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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Adult drop-in class in SF Bay Area?


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Next week, a business trip will take me to Berkeley, San Francisco, and San Rafael (different hotel each night). I've been averaging 3 ballet classes a week since the new year began and don't want to fall off the wagon. I'm hoping my schedule will permit me to drop in on an evening class or two while I'm there. Any advice on places to take class or special teachers? A few years ago, I took class at the San Francisco Dance Center. Did they move?

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Lucky you! I always liked it when my business travel took me to the SF-Berkeley area -- it has some of the best drop-in classes around. The SF Dance Center I think is still at 7th and Market, and I took a class with Kathy Mata there. I think Xena might have recommended her, and she's great -- really positive and tuned in to what adults need. In Berkeley, I've taken at the Berkeley Ballet Theater, on College Avenue, but I can't remember the teacher's name.

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You may also want to check out Marin Dance Theatre in San Rafael run by Margaret Swarthout. It is just off of 101 and St. Vincent's Drive. Beautiful location too.

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I also very highly recommend Marin Dance Theater. The website is http://mdt.org/adult_division.html and it has a schedule of classes. Nancy Gallenson is the teacher, and she's wonderful - learns names quickly and gives great corrections. The classes I've taken with her have probably been my favorite ones ever.


I've also taken a few classes at SF dance center - http://www.linesballet.org/dance/ - with a few different teachers; take my opinions with a grain of salt though, as I've only taken one class per teacher. Kathy Mata's class was very good - she learns names and gives lots of corrections, however I found the class somewhat disorganized and sloppy. I really enjoyed my class with Austria, even though she didn't give many corrections. I also took one class with Warner, and well, I'm hesitant about making negative comments about someone after just one class, so suffice to say I will never take class with her again.

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  • 5 months later...

I'll be in SF next week & would love to take class even though it's painful these days. It sounds like San Francisco Dance Center is the place to go. Any recommendations? (My preference is for an intermediate level class that moves well and has a good accompanist... I never know what my body will allow me to do anymore, but would like to fake it enough to feel like I'm dancing... if I go to a class basic enough for what I'm physically capable of these days, it's too slow & square to feel worth it... but I wouldn't want to cramp an advanced class... is there a class with room for the occasional crazy older dancer type?).

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DD's teacher is a teacher there on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 11:30 am. It is a challenging class. She goes whenever she has the opportunity. It is listed as an advanced class but there are many different levels.

SFB and Lines Company dancers are seen in his classes frequently.

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