curriculumn classes (ballet i through ballet vi)

Under the direction of artistic director and ballet mistress, Valeria Sinyavskaya, nine professional instructors lead the charge in implementing a comprehensive ballet curriculum with a Vaganova syllabus.

 

RECREATION and CURRICULUM

Dance Movement and Prep:

The curriculum at KB is designed to take a dancer methodically through a comprehensive training method, by way of a step by step progression. This progression begins specifically targeted to age as well as physical and developmental readiness in Dance Movement and Preparatory classes. We provide this foundation through the instruction of qualified professional teachers.

Beginning Technique:

When dancers graduate from Preparatory levels and enter the beginning “technique” levels, i.e. Ballet I (BI) the focus becomes more toward technique (much like when reaching First Grade shifts the focus of school on academics, rather than learn through play) this is the correct technique that lays the foundation for classical ballet learning. Usually dancers are approximately 7 years old at this time, and ready for more focused instruction. They begin to understand that what they are learning is not simply fun movement to music, but purposeful movement which has rules and right and wrong applications which when grasped and mastered give students a sense of accomplishment and achievement. They begin to see how what they put into it now will translate to more down the road, and that the pieces become part of the whole.

Other Forms of Dance:

In addition to ballet and pointe, students may take tap, modern, jazz and or yoga. Please see each class level to determine eligibility.

Recreational Track vs. Curriculum Track:

Upon completion of BIIA, dancers may be placed in the recreational track or the curriculum track. A dancer may choose to go into the recreational track, but acceptance into the curriculum track will be by teacher recommendation. Whether in the recreational track (C track) or curriculum track, students will all receive the best intruction we have to offer.

Additional classes may be added upon teacher recommendation, including other forms of dance.

The curriculum track is available to students who have the interest and teacher recommendation. Upon entering the curriculum track, students begin taking ballet two times per week and may add additional forms of dance. The curriculum for this level will follow a path toward preparation for pre-pointe, reaching a strong level of physical conditioning in order to have the correct technique and proper body alignment to begin pointe work approximately in level BIIIB. Curriculum students are eligible to progress to additional roles in Company productions they are eligible for, and eventually be eligible for Company membership, summer intensive and other curriculum activities.

Going on Pointe:

Learning pointe work requires a dancer to have a solid foundation in technique so that she can apply that technique using pointe shoes. Strong feet (good pointing habits,) strong and sustained use of turnout, holding muscles correctly in the upper body, arms, abdomen, back,

glutes, etc. are all essential when working on pointe. Many elements must be in place in order for a dancer to begin pointe work properly and without injury. This curriculum progression, increasing the number of days per week she studies ballet, ensures that a dancer is physically and mentally ready for additional training and more advanced instruction. This readiness is more a condition of physical and technical readiness than chronological age.

This curriculum model is the basis of classical ballet. Dancers progress to taking ballet class four and five and six times per week as they advance, because their level of training demands challenging physical work and requires dancers to be extremely fit and well conditioned.

At Kingsport Ballet, the level of training we provide in the Vaganova method is correct, and recognized internationally as such. Whether a dancer goes through our program for enjoyment, performing opportunities, college scholarship opportunities or for a future career in dance, we ensure that students receive the best available instruction providing versatility in other dance forms as well as pre-professional ballet training.

Benefits of a Ballet Education:

We know that being a trained ballet dancer inculcates top shelf life skills, which in today’s world are highly valued in any field of work as they have become increasingly rare. Our training teaches a strong work ethic, solid commitment and responsibility habits, the meaning of a contract and the value of following through, the value of hard work, perseverance and a unique understanding of history, culture and art. Additionally, it fosters a positive and nurturing family environment among the dancers along with sportsmanship and team-building skills. And last, but not least, full-time ballet students are recognized by universities across the country as having what it takes to become highly successful students, capable of juggling complicated schedules and demands, and having the flexibility to adapt under pressure. Ballet dancers are recognized as individuals capable of becoming highly successful, productive citizens.

Lower School CURRICULUM TRACK

DM 3 and 4 These classes are 45 minutes long and geared toward children ages 3 and 4. Placement is according to age. Children in DM4 are eligible to begin Tap classes. These are recommended for children at this age to work on rhythm and musicality. Tap IA would be the proper placement for interested students.

Prep I, II and III These classes are 1 hour long and are intended for students ages 5-7. The term “preparatory” refers in this case to preparing students to progress to full technique classes. Students in these levels are eligible to also take Tap in order to enhance rhythm and musicality. Tap IA/B would be the proper placement for interested students (Tap IA if this is the first year she is taking, and Tap IB if she has taken tap before)

BI (BI, BIA or BIB) This is a one-hour class and begins to place greater focus on ballet technique. Students are typically age 7 or 8 in this level. Dancers at this level are eligible to take Tap IA/B to enhance rhythm and musicality, or Jazz IA for an additional form of dance in addition to their ballet class. Dancers in BI and higher are eligible to audition for NUTCRACKER. Dancers in this level and higher are eligible to take the beginning level of summer workshop in June.

BIIA This is a one-hour class and builds on what was learned in BIA or BIB. Students are able to reinforce the technique learned in BI, and begin strengthening and preparing for additional center work. Students in this level are eligible to take Modern IIA or Jazz IIA. Dancers in this level are eligible to audition for THE NUTCRACKER. Dancers in this level and higher are eligible to take the beginning level of summer workshop in June.

Following BIIA students are evaluated for placement into the curriculum track. If a child  is recommended for the curriculum track and she accepts, she will begin attending ballet  class two times per week in BIIB, with an option to take modern and/or jazz in addition to their ballet classes.

BIIB This class level meets 2x per week. Students in this level are building upon prior technique but also beginning to build increased physical conditioning and strength. Taking class 2 times per week facilitates greater muscle memory and strength. Students in this level are eligible to take Modern IIB or Jazz IIB in addition to their ballet classes. Dancers in this level are eligible to audition for THE NUTCRACKER. Dancers in this level and higher are eligible to take the beginning level of summer workshop in June.

BIIIA This level meets 3x per week for one hour and fifteen minutes. This level begins the first stages of pre-pointe preparation. Students in this level are eligible to take either Jazz IIIA or Modern IIIA in addition to their ballet classes. Dancers in this level are eligible to audition for THE NUTCRACKER. Dancers in this level and higher are eligible to take summer workshop in June.

BIIIB Students in this level should have completed BIIIA or will have been placed by artistic director. Classes are 1.5 hours long and meet 3x per week. Students may have begun pointe work or will begin pointe work during the year or at the completion of the year. Students at this level are eligible to take Jazz IIIB or Modern IIIB. Students in this level are eligible to audition for Company candidacy. Dancers in this level are eligible to audition for THE NUTCRACKER. Dancers in this level and higher are eligible to take summer workshop in June. Note: Dancers who are in Company are required to attend a minimum of 2 weeks of summer workshop in June.

Upper School CURRICULUM TRACK

BIVA Students in this level should have completed BIIIB. Classes are 1.5 hours long and meet 4x per week, in addition to Company class on Saturdays. Students in this level are working on beginning pointe technique. They are eligible for Jazz IVA or Modern IVA. Dancers at this level are eligible for Company membership. Note: Dancers who are in Company are required to attend a minimum of 2 weeks of summer workshop in June at Kingsport Ballet and/OR at an approved outside (request must be made to the artistic director in advance) summer intensive

BIVB Students in this level should have completed BIVA. Classes are 1.5 hours long and meet 4x per week, in addition to Company class on Saturdays. Students in this level are working on building pointe technique, strength and improve technique. They are eligible for Jazz IVB or Modern IVB. Dancers at this level are eligible for Company membership. Note: Dancers who are in Company are required to attend a minimum of 2 weeks of summer workshop in June at Kingsport Ballet and/OR at an approved outside (request must be made to the artistic director in advance) summer intensive.

BV and BVI These are the highest levels offered at KB. Students are expected to attend class five times per week, in addition to Company class on Saturdays. Students at this level take Modern V/VI and/or Jazz V/VI. Note: Dancers who are in Company are required to attend a minimum of 2 weeks of summer workshop in June at Kingsport Ballet and/OR at an approved outside (request must be made to the artistic director in advance) summer intensive.

Partnering and Variations When a dancer is in the advanced level, she may be ready to begin working with a partner, and begin learning solo variations. Both of these, whether in private instruction or in a class, are very demanding of proper technique and require a good deal of strength. These classes or privates may be offered to a group of dancers or recommended to individual students.

Company Membership Once dancers have completed BIIIB they are eligible to audition for Company. Company members must be on pointe a minimum of one year. Saturday company classes are intended to provide additional training opportunities and are free of charge.

Company Requirements:

  • Dancing in Company productions
  • Attending summer intensives at KB a minimum of two weeks
  • Attending Saturday company class
  • Participating in any outreach or community performances or educational endeavors that are part of the organization.

RECREATIONAL TRACK

DM 3 and 4 These classes are 45 minutes long and geared toward children ages 3 and 4. Placement is according to age. Children in DM4 are eligible to begin Tap classes. These are recommended for children at this age to work on rhythm and musicality. Tap IA would be the proper placement for interested students.

Prep I, II and III These classes are 1 hour long and are intended for students ages 5-7. The term “preparatory” refers in this case to preparing students to progress to full technique classes. Students in these levels are eligible to also take Tap in order to enhance rhythm and musicality. Tap IA/B would be the proper placement for interested students (Tap IA if this is the first year she is taking, and Tap IB if she has taken tap before)

BI (BI, BIA or BIB) This is a one-hour class and begins to place greater focus on ballet technique. Students are typically age 7 or 8 in this level. Dancers at this level are eligible to take Tap IA/B to enhance rhythm and musicality, or Jazz IA for an additional form of dance in addition to their ballet class. Dancers in BI and BII or higher, are eligible to audition for NUTCRACKER. Dancers in this level and higher are eligible to take the beginning level of summer workshop in June upon recommendation.

BIIA This is a one-hour class and builds on what was learned in BIA or BIB. Students are able to reinforce the technique learned in BI, and begin strengthening and preparing for additional center work. Students in this level are eligible to take Modern IIA or Jazz IIA. Dancers in this level and higher are eligible to audition for THE NUTCRACKER.

Following BIIA students are evaluated for placement into the recreationl track. If a child  is recommended for the recreational track she will continue taking ballet class one time  per week in BIIC, with an option to take Modern/Jazz C in addition to their ballet  classes. They may also be eligible to take Tap. Additional ballet classes may be added.

BIIC This class meets 1x per week and is intended for students approximately ages 9 through 11. Classes are one hour long. If students in this level are interested in taking additional ballet classes, they may add one or two ballet classes during the BIIB class times in addition to their BIIC class. Students in BIIC are either in the recreational track, wishing to take ballet at a more relaxed pace than our curriculum track, OR have completed BIIA or BIIB but are not yet ready or interested in dedicating three days each week to their ballet training.

These students are also eligible to take Modern IIC of Jazz IIC. Dancers in this level and higher are eligible to take summer workshop in June (placement is by evaluation)

BIIIC – It builds on the technique taught in BIIC, and is intended for students ages 11-13, interested in continuing to study ballet technique, but not necessarily interested in becoming full curriculum students. It is a 1 hour class, one time per week. Students in this level are eligible to also take Modern or Jazz in the C track (placement is by evaluation/experience) Tech: Jumps/Turns This class is intended for middle school and high school students who are interested in dance technique with a focus on proper alignment, posture and correct use of muscles, understanding and applying proper technique to movement, with a greater focus on jumps and turns often used in color guard and dance teams.

Modern/Jazz C This class is intended for all students interested in taking modern or jazz who are not in the curriculum track. It is intended for students ages 9 and up (or by placement) Tap I/II/III This class is intended for all students interested in Tap, ages 4 and up.

Students are placed in the recreational track by their instructors (if they have had dance movement or preparatory classes with us) or are recommended into it by staff based on the dancer’s needs.