The SLDA Team

Sophia Leong BAHons, MA, LRAD, RTS and RAD examiner (Artistic Director, Owner, Operator and Ballet Teacher)
Nina Gaskill RAD Dip, AISTD, DDE and RTS RAD (Senior Teaching Consultant and Ballet, Modern and Tap Teacher at SLDA)
Devhan Johnson RTS   (Admin Co-Ordinator at SLDA)  
Natalie Champion (Modern and Tap Teacher at SLDA)
Jane Clarke (Modern and Tap teacher as SLDA)
About us
SLDA Bake Off and Welcome Back Party
Halloween Party 
Christmas Party
Aladdin Trip
Euro Disney Trip
Royal Academy of Dance
Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing



Royal Academy of Dance

Royal Academy of Dance (RAD)

Sophia Leong Dance Academy offers Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) ballet classes with fully registered and qualified RAD teachers. Here is some information about the RAD and what it means to be taking RAD ballet classes.

History of the Royal Academy of Dance

The Royal Academy of Dance was founded in London, England 1920 by a group of eminent dance professionals who represented all of the principal ballet training methods of the time. These professionals were concerned about the quality of ballet teaching at that time and wished to create a body which could produce a standard for ballet training. This body was to be known as the ‘Association of Teachers of Operatic Dance’. Over the next decade the association grew and in 1935 the association was granted a Royal Charter (HRH Royal approval) and became the Royal Academy of which the Queen of England is patron.

The Royal Academy of Dance Today

Today the Royal Academy of Dance is an organization setting the standard for dance teaching and performing worldwide. It has over 15,500 members across 82 countries and 37 offices in many countries around the world.

The RAD sets a worldwide standard for the teaching of classical ballet by offering ballet examinations. These exams are available to ballet students, from those young children just beginning to the student aspiring to become a professional dancer or qualified instructor. No matter what level the student benefits from the RAD system, RAD qualified teachers are trained not only in ballet technique but also anatomy, injury prevention, child psychology, dance history, choreography, dance notation (a form of shorthand for dance movement) giving the student, whether recreational or vocational, the best and safest possible ballet instruction. The RAD exams provide goals to be worked towards and once attained the student feels a real sense of achievement. The Royal Academy feels strongly that it is important for every student to have an achievable goal. Therefore, there are different levels of examinations on offer to students depending on which exam suits the individual. These options are examination or presentation, involving the study of either the graded or vocational syllabus.

The Royal Academy of Dance Examinations are recognized globally and the Vocational Graded Examinations are accepted by international ballet companies and international dance academies. The RAD examinations are also recognised by on the Regulated Qualifications Framework in the UK and students can use their ballet exams as extra UCAS points for entry into university..Ballet is very often perceived to be just a recreational activity, which to many students it will be and with safe training it is a wonderful, healthy, fun pastime. However, there are other opportunities to be gained from having formal RAD training. With the RAD syllabus those who have the talent and the inclination to pursue a career in the field of ballet have the option of working around the world or at home. There are many vacancies both in performing and teaching still open around the world thus displaying the requirement for fully qualified dance and instructors globally.