Abbie Jennings L.I.S.T.D DDP – Principal and Teacher
Abbie founded AJ Dance and Fitness in 2012 and started out with just an adult ballet and adult tap class in Chandlers Ford on a Wednesday evening (these classes are still going strong!). Classes have continued to grow and expand over the last 8 years and Abbie is proud of what AJ Dance and Fitness offers to so many people from tots through to adults.
Abbie is a fully qualified and registered ISTD Dance Teacher in Imperial Ballet, Modern Theatre and Tap Dance and is also a qualified Fitsteps Instructor. Abbie started dancing with a local dance school when she was only two and a half years old, studying Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (ISTD) Imperial Ballet, Modern Theatre and Tap Dance and continued with the Academy until she had completed all her major dance examinations. Abbie also attended the Urdang Academy in Covent Garden for two years from the ages of 11 to 13 on their Musical Theatre course where she performed in a revue show and in the musical Godspell. In 2009, to further her studies, Abbieattended Chichester College after leaving school and studied a BTEC National Diploma in Dance and a BTEC Subsidiary Diploma in Musical Theatre, passed with Distinction and Distinction*, alongside the ISTD Teaching Qualifications, Diploma in Dance Instruction (DDI) and Diploma in Dance Education (DDE). Full qualification and registration with the ISTD were awarded in 2012 after 3 years of training. In 2017 Abbie graduated, after a further 2 years of training, from the ISTD Level 6 Diploma in Dance Pedagogy in which she specialised in Tap Dance. Abbie plans to further her education again by studying for her QTS (Qualified Teacher Status) in 2021. As well as running and teaching at AJ Dance and Fitness, Abbie is also an Associate Lecturer in Tap Dance and Ballet at the University of Chichester for the Music and Musical Theatre course.
Abbie is very lucky to be involved in lots of local theatre and has had the opportunity to choreograph many shows including the Hampshire professional tour of ‘Bouncers’ in 2017 for Blackbox Theatre Company. She has choreographed various musicals and pantomimes for Mountbatten Players and most recently for Spot On Productions. Abbie also choreographed the ‘AJ Adult Tappers’ routines for their performance at Her Majesty’s Theatre in London in 2018 and for their own 20-minute performance in the heart of Disneyland Paris in 2019 – both were wonderful experiences for all involved.
Jemma Conner ISTD DDE – Teacher
Jemma’s love of dance first started when she was just 4 years old when she started studying Imperial Ballet, Modern Theatre and Tap Dance at a local dance school. Whilst training she took part in annual shows and exam sessions and went on to pass her major examinations in all three subjects.
Jemma chose to study GCSE Dance at Secondary School, before going on to study A Level Dance and a BTEC Subsidiary Diploma in Dance at Totton College, alongside English Language and Sociology. She then went on to study at Chichester College, where she gained her ISTD teaching qualifications; Diploma in Dance Instruction (DDI) in 2015 and Diploma in Dance Education (DDE) in July 2016, successfully qualifying in all three genres.
Whilst Jemma was studying, she had the opportunity to perform as part of the curtain raiser, for Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake, at the Mayflower Theatre in Southampton, after taking part in a week’s workshop with the company. Jemma loves performing and has been in several shows with local theatre group, Spot On Productions.
She has been lucky enough to perform at Her Majesties Theatre in London three times, in 2015, 2019 and 2020 and in 2019 had the opportunity to perform at Disneyland Paris with AJ Dance and Fitness, an experience she will never forget. Jemma has been teaching for AJ Dance and Fitness since 2016 and loves teaching all the different age groups and genres.
Izzy – Student Teacher
Izzy is currently studying Musical Theatre at A Level at Barton Peveril, after achieving top rated results in her recent GCSE’s. She joined AJ Dance through her love of all dance genres and loves to share that passion with those around her. Her motivation is infectious, and she has a fantastic ability to engage with anyone she has the pleasure to teach. Izzy hopes in the future to take her teaching degree, but in the meantime, she just loves to dance and sing and looks forward to getting to make all your little faces smile!
Steph – Student Teacher
Steph is a Year 10 student at Wyvern School, taking GCSE Dance. She has been an active member of performance dance groups and musical theatre since the age of 6. Steph is a natural in communicating and engaging with younger children and hopes in the future to pursue a career in paediatric nursing. Steph loves singing and dancing and being able to combine her favourite things just makes her sparkle! She cannot wait to meet you all and get dancing!
Dance Class Testimonials
Abbie is an amazing teacher. She is brilliant with young children as well as adults and always pitches the lesson just right. I cannot recommend Abbie highly enough. I am very happy to have her as a teacher for both myself and my daughter. She always choreographs interesting and varied routines suited to the ability of her pupils. If you are looking to keep fit, refresh some old skills, or learn some new ones in a fun environment then Abbie’s classes are for you!
A really brilliant adult tap class! It is extremely friendly, fun and a great way to escape for an evening and get some exercise! Abbie is an amazing teacher and keeps us on our toes ;-)
This is a fantastic tap class, we work at a good pace and Abbie always makes it interesting and challenging for us all. A great work out with lots of enjoyment. Highly recommended.
Fitsteps on a Monday eve is brilliant fun and great exercise!! Can’t recommend enough, well done Abbie.