– Principal Teacher at Danceworks Ballet Academy in London
South African born Yolandi started her ballet training at age four. From age twelve she was taught by Martin Schonberg’s Ballet Theatre Afrikan Academy of Dance and attended the National School of the Arts from 1996-1999. She completed her schooling at Canada’s National Ballet School in Toronto. Yolandi studied contemporary and Spanish dance with her main focus being classical ballet.
In 2000, upon her return to South Africa, she joined the Ballet Theatre Afrikan Company (BTA) as a principal dancer. Whilst with BTA she toured South Africa performing a number of principal roles including Paquita, Aurora in the Sleeping Beauty, Grand Pas Classique as well as Odette/Odile from in Swan Lake.
In 2001 Yolandi became the youngest Giselle ever in South Africa when she appeared as a guest artist with the South African Ballet Theatre (SABT). She joined SABT in April 2008 as a soloist and made her debut with the company as Queen of the Dryads. She performed in various other soloist and principal roles during her time in the company.
Since 2012 Yolandi has focused on preparing students for entry into vocational schools, and putting them through their dance examinations in the Cecchetti method as well as coaching in the RAD method and rehabilitating injured dancers with intense body conditioning and floor barre training. She has prepared students for international ballet competitions as well as auditions for companies and Summer programs and has also coached principle dancers for roles performed such as Giselle and Swan Lake. Taking this path in her teaching career has allowed her the opportunity of working with young children (6 years of age), through to young adults and adults alike. The success of this teaching can be seen in the student’s results which have been quite remarkable all round.