Giant Leaps - Our Team.
Speech Therapist / Speech + Drama Teacher
Anna is the creative driving force behind GIANT LEAPS Speech Company - established in response to the demand for quality and specialist Speech Therapy and Speech + Drama Classes for all ages and abilities. A qualified Speech Therapist (BSLT) and Speech + Drama Teacher (ATCL, ASB), Anna is a member of the New Zealand Speech & Language Therapy Association and has over 20 years experience working with young people to develop confidence, creativity and most importantly communication skills for life. Anna is especially passionate about early intervention and the importance of giving young children the best start in life. Anna is a mother to four young children and understands the importance and emotion involved in wanting to see your children succeed.
Louise graduated in 2004 with a Bachelor of Speech & Language Therapy with first class honors. Before joining the GIANT LEAPS team, Louise worked as a Speech Therapist in both the public education and health sector. She has worked extensively with pre-school and school aged children presenting with a variety of speech and language disorders and delays. Louise is passionate about working with children and families. She is a superstar working with speech + language delays to provide the best possible communication support and therapy outcomes. Louise is a wife and mother to three young children, so understands first hand the developmental and social importance of every individual achieving their communication potential.
Speech + Drama Teacher
Krissy is a leading vocalist with over 20 years’ experience. An accomplished performer in her own right, Krissy has been involved in drama and musical theatre from a very young age including the Musical Theatre Oamaru production of “The Addams Family” in which she played Alice Beineke, and received an OSTA best supporting actress nomination for the role. We are excited to see Krissy take on the lead role of Donna in the upcoming Musical Theatre Oamaru’s production of “Mamma Mia!”. Krissy has extensive experience working with, and supporting people with disabilities. Krissy believes that music, singing and drama has wonderful therapeutic rewards, both mentally and physically, and is so excited to be able to share her knowledge and passion with others.
Alice Sollis has achieved an impressive list of theatre and performing accomplishments. Her career on stage began as a dancer in SCDL revues, and she is now a recognised and well respected director having directed over 50 stage productions including the highly successful “The Sound of Music”, "Grease",“The Addams Family”; “Chicago”; “All Shook Up”; & "Wizard of Oz"; to name just a few. Alice writes compilation shows; has worked in radio; creates sound effects for plays; performs as a soloist, and sings in the very busy band “The Drama Queens” at corporate and private functions. Alice works as event & production manager for festivals and concerts, has acted in two locally produced movies, judged numerous talent quests, and leads school holiday drama programmes all over Canterbury. Alice loves teaching and nurturing all aspects of theatre and the spoken word.
Vocals / Speech + Drama Teacher
A qualified teacher, Anna graduated from the Dunedin College of Education in 2005 with a Bachelor of Education. Her passion for teaching drama led to her being appointed in a leadership role in the drama department at Murrays Bay Intermediate School, in Auckland. In this role, Anna was responsible for designing the drama teaching programme to be implemented throughout the school and for assisting other teachers in their delivery of the drama curriculum in their own classrooms. Upon returning to Otago, Anna took up a position teaching secondary school English at Lawrence Area School. Anna also featured as a tutor for the Lawrence Arts Academy singing and creative writing courses. A performer in her own right, Anna has been involved in drama and musical theatre from a very young age. Anna is passionate about working with young people on their own journey towards fluency of expression and self-confidence.
Speech + Drama Teacher
Jill is a is a passionate Drama teacher with over 20 years experience. Jill trained as an actor at the Court Theatre Training Company in London and has worked on stage and on film in the UK, Switzerland and New Zealand. Jill adores teaching and is extremely passionate about encouraging young people to become involved in the performing arts. Jill has recently been teaching Drama and Languages at Geraldine High School. She has instructed Drama workshops at Roncalli College, Mountainview High School and Geraldine kindergartens and schools. Jill's classes are energetic and full of life. She inspires her students to be the best they can be by building their confidence, their performance and their communication skills! We are excited to have Jill as part of our teaching team.
Abigail is a well rounded + experienced performer and teacher. She has a long list of credits to her name with the most recent being Elle Woods in the South Canterbury Drama League show Legally Blonde. Not only did Abigail play the leading lady she but also choreographed the show! This was her third SCDL show she has choreographed over the past 2 years alongside Suessical Kids, Hairspray Junior, and Cinderella. Along with great experience in musical theatre, Abigail also sings lead in the popular band, Livewire who are regularly gigging across the South Island. Abigail is passionate about sharing her performing knowledge and experiences with others. She thrives on seeing her student's grow in confidence and the positive impact that involvement in the performing arts has on shaping their lives both now and in the future.
Broadway Kids Coach
At the tender age of 17, Lily is an accomplished public speaker, performer and stage manager. Lily recently played lead roles in the Waitaki Combined School’s - High School Musical, and then MTOs - Mamma Mia. She was nominated for the OSTA of Best leading female for her role as Sophie. In her own words "I am incredibly excited to work alongside Krissy and Anna as a Broadway Kids coach and look so so so much forward to showing kids how much fun we theatre guru’s have! I love both kids and performance, so the two combined for a job at my age is a dream come true
Ican Academy Coach
Josh brings to our creative team youth and energy. A musician, a singer, an actor... Josh is a natural stage leader and teacher. Josh has stage and musical theatre experience and he is eager pass this on to our young students. Josh has a special interest in working with youth and adults with disabilities. He loves nothing more that sharing his performing arts passion and experiences with them. and Josh is the "big kid" of our teaching team and he brings with him a bundle of infectious energy to share.
Alison comes to us with a wealth of experience in schools and community theatre. Alison has worked in Dunedin for several years, directing and coordinating the highly acclaimed Kings and Queens High School’s joint musical productions. Alison worked alongside professional Director Russell Dixon in the production of Oamaru Musical Theatre’s Mama Mia in 2018. She has been secretary and judge for the Otago Musical Theatre Awards ( OSTAS). With a life time love of music and the theatre, Alison is an asset to our team. She believes in the value of encouraging children to become involved in theatre and singing. Alison believes music singing and drama teach important life skills of self-discipline, personal growth, improved brain function and mental health, as well as being a lot of fun.
Speech + Drama Teacher
Hannah has spent a lifetime on the stage and in theatre. Hannah is a graduate of the National Academy of Singing and Dramatic Art (NASDA) in Christchurch where she studied singing, dancing and acting. In 2019 she graduated from the National Academy of Singing and Dramatic Arts (NASDA) with a Bachelor of Performing Art (Music Theatre). Her credits include Jesus Christ Superstar; The Wind in the Willows (The Court Theatre), Footloose; Little Women (NASDA), The Bechdel Test (Blackboard theatre collective) and Miss Saigon (Showbiz Christchurch). Hannah has been performing as a musician across the South Island for the past year as one half of an acoustic duo and recently featured as the soloist on her first Spotify cover.
Speech + Drama Teacher
Sam is a graduate of the National Academy of Singing and Dramatic Art (NASDA) with a Bachelor of Performing Arts. His theatre credits include Jesus Christ Superstar; The Wind in the Willows (The Court Theatre) Little Women; Footloose (NASDA); Saturday Night Fever (Showbiz Queenstown) and Buddy - The Buddy Holly Story (Alexandra Musical Society). Sam has recently finished an educational children's theatre production with Perform! Education, where he toured two shows across New Zealand for four months. In 2019, Sam received a nomination for Best Actor at the 48Hours Film Festival Auckland regional finals.
Join our Team.
Our vision is that every child, teen and adult can achieve their very best communication + performance skills to succeed in life. The demand for this is needed more today that ever before. We need powerhouse speech + drama teachers and speech therapists to join our team in Oamaru + Timaru + Ashburton + Christchurch. If you like what you see + think you have got something to add... then lets talk!