East Enders star helps Tip Toe celebrate 30 glorious years

ONE of the borough’s most popular and endearing groups, the TipToe Stage School, are celebrating this month as they hit their milestone 30 year anniversary.

Last Saturday and Sunday the school celebrated by performing two sell out performances at the Towngate Theatre in Basildon in their show “Best Foot Forward”.

Over 150 pupils took part, with performers’ ages ranging from 18 months to 75 years!

The audience was packed with friends, family and dignitaries in who were celebrating the Civic Award winners 30 years of success.

Pupils were also delighted to welcome industry figures at the weekend all of whom came to support the pupils and Julie Barker, the school’s principal.

These included The Voice finalist Lydia Lucy who took time out from working with Will I Am and recording her debut album and also Maisie Smith from EastEnders who plays Bianca’s daughter “Tiffany Butcher” and is about to release her debut single.

On the Sunday evening, Thurrock Mayor, Cllr Cathy Kent, took to the stage to give an uplifting speech about what the school has achieved and how it is now regarded as an “institution” in the borough.

Speaking after the show, Julie Barker commented: “This is a very emotional weekend for me and I cannot believe that 30 years ago I started with six pupils and a little cassette machine!

“From our little babies to our Adult Tappers, each person lit up the stage this weekend. And this is down to the amazing teaching team we have at TipToe along with some very supportive and encouraging parents.

“Everyone has played such a big part in getting us to where we are now and it is humbling to think of what we have achieved. We’ve performed on Broadway, in the opening and closing ceremony of the Olympics, Disneyland, and almost every London and regional theatre you can think of. These people represent all what is good about Thurrock and it is an honour to teach them and be part of the TipToe ‘family’. Thank you to everyone and especially those that took time out to watch and meet the children.

“Now we start looking to next year with discussion underway about performing in Las Vegas and we are returning to the Royal Albert Hall, London’s O2 and hopefully, The Palladium”.

If you are interested in joining TipToe call 07940 521864, email julieecarter@aol.com or find them on Facebook. Classes are offered in all genre and soon plans and casting will take place for the next Drama and Singing show.

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