A THEATRE school taken over by a West End star is holding an open day.

Damien Poole, who runs DPTA, which has Downton Abbey stars Jim Carter and Imelda Staunton among its patrons, has taken ownership of the Stage Door Theatre School.

Says Damien: "At DPTA we're passionate about teaching theatre arts and passing on our professional knowledge to young people. With our very own Stage Door Studios in Guiseley, our classes are designed to challenge and nurture students into becoming accomplished performers."

The open day is on Sunday, September 3. "Come along and embrace our day of fun, speak to the teachers, other parents, and chat to the many DPTA Alumni who have asked to come along, most of whom have trained or are currently training at Arts Ed, Mountview, Guildford, East 15, Italia Conti and are also performing professionally in Annie Get Your Gun," says Damien.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Damien was a performer in West End shows for 10 yearsDamien was a performer in West End shows for 10 years (Image: Damien Poole)

The Stage Door school was previously run by Damien's friend, Amy Atkinson, for 15 years. "With her blessing and hope that the school will thrive as a DPTA, she has handed it over," says Damien. "DPTA now has classes in drum, guitar, ukulele, singing, and piano, alongside musical theatre training."

Damien, a former Shipley College student, graduated from Arts Educational School of Musical Theatre in London with a Dance and Musical Theatre degree. He had a 10-year career in West End shows, including Mary Poppins, Shrek the Musical, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Gypsy. As a child actor, his TV work included Emmerdale, Heartbeat and My Parents Are Aliens. He was a session singer on the Mary Poppins Returns film and has led workshops, masterclasses and talks across the UK and the Netherlands.

The open day is Sunday, September 3 from 10.30am at The Stage Door Studios, South View Business Centre, Ghyll Royd, Guiseley. Email damien@dpta.co.uk