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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Classes in Los Angeles

Guest tasche

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I took some adult classes at a school in the beach cities. I'm willing to drive around and am out lax way alot anyways so which classes do you recommend and why? I'd like to be able to find a dancing home ( for adults or course)

Edited by tasche
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I went to class at Jimmie DeFore in Costa Mesa for about a week last summer while on vacation. I thoroughly enjoyed it. They seem to have classes in a wide variety of styles and at many levels.


Here's a link:

Jimmie DeFore Dance Center

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Like everything it all depends on what you're looking for.


Westside is okay. Mark Lopez's classes and Margaret Hills classes get good reviews though I feel Mark doesn't correct that often but when he does it's hands on. Margaret Hills corrections are general ones usually directed toward the room. Lots of classes in lots of time slots. The large studio is the best floor in the place. The others can be slippery or too hard.


Zeal Studios in Culver City has Carolette Richards. Her classes are besice beginning and intermediate levels. She does some hands-on corrections but mostly general to the room kind of notes. However, if you listen to her general notes they are almost always right on target. She's good on getting you centered but the studio is small and I find the floor a bit hard. I hate that because I love Charolette.


Dance Arts Academy in Mid-Wilshire has Cynthia Molnar. She teaches advanced beginning on Tues and Fri at 9:30 AM, intermediate on Monday at 9:30 AM and a new intermediate/advanced class on Wednesdays at 11AM. Shes hands on with the corrections and her classes move fast because she now has piano for all but the Monday class. Reid Olson also teaches here but I don't know his schedule. He classes are pretty intense, upper level and advanced.


I avoid Edge. It has the reputation and the "name" talent but balelt is a strange phenomenon there, a twisted sort of modern take on ballet. That and the floors are slippery. I found the whole Edge experience one of attitude and no substance. Add to that the really bad parking, why would you even think of going there?

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Echoing the 'it all depends what you're looking for'. . . I have heard very good things about (but never taken class from) Diane Lauridsen who may be geographically more convenient for you.


Margaret Hills is now down to only M,W,F at 9:30 am and Saturday am (that one at 7:45!) and her classes tend to be fairly low energy at a solid intermediate level. She is technically impeccable, but very rooted in the Royal Ballet (she is a former senior ballet mistress there) and her classes all tend to have a sameness to them. She is however, gracious, lovely and helpful. Mark is a livelier teacher.


Other teachers around town in addition to the above include Colleen Neary and her husband (he teaches when she's out of town) who has unfortunately only one open class --at Dance Arts on LaBrea on Mondays at 11am. Not alot of corrections, but a really solid, good class.


Reid doesn't give corrections at all and although it's an advanced class the range of technical proficiency is all over the place. He does however, have a truly fabulous pianist.

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I've taken at the Lauridsen studio in the past but the times dont really work for me as I dance ballroom at night and was looking for morning classes. They only really ahve begginer classes (though I could probably handle the intermediate) classes on monday/friday whereas I would prefer tuesday,wednesday,thursday,sat,sun :D

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Celeste Amos teachers a ballet I which is a low intermediate class at Westside. She's a great teacher and her classes are fun. Her corrections tend to be directed towards the room although a few person specific ones are given. If you have been doing the beginning at Lauridsen (as i previously did) and you are looking to move up, Celeste's Ballet I is a good place to start. There is a class offered every day of the week except for Friday. The only morning ones are Saturday and Sunday.


Mark Lopez's class's at this level are 8:30 every morning. His classes are also fun--as everyone previously mentioned.



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Thanks thats exactly the info I needed. I ahven't taken a class in 18 months tho but I was planning to take the sat/sun beg basic class until I felt comfortable then take marks classes at 8.30am as the the time slot suits me but was worried that I might join in a level that was inappropriate i.e either too easy/hard



Edited by tasche
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The beginning basic _may_ be too easy for you but it's not a bad place to start if you haven't gone in 18 months. If it's too easy, the ballet I is right afterwards. A bunch of people do both classes together to get more hours in.


See ya there!


Laura :)

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Hoepfully! Thanks for all your help. I am definately going to try and go to at least my lcoal studio this week then spend some time sampling all the different places mentioned :)

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