The Chiltern Academy was established in 1973 by Jane Anderson’s mother, Elaine, when she took over a High Wycombe dance school where Jane had been a student. It was a wonderful challenge for Elaine to run her own business – her husband came up with the new name and Chiltern Academy’s journey began.
The Prestwood studio opened in 1976 and started with a handful of eager students attending class on Friday afternoons. Little did they know that, over 40 years later, Chiltern Academy would still be thriving with nearly 300 students coming through the door each week.
What started as a local village dance school, offering ballet classes one afternoon a week, has since become one of Buckinghamshire’s most prestigious performing arts schools with students travelling from as far as Berkshire, Hertfordshire and Oxfordshire to attend. Numerous students go on to vocational colleges and successful careers within the dance world.
Over 50 classes are delivered weekly in the Methodist Hall in Prestwood High Street by a strong, dedicated team of fully qualified staff, each imparting their knowledge and passion for their craft. Every student is an important part of the Chiltern Academy family and the affection and appreciation they feel for the school is clear from the reviews left on CA’s Facebook page and website.
Students are given opportunities for regular exams and numerous performances throughout the year, with productions at the Wycombe Swan, Aylesbury Waterside, Milton Keynes Theatre, The Elgiva in Chesham and The O2 Arena. On 22 October students will be performing at the Shaftesbury Theatre in the heart of London’s West End, an event they hope will become an annual addition to the CA diary!
Each year, Principal, Jane Anderson, endeavours to add a new class to the already extensive timetable and she’s recently teamed up with Sophie Free at Freedom Yoga to bring you “Little Yogis”.
A delightful interactive class teaching yoga techniques and poses through stories, songs and games, this class for 2-4 year olds, with the help of their “grown-ups”, will start on Friday mornings from 8 September.