Staff

Our Staff

All of our instructors (be it of Spanish language, film, theatre, dance, or cooking) and staff have something in common: passion, experience and excellence. No matter what you choose to learn at Battersea Spanish, or who you deal with at our organisation, it will have a meaningful impact in you.  If you’re interested in teaching or working with us please contact us today at hola@batterseaspanish.com. We love fresh and inspiring minds!


 

Sara Caba

Founder & DirectorSara Caba At Battersea Spanish

Sara Caba At Battersea Spanish

Costa Rica is my home country. There, I studied Psychology at Universidad de Costa Rica. Sixteen years ago I left looking to expand my horizons. I went to Copenhagen, where I studied a Master’s degree in Science, Technology and Society at Roskilde Universitet, and stayed four years, collecting work experience as a Spanish teacher and at IBM. I then moved to Boston, where I gained further experience teaching. I enrolled at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and worked as a Project Officer at Harvard University LASPAU. I then came to London, where I took the Spanish Teaching Certificate from Goldsmiths University and Instituto Cervantes, and became the proud founder of award winning Battersea Spanish. I love to work, watch films, write, travel and read.


Ben Hope

Co-FounderBen Hope, the co-founder of Battersea Spanish

benSince 2002, when I was working as a marketing manager for Costa Rica Outward Bound, and later as a school director for an English School in Boston, I’ve been promoting language learning and exchanges and finding interesting ways to use the web to bring people together in the ‘real world’. You are likely to see me at Battersea Spanish Social Events, and I look forward to organizing more. If you run a Spanish or Latin oriented business, restaurant, dance school, night club, etc., and are interested in partnering to create compelling events, please contact me at: ben (at) batterseaspanish.com


Guadalupe Costantini

Spanish InstructorGuadalupe Costantini - Spanish Instructor

Guadalupe Costantini - Spanish Instructor

Hola! My name is Guadalupe. I’m from the beautiful province of Mendoza, in Argentina. I have a degree in English Teaching, and I’ve always had a passion for languages and literature. I love my native Spanish language, and I want to share its richness and beauty with you. In the hours between work and chores, if I’m not with a book in my hands, I get super crafty with sewing and embroidering. ¡Nos vemos en Battersea Spanish!


Luis Edoardo Torres

Spanish InstructorLuis Edorado Torres, the Director of Taller de Escritura Creativa & Spanish/Literature Instructor at Battersea Spanish

edoardo¡Hola! My name is Luis Edoardo, and I was born in Nuevo Laredo Mexico, in the frontier with the US. I have always been an enthusiastic reader, writer and educator. I started writing poetry and plays because I wanted to be like Federico García Lorca one day. For 10 years I collaborated with a literary magazine and had the opportunity to meet and learn from many great Latin American writers. My plays have been published in different anthologies, staged several times and translated to English and German. These experiences motivated me to study for a master’s degree in Education of the Arts in Roehampton University. I have also been teaching Spanish and literature to young people and adults for over 6 years, both in Mexico, the UK and more recently Greece. I can’t wat to meet you in class! ¡Hasta pronto!


Trinidad Martínez

Spanish InstructorTrinidad - Spanish Instructor

Trinidad - Spanish Instructor¡Hola a todo el mundo! My name is Trinidad and I am from the beautiful city of Córdoba at the heart of Andalusia. I have a degree in English Studies from Universidad de Córdoba, and postgraduate studies in teaching Spanish as a foreign language to children and adults. Teaching has always been my passion and when I came to London many years ago, I decided to dedicate myself to teaching Spanish. I like to read, dance and travel whenever I can, but what I like the most about all things is sharing great moments with my friends and other wonderful people.


Neidy Guerrero

Spanish InstructorSpanish Instructor

Spanish Instructor¡Hola a todos! I am Neidy from Bogotá Colombia. I love languages and teaching them, which is the reason why I studied Modern Languages at La Salle University and then did a Master’s in Education at Universidad Externado de Colombia. I recently moved to London, and I am really excited about being able to teach my language and culture here. I love to draw, watch films, travel and read. I am also a tattoo artist! ¡Saludos y nos vemos pronto en Battersea Spanish!


Rocío Andrés Guerrero

Spanish InstructorRocio - Spanish Instructor

Rocio - Spanish InstructorHola! My name is Rocío and I am from Madrid.  I came to London six years ago to expand my professional skills and fell in love with this city. I obtained a Primary School Teacher Degree in University of Alcalá de Henares in 2011 and have experience teaching Spanish and English to adults and children back in Madrid. For the past five years I have been working as a teacher in Early Years across different settings in London. I love the interaction with the little ones! And enjoy the intellectual challenge of working with adults.  My hobbies include watching thrillers, listening to music, reading and going to art exhibitions.


María de la O Garrido

Spanish InstructorMaría de la O Garrido, a Spanish instructor at Battersea Spanish

María de la O Garrido¡Hola! My name is María and I come from one of the capital cities in Andalusia, Jaén, paraíso interior! I have been enjoying teaching Spanish since I moved to England, first in beautiful Cornwall, now in London. I graduated from the Spanish Language Teaching to Adults Program from Instituto Cervantes and the University of Roehampton in London, and have been gaining experience as a Spanish teacher for children and adults in a variety of settings. I am also a contemporary artist whose work is multidisciplinary and includes sculpture and photography and has a strong influence from literature. In my artistic practice, there is an emphasis in the educational field, developed through workshops and exhibitions. I studied a BA in Fine Arts in Valencia and spent my last year in Guadalajara, Mexico. I also have an MA in Contemporary Photography; Practices and Philosophies from Central Saint Martins London. I am really looking forward to meeting you all, so see you soon at Battersea Spanish!


Camila Merlo

Spanish InstructorCamila Merlo, a Spanish instructor at Battersea Spanish

¡Hola! My name is Camila and I am from Buenos Aires, Argentina. I have always been passionate about language and literature, which is why I studied Letras at Universidad de Buenos Aires. Teaching my language and transmitting my culture is one of the things that I enjoy the most because it is about creating bonds between people through communication. In my free time, I love going for a walk in a park while drinking mate, playing football with my friends and, of course, watching a good film. Saludos and I look forward to meeting you in Battersea Spanish!


Núria Benavent

Spanish InstructorNúria Benavent

Núria Benavent¡Hola! I come from the sunny and wonderful Valencia in Spain. I have been working as a language teacher for over six years both in Spain and the UK with students of all ages and I have absolutely loved every bit of it! I have a huge passion for learning new things, especially those related to languages, foreign cultures and art. This passion lead me to conduct academic research on teaching foreign languages and Intercultural Education after finishing my MA in Foreign Language Teaching. Before I studied Translation and Music, another big interest of mine. I utterly enjoy my job as a teacher and there’s nothing that makes me happier than transmitting my passion and motivation for learning my native language and the Hispanic cultures to my students. One last thing about me? I love food (cooking, eating and sharing it, of course). I come from the land of the true paella valenciana, so let’s discuss its actual recipe in class! ¡Hasta pronto!


Blanca Romero

Spanish Tutor for ChildrenBlanca Romero, a Spanish tutor for children at Battersea Spanish

blanca romero¡Hola a todos! My name is Blanca and I come from the sunny capital of Spain, Madrid. During my professional career I have been able to combine my background in fashion and design with my passion for teaching. After graduating from my postgraduate studies in Madrid, I started working with children in a non-for profit organisation and began running extracurricular activities. Here in London I have continued to expand in my roles as Spanish Playworker and Arts teacher. I strive to create a stimulating and safe environment for the children and adolescents I work with. I look forward to meeting you in person soon!


Tania Betancor

Spanish Tutor for ChildrenTania Betancor, a Spanish tutor for children at Battersea Spanish

tania¡Hola a todos! My name is Tania and I am from Lanzarote, one of the seven islands part of the Canary archipelago, where it’s always summer! I studied education in Madrid at Universidad Complutense de Madrid and came to London three years ago with the goal of gaining more experience as a Spanish teacher. My favourite part of the job is when I see that my students are able to put into practice what they have learned in class.  It is incredibly rewarding. Thanks to my work as a deputy manager at a local nursery in Wandsworth I have gained a lot of experience working with children between the ages of 2 and 4. My passion is teaching children and thanks to Battersea Spanish I am teaching Spanish to the little ones. ¡Nos vemos pronto!


Juan Pablo Bonboni

Spanish Tutor for Children and Football Club LeaderJuan Pablo - Kids Instructor

Juan Pablo - Kids InstructorHola!, ¿qué tal? My name is Juan Pablo, and I am from Argentina. I am a trained Physical Education teacher, lifeguard and Pilates Reformer Instructor, and I have dedicated most of my professional life to teach children of all ages. In my home country, I was the coordinator of a very popular football club for kids! I love travelling, playing soccer and enjoying being with family and friends.


Juan Carlos Otero

Flamenco & Visual PerformerJuan Carlos Otero, a Flamenco and visual performer at Battersea Spanish

Flamenco Artist

I graduated in 1994 with a BA (Hons) in Fine Art, producing painting, conceptual video, sound and performance. I continued developing conceptual work in design, and worked extensively in education but my main artistic output for the past two decades has been as a flamenco dancer and choreographer. Since 2013 I have also been devising multi disciplined experimental theatre. My practice has evolved around the dichotomies of my dual nationality/ cultural identity and the split between my background in traditional culture and my education in contemporary art. For years now I have been trying to create projects that unify my various creative strands.


Magdalena Mannion

Flamenco InstructorMagdalena Mannion

Magdalena MannionHola! My name is Magdalena and I am a flamenco dancer/choreographer and teacher based between Madrid and London. I studied at Amor de Dios and Fundación Casa Patas in Madrid, and have a degree in Pedagogy of Flamenco, specializing in professional flamenco training from Conservatorio Superior de Danza Maria de Avila, Madrid. I am the co-artistic director of the contemporary flamenco dance company Dotdotdot Dance, whose work includes a commission from Sadler’s Wells. I am a regular soloist in Madrid’s traditional flamenco venues, “tablaos”, such as Corral de la Morería, Café de Chinitas and Casa Patas, and I have also had the opportunity of touring internationally with different dance companies. I have been a guest teacher at Casa Flamenco, Pekin. I am passionate about the history of flamenco and have a particular interest in the traditional flamenco repertoire.


Carmen Igarza

Flamenco InstructorCarmen Igarza, a Flamenco Teacher at Battersea Spanish

Flamenco TeacherHola! My name is Carmen Igarza and I come from beautiful Albacete in Spain.  I am a professional Flamenco Dancer and Teacher who has been living in London for more than 15 years! As a dancer, I’ve had the privilege of performing around the UK with Alma Flamenca Company, touring major theatres including The Royal Albert Hall, Birmingham Hippodrome, Dublin Opera House and the Lowry Centre. I perform regularly at events and tablaos in London, including Ronnie Scott’s and currently I’m working with a number of dance companies as well as teaching. I like to combine very traditional Flamenco with a modern interpretation influenced by other dance styles and music, but deeply rooted in the Flamenco tradition.  I feel it is important to create a relaxed atmosphere where students are encouraged to express themselves and develop their personal styles through the enjoyment of this beautiful art form. I also love to have a good time with my students, so I look forward to seeing you in Battersea Spanish soon!


Natalia García-Huidobro

Flamenco InstructorNatalia García-Huidobro

Natalia García-Huidobro¡Hola! My name is Natalia. I am a Chilean Choreographer and dancer based in Spain with training in Mexico (with Mercedes Amaya “La Winy”, niece of Carmen Amaya), Spain and the United Kingdom. I have had the opportunity to perform in all the tablaos in Madrid, collaborated with several companies and performed in stages in Chile, Argentina, Spain, the U.K., Russia, Japan, amongst other countries. I have developed a very personal line of contemporary flamenco facing the tradition and opening the structures of this language in collaboration with artists from different disciplines. This has allowed me to feed La Típica (company that I lead since 2000) with new forms of flamenco. Some of my main works as artistic director are El Arrebato, Our prayer, La Extranjera, Memorias del viento, Acuérdate de mí…Lola, Silencio and A ras de Tierra. As a performer I have collaborated with various visual artists and musicians, such as Juan José Gurrola, Rodrigo Bazaes, José Luis Vidal, Sonia Sabri, Lemi Ponifasio and have participated in projects of audience’s integration through dance at Sadler’s Wells (UK).


Noemí Luz

Flamenco InstructorNoemi Luz Flamenco Instructor

Noemi Luz Flamenco Instructor¡Hola! My name is Noemí, and I am a flamenco performer, choreographer and teacher. I trained classically at Elmhurst Ballet School and Central School of Ballet (UK) before moving to Seville, Spain age 20. There I became apprentice to my mentor Yolanda Heredia for 6 years, specialising in traditional flamenco and bata de cola technique. I have performed at many traditional flamenco venues in Spain including Tablao Arenal, La Casa de la Guitarra, Peña la Perla de Cadiz, Peña Niño del Alfalfa and Café Zyriab as well as appearing on CanalSur TV and BBC Radio.
I co-founded Dotdotdot Dance in 2014 and together we have produced and toured our productions No Frills and In Body around the UK, Sweden and Spain. My choreographic works include The Ugly Truth, Into Being (Sadler’s Wells Takeover of the National Theatre River Stage 2018), Life, Melvin, is a fish and RAW (work in progress). I’ve performed at theatres and festivals such as Coetani Festival for Experimental Flamenco (Athens), CAAC Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo (Seville), PAUL Studios Collective, The Wall Series Vol.1 (Berlin), Flamenco Fredag (Stockholm) and Contemporary Dance Series Corto y Bailo (Seville) among many others. I have also taught flamenco, choreography and composition workshops and masterclasses at institutions such as the Conservatorio Profesional de Danza (Seville), Estudio 35 (Seville), Asómate Local Flamenco (Seville), Trinity College of Music, The Drama Centre and The Royal College of Music (London) as well as giving private coaching to individual students.


Claire Poiret

Fitness InstructorClaire Poiret - Fitness Instructor

Claire Poiret - Fitness InstructorHola! My name is Claire, and I am a French fitness instructor with Spanish and Moroccan background. I started dancing salsa 15 years ago and instantly developed a passion for the Hispanic culture. I danced with a Cuban band for 2 years and was an extra as a dancer in the movie Cuban Fury with Nick frost, Rashida Jones, Ian McShane and more. I am a qualified personal trainer and manage one of the 8 1Rebel London boutique gyms with live music (and alcohol license!). For me, dancing is the hidden language of the soul, and Latin Beats is the greatest way to share and connect with each other – while getting a whole lot of endorphins.


Zaira López

Fitness Instructor

Hola! I am Zaira. I was born in Spain, where I trained as a Ballet and Contemporary dancer. In the late 90s, I moved to the UK to pursue my passion for dance and I fell in love with the London Salsa scene, which was buzzing at the time. I joined a Latin dance company, “Fantasia Cubana”, founded by Homero Gonzalez, a Cuban dance master, and I became his dance partner for years. Together we performed and taught in the UK, US and Europe. These days I am based in South London where I teach Pilates, Ballet and Latin dance. I love teaching dance/fitness fusions as they are not only a very effective way to exercise but they also incorporate the fun and the joy of dance. I look forward to welcoming you in my Latin Beats class!


Miro

Bachata InstructorMiro Bachata

Miro BachataMiro has been dancing Bachata and kizomba and other Latin dances for over 10 years and has been teaching and DJ-ing for the last 7 years, both nationally and internationally (Europe and America). He has taken part in multiple competitions and has choreographed and performed in various events. In 2015, He and his colleagues were personally invited by Korke y Judith (the creators of Sensual Bachata) to take part in the first ever teacher training course and hence he is part of an elite group of certified teachers. He is the Co-organiser of Bachata Musketeers and Bachata Kiss.


Gabriel Bravo

Salsa & Bachata InstructorGabriel Bravo - Bachata Instructor

Gabriel Bravo - Bachata InstructorGabriel Bravo Rivera is one of the leading Bachata teachers in the U.K. a specialist in traditional Dominican Bachata, he believes in continually learning from others to keep improving.  Originally from Bolivia, Gabriel began dancing 13 years ago, learning multiple styles of Latin dance and he has been teaching professionally for six years.  Now based in London, Gabriel teaches for three different dance schools and regularly travels across Europe and Latin America teaching at festivals. As a teacher Gabriel’s style is warm, fun and friendly, making his classes incredibly popular.  Helping his students progress is at the centre of his teaching style, he has a fantastic understanding of technique and the correct way to teach it – making his workshops highly accessible and he is always in-demand.  Gabriel is also a wonderful social dancer – in both salsa and sensual styles and he knows how to party!  So make sure you ask him for a dance!


Ivan Galvez

Salsa & Bachata InstructorIvan Galvez - Salsa Bachata

Ivan Galvez - Salsa BachataIvan hails from Malaga, Spain. At the age of 14 he began to train at the Higher School of Performing Arts in Malaga for 4 years in different disciplines such as classical ballet, contemporary, jazz and hip hop. He soon discovered his passion for Salsa, Bachata and Chachacha. And attended to different Salsa and Bachata congresses throughout Spain where he learnt from the best instructors and performers in the world latin scene.

He has performed in different musicals and was part of distinguished dance companies related to jazz and contemporary, such as the dance cast of the famous Spanish singer Daniel Diges representing Spain in Eurovision or Disney Musical performing around Spain. He started teaching Salsa, Bachata and Chachacha with the age of 20 in different schools in Madrid. He was also part of the company Stravadanza, and performed in the most important latin congresses in Spain.

Ivan has travelled around Europe, training and improving his style in Schools like Global Dance Center in Amsterdam or Motion Tanz Dance School in Berlin. He has a very bubbly personality, so people learn and have fun at the same time. He can teach Salsa Cross Body, Cuban Salsa as well as Salsa On2, Bachata, Chachacha or Merengue.


Tiffany Lengthorn

Salsa InstructorTiffany Lengthorn - Salsa Instructor

Tiffany Lengthorn - Salsa InstructorTiffany is a professional Dancer in Salsa, Bachata and Zumba. She is also a Fitness Instructor. She studied Musical Theatre & Contemporary Dance and graduated from Coventry university with BA Hons. She soon developed a passion for Latin Dance and has now over 15 years experience teaching!
Tiffany specialised in Salsa from Cali Colombia, and has spent many trips to Colombia learning and dancing with the locals.


Benny Maslov

Salsa InstructorBenny Maslov- Dance Instructor

Benny Maslov- Dance InstructorBenny is from Chelybinsk, Russia. Originally a competitive Latin and Ballroom dancer, he qualified as a professional ballet and contemporary dancer as well as a musical theatre performer and actor. He has performed on major London stages with numerous theatre and dance productions. He was a dance captain on the West End Show Cabaret, toured the UK with The Johann Strauss Gala, danced and acted in films Alexander, The Muppets amongst others and took part in several World Latin and Ballroom Dance Championships.


Roger Cracco

Latin Dance InstructorRoger Cracco - Latin Dance Instructor

Roger Cracco - Latin Dance Instructor

Roger is a latin dance teacher specialised in Bachata Moderna and Sensual Bachata based in London. Born and raised in Venezuela with Italian heritage, Roger has been dancing since a young age to latin music with strong foundations on musicality and ritmos latinos including bachata dominicana, salsa, merengue, bolero, kizomba, reggaeton. After teaching for a couple of years in Bournemouth and training in Spain/Festivals with some of the world class teachers now Roger has moved to London and became very popular in the scene for teaching with passion and enthusiasm the admired sensual bachata style created in Spain.


Laura Kenyon

Fitness & Dance InstructorLaura Kenyon - Fitness Instructor

Laura Kenyon - Fitness InstructorHola, I’m Laura! Originally from France, I am a dance performer, dance teacher and yoga and fitness instructor. I started dancing Flamenco when I was 6 years old and then trained in ballet and contemporary. I graduated with a dance degree in 2014 in London and have performed for the past 10 years between France and the UK, in various venues and theatres including Festival d’Avignon, Sadler’s Wells, Hat Fair and more. My Flamenco training mostly took place in Sevilla, in several dance schools – Ados & Alicia Marquez – and I continue to go back every year to learn from grand Bailaoras such as La Lupi, Maria Morena among others.


Débora Lima

Dance InstructorDebora Lima - Dance Instructor

Debora Lima - Dance Instructor Lima, born in Portugal, had a very musical upbringing, being surrounded by musicians since birth. Her teenage years were spent between Italy and Australia, where she fell in love with dance. She trained in contemporary, Latin ballroom, salsa, kizomba, bachata and acrobatics. In 2013 she moved to the U.K. where she first created a name for herself as a kizomba dancer. Since then she has been involved in different opportunities from music videos to fashion shows and performances as well as owning her own dance team (Sexy Mamis).


Edi Alva

Dance InstructorEdi Alves - Dance Instructor

Edi Alves - Dance InstructorEdi Alva, born in Peru, has since childhood been influenced by Latin music. As a young adult he moved to Spain where he started his dance career in Madrid. Edi competed and performed next to prominent names in the industry, such as Ronald/Alba and Pablo/Raquel, while living in Spain. As well as teaching nationally and internationally, Edi created his own dance team “Soul of Dance” and helps create many great dancers and teachers.


Paul Davies

Dance InstructorPaul Davies - Dance Instructor

Paul Davies - Dance InstructorPaul trained at The Northern School of Contemporary Dance, graduating with a First Class Degree in 2015. He went on to complete an apprenticeship with Motionhouse Dance Theatre, touring over 2015-2016 and teaching for Motionhouse Youth company. He also delivered classes and workshops at Northern School of Contemporary Dance after completing his apprenticeship at Motionhouse.

He has performed works by Motionhouse Dance Theatre ‘Captive’ and ‘Broken’ Tino Seghals ‘Kiss’, Tangled Dance Company ‘Once Upon A Twisted Time’ and ‘Frosted By Magic’.

Paul first worked with Dam in 2015 for a third year and graduating piece ‘(Im)Pulse’ and afterwards joining the company for the performances of ‘DEP’ and has stayed with the company since.


Angus Cruickshank

Guitarist and ComposerAngus Cruickshank - Guitarist

¡Hola! I’m Angus. I started studying flamenco late ’80s and following a visit to Paco Peña’s summer school in Cordoba 1990. I have played in 7 countries, through the years, in venues ranging from Glastonbury festival, Royal Albert Hall and Courtauld Gallery, to Peñas in Glasgow, Bristol, London, and tiny village halls in the wilds of Norfolk. I’ve worked with flamenco luminaries such as Mario Maya, La Tati, Angel Muñoz, Alicia Marquez, Inmaculada Ortega, Beatrice Martin, Cristian Lozano as well as the majority of London based professional artists. I’m happy to be working for this exciting project and hope we can inspire you to explore more about flamenco and Spanish culture.


Juan Toledo

Book Club CoordinatorJuan Toledo - Spanish Book Club

Juan Toledo - Spanish Book Club¡Hola! I am Juan Toledo, Colombian by birth, Londoner by choice. I have dedicated my professional life to reading, writing and teaching. I am the editor of the literary magazine Perro Negro, and the director of the online radio station ZTR Radio. I am a literary critic, translator and author of the recent poetry book titled “Ocurrencias y recurrencias”. I have called London my home for over two decades. I live in South London with my wife and three children.


Jorge Bravo

Guitarist and ComposerJorge Bravo, a Flamenco Guitar Instructor and performer at Battersea Spanish

Flamenco Guitar InstructorHola everyone! My name is Jorge and I’ve been a musician for more than three decades. My passion for and dedication to music has enabled me to travel around the world as a concert guitarist, and collaborate with amazing musicians either as a guitarist, arranger, songwriter or composer. Alongside my career as a performer and producer, I love sharing my enthusiasm for the beautiful art-form of flamenco guitar with students of all levels. I’m delighted to join Battersea Spanish’s team of teachers and I am looking forward to sharing my knowledge and experience with new groups of students!