Bush Davies School of Theatre Arts

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Bush Davies School of Theatre Arts
Bush DAvies School.jpg
Established 1914
Closed 1989
Type Independent
Founder Pauline Bush
Location United Kingdom United Kingdom
51°08′47″N 0°01′04″W / 51.1464°N 0.0178°W / 51.1464; -0.0178Coordinates: 51°08′47″N 0°01′04″W / 51.1464°N 0.0178°W / 51.1464; -0.0178
Website www.bush-davies.com

Bush Davies School of Theatre Arts was a renowned dance and performing arts school in the United Kingdom. Founded by the dance teacher Pauline Bush in Nottingham in 1914,[1] and later with branches in Romford, Essex and London (until it was bombed out during the Second World War) after which it moved to a former boys' school set in beautiful grounds in East Grinstead, the Romford branch continued until 1974 when property speculation forced its closure, it would become recognised as one of the foremost performing arts schools in the United Kingdom, until its closure in 1989. After Pauline's death, the school was run by her daughter Noreen, herself a very accomplished dancer who became recognised as one of Britain's foremost ballet teachers and examiners for the Royal Academy of Dancing (she was awarded a Fellowship) and her husband Victor Leopold, one of Britain's most renowned tap dancers. Later their son Paul Kimm joined them, and he remained Principal until the school closed.

In May 1959, Marjorie Davies produced and directed the musical "What Katy Did" by Jo Masters, which starred students of the Bush Davies School with Pat Goh as Katy.

In 1974, Susan Passmore and Raymond Bishop produced the annual July performance 'Time Steps' in celebration of the school's Diamond Jubilee in the Adeline Genee Theatre, the beginning of a long and glorious partnership. The 330-seat theatre opened in 1967 on land gifted by the school with a performance of "Coppelia". Dame Adeline Genée had cut the first turf herself. The school staged an annual production each summer, playing for a week each time to packed houses. The Theatre was demolished shortly after the school closed, after a long, determined, and at times bitter battle between property developers and council on the one side, and a local group on the other, mainly of the Theatres enthusiasts, determined to save it.

Notable students[edit]


  1. ^ "Bush Telegraph", Bush-Davies School, East Grinstead, July 1974