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Welcome to PQA Peterborough

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Hello and welcome to PQA Peterborough!

We operate on Saturdays in the lovely setting of The Peterborough School, where we welcome students aged 4 to 18. Each week students have sessions in Comedy & Drama, Musical Theatre and Film & Television all led by our fantastic team of teachers and teaching assistants.

Since we opened our doors in April 2017 we have been working on lots of exciting projects which feature our students performing in a variety of different roles, in musicals, plays and films. We have already made a film featuring all age groups, and we were very excited to be invited to sing with vocal Group G4 on their live tour in September.

We are passionate about every student's personal journey with us, and the whole team works 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!

I would love to show you what we do here at PQA Peterborough. It really is a hub of energy every Saturday. In addition to our weekly classes, we have Trinity exams, West End productions, cinema screenings, Quirky Kidz agency and much more for the students get involved with.

If you're interested in a free taster session please call me for a chat and we can arrange for you to visit the Academy. Alternatively, you can request a brochure or enrol online now – we look forward to welcoming you to PQA Peterborough!

Maureen Wardill – Principal
07845 974679

Meet the Team

Maureen Wardill


Maureen Wardill - Principal

One of my earliest memories is being around 7 years old and making up a game about a girl who found a magic book, and when she opened it she could jump into the pages and join the world of make believe, having a series of adventures. I was, of course, always the little girl. I think I was always fascinated by making stories come alive, and from this came my love of drama and the performing arts.

This passion, combined with my many years of experience in teaching drama to children and young people, together with my sense of fun, will guarantee that Saturdays are the best day of the week for your children should they decide to sign up for PQA Peterborough!

My first big role was 'The Inn Keeper's Wife' in the school nativity and from then I was hooked. I begged my mum to enrol me in the local theatre group which I attended every week without fail, and here I realised that I could play my make-believe games to my heart's content in the acting class, and met many like-minded friends.

As the years went on I performed in a variety of plays and shows, took part in drama competitions, singing festivals, performed in radio plays, did voiceover work and stage work, and I couldn't get enough. I have been lucky enough to be able to combine performing with teaching drama whilst also promoting shows for a number of theatres in the South East. My love of communication and creativity led me to study advertising and marketing which provided me with another 'string to my bow' in terms of career development. I honestly don't think I would have gone down this path had I not discovered drama at such a young age.

When I had my own family I began to focus much more on the educational side of performing arts. As a LAMDA trained Speech and Drama teacher, during the week I work with children preparing them for examinations in acting, public speaking and communication. One of the most rewarding parts of my job is seeing the confidence grow in each child as they discover their own capabilities through performing arts. The lovely thing is that you don't have to want a career in performing arts to gain all the life skills, confidence and presentation skills that come with performing. Not to mention the fun to be had!

I am so excited to be launching PQA Peterborough. The PQA modules are modern, fun and relevant to today's world. The opportunity to perform on a West End stage is so exciting and for the children to be able to see their own film in their local cinema is a totally unique experience.

I know that the '7 year old me' would have jumped through hoops to be a part of this experience, and I am so grateful that the 'adult me' has that opportunity now.


Vice Principal

Dale - Vice Principal

Dale's first foray into the world of drama was an instant success culminating in an award-winning production of Billy the Kid at the tender age of 11, which he wrote, directed and starred in the leading role. This was recognised as a seminal piece of work by a Year 6 student in his primary school, and from there Dale's love of drama continued.

Throughout his business career Dale has continued to write short pieces of drama and comedy sketches on the side, and in recent years has been part of an improvisation crew. As a lover of fitness, he has admitted to having a secret wish to learn Street Dance – albeit as a slightly more mature dancer!

Dale has run his own companies for many years and is really enjoying transferring these skills to the smooth running of PQA Peterborough.

"I have always had a love of theatre and film, and to be a part of PQA is proving to be a superb experience. Having been very involved in the running of global business events over the years, I am looking forward to putting my skills to good use at the Academy with our very own red-carpet film premiere, plus I have lots of ideas for other exciting events for PQA Peterborough".


Assistant Vice Principal

Lara - Assistant Vice Principal

Lara has been with PQA Peterborough since we opened our doors in April 2017 and gets involved in all disciplines across the Academy. As well as helping all our parents and carers with enquiries on a bustling Saturday at Academy, Lara works on special events, external performances and Academy admin. As an experienced Higher Teaching Assistant and Class Cover Supervisor in a wonderful village primary school, Lara even finds time to TA in our classes from time to time.

With a passion for musicals, plays and music, Lara can often be found singing along at a west end show, or dancing the night away at a pop concert. Lara is also a devoted wife and mother of 2 children and in her limited down time she loves nothing more than to relax with her nose in a good book or watching a period drama.


Musical Theatre

Charlie - Musical Theatre

Performing Arts has been a huge part of Charlie's life since a very young age, and over the years she has played a wide variety of parts from the scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz to the unforgettable part of Glinda.

She began her dance studies at Deeping dance centre at the age of 3 and continued there until the age of 18 by which time she had completed advanced levels in ballet, tap and modern dance. Charlie then took the obvious next step and went on to further her performing arts education at Midlands Academy of dance and drama (MADD) graduating with a Dance and Musical Theatre Diploma in 2009.

Since graduating Charlie has been working for many companies and schools in the Lincolnshire and Cambridgeshire area teaching musical theatre, drama and a wide variety of dance styles such as Hip-hop, commercial street dance, Latin American, Irish dancing, Mexican, Stomp Dance....... the list goes on. Charlie's energy and enthusiasm for all her work is contagious, and she is always bursting with ideas for musical theatre numbers and show stoppers.

"I am passionate about musical theatre and love nothing more than seeing that passion come alive in children. I am so excited to join the team at PQA Peterborough and look forward to sharing my knowledge and passion with the students at PQA".


Comedy & Drama

Holly - Comedy & Drama

Holly has been performing on stage since she was around 9 years old and her love of performing arts is infectious – she is thrilled to be passing on her experience to the students at PQA.

Holly's performing arts experience is wide and varied, from playing many lead roles in plays and musicals such as 'Sandy' in Grease, 'Scrooge' in A Christmas Carol, and 'Prudy' in Hairspray (to name a few), to directing immersive theatre projects and singing in competitions.

Holly holds a Diploma in Performing Arts and a BA Honours in Performing Arts (in which she specialised in contemporary and physical theatre) from the University of Peterborough. As well as teaching Comedy & Drama Holly works with children in the school environment supporting their learning and mentoring them. "I regularly use drama techniques to engage learners who may need extra support to open up their learning and creativity" said Holly. "It is wonderful to see how much impact performing can have on building confidence and self-esteem".

Holly is very excited to be a part of the teaching team at PQA Peterborough and loves using her varied performing arts experience to inspire our students.

In her spare time Holly enjoys going to see all types of drama, from musical theatre shows in the West End to discovering contemporary fringe theatre plays, as well as enjoying music of all styles.


Film & Television

Gill - Film & Television

Producer and writer Gill Williams is co-founder of award-winning TV company Wildside UK Productions.

In the last five years, she's made 64 documentaries for mainstream broadcast TV and shot conservation films in locations as far afield as Sumatra and New Zealand.

As well as being a producer and scriptwriter, Gill's been a TV chat show host, BBC Radio 5 presenter and national newspaper journalist. She's also the author of 100 Alien Invaders, a kids' pop science book that unmasks the evil-doers of the natural world.

Now she's keen to pass on her knowledge to a new generation of film makers and writers.



Kerrie - Poppets

Kerrie has had an interest in performing arts since the age of four when she first enrolled in tap and ballet classes, and later landed her first big part playing the inn keepers wife in the school nativity.

Throughout her school years she relished the opportunity to perform on stage. At the Kingswood School, Kerrie worked on a project called "Delivered" in conjunction with Frantic Assembly physical theatre company. She also played the part of 'Niobe' in The Love of a Nightingale and had various roles in the devised shows on offer at Kingswood, receiving acclaim at 17 for her original play "Mea Culpa" which was performed within Kingswood's black box theatre.

Kerrie took the natural progression of going on to to study Drama and Education at De Montfort University where she worked on a range of performance techniques and styles including musical theatre, modern theatre, musical and popular theatre. Here, Kerrie performed in many university productions and still enjoys the opportunity to devise new plays and performances.

Kerrie also holds a certificate of higher education from Oxford Brookes University in English and Performing Arts Community and Education.  Whilst there, Kerrie took part in many voluntary placements including Creating Routes charity, Pegasus Theatre and Cheney school. Kerrie has worked with children across all key stages from age 3 months – 19 years. She has a passion for the early years and loves to see young children express their imagination in a creative way.

Theatre in education is something that has always interested Kerrie and she is very excited to join the team at PQA.

"Imagination is one of the greatest skills that we can encourage in a child. There is nothing more rewarding than watching a child develop their creativity, and as a result grow in confidence ."


Poppets Assistant

Vanessa - Poppets Assistant

Vanessa's passion for performing arts began in secondary school, studying it for GCSE and A Level, then going on to continue her studies with a Theatre Arts course at university. During her studies Vanessa gained lots of experience in working with children and this took her to Italy where she taught drama and dance to children aged between eight and fourteen. Vanessa is delighted to be a part of the PQA team and is looking forward to passing on her love and passion for performing arts to our youngest members of PQA.


Film & Television Assistant

Matty - Film & Television Assistant

Matty's passion for film and TV started when he was 5 years old, after watching his first Spielberg movie. Since then he has always had a fascination with the film industry. He holds an extended Diploma in Television and Film and a BA in Media Studies from The University of Peterborough.
Whilst studying TV and Film at Peterborough Regional College Matty gained a varying amount of skills and training including creating and filming his own short films. A proud moment for him was when he was awarded Best Media Student of the Year for his work on this course. This led him to continue his studies studying media at University where he has been honing his skills further.
"I am looking forward to sharing my knowledge and passion with the students of PQA, to hearing their ideas, tapping into their imaginations and seeing the outcomes in their work and creations" said Matty. "I am also looking forward to watching the students evolve into very talented, creative, confident, passionate individuals, and seeing them move into their own careers and opportunities in life".


Teaching Assistant

Rob - Teaching Assistant

Rob's interest in the theatre industry sparked at around age 7 when he performed in the chorus of the Dick Whittington pantomime at the Cresset Theatre, Peterborough. From there his enthusiasm for the world of drama has continued to grow.
During his years performing Rob has also developed experience teaching children and assisting directors by facilitating sessions and workshops on various projects including productions of Oliver, Dream Night's and The Wiz, as well as working closely with young adults with learning disabilities.
The enthusiasm Rob has for theatre led him to study Drama at the University of Lincoln where he achieved a First Class Honours Degree. Alongside his studies he worked with media students on various film and television projects, performed at the National Theatre Connections festival, and has taken on the role of both actor and costume designer for a performance of Shakespeare's King John at Newark Castle.
"My passion for theatre has led me to the Pauline Quirke Academy, inspiring me to transfer my knowledge and skills to the next generation of theatre makers, which I hope will allow them to create enjoyable, engaging and innovative work to a high standard."


Teaching Assistant

Imogen - Teaching Assistant

Imogen has had a passion for performing arts and dance since she was a young girl. She started ballet at the age of three and since then has devoted her life to dancing and performing.

She has recently graduated from Tiffany Theatre College where she has completed a Two Year Performing Arts Diploma and a One Year Professional Performance Course specialising in Musical Theatre. She has trained professionally in a variety of disciplines including Jazz, Ballet, Tap, Commercial, Contemporary, Latin, Freestyle, Pas de Deux, Meisner Technique, Acting for Camera, Stage Acting, Solo Singing and Ensemble Singing.

Her performing credits include music videos, Alan Carr's Grease Night Live and three TTC annual shows in London's West End theatres.

"I am very excited work with PQA to pass on my passion and love for performing arts to the children, and to help them thrive and develop confidence and conviction when doing what they love the most. I can't wait to share the incredible experience of watching young performers grow into amazing artists".

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Saturdays 09.45 - 13.00 & 13.45 - 17.00
Poppets 10.00 - 11.30

The Peterborough School
Thorpe Road

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