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Redbookish

Up to date advice about classes in Washington, NYC and Austin

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Redbookish

I'm just about to do a very exciting work trip where I get to stay for 5-6 days in three of my favourite US cities: Washington DC, Austin, TX, and then New York. I have a fair bit of work to do, but blissfully there' only 1 meeting in the whole 3 weeks.

 

I've taken classes at studios in all 3 cities, and also followed discussions in here about studios, classes & teachers. But this was all some time ago & I haven't taken class on recent US trips (they've been back-to-back work, conferences etc). Any up to date recommendations of great classes and/or teachers? I can work at a low Intermediate level in most place (although not New York!): in the UK, I can actually work at Intermediate/Advanced level, although I refer to take a lower levl & get the technique right!

 

In DC, I did class at Joy of Motion, but they've moved from the Dupont Circle location I attended. I'll be staying near Van Ness and working on Capitol Hill, and wondered about studios in Bethesda, for example.

 

In NYC, I've done various classes at Steps -- scary but fun really. I tend to stay with Kathy Sullivan, who is lovely, but any other recommendations for a non-professionally trained but reasonably technically competent students in her 50s?

 

I haven't been to Austin for about 8 years, so don't know what's offered there: when I was last there, I went to Tapestry Studios most days, but I don't drive so I'm looking for something closer to the University, or accessible by bus.

 

As you can tell, I'm rather looking forward to this trip!

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MelissaGA

In Austin, Ballet Austin's community program has beginner through intermediate/advanced level open classes. Easily accessible by bus from the university.

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Redbookish

Thanks, MelissaGA -- Yes I've been to one class there, so think that will be my main port of call! I'm glad to hear it's still running a good adult programme.

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Blanche

Washington Ballet is probably the closest to you. They have quite a few adult classes, including one (I think it's Tuesday morning) at their Van Ness studio. The other option is Maryland Youth Ballet, which is easily accessible on the Metro Red line (the studio is about two blocks from the Silver Spring Station). They have the largest adult program in the area with anywhere from three to five adult classes per day, seven days a week (morning and evening). There you would probably enjoy Julie Miles's classes (labeled Advanced Beginner, but they are challenging at any level).

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Redbookish

Wonderful, Blanche -- thank you!

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lacetree

I'm afraid I've no useful tips for you, Redbookish, but I'm curious about why you say "low intermediate" for classes in the States and yet "intermediate/advanced" in the UK. Do the different countries grade their classes differently?

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lacetree

Oops, I've realised I'm not meant to post in this particular group. Moderators, please remove if you want.

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Redbookish

No problems -- it's a good question.

 

My experience of doing class -- particularly in Manhattan -- is that levels are a bit higher than the graded/vocation syllabus classes in the UK. I can just about wobble my way through an RAD or Cecchetti Advanced syllabus class (although the petit allegro often defeats me!), whereas I've found that the US "Advanced Beginner" is very doable, but still provides challenge. My sense is that open studio classes definitions of classes don't really map on to the syllabus style classes here.

 

But then I still learn a lot in every class -- even the basic beginner's class I do alongside more advanced classes at the moment.

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Redbookish

Just to say, I'm in DC at the moment, and having a great time, in between work, reacquainting myself with one of my favourite cities, and going to lovely classes at the Washington School of Ballet.

 

I don't know if there are people posting/reading here who attend adult classes at the WSB but if there are, you are all so lucky! I've taken Beginners, Advanced Beginners & Intermediate level classes there this week, and those big studios are gorgeous, the teachers are amazing: Mr Baranovics is so funny & welcoming in particular (I think he has quite a fan club!). The Intermediate class is like the classes I did in Birmingham UK, but cant get to anymore. So it was great to get back up to that level (probably not great for anyone having to watch me), and makes me realise I've lost skills -- so I'm going to have to think about how I get them back again with the opportunities at home.

 

And what I've really appreciated is how friendly & welcoming all the other students are. Often, studios can be quite unfriendly places -- everyone's just doing their own thing. But I've found DC adult dancers to be so welcoming & I've chatted to a few now -- mainly to say how much I've enjoyed watching their dancing in class. Which is true -- there are some lovely dancers.

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pirouettes2001

I will be moving the DC area in a couple of months. I'm aware of several studios in the DC area. I would like to know if there are any adult pointe classes in the DC/Maryland area.

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Lmdtap

In New York City you may want to try Dawn Hillen's classes at Steps or Broadway Dance Center as her speciality is adults. Dorit Koppel is another excellent teacher who works at Broadway Dance Center.

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dancypants1

In Dc/Maryland (Bethesda-Silver Springs specifically) Maryland Youth Ballet has a robust adult and drop in program. My DD has recently started taking classes there to fill in, and the ages range from her (just turned 14) as probably the youngets, to ladies and men who I would say are in their 70s or many even more. Some dancers put on pointe shoes for center. I also saw on the wall that they have adult intensives. If we weren't moving very far away, my older DD and I would love to take class there, simply because of the wide variety of students and class offerings- it's a neat place!

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Reece

I will be moving the DC area in a couple of months. I'm aware of several studios in the DC area. I would like to know if there are any adult pointe classes in the DC/Maryland area.

 

Maryland Youth Ballet does not teach adult pointe classes. Adult students who already have pointe experience can take regular classes en pointe with the instructor's approval, however.

 

I've heard Joy of Motion teaches adult pointe classes, but it's not something I've looked into specifically.

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