The HAPA Team

Below are the members of our amazing team.

Helen Arber

Helen Arber

Helen has loved performing since she was a very young child, she was lucky enough to attend wonderful local dance schools and the prestigious Italia Conti in London.

After living her childhood dream and having one of the best times of her life, singing and dancing at potters, she gained a place at the Millennium Musical Theatre College graduating with Honours.

Helen unexpectedly was given the opportunity to teach A level dance and drama at a large comprehensive school. It is from this experience Helen realised her love for teaching and writing school productions. Alongside full-time teaching, Urban Street was born which gradually evolved into what is now known as HAPA.

For many years HAPA was run over 4 locations involving several teachers and hundreds of children and young adults with Helen at the heart of it.

A surprise chance find came in 2018 when Helen found premises that had huge potential and changed the shape of HAPA completely.

Helen now runs The Billericay Theatre, alongside HAPA and The Billericay Theatre company. She continues to teach classes and writes the school productions and pantos and is the creative director for all her new shows as well as the occasional waitress!

Rachael Willcox

Rachael Willcox

Rachael graduated from university in 2009 and went straight into teaching primary children. Her passion has always been in Music and Performance and throughout her teaching career she has always been responsible for a number of productions. This has included writing an original production of Wind in the Willows which included 7 original musical numbers, Rachael also spends a lot of her time arranging and composing music for the HAPA theatre companies and loves being creative with harmonies.

Rachael has been teaching Music and Performance across Essex and also has a number of private singing, instrumental and drama pupils – all with 100% exam pass rate. She has a bubbly teaching style, and it has been remarked that she can make even the shyest of children come out of their shell. Rachael is one of our music teachers that can often be found teaching an inventive warm up or improving pupils’ techniques in fun and accessible ways. Whether it is rehearsing for a full-blown show, or a termly showcase, Rachael strives to get the best out of very child all while ensuring that they have fun performing. Rachael has a firm belief that every child is musical – they just need to be taught how to harness it.

Jayne Hammond

Jayne Hammond

Jayne graduated from Masters Performing Arts college with a Musical Theatre diploma. She then went on to have a 10-year professional dancing career across the world. Performing in hotels, casinos and circus’ performing for the King and Queen of Spain in El Salvador and Portuguese cabinet in Lisbon. Jayne founded her own production company & talent agency from 2007-2012, specialising in cabaret and taking dancers & shows worldwide.

Since stepping back from the professional world, Jayne has turned her full attention to teaching full time. Having taught for over 20 years she has extensive experience in teaching students from pre-school age through to adults. Jayne has entered students for ISTD exams from Primary to vocational level with 100% pass rate success.

Jayne is constantly continuing her teacher training, recently completing the new ISTD contemporary and Progressive Ballet Technique.

Fiona Reeder

Fiona Reeder

Fiona graduated university with a BA in music, majoring in performance on the flute. Whilst studying, Fiona also completed a degree level piano exam and a three-year conducting course and conducted the University of Surrey’s Wind band. She then went onto gain her PGCE (Secondary) specialising in Music and has been teaching for over 10 years. Fiona is an incredibly passionate teacher who engages students of all age groups. Fiona like to use her talents in composing and arranging to create unique and breath-taking arrangements to use in our choirs. She takes immense pride in everything she does, nothing makes her smile more than seeing and hearing her student’s blossom.

Fiona has been running and developing choirs for the last 10 years of up to 70 children at one time. She is very passionate about taking her choirs out into the wider community to enrich the members experience and to bring happiness to those who watch.

You can often find Fiona conducting our own choirs here at HAPA bringing the level of happiness and respect everyone loves within a Music Teacher.

Annabelle Vickery

Annabelle Vickery

Annabelle began her dance training local to Essex, focusing on many styles including ballet, tap, modern, jazz and contemporary. At the age of 18, she was accepted onto the prestigious full-time programme at the Royal Academy of Dance, where she spent three years training in ballet and contemporary, choreography, teaching theory and practice as well as dance histories and science. In 2017, she graduated with both the BA (Hons) Ballet Education and Licentiate of the Royal Academy of Dance, as well as the Advanced 2 Ballet Certificate. She now holds both Registered Teacher Status and Associate Status with the organisation. Upon qualifying as a ballet teacher, Annabelle then focused her teacher training on other disciplines, and received her Diplomas in Dance Teaching in both Modern Theatre and Tap Dance from the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing in 2020, as well as the Advanced 2 Tap Dance Certificate.

Annabelle joins us with a wealth of teaching experience, having taught all over London and Essex. Whilst primarily working with young children and teenagers, she has also worked with a number of vocational and pre professional students, assisting them in their training to then be accepted into various vocational dance colleges, associate schemes and youth companies. In addition to this, Annabelle has worked closely with local communities for a number of years, delivering both after school and extra-curricular workshops in schools and also dance classes to the elderly. She has also spent some time performing, having danced in a number of events including BBC’s ‘Let’s Sing and Dance for Comic Relief,’ local productions of Sister Act and The Tempest, and also at Move It Dance Expo, as well as on prestigious stages such as The O2, Royal Albert Hall and Saddler’s Wells, to name a few. Her choreography has been shown at The Hackney Empire, Royal Academy of Dance Headquarters and The Queen’s Theatre.

Courtney Skeggs

Courtney started dancing just before the age of 3 and knew all her childhood years all that all she wanted to do was perform. In 2021 she was lucky enough to graduate from a 3 year Musical Theatre/Commercial course at Tiffany Theatre College.

From there she went on to play Alice in the touring Pantomime: Dick Whittington and then landed a year’s contract as a dancer in Malta in April 2022. Since being back she has hosted various children’s events and is currently a dancer in the UK touring show ‘The Super Duper 70s Show’.

Courtney has been teaching Acro for the past two years and has supported numerous children through developing their skills. She believes it is such an asset to have as a dancer and focuses not just on tricks but on how to become the most flexible and strongest version of yourself. She loves passing her knowledge on to young aspiring performers and helping them to achieve their goals.

My daughter has been dancing at HAPA since the day it opened. During this time she gained a passion for dance and grown in confidence. I attribute this progress to the excellent teaching by Miss Jayne and the HAPA team.

Karen Ring

Thank you for being such an amazing team! Our girls love attending HAPA and it’s been great to have such good virtual content for such practical subjects. It’ll be amazing when we can return to in person lessons and watch shows at the theatre but in the meantime, you guys are doing a fab job!

Nadia Osborne

What a fantastic show!!! From entrance to exit you all captivated us such a fun, Happy Christmas spirit with great music and fantastic cast. So glad we came!!! Fantastic work and set. Thank you for having us.

Anna Smith