Stage Door Staff

At Stage Door School of Performing Arts we pride ourselves on our staff, all of whom have worked professionally in the industry, both in WA and internationally. We believe that our staff’s experience and expertise in their fields ensure that students develop their craft under highly skilled guidance.

The Stage Door staff range in experience in the performing arts, including lecturing/teaching at WAAPA and other established schools, studying at prestigious international universities, and working professionally in the industry in Perth, over East, and internationally.

Ian Westrip OAM

Stage Door School Director, Executive Producer & Musical Director, Chorus Master and Singer
Ian Westrip OAM, FTCL, AMUSA, ARCM, Dip Ed.

Educated in Perth, London and Glasgow, he was the recipient of a number of prizes and awards as a singing and conducting student, including the Lord Mayor of London singing prize and The Royal Scottish Academy Hugh S Roberton prize for conducting.
During the seventies he pursued a career as a singer of opera an oratorio, singing in the UK and with Australian Opera, Scottish Opera, Canberra Opera and West Australian Opera. At the same time he extended his conducting work especially with West Australian Opera of which he was Acting and Assistant Musical Director and Chorus Master, conducting Nabucco, The Marriage of Figaro, Dido and Aneas, The Medium, The Elixir of Love, Carmen, Amahl and The Night Visitors, Die Fledermaus, other productions and concerts. His singing roles include Figaro in The Barber of Seville, Zurga in Pearlfishers, Papageno in The Magic Flute and Dapertutto in The Tales of Hoffman, Masetto in Don Giovanni, Malatesta in Don Pasquale, Schaunard in La Boheme, Marullo in Rigoletto, The Minister in Fidelio, Junius in The Rape of Lucretia, Germont in La Traviata, Falke in Die Fledermaus, and Dancairo in Carmen. 

He formed the Music Theatre Company of WA creating more opportunities for young people to work professionally. He was also Musical Director of UWA Choral Society. 

After completing 13 years as Director of Music at John XXIII College, he took the position of Chorus Master of English National Opera and conducted a recording of Intermezzi and Preludes with the Philharmonia Orchestra in London. 

Returning to WA, he again took up Musical Direction of the Music Theatre Company and the management and responsibility of the Philharmonia Orchestra. Major projects in this period were as Chorus Master for Edgley’s Production of Aida, conductor of La Traviata, La Boheme and Verdi’s Requiem for Regal Opera. 

He is currently Managing Director of the Stage Door School of Performing Arts which he founded in 1996 to teach and promote singing and music theatre with young people. 

Until 2003 Ian was a lecturer in singing in Music Theatre and Classical Departments at WAPPA and has been lecturer in singing at UWA and ECU Classical departments. He manages, promotes and conducts concerts with the Perth Lyric Chorale as well as teaching privately.
In 1998 he was awarded the Order of Australia Medal in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for his services to music in Australia as a performer and teacher. 

The ICW Performing Arts Association (INC) is his new initiative with a goal of assisting youth and persons with disability in the performing arts. 
ICW Productions has now become an established part of the WA Arts scene with its highly regarded quality productions of OLIVER, COMPANY, LES MISERABLES and CATS. In 2014 THE MIKADO, THE SOUND OF MUSIC and THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA were presented, with further productions of THE WIZ (Iona PC) and OKLAHOMA (MUSAE) 2015 and OLIVER (ICW Productions) 2016.

The Best of British concerts have also been revived under the banner of ICW productions and will continue into 2018.
He was most recently Guest Chorus Master of WA Opera Company’s season of Carmen.

Emily Star 

Emily is a skilled Actor and Performer, who works in a variety of multidisciplinary settings.  Originally from Brisbane, Emily has recently made the move to Perth to study a Bachelor of Performing Arts at WAAPA. Emily is technically trained in a variety of dance styles including ballet, tap, jazz and contemporary, and has surrounded herself in all aspects of the performing arts from a young age. Her passion for performing led her to undertake fulltime Musical Theatre Studies for 2 years, where she performed in Urinetown, Songs for a New World and a variety of Cabarets in a solo & group context. So far her teaching has led her both interstate and overseas, allowing her to have worked with a wide variety of children in various settings.

Her most rewarding teaching experience to date is having the opportunity to work and tour as a Dance Captain on the mass ensemble of the national tour of ‘Grease the Arena Experience’. Emily’s background in live performance extends to solo singing and acting, making her a versatile teacher when talking about the performative aspects of dance. Emily is an approachable and committed Teacher who is keen to share her passion for music theatre, with those that she teaches. For her, creating a comfortable and supportive classroom is her goal as she believes it is the best atmosphere to encourage and nurture young performers.

Ksenia Arkhipova - Stage Door School Head Russian Drama teacher  

Ksenia was born in Moscow and she was devoted to the theatre from early age. She was playing in kids’ theatre from the age of 8 and attended classes of public speaking, poetry, artistic writing and a musical school. Throughout school years she has been writing scenarios and she has been staging her own performances at school and in summer camps, which involved up to 100 people being present on the stage.

When Ksenia was 10, she joined Russian Folk ensemble “Veretentse”, with which she performed on some main stages in Russia, including Kremlin palace and concert hall “Rossiya”. Though these performances mainly involved singing, it was a great school of stage voice techniques, which Ksenia willingly shares with her students. During university period, Ksenia was working on the radio and continued staging shows at universities and at the “Palace” of art and crafts of children and youth in Moscow. Not lacking sense of humour, Ksenia was a part of KVN team of Gubkin university and performed as a stand-up comedian. In Perth Ksenia has written several scenarios for Russian community concerts and plays. She acts as a conferencier, MC and a stand-up comedian.

For Ksenia the focus areas of teaching students drama are:
- Understanding the psychology of the character to be played, which is an excellent skill to learn to understand other people and predict the behaviours;

- Creative thinking;
- Partnership;
- Articulation, pronunciation and strength of voice – which is a great skill for any public speaking;
- Mastery in Russian language;
- Have fun.

“I am trying to give children knowledge which they could be applying in their everyday life”.




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