Meet Your Directors - The Donaldsons
Colin and Jacqui Donaldson
Colin Donaldson commenced his dance career at eleven years of age when he used to accompany his Mother and Father to the local village hall for the weekly sequence dance club nights.
As a young man he competed on a regular basis with his first partner Carole, and they were modestly successful in UK events. After a two year break for National service, he qualified with the IDTA and opened the Colin Donaldson School of Dancing in July 1967.
Jacqui Donaldson began her dance adventure when at 5 years of age, she joined the classes which were run by Winifred Donaldson (Colin`s Mother) in Woking Surrey.
She competed at the highest level in the sequence branch, and was many times a championship winner.
When Colin and Jacqui got together he opened the Hampshire dance school and then together they purchased the Diamond Dancentre, creating the now well established Ltd Company we have today.
Now celebrating 50 years of dance school history he is naturally very proud of the achievements in the competitive world of dance and feels that the success of the business is down to good management from the whole team of Teachers and helpers, plus the good will and support of all the pupils.
Whilst not always visible at the studio, Colin works tirelessly behind the scenes to make sure the school continues to progress. Jacqui is much more hands on at the studio, and her expertise is second to none with her amazing organising abilities. Both of them are directors of the Supadance National league and play a full role in the organising of the national finals each year.
Colin and Jacqui are both fully qualified and appointed examiners of the IDTA. They have travelled the world together, and continue to do so. Teaching, lecturing, and examining in far flung places which include China, Korea, all of Europe, Russia, Iceland, and the Middle East.
Jacqui was awarded the prestigious Carl Allen statuette in recognition of her work in developing the IDTA freestyle dance awards.
Colin was elected was elected to the Board of Directors of the IDTA in 2002, and served as President during 2008-2009.
Dance is what they do.
Cara has been dancing since the day she was born. With both parents as dance professionals and spending the majority of her time at the dance school, she naturally had dance in her blood. When Cara was 2 years old she took her first steps on the dance floor and completed her first rosette. Completing all of her medals she went onto to dance at Championship level all over the world. Cara danced until she turned 18 and after making numerous National and International finals she decided she would rather further her career as a teacher as opposed to a competitor.
It didn't take long for Cara to realise that teaching dance wasn't just about this, it was about nurturing and looking after people, inspiring them to step outside their comfort zone and believe they can achieve whatever they put their mind too.
Alongside Cara’s dance teaching she also found a love of fitness. Combining the two became easy when the Zumba qualification was introduced and immediately she was qualified and teaching and has sold out classes for the past 7 years. She also took her fitness instructor qualification and soon after became a circuit instructor.
In 2016 Cara decided to enter the London Marathon, what she didn't realise was the magnitude of the journey she was about to go on not just physically but mentally. From the first 40 minute run to the final 22 mile practise run it became a life changing journey. Cara was always driven but she now understands that she never really knew what actual hard work was. It challenged her physically and emotionally and she realised that she should be using this within her dance teaching to encourage her pupils to believe they can push themselves a whole lot more.
Since completing the race and realising her body could do so much more that she believed, Cara decided she would like to deepen her understanding of fitness and be able to answer questions about how to further herself and how she could help herself in any future fitness challenges. She begun studying for her Personal Training Qualification a few months later with no intention to pursue it as a career but more to be able to help people in whatever small way she could.
Cara is Qualified with the IDTA and has endless amounts of knowledge for dance, fitness and mind training.
Kerri-Anne began her dance career at the tender age of three years. Her very first partner was sister Cara, who partnered her when she competed at the Nationwide finals in Blackpool.
She was placed first in her age group that year.
From that time she began a very successful competitive career on the UK and worlds open dance circuit.
With various partners she rose to the top of the Juvenile, Junior, and Amateur Ballroom and Latin champions league, winning almost every major UK and world event.
The Highlights of her career include her first ever International title at the age of 9 years old, then going on to being placed first in the Junior open British Championships when she was fifteen years old, and finishing her competitive career with being chosen as a member of the British team with partner Alejandro Hernandez.
Being at the top of the competition world of dance Kerri-Anne missed many days of schooling whilst she travelled the world representing Great Britain. Winning multiple National and International titles along the way.
After 25 years of competing Kerri decided it was time to challenge herself in a new venture and alongside her troupe ‘Kings and Queens’ made the semi finals of the 2013 ‘Britain’s Got Talent’
She has worked in Paris for several years as the Choreographer for the French version of Strictly come dancing, and is now working in London on the choreography for our very own British show Strictly come dancing. She has also been involved in various projects including commercials for Chivas whiskey and G Tech Vacuum cleaners, aswell as Choreographing for Dance Tours and individual shows around the world.
Kerri-Anne cares deeply for the Diamond family school and takes each pupil in her care with great interest as she develops their natural talents. Kerri believes, Every one can learn to dance!