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Welcome to PQA Bedford

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We operate on Saturdays from 9.45am-1pm at Kempston Challenger Academy, where we welcome students aged 4 to 18. Each week students have sessions in Comedy & Drama, Musical Theatre and Film & Television, led by our fantastic team of Teachers and Teaching Assistants.

We are always working on exciting projects which feature our students performing in a variety of different roles, in musicals, plays and films.

We are passionate about every student's personal journey with us, and the whole team work hard to ensure every single student is given the opportunity to become the best performer they can be, and reach their potential creatively. Every student has something unique to offer, and it's our job to encourage this and develop it!

We would love to show you what we do here at PQA Bedford. If you're interested in a free taster session, please call us for a chat and we'll arrange for you to visit the Academy where Principal Gemma will be on hand to assist you. Alternatively, you can request a brochure or enrol online now – we look forward to welcoming you to PQA Bedford!

Meet the Team



Gemma - Principal

I am delighted to be joining PQA this year and opening a brand new Academy in Bedford. This is certainly a performing arts academy with a difference! The opportunities for children are endless and I cannot wait for students to embrace them.

I realised my love for the arts at age thirteen when I joined my local performing arts school. I couldn't get enough and went to every class I could to better myself as I felt I started quite late so I needed to catch up with the 5 year olds!

I worked super hard and was awarded a scholarship to train at the famous London Studio Centre where I achieved my BA (Hons) Degree in theatre performance. Since graduating I've explored various exciting avenues within the arts including stage productions, dance companies, theatre, cruise ships, television, music videos, corporate events and teaching.

The pinnacle of my career was performing in the West End musical 'We Will Rock You' where I completed a 3 year contract as assistant dance captain and went on to have my first child. Since then I have taught at various colleges and schools as well as taking on some acting and modelling roles. (And had one more child!)

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for choosing PQA for your child's performing arts journey. We aim to instill independence, confidence and relevant knowledge of the current industry in a fun, safe, inspirational setting. Everyone is welcome and I am a strong believer that there are no rules as to who can or can't take part. We all have talents, we just need great teachers to guide us and opportunities


Vice Principal

Craig - Vice Principal

I'm delighted to be joining the PQA family.

My background in the entertainment industry started in 1996 when I trained as a professional dancer at the Doreen Bird College of Performing Arts.

I went on to perform in many West End productions of We Will Rock You, Starlight Express, Saturday Night Fever, Footloose, along with UK and International touring productions such as Wizard of Oz and Boogie Nights.

In addition to this I was fortunate enough to work within the TV and Film industry working alongside the likes of Madonna and Kenneth Brannagh and working on the hit ITV show The X-Factor.

It has always been a privilege to be able to share my experience with others and I have been lucky enough to teach and choreograph for some of the top performing arts colleges and schools creating shows from conception to production.


Film & TV

Kevin - Film & TV

After leaving University I worked as an English teacher in Italy, Korea and Japan. When I came back to England I started work as a Primary teacher and it was here that my passion for filmmaking really took off. I could see how enthusiastic the children were, the creativity it inspired and the confidence boost it gave them to see themselves on screen. This led to me starting my company Young Directors where children aged 5-18 could engage in all aspects of creative filmmaking. The club has achieved some success making well over 100 films together with several appearing in the Into Film Monthly Film Awards. I also work on my own film projects, writing and directing, and was nominated for best screenplay at the OneShotMovie Awards in 2013. Coming into PQA, I'm excited to be making films in a completely new setting, helping the students express themselves through film and working together to make films that they can be proud of.


Musical Theatre

Lily - Musical Theatre

Lily is delighted to be joining the PQA family.

Lily is originally from Warwickshire. She left in 2008 to study Musical Theatre at Arts Educational Schools in Chiswick, London.

In her final year at ArtsEd Lily left early to join the ensemble and understudy the role of Eponine in Les Miserables in the West End.

A year later she was cast in the ensemble of the arena tour revival of Jesus Christ Superstar, starring Tim Minchin, Chris Moyles & Mel C.

She landed her first leading role as Demeter in Cats in 2013 where she toured the UK/ Europe. In 2015 she reprised her role in the West End also taking on a Grizabella understudy responsibly.

Later that year she was nominated for a Whats On Stage award for her portrayal of Nina Rosario in the original West End production of In The Heights.

Lily recently finished a thirteen month contract playing the role of Michelle Morris alongside Glee's Amber Riley in the original West End production of Dreamgirls. Lily's vocals can be heard on the cast recording.

As well as theatre Lily has also had credits in television and film such as the Beauty & the Beast feature film (Walt Disney Pictures), Drifters (E4), Vicious (ITV) and Sex Pistols vs. Billy Grundy (Sky), The Windsors (ITV) as well as many short film projects and adverts.


Film & Television Assistant

Georgia - Film & Television Assistant

Film, Art and Music have been interests of mine for as long as I can remember.

Whilst studying Film Studies and Creative Media Production at Sixth Form, I realised I could use my passion and creative flair to make a career doing what I love- telling stories.

Whilst pursuing my own personal film projects, I have been working as a production assistant and editor for a local video production company. It has been fantastic to have met and worked with so many talented and diverse individuals who have given me the opportunity to create various projects with great content.

My career aspiration is to continue practising and developing my skills in all aspects of film production with a view to enhance my editing skills and progress onto becoming a director. I look forward to sharing my experience and growing my enthusiasm with the students at PQA Bedford!



Jennifer - Poppets

I am incredibly excited to be joining PQA as Poppets teacher.

I completed my degree in Performing Arts at DeMontfort University's Bedford campus in 2007. My plan from there was to gain a PGCE and become an Early Years teacher. That plan took a back seat as I had my three wonderful little girls.

Last year I was very lucky to be given the opportunity to be Assistant Teacher at another performing arts school in Bedford. I loved every minute of it, and it reminded me of how passionate I am about Teaching Performing Arts to young children. It was wonderful to watch the confidence of the children grow weekly.

I am very much looking forward to filling Saturday mornings with fun, laughter and creativity.


Poppets Assistant

Taylor - Poppets Assistant

Performing and teaching others has always been a passion of mine which started from a very young age. Throughout my childhood I was always attending extracurricular drama / performing classes which lead to me taking performing arts at GCSE and A level.

During this time, I found my passion for teaching children. Being able to use my knowledge and skills and passing them on to others feels amazing! Teaching at PQA is the most rewarding thing. Be yourself and be amazing!


Academy Assistant

Francesca - Academy Assistant

Francesca began her journey into Theatre Arts at the age of 3 years old, training in Ballet, Jazz, Commercial and Musical Theatre. She took part in many competitions and completed accredited exams in Ballet & Irish dance.

Francesca then took that passion further by studying Musical Theatre for both level 2 & 3 extended Diploma Qualifications. With those complete, she went on to work with various companies to be in performances at both Bedford corn exchange and Electric Daisy Carnival for Avicci's performance in Milton Keynes.

In June 2017 Francesca secured a place as a dance and musical theatre specialist at a summer camp in the United States for 3 months. Whilst there Francesca choreographed with her dance team for shows including a Half time performance at a 4th of July baseball game in front of a very large audience.

Francesca is thrilled to be working with PQA and can't wait to share her passion with the students!


Academy Assistant

Naomi - Academy Assistant

I have loved dance from the early age of 3 years old training in Tap, Ballet, Jazz, Contemporary, Street & Modern. I have since competed and performed in many national and international events. I then took my passion further at the University of Bedfordshire where I began studying a degree in Dance & Professional Practice. During placements at local schools I developed an interest in creating and teaching choreography for theatre performances. I am really excited to share my experience with the students at PQA!

Latest News


Saturdays 09.45 - 13.00
Poppets 10.00 - 11.30

Kempston Challenger Academy
Hill Rise
MK42 7EB

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Request An Info Pack

Grab one of our FREE info packs, fill out our quick form.

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