What are the National Centres for Advanced Training (CAT)

There are only 9 Centres for Advanced Training (CAT) across the country.

These are a consortium of dance organisations that provide 10-18 year olds demonstrating exceptional potential in dance, with access to the best available teaching at top class facilities alongside strong links with the dance profession.

The CATs are supported by the Department for Education (DFE) Music and Dance Scheme (MDS) through means tested student bursaries. For those who qualify the training is FREE.


The CATs:

  • Academy of Northern Ballet, Leeds – ballet + Northern School of Contemporary Dance, Leeds – contemporary
  • Dance4, Nottingham – contemporary
  • Dance City, Newcastle Upon Tyne – contemporary
  • Dance East, Ipswich – contemporary
  • DanceXchange, Birmingham – contemporary & Yuva Gati (South Asian)
  • Swindon Dance, Swindon and Exeter – contemporary and urban
  • The Place, London – contemporary + The National Centre for Circus Arts – Circus skills
  • The Lowery, Manchester – contemporary
  • Trinity Laban, London SE – contemporary

What our Centre for Advanced Training (CAT) Does

The CAT develops the technical, creative and performance skills in dance as well as the knowledge and understanding that will prepare young dancers for higher vocational training and ultimately a career in dance.

Training is in dance styles appropriate to the professional dance world today and, more importantly, the industry demands of tomorrow.

The CAT provides students with mentoring, guidance and information on current training and career choices and related training matters like the healthier dancer programme.

Each dancer has their own Individual Training Plan based upon their individual goals, training needs and aspirations.

The CATs are supported by the Department for Education (DFE) Music and Dance Scheme (MDS) through means tested student bursaries. For those who qualify the training is FREE.



For more information go to: https://www.swindondance-youthdanceacademy

Career pathways of our CAT Students

Past students have gone on to train at some of the top vocational colleges and Dance Conservatoires:

  • Arts Educational
  • Bird College
  • Bodyworks Performing Arts College
  • Central School of Ballet
  • Institute of Arts Barcelona
  • Laine Theatre Arts
  • London Contemporary Dance School
  • London Studio Centre
  • Millennium Dance
  • National Centre for Circus Arts
  • Northern Ballet
  • Northern School of Contemporary Dance
  • Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance
  • Royal Ballet (upper school)
  • S.E.A.D – Salzburg Experimental Academy of Dance
  • SLP College of Performing Arts
  • Trinity Laban Conservatoire for Music and Dance
  • Urdang Academy


Two of our alumni have won their dance categories in contemporary and urban to go through to the finals of the BBC Young Dancer of the Year.  

Our alumni are working as professional performers, choreographers and directors in the arts world, such as:

  • Beyonce music video
  • Black Box Dance Theatre, Denmark
  • Boy Blue
  • Company Chameleon
  • Danish Dance Theatre, Denmark
  • Flickerr Dance
  • James Cousins Dance
  • Lexus car TV Advert 
  • Munich Ballet (Staatsballett) – principle dancer
  • Plague
  • Protein Dance
  • Punch Drunk – The Drowned Man: A Hollywood Fable
  • Rambert
  • Russell Maliphant
  • Tavaziva Dance
  • The face of Top Shop
  • Tribe Dance
  • TV commercials and music videos
  • Warner Brothers – Peter Pan
  • West End – The Lion King