Sometimes we get an exceptional testimonial from one of our students. We are proud and humbled to add a link to a testimonial from Jasmine Dotiwala who recently voted Sara as her #TeachersChangeLives on the DfE website.

Below are more testimonials from parents and students…

From the parents

“Babel is an outstanding dance school. They inspire and motivate children to bring out their talent and show their outstanding performance. A big thank you to Babel School of Dance and the teachers.”

Tessina Fernandes (PARENT)                                                                                                    July 2017

“It is a really good dance school and all the dance teachers are excellent! Both my daughters enjoy every minute of it.”

Maria Picardo  (PARENT)                                                                                                             July 2017

“What a wonderful friendly dance school, where children are encouraged to follow their drams and “dance like no-one’s watching”. Here’s to many more years of Babel xxx”

Suzanne Culbertson (PARENT)                                                                                            July 2017

“My two daughters have been coming for Babel for the last seven years and performed in the dance show at The Beck Theatre this year. Dancing has given them new friends, confidence, new skills and a general sense of achievement. The teachers are great and we would recommend Babel to everyone.”

Pooja Aggarwal – (PARENT)                                                                                                      July 2017

“I would like to sincerely thank you both (Sara and Charis) for your continued hard work and support in ensuring Eva was able to take part and thrive as she did in the show.
Eva has had a true journey since joining babel, and thanks to the passion and drive you both consistently show the children, the results speak volumes!
EVA JTLast year I would never have thought it possible to see such confidence and happiness shine through my little girl… THANK YOU!”

Carla Austin (Parent)

“My daughter thoroughly enjoys attending the Babel School of Dance. She has made friends, grown in confidence and takes part in a variety of dance classes. An excellent run school.”

Sue Campbell (Parent)

“I would like to say on behalf of myself and Melissa that during the 6 or 7 years Melissa has been coming to the Babel School of Dance we have always been very happy with how professional the teachers are as well as being very friendly and approachable; a very rare combination that is hard to find anywhere. Sara as a principal is always ready and willing to listen to any opinions and grievances that need to be aired without shying away from any issues.

In particular both myself and Melissa like the combination of the show every 2 years and the exams alternative years which enables progress with her dancing. The variety of dancing on offer is also a bonus that every type of dance can be offered at the one school without having to find what you are looking for elsewhere. Also the Arts Award is an excellent course which leads nicely on to the GCSE dance which Melissa hopes to take in a few years’ time.

I would recommend this school to anybody looking for their child to have fun and maybe to make a career out of dancing in the future.”

Linda Dobson (Parent)

“My daughter Taylor has been going to Babel since she was 3 years old and is now 16. During this time, she has had the opportunity to do her Arts Award and GCSE as well as various RAD exams etc.  The mileage between us has grown as we moved further away and the school had to move slightly further away, but my daughter still wished to continue attending Babel (even though there is a dancing school nearby) as she feels like she wouldn’t be happy anywhere else.  Sara and other teachers have been amazing over the years through my daughters’ various illnesses and continues to be so.  My daughter now assists teaching the younger students and I am sure she will be happy at Babel until she can no longer attend.”

Vikki Alone (Parent)

“Both my children love taking ballet lessons with Babel school of dance.  The teachers are friendly, approachable and professional. I would thoroughly recommend.”

Emma Leaman (Parent)

“From a parent’s perspective I have seen my two daughters who attend the Babel School of Dance blossom into confident individuals.  Jasmine my eldest daughter spent most of her time looking down on the floor when dancing and not at the audience.  Over the years she has become more confident as a person and is now looking at the audience when dancing. Jasmine has recently embarked on the GCSE Programme and is looking forward to starting in September 2015. The school offers a range of experiences including shows productions in theatres, exams, GCSE programme, annual school dance competitions and art awards. There is plenty to get involved in for all age groups in a friendly, safe and supportive environment.”

Neena Kochhar (Parent)

“My daughter was with Babel dance school for 14 years starting when she was 3 years old. It was a great opportunity to take part in the shows and the exams. I would totally recommend Babel Dance school.”

Veroni Pereira (Parent)

What past and present students say about Babel

I can’t really put how grateful I am for everything that Sara and Babel did for me into words. I’ve always struggled with self confidence and the idea of actually believing in myself, but I never had to worry about that during those incredible year of dance. Sara always made sure that I felt safe and included, no matter how I looked or what my skill level was and don’t think I am ever really going to be able to thank you enough for that.

Esther – Student


“Babel is a family, everyone is always smiling. Learning to dance is a passion here, the enthusiasm is incomparable.”

– Holly Paul

“In our last show, I had a lead role. It was great fun and everyone looks forward to them. It is hard work sometimes but all worth it in the end.”

Aimee Campbell (11)

“I like Babel School of Dance because I learn to dance and make friends. I  also like my teachers and ll the type of dances I can do. The last thing I also like is the costumes were in the shows.”

“I like the fact that we can dance with our friends and with our own age. I also like the areas we dance in. The teachers I like, the way they help us. You have lots of fun trips and lots of things that involve us. I’ve loved dancing since I’ve started here. I tell all of my school friends about this. They are very interested.”

I think Babel is great. It teachers me lots of dance moves. (I go to disco, Ballet and Street). I don’t like moves that hurt me!”

The thing I like about ballet is that I can make friends. Also I like dancing. The thing I don’t like is I am the smallest!”

Babel has great teachers to teach us Ballet. I have learnt a lot and get to hang out with my friends. I also like Babel because we can buy food and water if we don’t have anything to eat and drink.”

Like so many little girls I was sent to weekend and evening dance classes. Not cos my middle class parents thought it was the norm, but because as the 10-year-old latch-key, only-child of divorced parents, my mum needed to keep me occupied and out of trouble after school.

Going to after-school dance classes let me see how the other half lived and gave me my first self-awareness that I was working class and ”coloured”.

I was one of only three BAME kids at ballet where my white peers’ parents would often innocently refer to us two as “the coloured girls”. But my ballet teacher Sara would always treat me totally equally to the other kids. Even when I felt like an elephant in a tutu, her coaching and support made me feel accepted and raised my confidence. Back then I used to dream about Sara adopting me. She made me blossom under her tutorials. I lived for her after school dance classes.

(Taken from The Huffington Post – 12.2.16)

– Jasmine Dotiwala (Past Student)

Some of the best memories I have of my childhood growing up were of dancing at Babel.
My partner in crime Harmony Bax, Duets together, rehearsing our big shows at Greenford, Ballet exams in London or at Cranford school. Watching my mother in the wings in the mums tap group, listening to her MC at the big shows. Growing up with a group of friends who I’m still friends with now! The costumes, the finale walking later and later as we got older lol. The medal sashes that got heavier and heavier haha! Dancing to the Beatles with my cousins!
So many memories to write down lol

– Sophie Bradshaw (Past Student)

Well, what can I say about Babel……I started when I was 3 and I remember that I absolutely loved to dance,especially ballet. Every Saturday morning my Mum would take me and almost always stay to watch, I know she loved it as much as I did. I remember the first show we did,at Heston community hall, I had a beautiful tutu made for me, it was white with hundreds of tiny crystals all over it and I felt like a princess. We were all so nervous going on stage for the first time,there were mothers frantically sewing costumes up until the last minute & the smell of hairspray was everywhere!! It was a success & it was the first of many many more shows. I have so many happy memories from my years at Babel, all made possible by one person…Sara. She was always so kind & patient and a great teacher. One year when I was about 8, I was accepted by the Royal ballet school to go to a residential summer camp in London for a week, but after a couple of nights I got really homesick & wanted to leave, Sara drove all the way to Battersea to comfort me and persuaded me to stay, saying that she would call me everyday, and she did. There aren’t many dance teachers that would do that! Then there was the Mum’s dance troop!!! Dancing to classics such as “My boy lollipop”!!! She encouraged everyone to have a go & enjoy themselves, which they certainly did!! Babel gave me a great start in the world of dance & I went on to attend Arts Educational School and dance at the Royal Opera House & the London Coliseum. I’ve now just become a Mum for the first time & I know my daughter will be going to dance classes as soon as possible & one day be wearing my beautiful white tutu in a show of her own, my only hope is that she loves it as much as I did & has a teacher just as lovely as Sara Ridley is a fabulous teacher and an incredible woman. I love that she let us express ourselves how we wanted to and made sure the atmosphere of the school was laid back and fun. She was also there for you when you needed advice, I am so glad I had her in my life when I went from shy child, to mouthy teenager to college student / grown up. Sara, i love you and will never forget you xxSara. I made great friends & great memories at Babel & it will always have a very big place in my heart. Congratulations on your 30 year anniversary & good luck for the show xxx

– Suzanne Luff (Past Student)

Sara, Just a note to say I miss you. I know this is very random but I want you to know that I will never ever forget what I learnt at Babel most of which was solely down to you. Just want you to know that I haven’t forgotten you and I’m so pleased you’re still going strong. I know I have lost contact with you and that I am out of London now but thought you should know Ill never forget my years at Babel.

Sara Ridley is a fabulous teacher and an incredible woman. I love that she let us express ourselves how we wanted to and made sure the atmosphere of the school was laid back and fun. She was also there for you when you needed advice, I am so glad I had her in my life when I went from shy child, to mouthy teenager to college student / grown up.

Sara, I love you and will never forget you xx

Lots of love The other Sara x x x x

– Sara Odisho (Past Student)