From one children’s dance class in a draughty church hall to a custom built dance studio and biannual shows at Halifax’s Victoria Theatre, Limelight Theatre School has come a long way.
This month, Limelight is celebrating its 10th birthday, with three students who have been there from the very beginning.
Kaitlyn Young, Holly Knowles and Eloise Denney all attended the first class on November 5, 2008, as dance teacher Lisa McCann looked to start her own business in Rastrick.
Ten years later, Kaitlyn and Eloise are now Senior Streetdancers working towards Limelight’s next show and Holly is studying at Huddersfield New College.
Limelight is owned by Lisa and James McCann and they attribute the company’s success to its unique pay-as-you-go system.
James said: “We don’t charge termly fees – people only pay for the classes they attend.
“As parents, we hated having to pay out for classes when our kids were ill or when they clashed with other events like parent’s evenings or school discos. We try to be as fair as possible with our students, we don’t insist people buy an expensive uniform or elaborate show costumes they may only wear once.”
In 2014. James and Lisa bought a property adjoining their house in Rastrick and demolished an old workshop to enable them to design and build their own studio. The Limelight Studio now hosts all of their dance, tap, drama, musical theatre and fitness classes and is available to rent to other fitness professionals in the area.
At weekends, James turns party entertainer and the studio converts into a children’s party disco room. It recently won The Best Disco & Party Venue in West Yorkshire at the 2018 UK Enterprise Awards.Lisa also takes advantage of the disco room to run her exclusive GloFit and GloKids fitness sessions, set among the lights and lasers of the Limelight Studio.
James and Lisa met on a cruise ship and travelled the world as entertainers before starting their own business.
They celebrated their 13th wedding anniversary as Limelight celebrated its 10th.
They and more than 200 students are looking forward to another ten years. Their next show, Dick Whittington and his Cat, is at the Victoria Theatre, Halifax on January 27.