Class Descriptions

​Each ballet movement involves many complicated muscular skills, therefore certain levels may require multiple classes a week instead of allowing outside practice time without the benefit of an instructor. If a student wishes to take more or less weekly classes than are required, permission must be obtained from one of the Directors. Pointe and Character classes may be waived on an individual basis.

Creative Movement

ages 3 to 5

Creative Movement introduces the student to the joys of combining imagination and movement with music. Its primary objective is to build upon the natural instinct of the body to move in space and allow the student to gain self-confidence and believe in his/her own creativity. The class begins with a warm-up of the body and progresses to simple stretches and movements that teach transference of weight, balance, use of space, large and fine motor skills and jumps. Over the course of the year, the student becomes familiar with the structure of the dance class, self-discipline and group activities while maintaining his/her individuality. [45 minute class; any color leotard]

*Students are moved from Creative Movement into Pre-Ballet at the discretion of the teacher. Each student’s personality, muscular coordination, attention span and self-discipline are evaluated before a recommendation to change levels is made. Age-appropriate training can build confidence, improve reading and writing, continue to develop imagination and creativity, and allow children the opportunity to express themselves with movement and music. The child who desires to pursue dance seriously benefits the most from learning to love music and movement without having to achieve technical perfection first.

Pre-Ballet

ages 5 to 8

Pre-Ballet introduces the student to the formal structure of a classical ballet class without requiring the total outward rotation of the hip joint. Elementary vocabulary is introduced, concepts of alignment, the positions of the feet and arms, simple stretches, and movements that teach transference of weight, balance, use of space, large and fine motor coordination and jumps. The class also includes a healthy dose of creative elements so that the student doesn’t lose the natural ability to move freely in space and express his/her feelings through dance. Over the course of the year, students become familiar with the structure of a dance class beginning with the barre, progressing through center work and allegro. Class finishes with ‘free dance’ which allows the students to create their own movements and costumes using ribbons, scarves, fans, baskets and hats. [60 minute class; light pink leotard]

Ballet Fundamentals

ages 6 to 9

Ballet Fundamentals introduces ballet to the beginning student. Work includes elementary barre work, stretches and elementary center work designed to help in the development of posture, muscle strength and coordination, self-awareness, musicality and self-discipline. [60 minute class; light blue leotard]

Required weekly class: one

Ballet I - V

Ballet classes from the age of 7 and up are modeled after the six-year Vaganova Syllabus, which is taught at the Choreographic Institute associated with the Kirov Ballet in St. Petersburg, Russia. Students from Class II and up are required to study Ballet a minimum of twice a week. Placement is based on technical level rather than age and students progress to more difficult classes through the recommendation of the teacher and the approval of the Director. Pointe classes are added at the discretion of the technique teacher once a student has studied a minimum of two years and demonstrates the necessary alignment and strength.

Ballet I

Ballet I begins the dance student’s formal training in ballet. The curriculum is modeled after the six-year Vaganova Syllabus. The class consists of barre, center, allegro work and introduces the concepts of turn-out, alignment, port de bras, flexibility and musicality. Students are encouraged to take more than one ballet class a week and begin the study of Character. [IA: lavender leotard; IB purple leotard]

Required weekly classes: 2 Technique, 1 Character (optional)

Ballet II

For dancers ages 9-14 with at least two years of previous training or teacher approval. The class follows the curriculum for the second year of the Vaganova Syllabus. French Technique is also introduced and pointe work is conducted in a separate class. [turquoise leotard]

Required weekly classes: 1 Technique, 1 Pointe, 1 Character or 2 Technique, 1 Character


 

Ballet III

For dancers 11 years and up with at least 3 years of previous training or teacher approval. The class follows the curriculum of the third class of the Vaganova syllabus. French technique is also taught. [royal blue leotard]

Required weekly classes: 2 Technique, 1 Pointe, 1 Character/Variations

Ballet IV

For dancers 12 years and up. Audition required. The class follows the curriculum of the fourth class of the Vaganova syllabus. French technique is also taught. [red leotard]

Required weekly classes: 2 Technique, 1 Pointe, 1 Character/Variations


 

Ballet V & VI

For dancers 12 years and up. Audition required. The class follows the curriculum of the fifth class of the Vaganova syllabus. French technique is also taught. [V: pacific blue leotard; VI: black leotard]

Required weekly classes: 3 Technique, 1 Pointe, 1 Variations


 

Adult Ballet
Adult Ballet I

Adult Ballet I is designed to introduce the principles of classical ballet to adults whose previous training was limited to a childhood experience or who always dreamed of studying ballet and never had the opportunity. The class includes learning the basic barre sequences to warm the body up, center work, which includes selected repetition of barre steps that help the student to learn balance, transference of weight and port de bras. Class also includes stretches and the faculty adjusts for differing levels of flexibility and strength. Class ends with petite allegro and grand allegro and the students have the opportunity to learn combinations of movements, artistic use of the upper body, head and arms and using the music to inspire dancing in the space provided. Adult students are treated with respect and given positive and constructive corrections that help guide them to perform with a professional understanding of the artistic potential of dancing. Adult students who wish to perform are encouraged to participate in the school's public performances such as Nutcracker.

Adult Ballet II

Adult Ballet II is designed to allow adults with previous training to continue to train in a less competitive atmosphere. The class includes the basic barre sequences to warm the body up, center work, which includes selected repetition of barre steps that help the student to increase balance, transference of weight, change of direction and port de bras. Barre work concludes with a variety of stretches that are adaptable to the individual dancer's needs. Class ends with petite allegro and grand allegro and the students have the opportunity to explore combinations of movements, artistic use of the upper body, head and arms and using the music to inspire dancing in the space provided. Adult students are treated with respect and given positive and constructive corrections that help guide them to perform with a professional understanding of the artistic potential of dancing. Adult students who wish to perform are encouraged to participate in the school's public performances such as Nutcracker.

Boys Club
Boys Club I

young gentlemen ages 3 to 5...No girls allowed! 

Boys Club I is designed to introduce balance, coordination, and flexibility to boys. Through the use of movement games, boys will jump, leap, spin, march, and gallop as they explore imaginary lands filled with fiery dragons, pirates, knights and superheroes. They will learn musicality, how to transfer their weight correctly, strengthen their legs (especially knees), improve memory for sequential tasks, and learn positive self-discipline. These skills will help them live a safe, active life and are applicable to sports activities as well as dance.

Boys Club II
young gentlemen ages 5 to 8...Still no girls allowed! 

Boys Club II is designed to introduce balance, coordination, flexibility and strength to boys. Through the use of movement games, boys will jump, leap, spin, march, and gallop as they explore imaginary lands filled with fiery dragons, pirates, knights and superheroes. They will learn musicality, how to transfer their weight correctly, strengthen their legs (especially knees), improve memory for sequential tasks, and learn positive self-discipline. These skills will help them live a safe active life and are applicable to sports activities as well as dance. The boys will have an opportunity to explore basic dance warm-ups, Russian character movements, hip-hop, and jazz as well as learning the basic dance vocabulary.

Boys Club III

young gentlemen ages 8 to 11...Still no girls allowed! 

Boys Club III is designed to continue to teach balance, coordination, flexibility, strength and team work. Through the use of movement games boys will learn to jump (sauté), leap (grande jeté), spin (pirouette), jump & spin (tour en l'air), glide (glissade), slide (chassé) as they learn how to properly warm up their bodies. They will learn musicality, how to transfer their weight correctly, strengthen their legs (especially knees), improve memory for sequential tasks, and learn positive self-discipline. These skills will help them live a safe, active life and are applicable to sports activities as well as dance. The boys will have an opportunity to explore basic dance warm-ups, Russian character movements, hip-hop, and jazz as well as learning the basic dance vocabulary.

 

Hip-Hop

Acceptable attire: sweat pants, jazz pants, knee length shorts, boots, sneakers. Please no jazz shorts without tights, no jeans, and no bare feet.

Hip-Hop 1-2 

(Beginner)

For dancers with little to no experience in hip-hop dance. This class is designed to introduce concepts of the hip-hop culture as well as musicality, coordination, style, self-confidence, increase memory and execution of movement. The warm-up is designed to instill and nurture movement that the student can use to express themselves and get familiar with this style of dance.

Hip-Hop 3-4 

(Intermediate)

For dancers with a little to moderate amount of hip-hop training. This class is designed to elaborate upon the hip-hop culture and use those concepts to explore urban movement. We will practice musicality, coordination, style, isolations, self-confidence, increase memory and execution of movement. The class purpose is to begin to focus these standard concepts into technically fun and inspiring dances. Lessons in this class can be applied to athletic development, cultural awareness and exploring creativity.

Hip-Hop 4-5 

(Advanced)

For dancers with a moderate to exceptional amount of hip-hop training. This class is designed to share concepts of the hip-hop culture and fine tune those concepts while challenging the dancer to express himself/herself using musicality, coordination, style, movement quality and high level choreography. These classes will be used to prepare the student for master classes that will be featured at the studio.

 

Character

Character class is the study of authentic steps and performance styles of ethnic dances. Students learn rhythm, musicality and performance techniques. Students also develop the ability to memorize choreography and have the opportunity to perform with the St. Petersburg Folk Ensemble.

Jazz

Jazz is offered to older students placed in advanced levels in ballet only. This class is a combination of jazz technique, commercial jazz, and contemporary / modern styles. This is a fast-paced class designed to push the advanced dancer athletically, with a strong emphasis on proper technique and safe execution. Each class consists of isolations, conditioning (geared towards a strong core, building strength in areas that will most benefit students in all dance styles), stretching, and movement combinations across the floor, (turns, leaps, extension, etc). Most classes include a long combination at the end of class to explore and develop jazz and contemporary styles.

Acting

Acting class is open to all students beginning in Ballet I. Its purpose is to help dancers to explore their own individual artistry, build confidence, leadership skills and develop team cooperation. The curriculum uses theater games and improvisation to help artists develop the ability to make creative choices when preparing to perform a variation or full-length ballet.