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Ballet Talk for Dancers

New Studio

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With all the talk of class costs soaring just for the gasoline factor, I started doing some looking. I paused in my morning errands to chat with my tailor about a stitching problem and on my way found a Grand Opening going on in what was a quaint small town Main Street dress shop.

The place has been turned into a dance studio. I went right in and asked if there was any hope of a ballet class for adults while noticing Belly Dance costumes on display...The lady said ...actually YES! They are having a Modern Ballet class for adults. I have never done that but I have seen it

I'll take it.

I have to save money on classes somehow. I did ask if they were hiring or could barter classes. Not so far the way they are set up financially. I had to ask.

They put in new Bamboo floors and mirrors upstairs. They don't have a barre...yet. I will offer help with that as the railing they thought they might be able to use is barely above my knees.

The place already has dressing rooms and rest rooms. They are using their downstairs area for Yoga, and hopefully Pilates they say, and kept the carpeting there for that.

They have a variety of types of dance on the schedule already but are still taking on teachers as contractors. I am searching for a classical Ballet teacher too. Now I have a place I could put one if I find one.

They offer Salsa and Swing Dance too. I may yet get the hubby there for that...after Adult Dance Camp. I am trying to stay focused until then.


I never quite imagined that space would really work for a dance studio. It seems too small. It is actually narrow and deep, and has as much space to go across the floor as the smaller studios at my regular schools have, but no more than 2 could go at a time here. Part of their idea was to keep class sizes small.


I almost put this in the Champagne lounge but as I haven't taken a class yet, May-be I should wait. They start the ballet this Thursday.

I am considering the Belly Dancing too......

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Terrific! So, at least for now, some of your worries are put to rest. It may not be a perfect solution, depending on the quality of instruction, but it's a good sign for now. I hope it all works out for you.


BTW, I was trained in a studio that had two pillars right in the middle. It made us learn to be aware of our surroundings and in the end was not a deterrent. Having a narrow space is doable for basic training purposes as long as there is room to jump. Rehearsing for a recital might be a little more difficult since you don't have the same depth as a stage.


Good luck!

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This place advertises No Studio fees, No Competitions, No pressure. I thought I read no recitals too but I didn't. I am guessing the belly dancers will be called upon to perform but who knows so far?

They actually call one class "Yoga for Round People"..... I wonder if that will catch on???

I did go back to meet the ballet teacher. I am somewhere between Ummm and Uh-oh on that. I will still check out a class and see while still making other inquiries.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Here I am again. I went to that "modern ballet class tonight. Once was enough. :wink:


I kept thinking I could be teaching it as well; but with actual terminology. I would do more for "barre" than plies, tendus and jetes, if there was a barre.

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Oh dear! I did have some reservations from your earlier posts about the studio but was hoping it would work out for you. What a shame. :yawn:

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Could you request them to teach a real ballet class and see if people would come out?

Hmm... but maybe they have no qualified teachers..

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More details on how the class went?

Sounds like a studio that's up the street from my house!

I'd rather drive and get taught professionally than what that place offered.

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Sorry it didn't work out the way you had hoped!


Maybe the salsa or belly dancing will be better.


I had a somewhat similar experience once. I saw an ad in a local paper that read "Moms, we now have hip/hop jazz classes." I thought great, I am a mom, it's very close to home, and I would love to take jazz again. It's only been 20 yrs. :) I wasn't so sure about trying hiphop, so I tried to call several times to find out what sort of hiphop they teach. I ended up just showing up for class one day. It was a good thing I never got through. Not only was there no hiphop in the class, there was no jazz either! It was more like a dancercize class. Maybe. That might not be a fair comparison. I suspect the instructor was trained as a cheerleader and not in any form of dance.


And then there was the floors. I almost asked if they actually teach children ballet on that same floor (it was the only studio), but instead, I just left and never went back.

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More details on how the class went?



The class went as follows:

We did a little stretching while sitting on the floor. I am not big on doing that cold but I have had ballet teachers who will do that.

We were to do something for our feet she said as we stood up. I expected the forced arch plies or prances we do in ballet class. It was simple plies with arms, but hers were....not typical. :unsure: We did end with a balance.

Next was "brushes".

That was proper tendus with explanation of working through the feet. We did a lot of those. I can't say how many times we went en croix because she ended abruptly with the foot to the front once or twice. :shrug:

Third was jetes, but she didn't call it anything but "lets do this". We did a bunch of that too. The arms were weird, and not described as part of the combination, so I did mine the way I have been taught elsewhere when she wasn't looking.

All 3 of these exercises came with a lot of interruptions for her running back and forth to check and fix the music, and that continued through the time I was there.

The next bit we did in center. It was basically a step ball change with pointed feet and arms down to the sides. Think prances a la Riverdance. Then we added arms to it that resembled Tina Turner arms for Rolling on the River...up...down...up...up..down for the second 4 counts. Then we added a turn to the side and 4 counts of chasses.

Here we had a moment. Did you mean to say Sashay or Chasse? :wink:

There was also some confusion over which way to turn when you start on the other foot. The teacher didn't realize she had changed the starting foot or that it would necessarily either add a step to prepare or change the direction of the turn. :thumbsup:

The only other thing we did was a bit of pirouette practice and some spotting work while doing chaine turns. She seemed to know what she was doing there and was able to point out that my hip was coming up with my knee and throwing me off. I can always use the spotting practice too.


The obviously knows some things about dance technique. I am familiar with one of her previous Modern Dance teachers from the local university. I do not think she has had actual teaching experience before in either ballet or modern. She did show me a couple of moves that she planned to add later that are modern dance. Those were familiar enough. I just don't recognize any knowledge of proper ballet class structure and I m not so sure about the modern dance class structure either. It didn't resemble any I had back in the day. She is only 20 years old.


As to taking one of the other classes, it won't be Salsa or Swing because she is teaching those too. There may be hope for the belly dancing class. That teacher is the owner of the business and at least sounded like she knows her stuff. I'd rather wait until after adult dance camp to begin a new kind of dance but I would like to try that in the fall.


I may ask about a proper ballet class. It might be possible to bring in a girl who works at our Vet's office who used to dance a lot...classical ballet, and see if we can use the place when it is not busy for practicing together, and pay a fee. If she is any good we could say she is coaching me or something. She was interested in the Modern-Ballet class but skeptical too. I haven't spoken to her since I went but I left her a message saying "Don't do it" about going herself. It might be interesting to see if they would like to hire her as a teacher, and if they would ask about previous experience or credentials. :P The teacher they have could have a degree with a Dance minor from the local University, but that is all they offer so I doubt she has anything else to claim.



All I can say for sure is that it was worth going if only to find out it is unsuitable for my needs and wants. If there had been a video taken it would have been the talk of You Tube. The girl is well under 5 feet tall and you all know I am over 6 foot tall. People might have paid to see that. If I ever need a good comedy act....

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