MEET THE TEAM
Karen Williams ARAD RTS PDTD, AISTD DDE
Karen trained as a Senior Associate of The Royal Ballet School and then full time at Elmhurst Ballet School. She graduated with a National Diploma in Classical Ballet and Contemporary Dance. She is a fully qualified and registered teacher with the Royal Academy of Dance and Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing examinations boards.
Her professional theatre credits include; Dirty Dancing, Aldwych Theatre, (Penny, Vivian and Mrs. Shumacher), Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, UK Tour, Disney’s Beauty and Beast, UK Tour, Hello Dolly! Theatre Royal, Lincoln, Cats, German and Swiss Tour, (Victoria-White Cat), New English Contemporary Ballet (Soloist), Cats, UK Tour (Cassandra, Victoria and Tantomile). Karen has modeled for dance photographer Chris Nash and has recently appeared in ads for Avonmore and its4women.ie
Karen has twice been a judge for the National Dance Championships and regularly guest teaches throughout Ireland and the UK at workshops and summer schools.
Karen taught at Debbie Allen Dance School for 13 years and is delighted to bring the Debbie Allen Dance family under the umbrella of KWD.
Melissa Harman LISTD, CDE, BA (Hons)
Melissa trained at the London Studio Centre gaining a B.A Honours in Theatre Dance, Diploma in Musical Theatre and her ISTD Associate in Modern Theatre Dance. She danced professionally in Musicals and Pantomine for 10 years in the West End and touring before moving to Dublin and re-training to teach, gaining her ISTD Certificate in Dance Education in Modern and Ballet followed by her Licenciate in Modern. Melissa was Ballet mistress for the Junior company of the Irish National Youth Ballet from 2005-2009 and previously taught at The Dublin School of Classical and Contemporary Dance. She currently teaches at the Debbie Allen Dance School and in the Dance Studies course at Inchicore VEC.
Ellen Downey RAD RTS
Ellen trained in Dublin in the Debbie Allen School of Dance. Here, she trained in Ballet and Modern, completing Advanced 2 RAD Ballet and Advanced 2 ISTD Modern.
During her training, Ellen danced with the Irish National Youth Ballet and Monica Loughman Elite Ballet Company and while studying in UCD, she performed with the Jazz and Contemporary Dance team. Here, she was choreography manager for two years, choreographing and performing for events such as Electric Picnic, All Ireland Dance Experiment and Perform Ireland, as well as winning awards in the all-Ireland Intervarsity’s.
Alongside her work at KWD, Ellen works at Dancesteps and she also works in secondary schools, teaching dance as part of the Physical Education Curriculum, as well as choreographing for musicals. Ellen completed the Royal Academy of Dance's Certificate in Ballet Teaching Studies in 2022.