Kathleen’s start turn as teacher marks its 40th year

Kathleen Davis outsider her stage school, which has celebrated 40 years in business.

Kathleen Davis outsider her stage school, which has celebrated 40 years in business.

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She has helped a host of actors find their way into the limelight after her own successful showbiz career.

Now a celebration has been staged for Kathleen Davis in recognition of the 40-year anniversary of her stage school.

Kathleen Davis is a familiar face to many involved in the performing arts across the region.

Kathleen Davis is a familiar face to many involved in the performing arts across the region.

To mark the milestone, a surprise party was held for the 63-year-old, which saw pupils new and old join friends and family.

Kathleen began her own training at the age of seven to improve a knee problem, taking classes with June Mooore at a Pennywell church hall.

Within a year she was winning competitions.

She then joined Ethel Hardy’s School of Dance in South Shields, and stared in panto at the Empire as a teenager, before embarking on her professional career.

She is very proud of all the many pupils that have passed through her hands in the last 40 years but is particularly proud of those who have become dear friends, as she herself did with her first teacher.

Danielle Campbell

She appeared alongside Hughie Green and Scottish TV personality Stuart Gillies, as well as Kenneth Earle and Malcolm Vaughan, the ‘Ant and Dec’ of their day.

Former students of hers who have gone on to make a name for themselves include Gary Watson, who has starred in The Jersey Boys, Les Miserables, Matilda, and Evita.

He sent her a video message congratulating her for the achievement.

West End star Julie Armstrong was also among those to send thank you messages for her years of dedication.

Kathleen Davis in the early days of her career.

Kathleen Davis in the early days of her career.

Kathleen’s daughter Danielle Campbell, 35, who works alongside her mum, also performed her favourite song, Wind Beneath My Wings.

Kathleen, who is also supported by partner Ben Body, said: “It really doesn’t feel like it’s been 40 years.

“It’s was lovely to see pupils past and present all together.”

Over the decades Kathleen, who launched the school at Gilly Law Community Centre with 11 pupils and which is now based in High Street West, has helped hundreds of youngsters.

A shot of Kathleen Davis from her younger days.

A shot of Kathleen Davis from her younger days.

Danielle, who is mum to Joshua, nine, and Paige Elouise, four, said: “I am so proud of her.

“She’s worked so hard to establish the school.

“Everything she’s achieved has made her an inspiration and it’s fantastic how much she’s given them all.

“She is very proud of all the many pupils that have passed through her hands in the last 40 years but is particularly proud of those who have become dear friends, as she herself did with her first teacher.

“No one, as she says, should ever forget where they came from, it’s where training starts that is important not where it ends.”

For more information on classes visit http://kathleendavisstageschool.co.uk/

Kathleen Davis Stage School celebrates 40 years.
Left daughter Danielle Campbell

Kathleen Davis Stage School celebrates 40 years. Left daughter Danielle Campbell