About us

Cascade Dance was founded in January 2007 by Middlesex University graduates Ricia Coleman and Sam Blackden. Discovering a lack of contemporary dance culture within their local area they decided to create a company in Kent that would reflect its growing success in places like London. Ricia and Sam believe in providing dance that is creative, original, and fun, challenging participants, and surprising audiences of all ages. Their experience throughout years of dance training has given them a platform from which to launch their company with an innovative and creative approach. The company continues to grow, collaborating with dance practitioners and organisations within the South East.

Sam Blackden

Artistic Director
Sam graduated from Middlesex University in 2006 with a BA Hons in Dance Performance. With experience in a variety of contemporary techniques such as Cunningham, Release and Lyrical, Samantha fuses together styles with an aim to inspire her students and audiences. Alongside Cascade, Samantha works as a part time youth worker in the Maidstone area holding a youth worker qualification and first aid training. She is also an accredited Sports / Dance Leader and Arts Award Advisor. Samantha is also co-founder of Dance Resources

Ricia Coleman

Artistic Director
Ricia graduated from Middlesex University in 2006 and gained a BA (Hons) in Dance Studies. Having studied Jazz, musical theatre, ISTD tap and ballet for many years, along with modern & Cecchetti ballet, Ricia has since gained vast experience in both the performing and teaching world. Ricia is a qualified YMCA Aerobic, Ballet fitness, Aerial Hoop and Pole Instructor; she is also an accredited Sports / Dance Leader and Arts Award Advisor. Alongside Cascade, Ricia is also the founder of Pole Twist. Ricia’s latest Skill is the Aerial Silks and she will be teaching this very soon. Watch this space!

Jessica Maple

Dance Artist / Performer
Jess graduated from the University of Chichester in 2010 with a BA (Hons) in Dance. Jessica has since joined Cascade through an apprenticeship role, working closely with the company leading educational and community activities in Kent. Having trained under the ISTD syllabus in ballet, modern and tap since a young age, she is also qualified to teach with a Level 3 Diploma in Dance Instruction. Jessica now delivers a range of activities for Cascade as a dance artist and performer within the company.

Lizzy Sellar

Dance Artist / Performer / Former Apprentice
Lizzy graduated from Bath Spa University with a BA (Hons) in Dance Studies. Throughout her degree she has acquired experience in choreography, contact improvisation, somatic practice, the Alexander Technique and Contemporary techniques including; Cunningham, Limón, Release and Graham. Lizzy has also trained in street dance, modern, ballet from age 16 and after joining Cascade in 2012 through the apprenticeship programme, she now delivers projects for the company and performs in the adult dance company.

Emma-Marie Newman

Dance Artist / Performer
Emma trained at Creative Academy in West London for two years gaining a foundation degree in dance and completed her degree at Canterbury University with a BA (Hons) in performing arts, graduating with a 1st. She has recently completed a Professional Certificate in Education and is on her way to gaining QTLS. Emma is a qualified NATD contemporary teacher and is on her way to becoming a qualified IDTA ballet teacher.