All WSBPA teachers are fully qualified and registered with the Royal Academy of Dance, London and with the Imperial Society of Dance, London. They are also Garda Vetted and fully trained in First Aid & are up to date with all current child protection policies
Suzanne O’ Leary
RAD, DIP, DEG, AISTD
Suzanne has choreographed, produced or directed over 200 shows to date. A lover of Musical Theatre and Ballets, she is most at home when working on the stage or behind the scenes. This is why she chose a career that leads her from one amazing project to another. Suzanne’s dance training began at the age of three with the Wexford School of Ballet and Modern Dance; by age ten she had started RAD major training in Dublin and at fifteen had moved to England where she completed her RAD Ballet, ISTD Modern and National Dance majors. While there she gained invaluable stage and TV experience performing with many well known celebrities. Suzanne has received a RAD Ballet teaching certificate, an anatomy degree, a degree in the history of dance and an ISTD associate diploma & 6 levels of Des. On qualifying Suzanne was asked to train Intermediate and Advanced RAD and ISTD in Italy and England. She did so in England for some time and then on her return to Wexford in 1988 continued this training in Wexford, with her students receiving the highest results in Ireland. Suzanne’s students also won many awards and scholarships, 3 of them travelling to the Kirov Ballet School in Russia.Suzanne’s past students have been accepted into English National Ballet School, English National Ballet Company, Rambert Ballet, Laine Theatre Arts, Doreen Bird, Performers, Arts Ed, PPA, Laban London, Elmhurst and many more prestigious colleges in London. At this time 3 of Suzanne’s students are studying Musical Theatre in London & many of Suzanne’s students have written their own success stories, dancing professionally abroad and opening their own dance schools.
Suzanne has a passion for hard work and achieving only the best in the individual. A firm believer in discipline and preparation, but also a true believer in the love of stage and all the fabulous attributes it brings to a young performer. Suzanne runs the Wexford School of Ballet and Performing Arts in Wexford, Enniscorthy and New Ross.
Suzanne has been resident choreographer with Wexford Pantomime Society since 1989, and has received an honorary award for years dedicated to the Society. She is also an honorary and founding member of the Oyster Lane Theatre Group, with whom she has been resident choreographer since its inception. Suzanne is a nominated Aims award winner for her choreography of Hairspray the musical.
Ann O’ Leary
RAD, ISTD – Child Liaison Officer
This year, Ann O’Leary will celebrate over five decades of tutoring aspiring young dancers with many of them going on to successful dance careers. Ann trained in Dublin and at The Hammond School London and then returning bringing ballet to Wexford for the first time. In 1965, there were just a dozen or so pupils and one teacher – Ann. In 1986, Ann was joined by her daughter, Suzanne, who had completed training in England. By 2005, the school had expanded to three centres, Wexford, Enniscorthy and New Ross. They have worked side by side ever since and not only have they a firm working relationship, but are also best friends.
“After all these years, my mother’s vast experience is overshadowed by her obvious love towards the children, the younger end of the scale being her forte,” Suzanne says. “One class after another grace her door weekly and all is rosy in the garden as long as Mrs. O’Leary is there.”
Emma is a fully qualified Royal Academy of Dance ballet teacher and Imperial Society of Teachers of Dance modern dance teacher. She has been dancing since age four. Her dancing started with Wexford School of Ballet and Performing Arts. Emma did Ballet, Modern and Tap passing every exam with top marks. Any show from ballet school to Tops of the Town to Pantomime to the Opera, Emma was part of it. In Loreto Secondary School Emma was taking major dance exams and still passing with high results, and so decided to pursue her dream and take up dancing as her profession. Emma auditioned for dance colleges in London and was accepted for her first choice, Bird College of Performing Arts. She was one of thirty girls chosen from hundreds of applicants. Emma completed three years gaining a Diploma as well as many more examinations and plenty of performing experiences. When Emma left college she danced abroad with a dance troupe in Japan and Greece for many years. On her return to London she gained her teaching certificate at the Royal Academy of Dance. From there Emma was teaching in London at well established schools. The age range she has taught is from 3 to 20 years. On returning to Wexford Emma has been a teacher with the WSBPA and also freelances.
RAD, ISTD, PBT
Sinead started dancing at the age of 5 with Wexford School of Ballet and Performing Arts. During her training her she studied Ballet, Modern and Tap, taking her examinations in RAD Ballet and ISTD Modern with the school. On completing secondary school in Loreto, Wexford, she embarked on a Law Degree finishing with a BA Honours. She continued to dance throughout her studies, and finally decided to further her dance career. She successfully auditioned for Inchicore College of Further Education where she successfully passed her Diploma in Dance Instruction and obtained her Diploma in Dance Education both from the ISTD. Sinéad has also received a Certificate in Dance Education from the Royal Academy of Dance, London . Sinéad received a scholarship from the Leonardo Da Vinci Trust to attend an intensive dance programme in Vienna in the summer of 2011. During her studies in Inchicore, Sinead continued to work with as an Assistant Teacher with WSBPA, while also performing and acting as Dance Captain with Wexford Light Opera Society and Oyster Lane Theatre Group, and Wexford Pantomime Society, where she has also acted as Assistant Choreographer. Sinead is a qualified teacher of Progressing Ballet Technique (PBT) and is Resident Dance Teacher with Scoil Mhuire Primary School, Coolcotts. Sinéad is also a freelance dance teacher for adults and kids.
Jonny is a multi-styled choreographer who started dancing at the age of 13 with the Wexford School of Ballet and Performing Arts. Here he studied Modern, Ballet and Tap, successfully achieving ISTD Modern exams and RAD Ballet exams. On completing his Leaving Cert in St. Peter’s College Wexford, Jonny decided to pursue his hobby as a career. He began a tailor-made intensive course under the main tutelage of Suzanne O’Leary where he passed his vocational dance majors with flying colours.
Jonny completed his Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing Qualifications in Dance Instruction & Dance Education with London based examiner Linda Sweetzer and Dublin based examiner Louise Behan. Jonny obtained a first class honours and finished top of his class throughout his exams. Jonny’s love of teaching and his commitment to students has always come first, leading him to turn down some performance opportunities with the likes of Disney, Netflix and the BBC.
Jonny also works and performs with many other local groups, including Wexford Pantomime Society, Wexford Light Opera Society, Kilmore Variety Group, Centre Stage School of Ballet & Performing Arts, the Corish-Wallace Performing Arts School & Oyster Lane Theatre Group where he choreographed their hugely popular 25th Anniversary Production of ‘Grease’.
Jonny is the resident dance teacher and choreographer for Windmill Therapeutic Wexford and dance teacher with County Wexford Community Workshop, Enniscorthy, both working with adults with additional needs. He also spreads his love of dance and the performing arts by teaching in primary and secondary schools around Wexford.
Jonny believes dance is for everybody and offers ballet and modern fusion classes for adults (info on Facebook @JonnySmithDance), team building, one-to-one tuition, flashmobs and wedding first dances, for which he was mentioned in RSVP Magazine.
BA Honours Trinity Laban
Sorcha started her dancing with Wexford School of Ballet & Performing Arts from a very young age where she did Ballet, Modern and Tap. From there she went onto study dance at Inchicore College of Further Education in 2009. It was there she found her love of Contemporary dance and joined Dublin Youth Dance Company. In 2011 Sorcha moved to London and began her BA Hons Degree at Trinity Laban where she studied many Contemporary techniques such as Graham, Cunningham, Release and Limon. She also worked with other areas of Contemporary such as choreography, Laban Notation and improvisation. She worked with many world renowned Contemporary artists such as Richard Alston and Rosemary Butcher and performed their works in the Bonnie Bird Theatre. With Rosemary Butcher’s work she travelled to Tel Aviv, Israel to perform in 2014.
Éilish started her dance training at the age of 3 in RAD Classical Ballet, ISTD Modern & Tap, along with Irish Dancing. She progressed her classical training as a Royal Ballet School Associate from Junior to Senior level before gaining a scholarship to Bird College of Dance and Musical Theatre Performance, London. After graduating in 2009, Éilish spent many years working for The Walt Disney Company, as a Dancer & Character Performer, including playing some of Disney’s best known and loved characters in Disneyland Paris, France and Tokyo Disney Resort Japan. Her Princess performing roles included: Cinderella, Ariel, Sleeping Beauty & Rapunzel.
Since moving back to Ireland, Éilish has performed with the Wexford Pantomime Society, Oyster Lane Theatre Group, New Ross Musical Society and the Wexford Light Opera Society.
Éilish has been part of the WSBPA teaching team since 2018, and has recently completed a 2 year course to gain her Certificate in Ballet Teaching Studies with the Royal Academy of Dance.
(BA Hons in Musical Theatre & Dance, Bird College, London
Sam trained at Doreen Bird College of Performing Arts, London & graduated in July 2018. Previous to this, Sam attended WSBPA & the Irish College of Musical Theatre. Sam is also a qualified Personal Trainor, Fitness Instructor & Spin Instructor.
Since graduating, Sam has been performing professionally between the UK, Ireland & Germany.
Sam’s performing credits include; Backing Singer for Celtic Woman – Postcards from Ireland (DVD & PBS TV Special), Ensemble in The Mikado (National Concert Hall, Dublin), Ensemble & Understudy in Aladdin (Gaiety Theatre, Dublin), Ensemble in Peter Pan (Malahide Castle, Dublin), Ensemble in Singing in the Rain (Adelphi Theatre, London), Dancer in Party Like Gatsby (Germany, Uk & Ireland), Dancer in The Royal Olympia Horse Show (Olympia Arena, London), Ensemble in Beauty & the Beast (UCH, Limerick), Dancer in The Twin Swing (London), Young Soldier in La Navaraise (Wexford Festival Opera), Perform (TV Commercial), Backing Choir for Take That (3 Arena, Dublin) & Fair City (RTE).
Alongside performing, Sam teaches & choreographs for a number of Performing Arts schools in Ireland, including WSBPA, Steptacular Stage School, Dublin, O’Hanlon Stage School, Dublin, Westside Performing Arts, Dublin, Waterford School of Ballet & Performing Arts, Elevate Academy of Dance and Dionysus Dance School.
Sam also works as a Fitness and Strength & Conditioning Coach for a number of sports teams & secondary schools.
There is a bit of insanity in dancing, that does everybody a great deal of good
What WSBPA means to me…
Couldn’t be better in any way, teachers go above and beyond, Never want to leave.
WSBPA is a place where i have learned valuable life lessons. I have been taught the importance of hard work and discipline, dedication and perseverance. WSBPA is a home away from home where i have been show that family isn’t just limited to bloodline.
It has given me the confidence to do what I love and has taught me so much about performing. I have been taught things I would never learn anywhere else. I have been treated so well and always love coming to singing and dancing class. This is my favourite place to be and WSBPA means the world to me.
WSBPA was like my second family growing up. I started as a little 3 year old and I grew up here. Most of my fondest memories have happened here in WSBPA and I’m so thankful to all the teachers that helped me throughout the years to grow and mature. I know that the friends and memories I’ve made here will be my lifelong friends. Dance has bonded us in a way that’s difficult to describe. WSBPA has reared all of us Honohans and I can’t thank you all enough.
The WSBPA has been such a huge part of my childhood. In my time here I have learned so much more than ballet and modern dance. I have made life-long friends here and will never forget the great moments I have had here, both on and off the stage.
WSBPA means everything. The school and staff gave me more than just dancing lessons. It gave me life lessons that I will never forget.
My favourite memories of my childhood and teenage years are of evenings spent in the studio in John Street with some of the best people, who soon became a second family. The best years of my life I’m sure! x
The strongest of friendships and unforgettable memories. For me, dance is for life now and I have WSBPA to thank for that.
THE WORLD! A place where you can truly be yourself and also discover who you are. The people you meet will stay with you for life – there’s no bond quite like a bond made through the love of dancing. Thank you for the most wonderful memories! 🙂
To me, WSBPA is my childhood. Your classmates slowly grow into family, teachers become like second parents and the studio becomes your second home if not your first! The WSBPA will always hold a special place in my heart and mind with unforgettable memories with people that I know will be my friends for life.
The WSBPA has been my second home since I was 3. Words cannot explain how special the WSBPA is to me. So many memories and opportunities I will cherish forever. It’s a special place with wonderful friends and teachers.
The WSBPA is a place where I have made a million memories over my 14 years here and each one never fails to bring a smile to my face. From seemingly endless rehearsals, to buckets of ice for my feet and every moment of friendship in between – I wouldn’t trade it for anything. I know that the friends I have made here will always have a place in my heart. I really didn’t know when I walked in the door aged 5 for the first time that I would have tears in my eyes leaving it, 14 years later.