Students live in a friendly and caring community which is committed to their safety and welfare. Students receive outstanding Health & Well-being support specifically designed for dancers.
We are proud to be a world class centre of excellence for the training and education of classical ballet dancers where graduating students are prepared to secure contracts with national and international ballet companies. Teachers come from successful professional dance backgrounds and teach with passion and commitment.
A student-focussed learning experience maximises each studentís potential in learning, living and dancing skills. The positive learning environment and high expectations prepare our graduates for life in the very best national and international ballet companies.
Elmhurst in Association with Birmingham Royal Ballet is a world renowned centre of excellence for the training and education of ballet dancers. Students are equipped with the skills, resilience and creativity to succeed and make a difference in the professional dance world and beyond.

Errol Pickford

Head of Graduate Placement & International Links

Errol was born in Perth, Australia, and trained as a gymnast. After moving to England, he trained in ballet at the Hammond School, winning the Paul Clarke Memorial Scholarship and the Phyllis Bedells Award, and at the Royal Ballet School where he gained his Solo Seal and won the Adeline Genée Competition.

He danced with The Royal Ballet, becoming a renowned Principal dancer, working with and creating roles in ballets by Kenneth MacMillan, Frederick Ashton and David Bintley, amongst others. Whilst there, he danced alongside Rudolph Nureyev at the Margot Fonteyn Gala, in a version of the Mandolin Dance from Romeo and Juliet, specially created for him by Kenneth MacMillan. He also won the first-ever Eric Bruhn Competition in Canada, and he created history when he was the first Western dancer to partner Bolshoi ballerina Nina Ananiashvili, on the stage at Covent Garden for the Armenia Gala, in a performance that was broadcast live on national television. From 1997 he was a Principal dancer with Western Australian Ballet.

After retiring, he passed his RAD Professional Dancers' Teaching Diploma with distinction. He has taught at the London Studio Centre, the Arts Educational School in Tring and Bird College, and on RAD Summer Schools and Yorkshire Ballet Seminars, as well as classes for the RAD Phyllis Bedells Competition and the Cecchetti Society’s Barbara Geoghegan Award. He was Ballet Master and School Director for K Ballet in Japan for four years and has been a guest teacher with Birmingham Royal Ballet, The Australian Ballet, Rambert Dance Company, Adventures in Motion and English National Ballet.

He joined Elmhurst in 2008.

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Errol Pickford, Head of Graduate Placement & International Links; photo: Tim Cross

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