Our trusted drama teachers are well-trained, highly experienced and know the Drama Kids + DK Youth Theatre curriculum inside out.
Gareth Corke (he/him) | Principal + Drama Teacher.
Hiya! I’m Gareth.
I have been involved in drama and acting all my professional life; but even before that- it was drama at school and youth theatre in my spare time, that triggered my love and fuelled my determination to build a career in the performing arts.
Before becoming your Drama Kids + DK Youth Theatre Principal, I had a long and pretty successful time, acting in plays in London, touring too - both nationally and internationally. I’ve been a regular and made guest appearances on all kinds of programmes and channels including the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Netflix and radio. I’ve also been in films and commercials broadcast all over the world and even a cheeky music video or 2! It hasn’t stopped at acting- I have also worked as a theatre and screen director, agent, set designer and acting teacher over many years now.
As a teacher, I worked with arts education companies all over the UK, specifically running drama classes and projects in inner city and rural schools, and departments of acting and performing in colleges and universities with all ages as well as training other teachers and adults to improve their acting and communication skills. I really believe drama is the key to amazing powers of speaking and influence which means I never stop learning! I look forward to getting to know you better over the next year; and learn what brilliant things you can do.
There are such exciting times ahead for all of us, so let’s … GO FOR IT!
Michael Burnie (he/him) | Senior Drama teacher
Hello everyone! I’m Michael.
I have been energetically teaching and nurturing Drama Kids _ DK Youth Theatre students into confident performers since 2005. And I love every minute!
I’m also an accomplished actor and director and when not in mentor mode, direct full-on shows for the Brighton Theatre Group like this year’s run- away summer success Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. I’ve led productions of Les Miserables, Miss Saigon, West Side Story, Hairspray, and Legally Blonde as well as choreographing things like the European tour of Hair… this year I start preparations for The Addams Family (which will be ghoul-tastic!), Sunset Boulevard and Saturday Night Fever.
So, I suppose you could say I’m a bit of a musicals fan! I’ve found acting and drama is as important in musicals as singing and dancing- and telling a good story should be made up of all kinds of interesting characters. One of my favourite roles has to be my stint as Mr Bump in TV’s The Mr Men.
What will your favourite character be? I can’t wait to find out!
Naomi Allistone (she/her) | Drama teacher
Hello DK, my name’s Naomi!
I grew up in Chichester and spent pretty much my whole life as a student of acting or as a professional actress. I was a pupil at a performer’s school called Tring, before studying at a drama school called Arts Ed in London. This is where I met Gareth your principal, as we started our professional life as actors together (I’ve got some funny photos of us as newbies, acting in a play somewhere!).
I’ve been lucky enough to have acted loads in film, theatre, and telly for many years. Recently, I’ve been in The Crown for Netflix, lots of commercials as well as sitcom shows, comedy improv and TV dramas. I’ve been teaching and directing drama with young people almost as long as I’ve been acting, and wholeheartedly believe in drama’s superpower to unleash the essential life skills of self -confidence, feelings of positive self- belief and adaptability. Drama Kids is the perfect example of this approach, which is why I love working with the DK team. We have a commitment to ultimately having fun with our students whilst teaching them to diversify their craft in a safe and inclusive environment.
See you soon in my classes or at our brilliant holiday clubs.
Ellie Wasylocha (she/her) | Drama teacher
Hello there I’m Ellie!
I am an Irish actor- teacher, storyteller, and director. I studied and trained in acting at The Arts University, Bournemouth and love working with Gareth and the team from the academy. I also LOVE our new name DRAMA KIDS - because as you’ve told me in class, it matches our energy as an academy, putting our 2 favourite things front and centre… drama and YOU!
I am also busy directing with a young and exciting theatre company in Sussex which brings a whole level of extra skills that I can bring to our sessions.
Class promise - we’ll have fun, trust our instincts, and use our voices so that we can express ourselves equally on stage and in life. I can’t wait to be your teacher-director.
Roma Cabanas (she/her) | Drama teacher
I'm a Brighton-native and university graduate of Bristol but have been working with Drama Kids since 2018. I’ve worked my way up from Student Ambassador to Teacher and it’s become my home from home, I guess you could say! Being part of the Drama Kids team is just as exciting as it was when I started out.
From the beginning, I've loved how Gareth & Drama Kids put building students' confidence and creativity as equally important goals, as I’ve discovered they are key in both our development as people and as performers. I'm looking forward to continuing to inspire more students with our brilliant plays and top-class curriculum. See you in class or at our Holiday Clubs which I adore too!
Mel Shiri (he/him) | Drama Studio Assistant
I first got the drama bug back in secondary school as it was the one subject, I was best at! 8 years later after completing a BA in Theatre Arts brought professional credits with the BBC, UKTV, Discovery, Chichester Festival & Goodwood among others. I entered the holiday park circuit and won plaudits entertaining children and families shortly before the pandemic. Balancing Drama Kids classes and children’s parties are my happy place in life!
My favourite Drama Kids moments are when we are all together at presentation days; the kids, the teachers, the audience, are a big boost of adrenaline. Fun fact: My expressive face and high-energy are my drama tools, but I also love to dance as well!
Anna Greco Stenner (she/her) | Drama Studio Assistant
I was a student of this academy for 6 years and I can honestly say I loved every second of it from the moment of joining when I was 10 years old to leaving at 16. I used to be a very diffident, quiet person before joining, and now I’ve found myself to be quite the opposite. I think this is to a large extent thanks to my experience with Gareth’s academy. When Gareth asked me to become an ambassador and then part of the team I jumped at the chance. Not only have I gained confidence that will stick with me for life, but I have also made some amazing friends along the way. I used to never think I’d have the guts to perform on stage in front of lots of people, but the atmosphere provided by Gareth and the team and being able to perform with people I got on with well transformed those performances and turned them into happy memories that I’ll cherish forever. I adore that as part of the teaching team now, I get to help create an enjoyable, friendly and inclusive space in every class.
I have done a fair few Summers, Christmas and Easter clubs during my time and there’s nothing more memorable than Drama Kids ones! Getting to know other people from different groups and places in Sussex, that share the same passion as you are invigorating! Our academy allows students to be creative and gain confidence. I love my job!
#Drama 4 Life!
Charlotte De Quervain (she/her) | Drama Studio Assistant
Nice to meet you, I’m Charlotte!
I am a new graduate with a BA (Hons) in Performing Arts, after my three years at The Brighton Academy and foundation year at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance.
I am very passionate about bringing the arts to young people, no matter the background. Through my own experiences growing up, attending Saturday acting classes for 15 years, I discovered so much about myself, built my confidence, and became the person I am today. I hope to help other children in this self-exploration through drama.
Shane Considine (they/them) | Drama Cover Assistant and PA to children
Hello, my name’s Shane!
I am an experienced piano and violin teacher and accompanist based in Brighton. I am also involved in children’s storytelling classes in Sussex. I would most definitely class myself as someone who has a love of all things creative! I started working with Drama Kids when Gareth invited me to become Studio Assistant Cover for his Brighton studio in Elm Grove, which I thoroughly enjoyed. I am doubly delighted to be in Haywards Heath too this term, as SENCO Support for drama Fridays- something I’m very passionate about.
#I Love Drama!
Gemma Brydges (she/her) | Holiday Club SENCO
Hiya I’m Gemma!
I’ve loved drama and acting for as long as can remember. As a child, I begged my mum to take me to drama lessons at my local theatre and those days were my favourite of the week. My brother was into acting and so I was not alone in exploring all things drama at school and college.
I have four children (count them- four!) who also have a great love for drama. I feel fortunate to now be able to work with other children both in the school environment and in performance skills alongside Gareth at Summer School Sussex.
By giving young people stage awareness and confidence in performance (whilst having a brilliant time) the Drama Kids +DK Youth Theatre system offers the perfect combination to becoming a well-rounded person.
#Drama For All!
Jonathan Daly (he/him) | Finance & Vice Principal
When I was younger, living in Glasgow I was part of my local youth theatre and amateur dramatics company. After a few shows as a backing dancer, I discovered being back stage and running the show was much more my thing!
This continued through college and my career running my own retail business and managing healthcare professionals like opticians and dentists. You have to be very organised to do my job and sometimes it can be a bit samey, which is why I’m delighted to be part of something as exciting as Drama Kids + DK Youth Theatre!
This year we will be expanding the locations of our classes in Sussex so that you will have greater access to a Drama Kids Academy near you .
I hope to see you all soon at the shows and if you have any queries re: payments or fees then please feel free to contact me.
Khola | Chief Canine Consultant
I’m Khola -the office dog.
My favourite things are chasing balls on rope and eating all the socks I can find. I’m good at running and jumping and making you tickle my tummy on command.
If drama is about exploring- then I’m an expert! I can crawl down low or jump up high, crash into the waves or snuggle and hide on the sofa (it’s easy I just cover my eyes with my paw).
Woof luck and welcome to the Drama Dogs, Sussex family!
Class + Holiday Club Ambassadors
Ava, Clem, Sophie, Josh, Tilly, Emily and Charlotte
If you’d like to become a Parent or Student Ambassador (DK Youth Theatre pupils) and join our ambassador scheme, please get in touch firstname.lastname@example.org If you’d like to know more about my brilliant team - just ask! Gareth (your Principal).
What people say about us
Throughout the 6 years of attending Drama Kids Sussex Academy, I have loved every second of it- from joining when I was 10 years old to leaving at 16. I used to be a very diffident, quiet person before joining, and now I’ve found myself to be quite the opposite. I think this is to a large extent thanks to my experience at Drama Kids Sussex. Through Drama Kids Sussex, not only have I gained confidence that will stick with me for life, but I have also made some amazing friends along the way. I used to never think I’d have the guts to perform on stage Infront of lots of people, but the atmosphere provided by the Drama Kids Sussex team and being able to perform with people I got on with really well really made those performances turn into happy memories that I’ll cherish forever. The teachers made every class very enjoyable and inclusive.
I have done a fair few Drama Kids Sussex summer schools during my time and that’s been a memorable experience, getting to know other people from different groups that share the same passion as you. This academy allows us as students to be creative and gain confidence.
My son’s drama teacher at Drama Kids Sussex has been a huge inspiration to him. The lesson has benefited him in countless ways and he enjoys and looks forward to every lesson. He would go every day if he could!
I would highly recommend both the Drama Kids Sussex drama classes and the Drama Kids Sussex summer school. The teacher is great with the kids – they love her – and she works hard with them to put on shows they are proud to be part of.
Eva has loved coming to Drama Kids Sussex drama classes. She is always keen and reports that she has had fun. The teachers are really warm and friendly and they have a great rapport with both the children and the parents.