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Brooke Allen

Head of Dance/Choreographer

Brooke Allen BDAF RDT (Member BTDA) B.A. (Hons.)

Brooke has been an active member of the Ulster Operatic Company since 2008 and past shows include Oklahoma!, Jesus Christ Superstar, Boogie Nights, The Music Box and West Side Story. Since then, she has joined the committee and has worked with the company as both choreographer and dance captain for concerts and shows.

Brooke is a qualified dance and drama teacher with the British Dance Arts Federation. She is also a member of the British Theatre Dance Association, with whom she trained in Modern Jazz, Tap and Lyrical. Furthermore, Brooke has a first class BA (hons.) degree in Drama & English from Queen’s University, Belfast.

Brooke currently teaches at the Pauline Walker Dance & Stage School, where she trained as a student herself. At the school she teaches drama, singing and various dance disciplines including street dance, tap and musical theatre. Brooke also works as a freelance dance teacher and choreographer in many musical theatre companies, schools and youth groups cross the province, including Bright Lights Dance Group. Brooke also works professionally as a dancer and has worked alongside acts such as Lisa Scott-Lee from pop group ‘Steps’ and Kitty Brucknell (X-factor finalist).

Brooke is delighted to be working as choreographer of the Ulster Operatic Youth Academy, alongside a very talented team, and particularly looks forward to welcoming lots of fantastic young people to our company!

Michelle Harkin

Head of Music

Michelle has featured in all Ulster Operatic Company productions since joining as a member in 2009, including Rent, Jesus Christ Superstar, Guys and Dolls and Oklahoma! Also a committee member at UOC, she is delighted to be part of the production team of the Ulster Operatic Youth Company. Previous roles have included Sister Sophia in ‘The Sound of Music’, Emma in ‘A Son’s Return’ and Susan in ‘Calamity Jane’.

The primary school teacher has been performing on stage since she was four years old, and holds a BEd in Music from St Mary’s University College, as well as Grade 8 in both Voice and Piano and a Distinction in Musical Theatre. She also had success with teaching singing, piano and drama in Derry with many pupils winning competitions and going on to gain Distinction up to Grade 5.

Michelle has also directed and produced shows, including ‘A Taste of Wicked’ (2007) in which she also played Glinda, ‘Magic of the Musicals’ (2008) and ‘Footloose’ (2009). She was a member of the Grove Theatre Group in Derry for fourteen years where she played various principal roles, and also acted as a mentor and teacher for younger members. She has accompanied her school choir for the last two years and also ran an after school singing club.

Michelle is really looking forward to finding some new talent and helping the young people to gain the kind of stage experience that made her own childhood so much fun!

Meike White

Company Manager

Meike is originally from East Germany but in 1989 came to the West to promote the brilliance of Cowboy and Western Musicals. Upon arriving in Belfast she soon got involved in Musical Theatre in a production of ‘Oklahoma!’ directed by Peter Kennedy. She then became a member of Belfast Operatic Company and performed in many shows with them including ‘The Mikado’, ‘Pirates of Penzance’, ‘Patience’, ‘ShowBoat’, Numerous Panto’s, ‘HMS Pinafore’, ‘Trial by Jury’, and ‘Calamity Jane’.

She also has done shows with other companies including St. Agnes’ Choral Society… ‘Me and My Girl’, ‘Camelot’, ‘Oliver’, ‘Carousel’, ‘Trial by Jury’, ‘Merry Widow’, ‘The Messiah’ in Clonard Monastery with Brian Kennedy and taking part in Peter Corry’s production of ‘Les Miserables’ in the Odyssey, Belfast. She also took part in shows with Bangor Operatic Society… ‘Sweet Charity’, ‘Oklahoma’ and 'Little Shop of Horrors'. Not to mention a few AIMS concerts along the way!

Since joining The Ulster in 2001 she has been an integral part of the rejuvenation of the Company serving as Secretary and Production Manager on the committee for the last 15 years. She has performed in pretty much everything the Company has put on since then including ‘Little Shop of Horrors’ (three times), ‘South Pacific’, 'Fiddler on the Roof', ‘Calamity Jane’, ‘Oklahoma!’ (twice) ‘West Side Story’ (twice), ‘Sleeping Beauty’, ‘Cinderella’, ‘Aladdin’, ‘Rent’, ‘Boogie Nights’, ‘The Music Box’ (twice) ‘Guys and Dolls’, ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’, 'Grease', 'Oliver' and 'Legally Blonde' which she assistant directed.

Meike holds a Masters Degree and works as a Business Consultant helping new businesses start up, consulting existing businesses on growth and mentoring Social Enterprises.