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Ballet Talk for Dancers

This is what a NYC basic beginner class is like


KikiM

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I am currently taking an Absolute Beginner workshop in NYC-- the workshop is fabulous, I will post a full review on completion. The instructor is wonderful-- he provides clear instruction and great encouragement. I was checking out his facebook class profile and came across the link below on a post-- one of his students I assume (this is not my blog or link) posted a very detailed blog entry on his class, complete with tons of photos and video clips. I think it gives a beginner a great idea on what to expect in class and thought it would be fun to post the link here.

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Thank you for posting this, KikiM. I really enjoyed reading it. The photos so such a huge class! Ginormous compared to the classes I'm used too (2-12 students!).

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I can definitely see why you were intimidated--I would not really call that an "absolute beginner" class! It does look like fun, though, maybe as a supplement to a slower-paced class in which the teacher really explains things. If you haven't already, you might try looking for a class called something like "Introduction to ballet". Often those are not drop-in classes so that the teacher is able to really work with the students and help them understand what they are doing.

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Thanks Hans-- yes that particular class was a one-time thing! I am absolutely taking the most basic classes possible now, but even the most basic ones will throw in way too advanced moved (for me anyway!) now and then.

Pistachionut-- how lucky you are to take small classes! While there are exceptions, most beginner classes in nyc (at least from my limited experience) are pretty large.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sign me up, that looks fantastic! I am so booking a ticket to New York to come try his class. I well definitely avoid the elementary though if that's beginners!

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Thanks for posting. I love all the comments. It was a wonderful way to start the day!

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  • 1 month later...

Hi, Kiki-- it would be great more of your thoughts on Dariuz's workshop, now that it's over and done with, when you get a chance...I'm restarting ballet at age 26 (after a couple of years off from my first round of re-starting at 19) and am thinking of using the upcoming round of that Joffrey workshop to jumpstart my practice. I've been taking Finis Jhung's classes at Ailey and intend to check out Joffrey and some other NYC studios after the holidays. Either way, thanks for posting! (And sorry to bump an old-ish thread..)

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Hi disarmedfae-- sorry everyone else this post is NYC specific-- the workshop was excellent but keep in mind I am a true absolute beginner-- everything was new to me. We spent the first class learning only port de bras, for example. Since I was clueless, breaking up the barre this way was invaluable for me. In fact, i may even take it again. I am not sure how a more experienced student would perceive it.We had a website reporter (an experienced dancer) attend class-- she posted her review on fitengine.com, so that might help you more. If you are already familiar with basic barre exercises and center work, you may just want to attend Dariuz' regular classes-- his regulars seem to attend several times a week. If you are new and have some background as it sounds I am sure you can easily fit in. What level classes are you taking with finis Jung? I tried his most basic class a few times, and while I enjoyed his descriptions the class overall moved too slowly to build any momentum and had zero corrections, which was an issue for me as I had no idea if I was doing anything right. Dariuz' classes feel more like a "real" class, and even though I can barely keep up, I find them much more motivating and inspiring (the workshop is just as physically exhausting, if not more so, than regular class-- but again I am 40, not 26!). I also enjoy Richard marsdens classes-- the very beginner classes are slower than Dariusz's (so a good balance for me) but still lots of great instruction and corrections. He is also so exuberant that it makes class fun to attend. He is at both ballet arts and Roy arias-- and many levels too (i think you would want to take a higher level than the very beginner).

Beyond that I've tried some other basic classes at Steps that I thought were a huge waste of time and money (first 20 min of class on posture) so pls post if you find other good classes in your search!

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No problem about this being NYC specific! we often have posters travelling, taking tights & shoes with them, and asking for recommendations, particularly for adult beginner-ish level classes in New York. So thanks for this first-hand experience report.

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Yes, thank you for reporting back, Kiki-- great to hear about your time in the workshop. I've been taking Finis's most basic class for a few weeks-- I agree, it moves EXTREMELY slowly, but I'm finding that the molasses-like pace allows me to focus in on the little things. I can really feel all of my muscles working; it's almost therapeutic for me. But I'm craving a more dance-y class experience, too, so I think I'm going to start sampling some different teachers.

 

Thanks for the class recs, too-- I might check out one of Dariuz's classes soon (well...maybe I'll start with Sidney or Dena first :) ). I'm actually taking things slow and starting at the most basic levels, since I never got very far in my last go-around of ballet. Maybe we'll run into each other in class sometime!

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