Leonora Stapleton, who is originally from Leeds, was a professional dancer for over thirty years. Most of her career as a performing artist took place in America. This was due to Leonora's great fortune of meeting Alvin Ailey while studying at London Contemporary Dance School. With the help of Mara Ya Pili, a community dance group, she raised enough money to study at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Centre.
Leonora has performed with Contemporary, Ballet and African dance companies as part of her extensive background in dance. She has toured many countries and performed with companies such as Donald Byrd the Group, Jubilation!, and Dance Theatre of Harlem. Leonora has also performed on Broadway, in Disney’s production of The Lion King. After leaving the show she went on to become an Associate Choreographer for Disney’s production of Tarzan, which has been performed on Broadway, the Netherlands and Germany.
Leonora successfully achieved an MA in Leadership and Management, as well as a Certificate in Education. She was the director of Be Body Aware, a freelance dance teacher and manages dance projects before she died.