The Dance Center is thrilled to announce the new level system. These dance levels will allow us to serve all of our students with more precision and clarity. The levels will clearly define the progression of mastery for each codified technique. This will include correct body alignment, positioning, execution of steps, quality of movement and musicality among many other aspects of dance. This new system was adopted quickly due to many of the restrictions imposed by the pandemic especially the capping class sizes causing us to divide classes from the historical approach. Levels will be implemented for ages 7 and older and will be consistently applied for Ballet, Modern, Hip Hop, Jazz, Tap and Pointe (Pointe only offered for levels 3-5). While our classes our now smaller to keep us safe, it will also lower the student to teacher ratio to provide for more opportunity for correction and attention to each student at The Dance Center. Please take some time to review each of the levels and descriptions below.
What level is my dancer?
Level or class placement is at the discretion of the instructors. Placement is based upon age, experience and overall ability to perform steps in particular levels. Typically it will take students 2-3 years to master each level and move on to the next level. In some rare circumstances there may be exceptions to this rule.
Creative Movement will introduce children to rhythm, mime, fantasy, improvisation, choreography, stretching and strengthening. In the these classes, a great deal of emphasis is placed on enjoyment of the art of dance while maintaining the discipline required for any artistic endeavor. As the children age, we introduce ballet, modern, and jazz technique to prepare them for more rigorous technique classes.
Intro to Technique
Building upon the foundations of creative movement, children now learn to work in lines and on the diagonal. Basic movement themes such as; jumping, balletic runs, chasses, spinning and skipping are explored as an introduction to classical ballet. In this class we also introduce modern and jazz technique to prepare them for more rigorous technique classes. We also stress musical awareness.
Level 1 ballet is an introduction to the structure, form and artistry of the art of ballet. This level will emphasize proper body alignment, stretching, strengthening, positioning, extensive barre exercises, traveling steps across the floor and understanding basic ballet terminology. Expression and musical awareness are taught through free movement , mime and storytelling.
Level 2 ballet builds upon foundations learned and introduces students to the foundations of barre work in order to develop proper alignment and classical technique. Students continue to work on traveling steps with an introduction to grand allegro. At this level an emphasis is placed on turning, jumping, and linking steps. Introductory character work and free movement study provide students with an avenue for self expression and performance style. Students are expected to show awareness of basic technique appropriate timing and musicality.
Students at this level are given extended barre exercises with increasing demi pointe work, stretching and strengthening. Classical ballet lines should be established along with a new vocabulary for traveling steps, elevation and pirouettes. Students at this level have a strong understanding of classical vocabulary and can now adequately demonstrate use of line and musical performance.
Students continue to build their vocabulary with a new set of specific exercises at the barre and at center. At this level an emphasis is placed on detail and artistry, therefore, increasing stamina, concentration and discipline are required.
Students who have progressed to preprofessional level, now have an extensive ballet vocabulary. At this level, articulate footwork and secure use of legs is crucial. Class work continues to improve the dancer’s spacial awareness and orientation of the body. Dancers continue to work on coordination of the whole body with the addition of fluidity of movement. Added steps include multiple pirouettes and beating jumps.