Janice Sutton (centre) back in the studio with her pupils.Janice Sutton (centre) back in the studio with her pupils.
Janice Sutton (centre) back in the studio with her pupils.

Young stars to shine in blue and yellow as theatre school in Skegness returns to spotlight

Miss Janice takes centre stage beaming proudly at the pupils who clearly know they are in the presence of a legend.

It's a Saturday morning at the studio and classes have resumed with all systems go for this year's summer season show.

Janice Sutton Theatre School has been presenting shows every summer for over 50 years, and over the decades has continually wowed audiences with spectacular song and dance routines and costumes.

However, the past two years have been especially hard for the school's founder Janice Sutton because, in addition to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, she has lost her two most important people who have supported her through it all - Joy Everett and her beloved husband Ian Sisson.

Watching the recent horrors of the war in the Ukraine have also deeply affected Miss Janice and left her determined to rise up and do something to help the country's fleeing children and animals.

"The children at my school have been my life and I love animals and I am passionate to get back to work and do something to help them," Miss Janice explained.

"We want to do something spectacular to raise people's spirits because it has been a difficult two years for us all.

"But we also want to pay tribute to the people of the Ukraine and raise money to help the children and the animals.

"I have all the costumes I need to do something really special."

Already Miss Janice has come up with the name 'Stagestruck' for her 2022 show at the Embassy Theatre this summer, but she admits that might change.

There's a lot to do before then - including getting pupils to a standard to pass their dance exams.

However, the serious stuff was not going to start before a day of dance and celebration.

A special event was recently hosted at the studio in Grantham Drive by Miss Janice and Andrew Davison, Dance Teacher and Choreographer at the school.

It was a chance for pupils to perform for parents and family after nearly a two-year wait due to the global pandemic and restrictions in place for performances.

From the tiny tutu ballerinas to senior musical theatre performers, there were all styles of dance and song performed on the day.

Each pupil was awarded a trophy from Miss Janice for working so hard over the past two years in such difficult circumstances.

The trophy was also a reward for being superstars dealing with the restrictions on them during the pandemic - having to stay at home and miss out on classes apart from on Zoom and then, when the studio re-opened, being in two meter squares unable to touch or move around the room.

Now with the studio back in full swing, as well as preparing for summer shows plans are underway for a full examination session with the IDTA.

Andrew says he is delighted to have Miss Janice back at the studio with him.

"It’s wonderful having Janice back in the studio full time," he said.

"With her many years of teaching she brings so much knowledge to the classes.

"Her passion for dance and performance is infectious and is very proud of all the pupils.

"Janice taught me as a youngster and I then danced professionally all over the world.

"Now I teach with Janice and give back to the next generation and watch others follow their dreams.

"Miss Janice is very proud of the talent that Skegness has and

just wants locals and holidaymakers to support the cast who work so hard."

The summer show, Stagestruck, will be every Thursday in August at the Embassy Theatre.

Miss Janice added: "It is going to be special because the show must go on."

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