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Fiona and Dancescape South Africa make the Dancing Times. Click here to view the article.





The Fiona Sargeant Legacy:

Fiona Sargeant (1965-2017) was trained in England by the: Nesta Brooking School, Elmhurst, Ballet Rambert and Central School of Ballet. She had the privilege of working with exceptional teachers, such as Christopher and Carole Gable and Simon Mottram, her first teacher to influence and encourage her love of teaching. She enjoyed a fifteen year professional career dancing with the London City Ballet, NAPAC Dance Company and CAPAB Ballet. 

Her professional dancing career enabled her to perform and train internationally. Towards the end of her career she became involved with the CAPAB Ballets David Poole Trust 'Ballet for All' and later 'Dance for All'.

Above: Fiona Sargeant and trainee teachers Lihle Mfene, Lutho Zwendala and Anele Bizwaphi

Fiona was highly regarded as a mentor and teacher with a Royal Academy of Dance 'Distinction' Teaching Certificate.   In her life time she was recognised with four prestigious awards:

1995  The Balletomanes 'Behind the Scenes' Award for her contribution to the development of Dance.
2011  The Montagu Advice Office 'Cornerstone Award' for 'tireless efforts in previously disadvantaged and rural communities'.
2012  The Breede River Winelands Rotary Foundation Paul Harris Award 'in appreciation of tangible and significant assistance given for the furtherance of better understanding and friendly relations among peoples of the world'.
in 2015  Cape Winelands District Mayoral Award for Community Based Tourism Public Initiatives as the first recipient.

Fiona had a vision and passion for changing lives through dance, uplifting people through dance, and it is the desire of Dancescape South Africa to keep her legacy alive for the longest time.

Dancescape CEO and Director: (DSA)

Mitya Sargeant

Mitya started dancing at an early age and was taught by Patricia Clancy, Aileen Keegan, Dudley van Loggenberg, Dudley Tomlinson. He started working as a professional dancer in 1987 with the NAPAC Dance Company in Durban, South Africa. He danced many leading roles such as Albrecht in Giselle, Franz in Coppelia, Siegfried in Swan Lake, the Prince in Aurora’s wedding and many other roles. In 1992 Mitya married Fiona and they travelled together in Europe and Britain where he worked with the London City Ballet. They later returned to South Africa where Mitya worked with CAPAB Ballet Company in Cape Town. He retired as a professional dancer in 1996 and pursued careers in Pottery, Web design, Information Technology and the visual Arts. Mitya had over the years of their married life watched Fiona’s teaching progress in rural disadvantaged communities and wanted to preserve her legacy. With this in mind he registered Dancescape South Africa as an NPO in early 2016. Fiona had been diagnosed with cancer in early 2016 and passed away in September 2017. At the time of her illness Mitya was actively involved in teaching the students in the Zolani township. He now manages and directs Dancescape South Africa.

Dancescape Dance Teachers:

Farouk and Manie Irving

Farouk and Manie Irving have between them over 35 years of experience as professional dancers. They have both worked with the Cape Town City Ballet, the Playhouse Dance Company, Ikapa Dance company and the Bovim Ballet. They have both won Balletomane Awards for their dancing achievements. They both trained with Dudley Tomlinson at the University of Cape Town and Manie continued his training at the Urdang Academy of the Performing Arts in London. They have also performed in Musical Theatre and Manie has taken on acting roles and worked in stunts. Farouk who is 7 years older than Manie has several years of experience teaching at various organizations around Cape Town. Both brothers have spent time away from the theatre to work in a business environment, however their passion for the performing arts prevailed and both Farouk and Manie now want to give their vast knowledge and experience back to the career that has given them so much.

 Farouk Irving Manie Irving
Farouk and Manie teaching class  

Public Relations Officer:

In September 2018 Dancescape South Africa appointed Patricia Chimanga as its new Public Relations Officer. Patricia’s initial work will begin with making connections with the parents of our current students. We have discovered that most of the parents don’t really know what their children are doing in the afternoons when they attend classes with DSA. Patricia will be informing the parents / guardians about what we are doing every afternoon of the week. Furthermore they are told about the benefits of dance and the potential for making a career in the performing arts. Patricia is building bridges between DSA and parents and other important role players in our local communities.



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