Dancing Through Life teaches control, balance, strength, and flexibility to children through a professionally led ballet program. We teach choreography and fundamentals that lead children towards a life full of dance. With a dance recital hosted at the end of the program cycle, students even get to experience and gain performance skills. The Ballet program is a unique one designed to give children the chance to develop skills and perform them in front of an audience.
Dancing Through Life offers a dynamic Ballet program located in Davie, Florida. For more information on our Ballet program and class offerings, visit our class schedule.
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Ballet is elegant. Ballet is beautiful. Ballet is art. Dancing Through Life teaches Ballet dancing to beginners, childhood hopefuls, dabblers, and children seeking an elegant activity. Basic positions, techniques, and choreography can be learned at any time in our polished, relaxing studio. Ballet helps develops flexibility, determination, and love of dance at a young age that is unparalleled to other dance styles.
Ballet is a truly elegant form of dance, and its rich history as a performance art is integral to its development as a modern staple in the dance world.
What is Ballet?
Ballet is one of the oldest surviving concert and performance dance styles on earth. Although it has a rich history, its future looks even brighter. With origins in France, Italy, and Russia, Ballet draws from a rich history as an incredibly technical form of dance. Elongated limbs, polished moves, and elegant lines make Ballet one of the more beautiful dances in the world.
Ballet consists of formal and traditional techniques that are made up of individual steps, position, and attire. The culmination of various positions and elements into advanced combinations is both challenging to learn and satisfying to master. Beginner, intermediate, and advanced techniques are all incredibly different and challenging in their own rights.
For beginners, Ballet is more akin to Yoga than traditional dance. Mastering the five basic posi-tions requires determination, mindfulness, concentration, and flexibility. Understanding how to move the body, gaining flexibility to make perfect lines, executing precise movements, and learning how to sway the body in arcs and curves are all essential elements of learning Ballet. Although this dance style can be a relaxing hobby, it is also great exercise.
Ballet is many things to many people, but is traditionally practiced as a performance art. There are many styles of the dance that include Contemporary, Jazz, Russian, French, Italian, and even Neoclassical styles. Ballet and modern dance are intersecting at many roads to create a dynamic, elegant performance art for the new century. Ballet is art. Ballet is elegant. Ballet is what you make it.
The History of Ballet
The history of Ballet is a rich one. Ballet first made its stunning appearance in the ballrooms of the 15th and 16th century Italian Renaissance as a performance dance featured in court. As it began to evolve, it made its way into France and Russia as more of a concert dance than a performance art. Ballet grew in popularity and renown, developing a detailed French vocabulary based on the incredibly technical movements of the dance.
Jump to the 21st century, and Ballet has become a global institution that draws from every country it is performed in. Many dancers dedicate a lifetime to the mastery of Ballet at schools around the globe. The first Ballet academy was formed in 1661 at the Académie Royale de Danse, also widely known as the Royal Dance Academy. Dancing Through Life is proud to continue this rich tradition by offering Ballet classes to the masses.
Ballet is seeing something of another renaissance in the modern day. Famed choreographers like George Balanchine introduced newer, more dynamic Ballet styles like Neoclassical Ballet. Due to renowned stage performances and increased popularity, this dance style is seeing an influx of newer, more modern dance influence. Post-structural Ballet, Contemporary Ballet, and the roots of modern dance are influencing the entire world of dance. Our classes concentrate on developing a core to build upon. Although interests in styles differ from individual to individual, a perfection of Ballet basics is essential.
Ballet is based on a tradition of elegance, beauty, and technical proficiency. Throughout the years, this dance concentration has developed a reputation as the pinnacle of dance. Styles that have developed offer an interpretation of Ballet for people of all tastes, backgrounds, and skill levels. Understanding the types of Ballet developed throughout history provides a great basis for the development of Ballet-centered skills.
Ballet’s long history developed the practice of the dance into a variety of distinct styles. There are small differences in every culture that performs the performance dance, but three main stylistic differences are fairly consistent throughout the world. Classical Ballet, Neoclassical Ballet, and Contemporary Ballet are the main styles practiced today.
Classical Ballet is the closest style to the original performance dance that developed hundreds of years ago in Italy and France. This style of Ballet is steeped in the traditional, technical elements of the dance. Individual training methods for classical Ballet are usually named after the inventors of the methods and techniques.
The hallmark of traditional, Classical Ballet is the extensive French vocabulary that is such an integral element of the style. Classical Ballet is much more rigid, adhering to the historical tech-niques of the performance art unlike its more modern counterparts.
Neoclassical Ballet does value the traditional vocabulary and techniques of Classical Ballet, but offers several stark differences. Neoclassical style offers more flexibility in dance than traditional methods. Neoclassical offers several hallmarks, some of which are listed below:
- Traditional Ballet vocabulary
- Extreme tempos
- Marked increase in technical feats
- Complex spacing
- Focus on structure
Much of Neoclassical Ballet is stripped of the usually heavy focus on narrative and theatrics, but instead features the impressive physical abilities and technical proficiencies of the dancers. Turned in legs, flexed hands, and a more modern tilt with a healthy respect for the classical are the hallmarks of Neoclassical Ballet.
Contemporary Ballet has been gaining steam for the past few decades. This style of Ballet is really a partnership between modern dance and Classical Ballet. Modern elements of improvisation and a focus on musicality are clearly present in most Contemporary Ballet troupes and performances. Contemporary Ballet offers an incredible amount of flexibility that draws from the modern movement that puts value on innovation and distinctly modern movements.
Usually set to more modern music, Contemporary Ballet retracts the strict body lines associated with more classical forms. Many times, Contemporary Ballet is performed completely barefoot with a focus on abdominal body control. The combination of classical influence with modern leanings creates a truly dynamic dancing style that is both entertaining and strikingly innovative.
How to Ballet Dance
Ballet takes a lifetime, maybe two, to master. There are, however, basic techniques that make up the building blocks of all levels of proficiency and styles of Ballet. A Ballet class at Dancing Through Life teaches South Florida residents the basics on which to build an extensive skill set of forms and moves.
Below is a list of basic Ballet elements that are essential for any individual interested in Ballet.
- Basic positions: Ballet positions are numbered and are each quite different, but equally important. The basic positions include position 1, position 2, and position 3, position 4, and position 5. People interested in learning all basic positions should attend a professionally led class at Dancing Through Life.
- Arm positions: Although the position of the hips, feet, and knees are essential, so are the basics of arm positions. Once difference positions are learned, arm positions can be easily practiced at home.
- Orientation: Orientation of the dancer to the audience is another vital element of learning the basics. Many orientations must be routinely practiced before ever attempting a performance.
- Turnout: perhaps the most well-known element of learning Ballet is perfecting turnout. Turnout is simply the outward rotation of hips and feet. Good turnout is made up of feet with heels touching, forming as straight a line as is possible.
- Pointe: once you master the basics, it is time to master pointe. Ballet values elegance, light touch of feet, and dancing on the toes with pointe shoes. Dancing with point shoes is incredibly difficult and requires significant strength and balance.
- Choreography: once all basic elements are learned, the goal is to link them together to perform specific choreographies. A single “Ballet” performance can integrate all basic elements of Ballet, including orientation, arm positions, basic positions, turnout, and pointe.
The Elegance of Ballet in Life
Ballet is primarily a performance art, but it is also a growing hobby and exercise choice as well. For younger dancers, Ballet helps to build dedication, determination, and balance. As a dance with concentration on technical elements, this dance style engages the body, the mind, and the spirit. Classes at Dancing Through Life help build a skill set that is valuable and applicable in all areas of life for children who complete a course of study.
The elegance of Ballet in life can be seen in the performances, culture, and history that surrounds the performance art. Dating back hundreds of years, dancers benefit from the development of Ballet throughout history from cultures that range from French to Russian. The flexibility required to perform even the most basic of positions helps encourage health and balance of body and spirit.
Professional Ballet performances can be found on nearly every continent. The elegance of line and lightness of foot are the envy of all other dance disciplines. Children, adults, and the casual hobbyist all gain a valuable experience through the development of Ballet skills.
Dancing Through Life offers classes in Ballet to help bring a new sense of elegance in life. Love life. Live life. Dance through life.