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Ballet Schools in Hawaii


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Does anyone have any information on ballet in Hawaii? I was wondering about Ballet Hawaii and Hawaii State Ballet. I would like to know if they have a training program, any information about teachers and classes they might offer.

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My daughter's room mate at her SI is from Ballet Hawaii. From what I gather, they often have visiting master teachers there - Alaine Haubert was there for a month before going to direct the ABT Detroit intensive. They have ABT dancers come out and perform in the Nutcracker. Also, the girl that starred in Center Stage was from Ballet Hawaii.

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My husband is from Hawaii and when we went back last April for 2 weeks I took classes at Hawaii State Ballet. John Landovsky was the teacher. It was a great class very dancey but one strange thing. At bar, for the first side, you just followed along, he didn't tell you what to do with a little demo then you would start first side. I kept forgetting that he was doing that and I would just mark the first side. He didn't even say 2 demis one grande then start. He just started the music everyone looked at him and followed.


Ballet Hawaii had some high level morning classes then looking at their posted schedule some evening classes that were open. They didn't seem to have a lot of the school classes for the highest level.


The class was solid and the dancers seemed well trained. I was looking at the photos of some of their recent performances on the wall and they seemed to perform a lot.


When I lived there they would have SFB and ABT come on tour but there really isn't the focus that there is on hula. This isn't the joke kind of hula but really hard dancing. Ballet on the whole in Hawaii is not as popular as hula. This is of course just my opinion so ...

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Does this imply that the focus in general is more on Hawaiian dances or are there schools who provide professional trainging in ballet as well? I was wondering about the dancer programme at UH Manoa... :innocent:

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All serious ballet dancers in Hawaii do eventually leave. There is fierce protection in Hawaii for their own culture and of course ballet is of another culture so yes, their focus is on their own native dance. Even Amanda Schull left at a certain stage in her training. The last SI that my daughter attended in San Francisco had 3 kids from Hawaii attending.


That being said, if you are only asking for classes to take while you are there on vacation, then their are places like the above mentioned schools that will suffice. Don't forget the sunscreen! The tropical sun is quite brutal on dancers' skin!

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Thanks for the quick reply. I wanted to spend one or two terms abroad and UH Manoa is one of the parter schools which have an exchange programme with London. The other one would be California Institute of Arts. I am definitely more ballet focused - maybe I should call it contemporary ballet. :innocent:

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UH Manoa is a beautiful campus located in a valley outside of Honolulu. The valley it is in looks like the scene from Jarassic Park when they are flying into the island. Which was filmed on Kauai. I used to go to some of their dance performances and it was a college dance program. Again, there was lots of hula, modern and native dance. There is ballet outside of the campus. If it is just a semester and you have the ability to pay for classes at a studio to supplement the university classes I would say its beautiful in paradise. It is a very difference experience. It is not like the United States. The culture is very different. The pecking order is Chinese, Japanese, Korean then Caucasian. There are other Asian cultures after that as well as Pacific Islander cultures. The food is the most unbelievable part of the experience because all the cultures blended their food together taking the best from all worlds.

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Does that mean the UH Manoa does not have ballet classes at all? B)

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U H does have ballet classes. Ballet Hawaii and Hawaii State ballet are regular ballet schools--(not just for the hawaii native)..Both have performing companies.. Ballet Hawaii has a Nutcracker which combines school students with company members and visiting artists ( full orchestra-lovely production) John Landowsky had a fabulous pre- professional company that performs regularly.


I believe Amanda Schull left after high school to attend Indiana with VioletteVerdy - -Ballet Hawaii does encourage it's dancers to go to SI's elsewhere- So it is not a necessity to leave the island to train elsewhere..it is paradise and hard to leave after all..

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I am confused now. Does that mean the training is not enough to become a full dancer (in terms of time length) or is there no training provided at an advanced academic level? :blink::)

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There is no professional ballet company as such in Hawaii. And you never learn so much about ballet as in your first year of professional employment.

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Guest dancer88291

I have a friend at my SI, who goes to Ballet Hawaii. All I can tell you is that she is very very good! They must offer ecxellent training there.

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Yes, Ballet Hawaii and Hawaii State Ballet are both excellent civic companies, but neither is a professional company like Pacific Northwest Ballet or even Diablo Ballet. The importance of professional full-time experience cannot be overestimated. That said, let me say further that there are some civic companies out there that are better than some professional companies! :)

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