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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Protocal for asking questions in beginner class?


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Hi I am very new to ballet and dance in general. I've just started taking some open beginner classes in the nyc area and am uncertain on whether it is appropriate to ask questions in class. Sometimes I simply cannot tell what the instructor is doing or need further clarification. I have asked a few questions so far in different classes and have had mixed reactions-- either a quick reply back that made it clear I was interrupting or lots of attention, so much so that I felt a little guilty holding up the class. At any rate, the clarifications helped me tremendously (and at one point, gave the entire class an "aha" moment), but I don't want to be unfair to others in the class or disrespectful to the teacher's agenda. Anyone have some guidelines?

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If I need a clarification, I ask the teacher - I'd rather that than "waste" an exercise by muddling it. Same goes for my own students. Personally I wish more students would ask questions when they don't understand something. Anyway, if you are attending adult beginner classes, then I think the teacher should explain things carefully so that even the beginners get it, and shouldn't object to explaining again if necessary. I'm sure you do this - you sound serious - but as well as asking questions yourself, listen to other people's corrections and general instructions and corrections - you learn more that way. Perhaps there is someone in class who is more advanced than you and can show you the step discreetly. You could go and ask the teacher at the end of class, if you don't want to disrupt the lesson too much, but then there might not be time. Do make sure that the class is really for beginners, though. Sometimes things that look easy are not so simple and without basic skills, you can easily get lost. Anyway, good luck and enjoy dancing!!!!!

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If it is a beginner class, then people should be encouraged to ask questions. I agree with the above that is all about timing and not questioning every single thing. If you are constantly disrupting the flow to the class, that could be bad. If it is just a few questions here and there, no big deal.

 

Sometimes a more advanced student may get annoyed with the questions, but I feel if it is a beginner class, who cares. My studio offers plenty of levels that they can attend a more advanced class. I mostly find other student's questions to be useful....I may have thought I understood something, but once they asked, I found out I would have been wrong.

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