Borders dance school goes to ‘tap’ of the class

A Borders-based dance school has taken the ultimate title of Dance School of the Year for 2021 at a national awards ceremony, held in Sandy Park in Devon on Friday.

Monday, 1st November 2021, 1:04 pm
Updated Monday, 1st November 2021, 1:04 pm
From left: principal Fiona Henderson, business manager Andy Wright and awards organiser Anne Walker MBE.

The Fiona Henderson School of Dance (FHSD) took the top prize at the black-tie awards event, which was also streamed live to an international audience, reflecting the growing global interest in this dance industry award, as well as the increasing number of international dance schools taking part each year.

School Principal Fiona Henderson said: “We are simply stunned to be crowned overall Dance School of the Year 2021 in these industry awards.

"It is an amazing accolade, and I am extremely proud to receive it on behalf of the whole school, and our teachers and pupils.

"It is particularly appreciated as all the finalists are judged by leading dance industry experts.”

FHSD has a proud record at the awards, having been a finalist in 2017, a 2018 Gold winner in the category of schools with 200+ pupils before winning Silver in 2019 in the category with 300+ pupils and then receiving the ‘Innovation in Teaching of Dance’ award in 2020.

The school was established in 1985 and now has over 350 pupils ranging from 13 months old up to adult.

It offers over 100 classes a week in a wide range of dance styles in Biggar, Galashiels, Jedburgh, Melrose, Moffat, Peebles, Hawick and Selkirk.

The Dance School of the Year Awards was founded by Anne Walker MBE to celebrate the achievements of dance schools which so often do not receive the recognition they deserve.

This year saw the largest ever number of entries and an increasing international dimension with several international schools being announced as finalists and prize winners.

There were 25 prizes awarded for different categories and sizes of school, but it was the FHSD which skipped away with the enviable top prize.