'We're a happy little family': Brentwood dance school celebrates 25 years

Lorraine's School Of Dancing

The dance classes take place at Bentley Village Hall - Credit: Lorraine's School Of Dancing

A family-run Brentwood dance school is celebrating its 25th anniversary year.

Lorraine’s School of Dancing offers a variety of dance classes, including ballet, tap, modern, jazz, musical theatre, street and competition work. 

Lorraine's School Of Dancing

Many of the school's pupils participate in competitions - Credit: Lorraine's School Of Dancing

Founder Lorraine Hornsey trained at Bush Davies School of Theatre Art and has worked as a professional dancer and choreographer for over 40 years. 

She said: “Twenty-five years in, it feels like I’m just getting into it. 

“It’s a very fun little school, we’re a happy little family really.” 

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Her daughter, 29-year-old Sophia, said she felt “amazing” to see her family business reach this milestone. 

She said: “I remember when it was in a tiny hall, and it has grown so much. 

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“It’s so nice to watch people who I used to dance with as a child here bringing their own children to lessons.” 

Lorraine's School Of Dancing

Lorraine Hornsey (l) and daughter Sophia Hornsey enjoy working together - Credit: Lorraine's School Of Dancing

The school teaches children aged two to 18, and students have gone on to dance and theatre schools including Bird College, a conservatoire for dance and musical theatre. 

Lorraine explained: “It’s wonderful watching them go onto colleges and dance schools. 

“Our students always say it feels like they’ve grown up with us.” 

Sophia added: “Dance builds confidence, helps them meet friends, keep active and also teaches discipline - but in a fun way.” 

Having begun dancing as a toddler, Sophia went on to become a professional singer and dancer on cruise ships. 

In March last year, lockdown restrictions meant she had to return home from Miami, and helped move the school online. 

Lorraine's School Of Dancing

Lorraine teaches a variety of classes - Credit: Lorraine's School Of Dancing

“We’ve run online classes every single day throughout lockdown,” she explained. 

“Our students are very committed and enjoyed the classes from home. 

“It was tricky to balance at the beginning, as I was also setting up my own entertainment businesses, but worth it in the end.” 

Lorraine added: “Sophia is an asset to the team, and we’re working very well together - we're very close.” 

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