott Maurice – Age 26

I joined Pineapple at the age of 11 having danced since the age of 3 at my local ballet school Taylor Dance. As I moved on to Pineapple I was able to explore my love of drama, training with all the great teachers I was exposed to from the professional business. Through the opportunities I was given at PPAS I performed in many shows and television programmes including The Queen’s Jubilee Celebrations and Blue Peter. I secured an agent for my acting ability and a highlight (whilst still at school) was appearing in a major commercial for Robinson’s Fruit Drink on national television.

After completing my A levels I went on to attend Mountview on their post graduate course and since then have been lucky enough to make it my career working as a model, dancer and actress. I have been a part of PPAS for over 10 years and even teach there occasionally too! Not only have I had a brilliant time training and performing with PPAS, but have made some amazing life long friends, we still all keep in touch and attend the adult socials every term, I could not imagine what I would be doing now if it hadn’t been for the support of the school and all ait has to offer on so many levels!

Clare Bridges – Age 26
Sterling Williams West End Credits: Simba in the Lion King and Young Michael Jackson in Thriller Live

Sterling Williams

Anthony Kaye Dancer and Assistant Chorographer on XFactor, danced in pop videos with the likes of Pussy Cat Dolls, Girls Aloud, Alexander Burke and Rihanna to name but a few!

Anthony Kaye

PPAS currently have many students in Full Time Training at prestigious schools and colleges including The Britt School, Rose Bruford, Arts Ed, Urdang Academy, East 15 Acting School, London Studio Centre, NLDS, LIPA and Mountview.

Jermaine Smith – Charlie Bates – Keanu Wilson – Vedi Roy – Jade Stanger – Lily Tello – Jazz Andrews – Buju Sen – Guy Salim – Betty Marquez – Verity Rivitt – Grace St Hill – Emme Hayward – Allie Munro – Razak Osman – Jordan Coulson – Katherine McNamara – Katrina Dix – Emily Clements – Adam Shorey plus many more.

STUDENTS IN THE BUSINESS!

Many of our students gain outstanding successes in West End shows and as professional performers. We are proud and delighted of all of their success. Check out what some of our students and ex-students have achieved!

Mark Calape West End credits include: Into the Hoods, Pipe Piper, Thriller Live, Finalist in So You Think You Can Dance – Member of the award winning dance group Animaineax

Mark Calape

Sisco Gomez Director Dance2xs. Danced with Madonna, Pussy Cat Dolls, Kylie and regularly appears in pop videos with leading artists. Well known as his role as a judge on So You Think Dance

Sisco Gomez

Paisley Thomas and Candice Krieger-Dyer – Nala in The Lion King Lewis Bundy – X.Factor dancer Russell Royer – Into the Hoods Jennifer Lee Moon – Recording Artist Desrina Ramus – Backing Vocalist Boyzone Paul McRae- The Bill, Walking the Dead, William and Mary Acayzia Parker – Recording Artist Loick Essien – Recording Artist Gemma Hoddy, Kieron Nelson, Sam Gollie – Boy Blue Joe Smith – Funny Girls Blackpool Joe Drum – X factor dancer Royal Variety Performance Sophie Webb – Co-founder and Principal Sole Academy Nileeka Gunwardene – Co founder Director Bollwood Dance London Warren Glen – PDG