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Ballet Talk for Dancers

RAD and Vaganova methods

Guest Juliecute

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Guest Juliecute

I was wondering what the difference is between RAD and Vaganova methods, and are there any other main methods? I'm pretty clueless about this!

(I'm not sure if this is at the right board, sorry if it isnt.)

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Oh brother! What a question!


RAD is the official syllabus of the Royal Academy of Dance, and contains its core curriculum from Cecchetti, another method of teaching, but since it was founded, it has taken on and been influenced by many other major schools.


Vaganova is the method used by The Vaganova Choreographic Institute and its outlying fellow-institutions, like the Bolshoi, Kiev, and Perm schools to name a few, and others formerly part of the former Soviet Union, amd other areas influenced by them. It is named for its originator, Agrippina Vaganova.


Another method/style that came out of the same place, St. Petersburg, Russia, but developed in the west, is the Balanchine school, which is vastly different from most other schools, but does not contain its own lexicon (dictionary of steps), so is really more of a teaching system.


More major influences have been imbibed and absorbed by the Paris Opéra School, than any other in ballet history, in part, because that school has lasted so long!


Cecchetti, as mentioned before, is the development of a ballet training system which was done by Enrico Cecchetti at the beginning of the twentieth century. He personally aimed at reforming the over-fussy and affected manner of dancing that had corrupted the Maryinsky Ballet and its students.


There is the "endangered species" of the lot, the Danish Bournonville method, which comes from the High Romantic period of ballet, and is only really found, rarely anymore, in Denmark, but there are many who much admire it.


An emergent method appears to be developing in Cuba, at the school of the Ballet Nacional de Cuba, which is still "in work" at this time.


Then there is the general sort of Franco/Italo/Russian patois that most of the world dances, as synthesized and passed along by countless teachers.

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