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Executive Artistic Director


Operations Director


Design & Media Consultant


Marketing & PR Consultant


Administrative Assistant


















Philip trained at the University of Cape Town Ballet School and graduated in 1976 with distinction. He joined CAPAB Ballet in 1978 where he was a principal dancer for 23 years. He has danced all the great leading roles in classical ballet repertoires, performing locally and abroad.


In 1991, he decided it was time to pass on the knowledge and experience he had gained from his professional career and to offer something that would bring hope and purpose to the lives of underprivileged children. He joined an outreach programme, started under the auspices of CAPAB Ballet, called Ballet for All.


In 1997, Philip started the David Poole Trust, as a vehicle through which to raise funds for DFA, realising that there was so much more to be done and that Dance for All needed to develop its own identity. In March 2002, Philip ended his long association with what had by then become Cape Town City Ballet and was named Artistic Director of Dance for All.


In 2008 Philip was appointed as Chief Executive Officer. In this capacity, and through his positive leadership and untiring energy in promoting dance in the Western Cape, he took the organisation to new heights until his retirement in 2017 

The late Phyllis Spira

Phyllis Spira was a South African ballet dancer who began her career with the Royal Ballet in England. After only a few months of training at the Royal Ballet School at the age of 16, she made her debut in a performance of Swan Lake at Covent Garden after which she joined the Royal Ballet touring company. Spira remained with the touring group of the Royal Ballet for three years, from 1960 to 1963 and was promoted to soloist in 1961. A promising future lay before her, but her longing for home made her decide to return to South Africa in 1964.

Upon returning to South Africa, she spent twenty-eight years as prima ballerina of the professional company CAPAB Ballet in Cape Town. In 1984, Phyllis was named South Africa’s first (and only) Prima Ballerina Assoluta, a rare honour, traditionally reserved only for the most exceptional dancer of a generation. She continued to lead the Cape Town company until 1988. 

After leaving the stage Spira served as principal ballet mistress of CAPAB Ballet until 1999, during which time the company was renamed Cape Town City Ballet. Phyllis joined DFA after retiring and ran the organisation together with Philip Boyd and Marlene Carstens, making DFA the organisation it is today. 


It is with gratitude that we honour the individuals who have made remarkable contributions to the success of DFA.


Former Honorary Life Patron

07.10.1931 – 26.12.2021


Founder & Honorary Life Patron





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Operations Director


Design & Media Consultant


Executive Artistic Director


Marketing & PR Consultant

Allison Hendricks


Allison is a producer, director, choreographer, dance coach and adjudicator with 35 years’ experience in the performing arts industry. She trained at the University of Cape Town School of Dance (1989-1991) completing practical training in Classical Ballet (highest Ballet exam passed – Royal Academy of Dance Advanced Executant), Modern Jazz, Contemporary Dance, African Dance and Flamenco. Other subjects completed include History of Ballet, Music Literature Anatomy, Theatre Craft, Dance Notation, Teaching Method, Choreography and Drama.

Her extensive professional career includes being the Director of the DFA(SA) InSPIRAtions Youth Company and full-time Bridging Training Programme. She has been an adjudicator of the Suidoosterfees Talentsoektog since 2019 and a former South African International (SAIBC) adjudicator. Allison is the founder and Artistic Director of Artists Extreme Pty Ltd.. She also founded the ‘Exposé’ youth talent project that is focused on discovering, exposing, nurturing, and training young artists between the ages of 10-18 years old in the acts of dancing, singing and music. She is a member of the International Dance Council CID and a former South African German Network (SAGE Net) E.V. Committee member. 

Her focus is on discovering, uncovering, nurturing, and training performing artists. She imparts strong training, grounding, skills development, and mentorship to dancers, vocalists, and musicians


Marlene Carstens


Marlene Carstens, former Cape Town City Ballet Company manager, has been part of the DFA team since its inception and alongside founder Philip Boyd initiated many of the training programmes, including the Bridging Programme and InSPIRAtions Youth Company. 


During the initial years, she worked closely with DFA’s strategic partners. In the later years, she worked alongside the current EAD, Allison Hendricks, contributing significantly to shaping DFA into its present form.

Michelle Louw


Michelle completed a BA Graphic Design degree at MGI in 2013. She is a diverse media expert, and her services include creative design, web development and media management. She joined DFA in 2017.

Nicolette Booyens


Nicolette is a NPO development specialist focused on wholistic organisational sustainability and promotion. She holds a BA Communication degree from Johannesburg University and has 20 years’ experience in non-profit organisational development and support. She joined DFA in 2024 and is focused on Marketing and Communications. 

Shannon Roode


Shannon is a Northlink College graduate, specialising in Dance, Drama and Musical Theatre. Shannon has performed across local and international stages. She has worked in the creative arts education sector since 2017.

Caitlin Alkana


Caitlin matriculated at Groote Schuur High School and completed a B. Com General degree at the University of the Western Cape. She joined DFA in 2024 and is well versed in administration, information systems and business management. 

Nomthandazo Cynthia Ndindwa


Cynthia joined DFA in 2014 and offers a valuable service in keeping our working and movement spaces neat and organised. 

Elliot Maseko


Elliot joined DFA in 2022 and is an important member of our team. He ensures that students are transported safely to and from their dance classes, performances, and outings. 

Abdul-Aagier Isaacs

Hailing from Wellington, Abdul is a DFA Bridging Programme graduate, a Jazzart Dance Theatre trainee, and is currently completing a University of Cape Town Diploma in Theatre, Dance and Performance. In 2019 he was awarded third place in Kaapse Dans Solo. His professional career includes dancing in numerous productions and at festivals. In 2023 he choreographed a production called Uhambo, which was performed by DFA. In 2024 he danced in Encore for Jazzart Dance Theatre. Abdul has been teaching at DFA since 2023.

Annie Hlahleni

Annie started dance training when she was three years old at TDP, where she trained in a variety of styles and majored in Hip Hop. Dance studies at Alexander Sinton High School broadened her training and she completed the DFA Bridging Programme. Her career includes dancing in productions and competitions, choreography, and teaching. She has performed in Going Places the Musical and Woza Cape. She has featured in two music videos and choreographed for the Baxter Festival in 2019. She currently teaches dancing at both DFA and Dynamic Dance.

Nkosentsha Tamana

Hailing from Khayelitsha, Nkosentha matriculated at the Chris Hani Arts and Culture Focus School. He went on to achieve a Diploma in Dance Education and a Certificate in FET Training from the University of Cape Town. His career as a teacher includes teaching at Chris Hani Arts and Culture Focus School, UCT School of Dance, the Ubuntu Organisation for Children, School of Science and Technology, and DFA. His performance career includes working with Sibonelo Dance project, Underground Dance Theatre and acting and dancing in a range of international movies, commercials, and other projects.

Peter Johnson

Born in Cape Town, Peter began studying classical piano and tap dancing while at school. He furthered his studies at the University of Cape Town under the guidance of Dr. Franklin and later joined the Cape Academy of Performing Arts (CAPA) graduating in 2009 with a Diploma in Musical Theatre and Dance Related Studies. Peter was introduced to vocal studies, drama, and dance genres such as Ballet, Contemporary, Spanish, and various other techniques under the guidance of Debbie Turner. He has worked with South African choreographers such as Adele Blank, Ananda Fuchs, Sbonakaliso Ndaba and international choreographer Micheal Thomas. Peter taught tap dancing at Reddam House Constantia with Denise Morrison between 2018 and 2022. He is now a freelance artist, Tap dance teacher and musician.

Philasande Majikela

Philasande matriculated in Eersteriver in 2018 and went on to do an exchange with Carl Of Gymnasium in Germany. In 2019 he completed the DFA Bridging Programme. His extensive career includes dancing, acting, choreography and a range of other performing arts roles. He has won three best actor awards, two in Germany and the latter at the National Screenplay Competition for High School Learners, sponsored by Kyknet.

Tamsyn Pretorius

Tamsyn began her dance training at Norma Road Primary School and later at Sinton High School. In 2010 she joined DFA’s specialised Ballet Program, went on to the Bridging Programme and became a member of the InSPIRAtions Youth Company.
She was awarded a three-year bursary to continue her dance training at Cape Academy of Performing Arts (CAPA). Tamsyn has performed in numerous productions and worked at Bridgetown Theatre Company as a teacher and choreographer before joining DFA.

Thimna Tumelo Thethani

Thimna matriculated at Zonnebloem Nest Senior School and went on to complete a Dimploma in Performance Making (Choreography) at Cape Town University. He has taught dance at Queen’s Park High School, Zonnebloem Primary School, St Agnes Primary School and DFA. Thimna is an accomplished dancer and choreographer with a long CV including productions with UCT School of Dance, Artscape, Little Theatre, Bindery Lab, Black Box Theatre, Grahamstown Festival, Suidoosterfees, Makukhanye Art Room and many more.

Yaseen Manual

Yaseen is a multi-talented artist with a strong visual and artistic approach. He has worked with influential artists both nationally and internationally, gaining a broad understanding of the arts. Yaseen is passionate about cultivating a love for dance and the arts in South Africa. His choreographic style is based on Contemporary Dance, improvisation, and neo-classical elements.