Debi Rush gained a BA Honours Degree in performing Arts at the University of Hertfordshire in 1998. She then began work as a professional actress in children’s theatre working with the legendary ‘Sooty’ and touring with ‘Art Attack’. After travelling the world, purely for pleasure, Debi decided on a slightly different career path on her return. She has never looked back and has been teaching drama to children aged 5-12 years for the past 18 years. Debi began Little Tanks in 2003 teaching all the classes herself, however after a growth spurt in the company and having two children, Lily & Harry she decided to take a more managerial role. Little Tanks has grown from strength to strength building up to 18 schools per term!
Alexandra (Alex) Searle graduated from GSA in July 2018 with a degree in theatre and performance. During her training Alex completed her Lamda grades and spent a placement year teaching and gaining plenty of experience at Berzerk Productions. During her final year at GSA Alex co-created Tales & Trails Children’s theatre company that took ‘Eliza’s Big Adventure’ to the Edinburgh Fringe 2018. Alex has always had a passion for working with young people and enjoys working for Surrey Youth Music Theatre during the holidays helping to create musicals in a short space of time with groups of young people. You may also find Alex dressed as a princess and covered in glitter working as a party host for CTP, making children’s party dreams come true!
Emma Duncan Trained at the University of Central Lancashire gaining a BA Hons degree in Acting. Since then as well as perusing a career in acting Emma has also found a love of teaching her skill to others. Emma has taught at Stage Coach teaching children from aged 5 up to teens all the disciplines; drama, singing and dance before setting up her own holiday theatre workshops that proved very successful before taking some time out to travel the world. Now Emma is back in the UK and working as a nanny for 2 families looking after babies and toddlers she is keen to get back into teaching by joining the Little Tanks team.
Alexia Amasanti graduated with BEd.(Hons) in English & Drama from Kingston University and is a fully qualified primary school teacher. Over the last 20 years she has enjoyed teaching drama to children of all ages, beginning at Eastcote School of Drama. She prepared students for LAMDA exams and staged theatre shows at The Compass Theatre. After bringing up her family of four, Alexia returned to teach drama to children aged 5-16 years at Stars at Knight School of Drama in 2013. During this time she has enjoyed the rewards of helping students, including those with special educational needs, develop confidence and drama skills whilst preparing them for theatre performances and Trinity Guildhall exams at all grades.
Mine Çerçi studied dance as a child in Istanbul instilling an early interest in movement and performance, from there she went on to study Theatre Studies at the Sorbonne in Paris. After taking the two year acting course at Ecole Jacques Lecoq, she joined Clout Theatre as a performer and a director with two of her shows nominated for Total Theatre Awards. Back in Istanbul, Mine co-founded a Physical Theatre and Comedy School as well as working with private, state and municipal theatres as a freelance director and as a Drama Teacher in a British School. Mine has been very busy studying and now holds a master’s degree in Language, Arts, Cinema from Paris 7, Denis Diderot University. Her most recent drama teaching in the UK is at the Identity School of Acting and Fresh Arts in London.
Gabby Parker trained at London Studio Centre for three years gaining a First Class Honours BA Degree in Theatre Dance; and was always awarded the Most Progress Achieved cup in her graduation ceremony (previous winners include award winning choreographer Stephen Mear). Soon after graduating Gabby was cast in the International Tour of Cats the musical playing the role of Victoria/ White Cat. Gabby was due to go back on tour with Cats but due to the pandemic it could not go ahead. Last year Gabby was cast in the International tour of Phantom of The Opera, but unfortunately this is also on hold due to issues still surrounding the pandemic. Amongst this Gabby has always continued to teach in several schools and venues across the country including Stagecoach, Boo Theatre and Pinnacle Performing Arts. Gabby has a real passion for teaching and is excited to be joining the Little Tanks team.
Shani Woodley studied Musical Theatre at The Brit School of Performing Arts for two years and then continued her studies at Chichester University graduating with a BA Hons in Dance. She has trained extensively for many years in various styles of dance, including Ballet, Tap, Modern, Contemporary and Musical Theatre. Currently taking her DDI teaching qualifications in ISTD Modern Theatre and Tap, Shani is looking forward to becoming a qualified ISTD teacher. Shani has had the experience of working on many large projects within the Film/TV industry and also stage performances as well as teaching for various schools and companies within the area. Priding herself in her keen eye for detail, high expectations and passion for the Arts, Shani loves helping young performers to blossom and grow, whilst having fun and learning new skills.
Hayley Allerton achieved a degree in Theatre Studies with Dance at The University of Hull and completed her training at The Rep College. With a background predominantly in Repertory theatre, credits include Lady Macbeth; Carol, Shakers; Val, Fen; Anne, Fall; and Vera in The Odd Couple. Hayley completed a year touring Europe and the US as Wendy in the Bob the Builder Live international tour. Building on her career in Recorded Media she presented the Cowes Powerboat Race for Sky Sports, and most recently appeared as Jess in PRIDE for BBC Films. After touring with children’s theatre, and working at Legoland, Windsor for the SGA entertainments team Hayley discovered a real passion for working with children and can’t wait to get on board with the Little Tanks team. Hayley’s love for theatre and first big role as Alice in Alice in Wonderland all stemmed from after school drama clubs so this is a great opportunity to recapture that magic, helping children to learn and grow through their love of performing.