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Our Team Members

Meet our awesome family

Meet the DanSci Dance Studio Family

Miss Ava (The Dreamer): Artistic Director and Founder

Ava Started dancing at the age of three in Great Yarmouth, enjoying experiences with the Royal Ballet junior associates and English National Youth Ballet before winning a scholarship to Northern Ballet School where she completed her Advanced major examinations in ISTD Ballet, Modern, Tap, National, Classical Ballet Teaching associate and RAD Advanced Ballet., graduating with a diploma in Classical ballet.  She has danced professionally in Europe and the UK, alighting famous stages such as the London Palladium and Royal Albert Hall as well as several Television and film credits. Ava is also a published author with a series of health booklets for Dancers and Models.

Mum of three; Ava Barron Thomas retrained after injury, gaining certificates in Sports Injury Prevention and her MSc in Dance Science from Laban, London. She holds a diploma in Sports Nutrition and NVQ in Customer service. However, it was opening her babyballet Franchise in Exeter which has highlighted her passion for great quality dance instruction for all. Helping build the local dance community by then going on to create DanSci Dance studio, with her husband Anthony Thomas (the logical one in our DanSci family!)

Ava insists that Exeter deserves a professional, safe dance space to rival other major cities. She believes everyone should have opportunity to experience top quality dance classes regardless of their background or aspirations. It is really important to Ava that DanSci becomes the place to get correct, informative health information for dancers and practitioners. The studio is also a hub for Dance Science research especially while Miss Ava is currently embarking on her Doctorate in Science.


Ava, an Associate Lecturer at Exeter College is a registered babyballet teacher trainer, Certified as Progressing Ballet Technique & Flowetic instructors. She also holds her Dance Instructor certification through the International Dance Teaching Standards and her Junior Acro Dance Teachers Association certification.

As well as overseeing all aspects of DanSci Dance Studio she teaches the Creative Ballet Programme and heads up the Dance Science department. She is loving her new venture providing LilBeatz Hip Hop classes. Ava is proud to bring together so many qualified, professional dance teachers from across so many different styles under one roof. She may be the ‘Boss’ But she still sleeps with a teddy bear!


Winner of the National Can You Dance 2023 award for Diversity and Community. Winner of the Exeter Living 2021 Arts Award. Winner of the Grow Exeter 100 Most Influential woman 2018 Winner of the Express & Echo Entrepreneur of the Year 2017 Award. Winner of the Mummazing Awards 2016: Mum Entrepreneur, Finalist of the Venus Awards: Business Mother of the year 2015, Dance Teachers Hub Finalist 2015:  Best New UK Dance School, Finalist of the Express & echo Business Awards: Best City Centre Business 2016,

Harley started her early dance training in styles such as Ballet, Tap, Jazz, and Street dance alongside competing as a gymnast.

Miss Harley

(The Hungry One!) Acrobatics Arts, babyballet teacher, youth contemporary and commercial street.

DanSci prides itself in giving young stars opportunities to improve and fulfil their dance potential. Our program of assistant teachers allows are dedicated senior students opportunity to support staff and develop their skills in dance , choreography and teaching. Recognised by the Children's University and DofE programs, students grow in confidence, developing their skill sets in responsibility, creativity and teamwork. One of or success stories is our loved Miss amelie who has worked herself up through the ranks to qualify with the IDTS and complete  her ADTA acro teaching qualification. Miss Amelie embodies the ethos and values of DanSci and is a fantastic Acro and cheer teacher

Miss Amelie

(The Pip Squeek!) Acro Dance & Cheer Pom instructor, General cover everyones role superstar!

Helena started dancing at the age of 2 at the Gladys Dare Theatre
School in Surbiton, Surrey and when she was 11 trained at The Arnould
School of Dance and Drama. When she was 18, she spent 3 years at the
the then Laban Centre for Movement and Dance at Goldsmith’s College,
New Cross training with Laverne Meyer, Founder of the Northern Ballet,
Merce Cunningham and Robert North amongst others.
Her professional career took off immediately in Italy working with
Norberto Rosofsky aka Pepi Nelson, Primo Ballerina from the Teatro
Nacional de Buenos Aires. Pepi and Helena became partners and they
toured Italy choreographing a number of large shows together. After a
few years Helena too began to choreograph, design and make costumes.
Not only did Helena tour Italy but she also performed on Italian TV and
choreographed videos for up and coming young Italian singers with MTV,
Milan. She retired at the age of 40 to settle down, have a family and
change her career path and she moved to Exeter with her husband and
young son. Helena is a qualified Teacher and has Early Years Professional
Status.  In March 2021 she was awarded the Nationally coveted
Children’s Champion Award for her commitment and dedication to the
Early Years sector. As well as running numerous succesful children's and adult classes at DanSci Miss Helena id the dedicated safeguard officer.

Miss Helena

(The organised One!) Musical Theatre teacher, Absolute series teacher, Safeguard officer

Anthony may be the one that most often says no to our frivolous requests and demands but he is also the driving force behind DanSci Dance Studio. Going behind Miss Ava's back to put a deposit down on the premises, just so that she wouldn't chicken out on her dreams, he has remained the stable logical one throughout. Managing the set up, business needs and financial direction of the business; Anthony is an integral part of our family (Seriously as Miss Ava's husband but also the DanSci family!) Just don't ask him to dance-as that is not so pretty!

Anthony Thomas

(The Logical One) Accounts and Business Director

Stevie can often be found in the studio watching and helping to boost morale. Stevie loves to help out at the studio pointing out all the corrections needed to be a great dancer! You'll often find him napping somewhere in the studio but his snoring and farts give away his location... If you see Stevie be sure to offer his a stroke and cuddle.

Stevie (The Dansci Studio Mascot!) Emotional support and hug distributor

(The Cute One!)

Details comming soon!

Miss Naomi

Miss Janine has been the main facilitator of DanSci Dance Studio long before its inception! Training from the age of 4 in ballet, tap and National. Miss Janine has always favoured Tap and National Dance styles, due to their up beat lively nature. Her height often lead her to play the male in many productions! Miss Janine gave up her dance career turning to roles backstage in the television and music industries while raising a family and studying for her Bachelor of Arts in Geology. Life has taken her on many exciting adventures but she has now returned to Exeter qualifying as a Pilates Instructor and taking up teaching. We are super glad to have her expertise and experience here at the studio as she delights the children in stage based tap beat classes.

Miss Janine

(The Supportive One!) Tap beats and Pilates Instructor

Dominique started out training in contemporary dance at secondary school, even though she has been putting on dance shows for her family long before this! Dominique began formal ballet training when she was 16, gaining both grade 7 and 8 in RAD ballet as well as her A Level in dance at college. A hip injury postponed her dance career for several years at which point she trained to be a Registered Veterinary nurse; once Dominique fully recovered from hip surgeries she began taking dance classes again and completed the BBO level 4 diploma in dance teaching.

Dominique is passionate about creating a fun, safe environment for both adults and children within a dance class, so that everyone can feel confident and reach their individual goals. In her spare time she loves to take her dog for long walks, train at the gym and is currently learning to roller skate!

Miss Dominique (The Animal Lover!)

Creative ballet, Commercial & LilBeatz Instructor

Miss Cindy

(The Organised One!) Adminstrator & Reception

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