LSC alumni join the Mad Hatter's Tea Party
ZooNation, the UK’s leading hip-hop dance theatre company, is taking London by storm once again with its brand new Christmas show The Mad Hatter’s Tea Party, and the team at London Studio Centre are delighted to see four alumni in the cast.
Teneisha Bonner (2004), Rowen Hawkins (2002), Shaun Smith (2008) and Ross Sands (2008) all trained at London Studio Centre and have danced regularly with ZooNation, in previous productions such as Groove On Down The Road, Into The Hoods and Some Like It Hip Hop.
They have also amassed an impressive list of commercial and West End credits between them. Shaun and Rowen performed together this year as ‘The Alterboyz’ in the West End’s I Can’t Sing, and individually have performed with artists including LMFAO, Katy Perry, Cheryl Cole, The Saturdays, Rihanna and Goldfrapp. Ross has also performed with Beyoncé, Rihanna, Take That, Pixie Lott, The Wanted and Alesha Dixon, to name but a few, as well as credits in Thriller Live! and Blaze (Sadler’s Wells). Teneisha won the Critics' Circle National Dance Award for Outstanding Female Performance (Modern) in 2013 for her performances with ZooNation, and has also appeared in Shoes at Sadler’s Wells and with Rihanna, The Black Eyed Peas, Kylie Minogue and Take That.
The Mad Hatter’s Tea Party puts a new twist on Lewis Carroll’s children’s classic Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: highlighting the weird and wonderful nature of Carroll’s story, the show relocates the action to a psychiatric hospital where a group of Wonderland characters – including the Queen of Hearts (Teneisha), Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee (Rowen and Ross respectively) and the March Hare (Shaun) – are stuck in a never-ending tea party.
Nic and Nikki Espinosa attended the first performance of this family show and were delighted to see the continued connection between ZooNation and London Studio Centre. In addition to the alumni on stage, Managing Director and Producer of the company Chantal Spiteri also trained at LSC; choreographer Kate Prince teaches at LSC when her hectic schedule of work allows; and current students benefit from the teaching of both Shaun Smith and Swing Carrie-Anne Ingrouille on a regular basis.
With its original score, exuberant choreography and wonderfully wacky characters, The Mad Hatter’s Tea Party is a must-see for the Christmas season; the show has already sold out at the Royal Opera House’s Linbury Studio Theatre, but can be seen via a live stream on the ROH website on Thursday 18 December. For more information about ZooNation, visit their website here.