WHAT IS ARIEL?
Ariel is a Theatre Company who have been running Drama Academies throughout Sussex for students aged 4 – 19 yrs since 2004. There are currently Ariel Academies at venues in Burgess Hill, Crawley and Shoreham taking place on Saturday mornings and at venues in East Grinstead, Haywards Heath and Horsham taking place on Saturday afternoons.
WHO RUNS ARIEL?
Nicci and Neil Hopson, are the Directors of Ariel Company Theatre and have appointed Principals to oversee each of their Academies along with Tutors, Support Tutors and Administration staff, all of whom are DBS checked and in most cases, are the holders of a Chaperone license issued by West Sussex County Council. There are also basic first aid trained members of staff at each of our Academies. As Directors Neil and Nicci regularly teach at or visit each Academy most Saturdays to ensure that the Ariel ethos and values and teaching methods are maintained throughout, and that teaching is of the highest standard.
WHAT HAPPENS AT ARIEL?
Ariel Academies provide tuition in Drama, Singing and Movement for our students, within age range groups. These groups begin with our youngest students in the HAMLET group, aged from 4yrs (once they have begun school) until 7yrs, for these students we provide a 45 minute lesson to incorporate all three disciplines in a fun learning environment. These sessions are designed to develop children’s confidence, focus and social skills and provides a great introduction to performing arts.
From 7 – 19 yrs, the students move into age specific groups: ARIEL, PROSPERO, ORSINO AND TEMPEST. These four groups receive three 45min lessons in each of the three disciplines, each with a specialist tutor, along with two 15minute breaks in between lessons for students to have their drinks and snacks and meet their friends at Ariel. Student’s develop their skills across the three disciplines and will explore a variety of different techniques, styles and genres across all schemes of work.
The four groups are brought together at the beginning and end of the Saturday sessions for notices of forthcoming events, shows and workshops and celebrations of birthdays and of our Student’s achievements.
Ariel also has a group called OTHELLO run by specialist tutors who provide a 1-hour lesson combining all three disciplines suitable for students with special additional needs and disabilities. These sessions take place at our Crawley venue on Saturday mornings and Burgess Hill, Shoreham, and East Grinstead venues on Saturday afternoons. As well as the tutors for this group, there are a number of Ariel students who volunteer as buddies to support all our special needs students.
HOW MUCH DOES ARIEL COST?
Ariel are proud to be competitively priced, offering high quality lessons and opportunities at affordable prices.
Upon joining Ariel, there is a one-off non-refundable registration fee of £25, this price includes an Ariel T Shirt in either red or black depending on which age range group the student is to be placed.
For more information regarding our fees, please enquire at Select here
The fees are paid monthly in advance via direct debit. The direct debit is prorated over the year: weekly session cost x weeks open / 12 months. Sibling discounts are available within the Ariels, Prosperos, Orsinos and Tempests groups
There are no hidden fees within Ariel’s fee structure. All fees include the students participation at their annual Academy Showcase at The Hawth.
Othellos group is paid by monthly standing order.
WHAT SHOULD MY CHILD WEAR TO ARIEL?
Students are required to wear a uniform on Saturday sessions as well as at our Showcases, to outside
events, or anywhere where they are representing Ariel. This uniform for all ages and groups consists of full-length black trousers, (no jeans), the Ariel red or black T shirt, and either black dance/jazz shoes or similar suitable soft soled black trainers. Students can also either wear an Ariel Jumper/sweatshirt or their own plain black or red jumper. In addition, we ask that students should not wear Jewellery and that long hair is tied back with black or red accessories. The Ariel T shirts & sweatshirts can be ordered and purchased through Ariel’s online
IS ARIEL OPEN ALL YEAR ROUND?
Ariel Academies are open for 44 weeks of the year. They are closed for 2 weeks at Christmas, 2 weeks at Easter and 4 weeks of the Academic School Summer holidays. Ariel continues on Saturdays throughout the School half terms. Fees paid by Direct Debits are therefore calculated by multiplying the fee by 44 and then dividing by 12 giving a monthly payable figure.
HOW DO I JOIN ARIEL?
Throughout the year each Academy holds free trial dates for prospective new students, we ask that an application form is completed prior to attendance at a trial date and these can be completed from our website at
Each prospective new student is given a buddy within the group that they are allocated to be part of, and where possible we try to buddy new students with either friends or students that they may know already through school etc. Each Academy has a new starts Administration Officer who will upon receipt of an application form, phone call or email enquiry, (all contact details are at the footer to this document) to contact you regarding attending one of the Academies free trial dates, or they will inform you of a waiting list for a particular group and will then contact you when a place is available.
Following the trial date, you will be contacted by the Administrator to enquire whether your child would like to join the Academy from the following week. If your child would like to take up the offer of a place, then we would ask that the online joining form and Direct Debit mandate form are completed by the following week. You will be asked to provide us with an e mail address for communication and you will receive regular updates and news about Ariel. You will also receive a link to our merchandise store, along with discount code so you can order your FREE uniform t-shirt.
WHEN CAN I SEE WHAT MY CHILD HAS LEARNT AT ARIEL?
Throughout the year each Academy has internal showing dates on a Saturday following the scheme of work. These shows are for the Directors, Tutors, and the rest of the Academy only and are not open to parent/guardians or friends to watch, but from these shows the material is chosen which will form part of each Academy’s Annual Showcase, for parents/guardians and friends to attend. Each Academies Showcase is held at a local theatre, each student is expected to perform at these Showcases, and it involves all groups at Ariel. Ariel do not charge a showcase fee to participate in the showcases. Much preparation and rehearsal go into creating an Academy’s Showcase and therefore commitment and attendance at Ariel’s Saturday sessions are very important to provide a spectacular evening for all.
WHAT OPPORTUNITIES WILL MY CHILD HAVE BY BECOMING A STUDENT AT ARIEL?
Students are provided with many varied opportunities with and through Ariel, these include Musical Theatre Shows, Holiday Workshops, Day Workshops, Plays, Festivals, Competitions, TV work, Pantomime, Private singing tuition and LAMDA exams. Private LAMDA lessons are available throughout the year. Ariel offers FREE LAMDA tuition at the academies.
Ariel also runs a boutique agency in which selected students are invited to audition for.
DOES MY CHILD NEED TO BE LICENCED TO PERFORM WITH ARIEL?
We are very proud to hold a Body of Persons License awarded to us from West Sussex County Council who license Ariel as a Company, which means we do not have to license our students individually each time they perform. Instead, we provide West Sussex with details of Ariel members performing at each event, therefore there is no paperwork to be completed by parents/guardians other than that required when your child first joins Ariel.
We have a social media and web page so that you can always be up to date with general News, Events, Shows, Workshops and Showcases.