Principal Staff

  • Principal and Artistic Director Ross McKim MA PhD NBS (IDP)
  • Deputy Principal and Head of Undergraduate Academic Study Amanda Britton MA
  • Assistant Director Head of Musical Studies Barry Ganberg BA
  • Assistant Director Hilary Clark ARAD dip PDTC
  • Finance Director Clare Buckle ACA
  • Head of MA and Research Ross McKim
  • Head of Studies Abby Hoffmann MA PhD
  • Wardrobe Master Paul Clarke
  • Ballet Hilary Clark ARAD dip PDTC
  • Ballet Paul Clarke BA (Hons) PDTD Dip
  • Ballet Ayumi Hikasa ARAD BBO Dip
  • Ballet Chris Wright MRBSoc (PDTD Hons)
  • Classical Solos Coach Anya Sainsbury CBE
  • Contemporary Dance Ross McKim MA PhD NBS (IDP)
  • Contemporary Dance Amanda Britton MA
  • Contemporary Dance Sian Hopkins MA
  • Production and Rehearsal Director Darren Ellis
  • Ki Somatics Master Tae Lee 8th Dan
  • Music Barry Ganberg BA
  • Musician Jill Barnes LRAM
  • Musician Chris Benstead
  • Musician Philip Enscot D.R.S.A.M., L.T.C.L., D.L.O.C.
  • Musician Barry Ganberg BA
  • Musician John Hoskins
  • Musician Frans Linthorst
  • Musician Alan Lisk MA, Cert Ed
  • Musician Tom Kirkpatrick
  • Musician Curtis Probel
  • Musician Irina Moiseeva
  • Musician Neil Shaw
  • Student Support Officer Michelle McKim BA
  • Osteopath Peter Dunleavy BSc (Hons)
  • Pilates Kio Tomiyama
  • Office Co-ordinator and PA to Principal Grace Campbell
  • Admissions and Registry Stevie Taylor
  • Projects Officer Heidi Spicer

For a list of recent guest teachers click here.

Ross McKim MA PhD NBS (IDP)

Principal and Artistic Director, Ballet & Contemporary Technique, Choreography

Ross McKimRoss McKim entered The Royal Ballet School in 1965 at the age of sixteen. Judged first in his class at the end of his first term he was taken into The Royal Danish Ballet by the end of what would have been his second. He then danced with The Royal Danish Ballet, The National Ballet of Canada and London Contemporary Dance Theatre as a principal dancer before performing for his own companies. He founded Moving Visions in London in 1976. It was later known as English Dance Theatre while based in the north of England. He set up Chamber Dance Theatre in Canada and moved it back to London. In 1985, he was appointed Director of Rambert School and re-established Moving Visions as a research vehicle. He has taught for all the major London professional schools and many companies including Rambert Dance Company, London Contemporary Dance Theatre and Phoenix Dance Theatre. He has choreographed for contemporary dance companies (including London Contemporary Dance Theatre), ballet companies (including The National Ballet of Canada), opera (including English National Opera), theatre companies (including the Tyne Wear Theatre Company) as well as schools, youth groups and puppets.

His choreography has won various awards including the Edinburgh Festival Critics Award and The Guardian Critics Choice. He spent the last years of his time as a full time dancer performing in his own companies mostly outside of London. During this period he was called, “… possibly the most beautiful dancer in Britain,” by the Birmingham Post and “…perhaps this country’s most beautiful dancer,” by the Yorkshire Post. His contribution to choreography has probably been most significant as presented in over twenty cathedrals, mostly in England. This work concerns a via negativa in dance and the experience and expression of the numinous. Concerning this work, as shown at the Edinburgh Festival, the Evening News spoke of, “…oases of hope and beauty in a world filled with gall”. He has an MA (Dance Studies; University of Surrey) and a PhD (Theology; University of Durham). He has written reviews, articles and three books.

Barry Ganberg BA

Music and Choreographic Studies

Barry GanbergBorn in New York City, Barry Ganberg graduated from City University of New York with degrees in Music and Psychology. He further studied music and composition with John Corigliano, baritone horn with Jack Hyatt and voice with Sylvia Friedrich. He has performed and composed for many dance and theatre companies including London Contemporary Dance Theatre, Scottish Dance Theatre, Ballet de San Marcos and Moving Visions for whom he is Music Director. Some of his most recent work includes the re scoring of Robert Cohan’s classic choreography “Class” in 2014. He is continuing to develop research into the use of percussion and voice with projects drawing from a variety of cultures in countries such as Ethiopia, Japan,  Lithuania, Peru and Senegal.

Amanda Britton MA

Assistant Director, Critical Studies and Contemporary Dance

AMANDA BRITTONAmanda Britton has over 25 years of experience as a dancer, teacher, rehearsal director, mentor and course leader. Following her training at Rambert School, she joined Ballet Rambert in 1984. She went on to become a leading dancer, creating roles in works by Christopher Bruce, Merce Cunningham, Richard Alston, Siobhan Davies, Ashley Page, Glen Tetley and Trisha Brown amongst others. She left Rambert Company in 1993, moving on to create and perform work with Siobhan Davies Dance Company, including the Olivier Award winning ‘Art of Touch’ (1995). Amanda taught extensively for Rambert Dance Company’s education and outreach department, and choreographed work for youth groups and vocational dance students. She has also taught contemporary dance technique in schools and companies throughout the UK. Retiring from performance following the birth of her second child, she joined the faculty at London Contemporary Dance School, where alongside a full-time teaching role she completed an MA in Dance Education and Training.

She took up her current post as Head of Undergraduate Critical Studies at Rambert School in 2005. Passionate about improving dance training and education for young people, this role has encompassed teaching contemporary dance technique in addition to overseeing the critical studies curriculum for the degree programmes at Rambert School. Amanda has retained her links with Rambert Dance Company, and regularly teaches company class. She has also worked as an External Examiner for several schools and currently fulfils this role at Trinity Laban.

Anya Sainsbury CBE

Classical Solos

anya-sainsbury_1 Born in Manchester, Anya Sainsbury started ballet training in Berkeley, California with Dorothy Pring and Theodore Kosloff. In 1947 she returned to England with her family and joined Sadler’s Wells Ballet School (now The Royal Ballet School). She joined The Royal Ballet Company in 1951 as Anya Linden and started dancing principal roles in 1957 including Coppélia, Giselle, Cinderella, The Firebird, Sleeping Beauty, Sylvia, and Swan Lake.

She married John Sainsbury in 1963 and she retired in 1965. They have three children and eight grandchildren. She has organised and worked on the production of five ballet galas in aid of One Parent Families, the most notable being ‘A Good Night’s Sleep’ with Wayne Sleep, and the ‘Anthony Dowell Ballet Gala’. She continues to coach at The Royal Ballet School and Rambert School. In 1987 she founded the Linbury Prize for Stage Design and was its chairman until 2010.


Hilary Clark ARAD dip PDTC

Ballet and Related Disciplines

Hilary completed her training at the Rambert School and immediately joined Scottish Ballet where she performed in all of the major classics and new works with the main company and also worked with the Educational Unit. On returning to London, Hilary toured extensively with London City Ballet and then completed the Professional Dancer’s Teaching Course at the Royal Academy of Dance, graduating with Honours.

Hilary has enjoyed considerable teaching experience at London College of Dance on both the diploma and degree courses, Elmhurst, Central School of Ballet (where she was also Artistic Co-ordinator for Easter and Summer Schools), Laine Theatre Arts and London Junior/Senior Ballet. Throughout her career Hilary has been a faculty member for the Royal Academy of Dance, teaching student and teacher courses worldwide; she is also an Academy Tutor, has twice taught the class section of the prestigious Phyllis Bedells Bursary Award and has recently worked as Senior Tutor for the Professional Dancers Teaching Diploma course. Hilary has been a guest teacher in California, USA, Tokyo, Japan and Coimbra, Portugal.

Paul Clarke BA (Hons) PDTD Dip

Ballet and Related Disciplines

paul-clarke Paul Clarke trained at Rambert School and Central School of Ballet at The Place. Upon graduation he joined the Deutsche Oper Am Rhein Ballet – Dusseldorf, Germany, dancing in ballets by George Balanchine, Jiri Kylian, Heinz Spoerli, Erich Walter and Roland Petit. He also danced with Malmö Staats Theatre Sweden and Hannover State Theatre, Germany, where he was a first soloist performing leading roles in both classical and contemporary ballets.

Paul also has a BA (Hons) Degree from Wimbledon School of Art in Theatre Design. His design credits include operas, ballets, contemporary dance, children’s theatre and several West End musicals. Paul graduated from the Professional Dancers Teaching course at the Royal Academy of Dance with Distinction.

Prior to joining the ballet faculty at the Rambert School, Paul taught at the Hammond School of Dance, Chester.

Paul is currently External Examiner on the Professional Dancers Teaching Diploma course for the Royal Academy of Dance.

Ayumi Hikasa ARAD BBO ATS Dip ttq

Ballet and Related Disciplines

Ayumi HikasaAyumi Hikasa was born in Tokyo and trained at the Noriko Kobayashi Ballet School and The Royal Ballet School. Upon graduating Ayumi joined the National Ballet of Portugal where she performed many soloist and principal roles in ballets such as La Bayadere, Swan Lake, Serenade and Theme and Variations.

She later danced with London City Ballet as Principal dancer performing many of the major roles in the company’s repertoire including title roles in Cinderella, Romeo and Juliet and Odette/Odile in Swan Lake. She has also worked and guested with many companies including Stars of British and Russian Ballet, Wiener Ballet Theatre, European Ballet, the 3rd Seoul International Ballet Festival in Korea and with Northern Ballet Theatre. She has also been in the cast of The Phantom of the Opera in the West End.Ayumi has taught a wide range of students, from very young to professional level. She teaches at many vocational schools and international summer schools as well as giving private coaching. She has also choreographed and co-produced two full length ballets in Japan.

Sian Hopkins MA

Contemporary Dance

HOPKINS-SianSian trained at vocational schools from a young age, including the Legat School, which led to gaining a place at Rambert School graduating in 2006. She has worked professionally with Inland Pacific Ballet and Stephanie Gilliland of Tongue Dance in California and the Peter McCoy Dance Company in Munich, where she also taught Ballet and Contemporary dance at Tanzprojekt. Since moving back to London, she has toured with Moving Visions and is currently Rehearsal Director for the company. In 2009 she co-founded Nexus Dance, debuting works at Cloud Dance Festival and Resolution! at The Place. Sian graduated from the MA in Advanced Dance Practice with Distinction in 2012.

Peter Dunleavy BSc (Hons) Ost


An ex dancer, Peter Dunleavy was a competitive swimmer and runner in his youth, before starting his working life as an Engineering Draughtsman. Changing to dance he worked with independent artists, Jane Dudley, Inge Longroth and Micha Bergese before a decade with the UK’s leading contemporary dance company, London Contemporary Dance Theatre. He then studied Osteopathy and once graduated ran a private practice specialising in professional bodies – athletes, dancers, fighters etc. On leaving private practice, he began working for the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama and devised and set up the Screening, Treatment and Rehabilitation Unit at Rambert School in 2006. He lectures in Anatomy at undergraduate level and assists in delivering academic lectures to the students and is currently part of the Dance UK Medical Advisory Group. Apart from dance, Martial Arts have been the consistent physical interest in Peter’s life, beginning with Judo and then Shotokan Karate. During his dancing years Aikido became the main focus of study. Peter holds 1st Dan in Shotokan and 2nd Dan Aikido.

Kio Tomiyama


Kio Tomiyama was born in Japan and trained there in classical ballet. She came to the UK to study at Rambert School in 1993. From 1996-2002 she danced professionally in Japan. In 2002, she qualified from the Pilates Teacher Training Course at Alan Herdman Studios and since then has been teaching Pilates at Alan Herdman Studios, Chelsea Harbour Club, Royal Academy of Dance and Millenium Dance 2000. Kio teaches Pilates, rehabilitation after injury and injury management as part of the Screening, Treatment and Rehabilitation Unit at Rambert School.

Master Tae Lee 8th Dan

Ki Somatics

Master Tae Yong Lee’s passion for martial arts began at the age of eight in Korea. In 1990, he held the title Champion of Korea and was National Representative in Kung-Fu, ranking second in the World Kung-Fu Championships. Afterwards, he continued his study and practice in other martial arts disciplines including Hapkido, Kickboxing and Taekwondo. He was drill master for the Korean Special Forces. He then established Sungji musical company in 1999 where he created and staged the musical ‘The Crucible’. In 2001, a second work, ‘Action Musical: the Former Life,’ was staged at the Korean National Theatre. He was given the opportunity to choreograph martial arts for the ‘Show Taekwon’ and ‘Jump’ in 2003, a show that ranked No. 1 at the box office at Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2005. He also worked as an artistic director of the ‘2003 World Culture Opening’ ceremonies, where he combined his skills in martial arts, dance, music and theatre. He then studied acupuncture and oriental philosophy under monk ‘Mook-jeong’ after which he travelled to the UK via America. He opened Sungji Action School in Isleworth, London and was appointed UK Commissioner for the International TGMS Federation. He also currently volunteers at The ARNI Trust (Action for Rehabilitation from Neurological Injury) and in 2012 he established Sang Moo Educational Trust LIMA (London Institute of Martial Arts). He teaches Ki Somatics at Rambert School.

Recent Guest Teachers

  • Esther Balfe - Forsythe Dance Company
  • Jackie Barrett - The Royal Ballet, Christopher Wealdon
  • Stephen Berkeley-White - Mark Bruce Dance Company
  • Carly Best - Vincent Dance Theatre
  • Kerry Biggin - New Adventures Dance Company
  • Sam Black - Mark Morris Dance Company
  • Neil Brown - Random Dance Company
  • Pippa Duke - Nederlands Dans Theater
  • Gosia Dzieron - Rambert Dance Company
  • Darren Ellis - Richard Alston Dance Company, Darren Ellis Dance
  • Hubert Essakow - The Royal Ballet
  • Dane Hurst - Rambert Dance Company
  • Tory Jestyn - Nederlands Dans Theater
  • Hannah KiddRichard Alston Dance Company
  • Luc de Lairesse - Balettoday Belgium
  • David Lloyd - Jasmin Vardimon Company
  • Lloyd Newson - DV8
  • Kerry Nicholls - k|n|d|c
  • Chisato Ohno - Batsheva Dance Company
  • Trish Okenwa - Rambert Dance Company
  • Christopher Powney –  Artistic Director, National Ballet Academy (Dutch National Ballet)
  • Pompea Santoro –  Cullberg Ballet
  • Pieter Symonds - Rambert Dance Company
  • Douglas Thorpe - Mad Dogs Dance Theatre
  • Renaud Wiser - Bonachela Dance Company
  • Jenny White – Russell Maliphant Company
  • Paul Zivkovich – Akram Khan Company