Two talented Burnley College Sixth Form Centre students earn places at one of UK’s top dance conservatoires

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Leeds Conservatoire – the Northern School of Contemporary Dance - has earned a reputation as one of the UK’s top higher education establishments specialising in dance, with its Alumni progressing to top roles in dance productions, as well as successful careers as choreographers, specialist teachers and dance company directors.

This year, two outstanding Burnley College Sixth Form Centre students have overcome strong competition from some of the UK’s top young dancers to earn places there, studying for BA Hons degrees and taking the next step on the ladder to career success.

Talented Gregor McIntosh and Abigail Mann are now pursuing their love of dance in Leeds, turning their passion into a career, after taking different routes to academic success at Burnley College Sixth Form Centre.

Abigail (19), from Rawtenstall, a former pupil at Haslingden High School, chose to study Dance at A Level, alongside English Literature and Drama. She has already shown her commitment to a career in dance by attending the Centre for Advanced Training in Dance, in Manchester, for four years and practising for up to four hours a day.

She said:

“I love to dance and live in the moment as I am dancing.  I’m really excited about studying at Leeds and exploring all aspects of dance although my career goal is to become a choreographer.

 “My time at Burnley College has helped me so much and I’ve enjoyed all the experiences I’ve had. I’ve been on so many trips that have been both fun and educational and it has given me so much to write about and discuss in my exams and in interviews. Plus, the Tutors are 100% committed to seeing you succeed and go out of their way to give you the support you need to do your very best.”

Gregor (18), from Slaidburn, a former pupil at Bowland High School, completed an Advanced Level Vocational qualification in Dance, enjoying the opportunity to concentrate full time on his dance studies and spend additional time in the College’s industry-standard dance studios.

He said:

“When I first visited Burnley College at an Open Event, I knew immediately it was the right place for me. I was impressed by the size of the Dance Department and its facilities and realised the Tutors were just as passionate about dance as me! I was absolutely amazed when I saw the current students dancing, I thought: ‘I want to do this!’”

Both Abigail and Gregor have taken part in the College’s thriving Dance Academy, producing pieces for performance at College; as part of professional dance productions in theatres across the North West and to tour schools inspiring other young people to take up dance

Their Tutor, Samantha Allen, is an Alumna of the Northern School of Contemporary Dance and said:

“Both Abigail and Gregor are exceptionally talented and have great careers in the dance industry ahead of them. I’m so proud they will be following in my footsteps to the Northern School of Contemporary Dance and am sure they will enjoy every minute of their degree courses.”

Principal of Burnley College Sixth Form Centre Karen Buchanan said:

“We’re so proud of Abigail and Gregor and can’t wait to see them flourish in professional careers in dance. They are truly an inspiration to our students currently studying dance – whether that’s at A level or Advanced Vocational Level – showing just what you can achieve when you combine your passion with our expert tuition; individual support and amazing extra-curricular activities.

 “Dance is an integral part of our Division of Creative Industries and Computing and the envy of many leading colleges. Each year, students excel both academically and in performances that really showcase their talent to audiences across the North West, as well as at College events. Their professionalism and dedication is truly outstanding.”

Are you passionate about Dance and would love to make it your career? We have both A Level and Advanced Vocational options for post-GCSE study, find out more online at www.burnley.ac.uk; contact 01282 733333 or email s.services@burnley.ac.uk.

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