The Preparatory Division consists of the first four levels of our progressive, methodically designed program of ballet training. Students are placed in the appropriate level of ballet according to their ability whereas age consideration is a minor factor in placement determination. Training hours increase with level advancement. Foundational steps and concepts will be introduced and developed prior to moving onto more difficult vocabulary. Focus will continually be on the principles of placement, alignment and turnout as these concepts are instrumental in establishing sound technique.
Alongside the required ballet classes there is an array of extracurricular classes that students can choose from to expand training and increase versatility. These include Youth Jazz, Youth Hip Hop, Youth Contemporary, Youth Sampler and Youth Ballet.
Ballet 1 (Ages 7+) is a stepping stone between the classes in the Children’s Division and the more formalized class structure within our Preparatory Division. In 1 hour class sessions, students will learn exercises at Barre and in Center Practice that begin to train the musculature and prepare the young dancer for methodical ballet training to follow.
Ballet 2 is a continuation of Ballet 1 with increased focus on the principles of placement, alignment and turnout. Classes are 1.5 hour in length with equal division between Barre and Center Practice. Exercises remain simple as students work on refinement as well as learning the proper French terminology related to the dance form. Ballet 2 (session 1 only) will contain a .5 hour jazz segment for students interested in being introduced to the high energy form of jazz.
Ballet 3 continues the process of developing proper alignment and placement, extending ballet vocabulary, Barre, Center Practice, spatial awareness and coordination. More complex exercises are introduced as well as concepts of rotation (pirouette) and petit allegro.
Ballet 4 continues ballet training at the intermediate level with more complex material. Students work on rotations (pirouettes), jumps, finishing on one foot and developing carriage of arms (port de bras). This level is critical in a student’s training as he/she begins to refine and add flow and expressiveness to movement. Jazz dance becomes a requirement at this level as it benefits the dancer in developing core strength and diversity.
Boys Class (ages 9 – 12) Our Boys Class introduces students to the basics of ballet through focus on athletics and jumping. It will build strength, flexibility and coordination. Come join in the fun!
Youth Jazz (ages 8 – 12) begins with a conditioning warm-up and emphasizes strength, balance and extension through isolation techniques, rhythmic exercises, floor stretches, across the floor combinations. Improvisation is introduced through group and individual exercises, allowing students to delve into expression through movement.
Youth Hip Hop (ages 8 – 12) Come join in the fun by taking Hip Hop, a relaxed, freestyle form of street dance that is set in a fun and fast-paced environment. Class will start with a warm up, followed by exploration of different rhythms and moves from this highly energetic dance genre.
Youth Hip Hop 2 – Intermediate/Advanced – (Ages 11+) This class is a progression of our Hip Hop 1 class. Students will learn more complicated moves, rhythms and combinations which will make them twist, spin, bump and roll. Join in the fun and experience the latest dance moves of this high energy fast paced dance form.
Youth Ballet (ages 9 – 12) offers students ballet training without having to meet the rigorous schedule of the required Preparatory and Pre-Professional ballet classes. Students learn combinations that focus on the principles of placement, alignment and turnout. Emphasis is placed on development of coordination, flexibility, port de bras and musicality.
Youth Sampler (ages 8 – 12) engages students by providing a pallet of the alternative high energy dance forms of Hip Hop, Jazz and Contemporary, all within one class. Through comparison and contrast, students learn the similarities and differences inherent in each of the forms. This class is fun and it provides an outlet for releasing creativity and stored up energy.
Youth Contemporary (Modern) (ages 10 -13) explores movement based in traditional Modern Dance technique. The class includes warm-up, stretching and core work. Students work with the qualities of suspension, swing, flow and percussion and will see how these qualities add dynamics to movement. It emphasizes students’ individual choices and expressions, helping to unlock new movement and sensations hidden within the body.