Part Time Classical Training Programme – A.R.A.D.
Karen studied ballet (amongst other dance genres) at the Valeria Hansen Academy of Dancing in Rockhampton from the age of four. She continued her training at The Royal Ballet School, London in 1978, winning Bronze at the Adeline Genee Competition, in 1979, and dancing Gypsy Girl in The Two Pigeons in her Graduation Performance at The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden in 1980.
The same year Karen joined Sadlers’ Wells Royal Ballet – now Birmingham Royal Ballet – and in 1987 was promoted to Principal Dancer under the direction of Sir Peter Wright, performing in London, across the UK and internationally. Some of her many leading roles include Aurora, Odette/Odile, Lise, Swanhilda , Giselle, Sugar Plum Fairy, Pineapple Poll and leading ballerina in Paquita, Divertimento No. 15, Theme and Variations and Five Tangos. Other roles include Elite Syncopations, Concerto Barocco, Raymonda, Flowers of the Forest and showcase pas des deux Don Quixote and Tchaikovsky. Karen has worked with many notable choreographers, but two career highlights were having David Bintley’s Allegri Diversi and Hobson’s Choice created especially for her.