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 Post subject: MALE BALLET CLASS: Characteristics and objectives?
PostPosted: Tue Jul 18, 2006 10:57 am 
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Joined: Sat Feb 12, 2005 12:01 am
Posts: 1
Location: Mexico
Hi,
I am a ballet teacher at the professional level, and I am investigating the different methodologies, objectives and characteristics that teachers around the world suggest for teaching an all male class, intermediate and advanced levels - especially those boys who will become professional dancers. What are the prefered class structures, particular exercises that have worked for you, particular ways to teach advanced allegro, for example. Where I teach we have the cuban methodology, basically. Anyone would like to share their opinions and experiences?
Thank you.
RBarraza

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 18, 2006 7:15 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 12, 2000 11:01 pm
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Location: Seattle, WA. USA
I like a short, but complete barre, so we/they get to lots of center and traveling work. One adagio at barre and one in the center are good. In the center, build methodically and carefully. Give them things that get them moving (even in port de bras and tendus/dégagés. It's something that I've always known, but really reinforced by observing the USA IBC -- be sure to give them lots of turns -- of many kinds (passé but also attitude, arabesque, and of course, jumping turns). Begin with basic jumps but push when they're ready, to add virtuosity: beats, clean and controlled landings, and "presence."

The best dancers at the IBC had technique and combined doing steps with clarity, strength, strong attack, and finesse.

Make each class interesting and fun. Challenge them. And get it moving! Don't talk a lot about the theories of ballet or technique too much except to impart these during exercises and while they are moving -- don't preach! (I used to be very guilty of "being a talker!") Use positive reinforcements -- "That was very good. Now add more. Now stick after the landing longer."

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Dean Speer
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2006 10:52 am 
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Joined: Wed Apr 12, 2000 11:01 pm
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Location: Seattle, WA. USA
I also have to add the importance of building stamina, not to mention strength. One of my (ballet) teachers used to have me run up and down the steps of my high school gym and he used to also have us do wall push-ups. These are done in a hand-stand position but up against a wall for balance and with one leg bent so you can keep your back straight and not arch.

He (and we) found that these wall push-ups were great for building overall back strength. (Just think of all of the lifts and partnering men need to do.) :shock:

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Dean Speer
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