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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Character dance class


Guest coupe66

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Guest coupe66

Hello Everyone,

 

My 9 year old dd has an opportunity to take a class in character dance in addition to her ballet technique classes this coming Fall. The director told me that the character dance class would teach the dancers traditional folk type dances, etc. I am not sure how or whether this class would benefit her ballet training at this point or if its something she can pick up later. Thanks in advance for any insight anyone can offer me!

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Absolutely. Character is a necessary adjunct to classical ballet training, and it's easier to pick up younger than older. It could make the difference between getting a part or not, or even being hired or not.

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The RAD syllabus has Character in it so they obviously think it's important. It is certainly very different from classical technique and very useful to learn as most ballets have it in!

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  • 4 weeks later...

Absolutely enroll! If you are fortunate to find a school with a reputable character teacher, consider this a HUGE blessing. For the most part in the US, good character programs are found in conservatory-type collegiate programs which is where I was fortunate to get a start though I would never advertise myself as a character teacher. What she will be learning would consist of dances of national origins(mostly of Spain, France and Eastern Europe) that have been modified for use in theatrical ballet/dance productions. Some ballets that would incorporate a good deal of character dance would be Don Quixote, Swan Lake, and of course, Nutcracker. If you can get your hands on a dvd of the Moiseyev Company, you will get a wonderful look at Eastern European/Russian folk dance that has character elements as well as entertainment value.

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  • 4 weeks later...

My daughter needs character shoes. I see they are in 1.5 and 2 inch heels. Do most use the 2 inch heels? Is it as necessary to get the exact size as in pointe shoes, or can we get ample growing room?

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I, personally, prefer the 1.5 inch heel with a suede sole as opposed to leather because they are much more flexible.

http://www.dancewearcorner.com/Products/Vi...mp;sAction=view

 

I would follow their fitting guidelines. You don't want a shoe that is too big because any additional space will allow for the foot to slide around and increase the risk of blisters.

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Is it as necessary to get the exact size as in pointe shoes, or can we get ample growing room?

 

Character shoes will be fitted more like street shoes rather than pointe shoes. Pointe shoes are fitted 'like a glove'; character shoes are not. Toes do need room in order to not get crammed in or develop blisters, etc. But, like street shoes, you don't want them so big that they cause rubbing and blisters.

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Don't forget character class often takes place later in the day when feet might be a little swollen. Keep that in mind so you don't purchase something too snug.

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