Performing Arts Faculty

Mr Matthew Bulmer, BA, MA
Director of Performing Arts
Head of Drama
Teacher of English

Mr Bulmer came to Brentwood as Director of Performing Arts having led the Drama departments in two large independent schools in London. His teaching experience has been exclusively in the independent sector where he has developed curricula and an approach to live performance that encompasses the nature of independent schools. It is his belief that an independent education should encourage all students to seize every opportunity offered to them and, once mastered, go looking for more. It is the then the school’s job to provide those opportunities. Indeed, an independent school that is not looking to move forward year on year, term on term, needs to drastically consider its modus operandi. 

Mr Bulmer's time at Cambridge University dramatically furthered a passion for Literature and Theatre that was planted and nurtured in his own school days somewhere in the vast rural splendour of North Yorkshire. It is his dream that all students can enjoy and feel inspired by Literature and live performance just as he was. 

Mr Bulmer continues to balance teaching with work in the industry with a professional production of Twelfth Night to be staged in January 2015 in London. Other recent work includes two shows that were nominated for the Edinburgh Fosters Award, a 120-student production of Sweeney Todd, two school productions that played at the Edinburgh Fringe, one an adaptation of Junk, by Melvin Burgess and a European tour of Hamlet. He has worked as an actor, director, producer and theatre company manager all across the country over the past decade. 

MAB@brentwood.essex.sch.uk


Mr Florian Cooper, BA
Director of Music

Mr Cooper graduated with a degree in music from Durham University in 2012, where he focused his studies on orchestration, conducting and research into the Russian composer Dimitri Shostakovich. During his last year at University, Mr Cooper was the Musical Director of the University Big Band. This year culminated at the Great North Jazz Festival and a sell-out tour of London’s West End. He is currently the Musical Director of the London based Seven Steps Big Band, a 20 piece premier jazz ensemble who take a yearly residency on the MS Marco Polo as a guest entertainment act, as well as regular gigs in prestigious London jazz venues. 

As an orchestrator and arranger Florian works in many different genres from big band to orchestral. A highlight came with the commission to orchestrate the new musical The Confession Room by Dan Looney for 11 piece orchestra, recorded on a concept album in which Florian also played the bass guitar. Florian’s orchestrations and arrangements have been performed extensively around the country as well as abroad, notably by members of the Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra. Florian is a passionate educator and has recently graduated with a post-graduate certificate of education at the Institute of Education. In addition to teaching privately and accompanying choirs and ensembles, he has always relished the opportunity to work with youth music projects and thoroughly enjoys teaching music and running co-curricular musical ensembles at Brentwood School.

FAC@brentwood.essex.sch.uk

Miss Kimberley Heterich, ISTD

Head of Dance Academy

Miss Herterich continues to teach both co-curricular and curricular dance. After finishing her professional training as a dancer and teacher her ambition was to go on to inspire her love for dance and the theatre to students of all ages. Brentwood School has been the perfect environment to establish a dance academy, choreograph dance productions and educate young performers.

KH@brentwood.essex.sch.uk

Miss Michelle Choate, BA, MA, AMTLA
Teacher of English & Drama, Head of Dance
Deputy Head of First Year

Miss Michelle Choate is the Deputy Head of 1st Form as well as a teacher of Dance, Drama, Games and English. She has a BA (Hons) degree in Dance and Culture from the University of Surrey and a Master’s degree in Dance Studies from Roehampton University. Michelle joined Brentwood School in 2015, having arrived from working at Gable Hall School, where she was both a student and teacher. In addition to her duties as Head of Year at Gable Hall School, she accompanied and led numerous Performing Arts and Physical Education trips to Paris, New York, Austria, Barcelona and Venice, as well as directed a number of performances and productions in school and professional theatres, including Sadler’s Wells Theatre, London, and Disneyland Paris

Michelle comes to Brentwood having worked at prestigious arts institutions, including the Royal Academy of Dance and Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance. More recently, one of her papers was also published in the educational dance magazine; Dance Matters.

Michelle is also an AQA GCSE Dance Moderator and an Associate Member of the Teaching and Learning Academy.

MKC@brentwood.essex.sch.uk

Mrs Lynsey Cleaves, BA, MA
Teacher of Drama
West Housemistress

Mrs Cleaves has recently completed an MA in Education examining the function and development of drama on the school curriculum. She aspires to ensure all drama lessons are relevant, engaging and challenging and she believes that drama and the arts are crucial elements of everyones's education.   She chose a career in teaching to inspire the next generation of theatre goers and makers.  She regularly attends the theatre, preferring fringe theatre and new writing at venues such as the Southwark Playhouse, The Almeida and The Arcola.  By maintaining her passion for live theatre, Mrs Cleaves ensures her school productions are up to date and likes to experiment with staging and space to present fresh interpretations of well known texts, which to date include; Alice, Animal Farm, Romeo and Juliet, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Antigone. 

LMC@brentwood.essex.sch.uk

 

Miss Felicity Passmore, BA
Teacher of Drama

FRP@brentwood.essex.sch.uk

Miss Rachel Worth, BA, MA
Teacher of Drama

Miss Rachel Worth studied at Rose Bruford College of Theatre and Performance and the Institut del Teatre, Barcelona before embarking on a career as a professional actor, performing on both stage and screen. Her fascination with the journey of theatre-making led her to taking an MA in Directing and Actor Training at the University of Exeter where she specialized in comedy and physical theatre and the role of the director as a facilitator of play in order for the performer to find creative freedom.  

Whilst working as a Practitioner and Director for the Theatre Royal, Plymouth Miss Worth particularly enjoyed creating theatrical experiences and developing the skills of their Young Company, inspiring her to continue sharing her love of performance with young people. Miss Worth joined us at Brentwood School in January 2015 having previously led the Drama Department at Farringtons School, Kent.

She brings to Brentwood a wealth of theatrical experience, enthusiasm and joie de vivre!

RGW@brentwood.essex.sch.uk


Mr David Revels, MA (Oxon), MMus, PGCE, LRSM
Assistant Director of Music

David is a graduate of Oxford University, where he read Music and sang as a choral scholar in the world-renowned Christ Church Cathedral Choir; he is also a post-graduate of the RSAMD. During his time at Christ Church, David toured extensively to many countries including New Zealand, USA and the Lebanon to name but a few. He features on many recordings from Byrd and Palestrina to Walton and Howard Goodall, as well as the more universally-known theme tunes for the The Vicar of Dibley and Mr Bean; and Stage Beauty - a film directed by Sir Richard Eyre featuring Claire Danes.

David is the former Head of Vocal Studies and Performances at Morley College, where he managed the vocal curriculum ranging from beginner to advanced level classes and a part time opera course and had responsibility for all music performances. Classes spanned many styles (jazz, folk, classical, pop) and also involved the running of several choirs.  For five and a half years, David conducted the College's Choral Society (often with orchestral accompaniment) e.g. Mozart's Requiem, Bach's St John Passion and Haydn's Creation.
 
As a performer he has extensive experience on the operatic and oratorio stages; and has toured with The Gabrieli, Monteverdi Choir and Britten Sinfonia Voices. 
 
DAR@brentwood.essex.sch.uk

 

Mr Sam Barber
Musician in Residence 

 

 

Mr Thomas Heard, M.A., B.Mus
Teacher of Music

TAH@brentwood.essex.sch.uk

 

Mr Tomas Pavelka, BA
Performing Arts Technician

PavelkaT@brentwood.essex.sch.uk