Training Program

Dance Genres

MA Arts offers an exciting range of dance classes for male and female students from the age of 2years and above, our classes cater for all experience levels and fall under the following main genres:

  • Classical Ballet
  • Contemporary
  • National/Character
  • Limber & Conditioning
  • Jazz & Musical Theatre
  • Tap

Divisions Guideline

* Age is used only as a guideline

  • Pre-School Division (Ages 2-7) 
  • Junior Division (Ages 7-11)
  • Intermediate Division (Ages 9-13)
  • Senior Division (Ages 12+)
  • Adult Division (Ages 18+)
  • Classical Extension Program (CEP)
  • Competition Squad (CSQ)

Pictured:  8 year old Academy Classical Extension Program student Isabella performing  Henriette Variation, Act 3 Raymonda in the Australasian Ballet Challenge in January 2017.

BALLET 

The Academy’s classical training program is based on an amalgamation of the following methods and syllabi’s.

  • Vaganova
  • RAD (Royal Academy of Dance)
  • AICD (Australian Institute of Classical Dance- Borovansky)
  • ICDS (International Character Dance Association)
  • ACB (Australian Conservatoire of Ballet)

These examination and technique training classes are augmented with classes in the following:

  • Jazz
  • Open Class
  • Contemporary
  • National/Character
  • Pre-Pointe & Pointe
  • Limber & Conditioning
  • Floor Barre, Ball Barre, Pilates
  • Repertoire, Variations and Production

The Academy believe that training should not just be abridged to examination and syllabus work, therefore each lesson will also include developing and furthering the students knowledge on other topics such as;

  • Anatomy & Physiology
  • Music, History & Theory
  • Performance, Drama and Mime
  • French Vocabulary (all ballet terms)
  • Improvisation, Free Movement and Choreography

CLASSICAL EXTENSION PROGRAM (CEP)

The Classical Extension Program follows the Vaganova method  and is designed for those seeking elite training or are looking to pursue a professional career in the future.

The Vaganova method is a ballet technique and training system devised by the Russian dancer and pedagogue Agrippina Vaganova (1879–1951). This method is technically difficult to master and requires a serious,  committed & patient mind who is willing to learn all the nuances of classical ballet such as port de bras, light ballon in their allegro, clean adagio lines, impeccable musicality  in more complex & varied tempos, and consistent dedication to a more slower yet focused system that will definitely shape a longer, leaner physique and leave you with a  more finished and polished dancer.

ENTRY:

Entry into the Classical Extension Program (CEP) is by Audition only. Group auditions are held annually that accompany a varied fee. If you are unable to attend the Audition date an individual  private audition with the Academy Director can be arranged.

The program is designed to have no more than 8-10 students per class (under the sole discretion of the Academy). Generally speaking there are a handful of students selected annually or who pass the auditions for entry into this program as it is extremely selective.

REQUIREMENTS:

Minimal entry requirements are that students are partaking in a certain number of hours per week (depending on their division the hours will vary). Students also need to have a serious goal to pursue classical ballet as a career.

There is also an assessment of anatomy and an assessment of character (personality), maturity, seriousness, etiquette and behaviour that goes into consideration when selecting students for this program.

SUCCESS & ACCOLADES: 

Students who have been a part of the CEP Program have been invited & accepted into prestigious schools and company events world wide. To view the Academy Accolades please click here.

POINTE PREPARATION CLASSES:

Pointe preparation has been designed to assist the students during their progression onto pointe, it is a class performed in demi-Pointe shoes.  The focus of this class is strengthening & conditioning the body, more specifically  the vastus mediulus oblique, arch/ instep, metatarsals, intrinsics, and muscles/ligaments of the foot to be able to endure the demanding requirements of pointe work.

Students must be at a required age, strength & technical requirement to be able to progress onto demi- pointes.  These classes commence for students aged 10 years and above.  It is at the discretion of the teacher and /or Director to decide if a student will be able to participate in this class to ensure injury prevention.

If a student would like to work towards Pointe preparation and or commencing onto Pointe, the MA Arts staff will be more than happy assist with deriving a strengthening program that is most suitable to your child’s needs.

POINTE CLASSES:

Pointe classes are offered to complement our students  training.  A student is only permitted to start training en Pointe when the teacher deems the student ready.  A pointe assessment  consists of the Academy director and teacher’s opinion and a physiotherapist report of approval.

Once the student is deemed ready, they may begin Pointe Preparation classes in Demi-Pointe shoes to develop the necessary strength and technique to execute Pointe work in Pointe shoes safely.

When ready for Pointe shoes, a MA Arts teacher will help check that you selected the right shoe type. In the RAD examination syllabus students will be required to perform at a high level on pointe as of Intermediate Foundation onward.

CHARACTER / HISTORICAL DANCE

Character dance is a specific subdivision of classical dance. It is the stylized representation of a traditional folk or national dance, mostly from European countries, and uses movements and music which have been adapted for the theater. Character dance is integral to much of the classical ballet repertoire.

A good example of character dance within ballet is the series of national dances which take place at the beginning of Act III of Swan Lake. The ballet Don Quixote as well as Paquita also features many character variations based on traditional Spanish dances. Popular character dance adaptations for ballet also include the national dances of Hungary, Russia, Poland, Italy and Spain: csárdás, mazurka, tarantella,flamenco, etc.

The Academy study the ICDS Character method created by Alida Segal, based on her studies at the Moiseyev Character Company in Russia. The students also study character based on the Vaganova method.

CONTEMPORARY

Contemporary dance is a style of expressive dance that combines elements of several dance genres including Modern, Jazz, Lyrical and Classical Ballet. Contemporary dance stresses versatility and improvisation, unlike the strict, structured nature of ballet. The dancers focus on floorwork, using gravity to pull them down to the floor. Unlike Classical Ballet it can be performed to many different styles of music including classical.
Pioneers of Contemporary dance include Isadora Duncan, Martha Graham and Merce Cunningham.  These contemporary dancers all believed that dancers should have freedom of movement, allowing their bodies to freely express their innermost feelings.

LIMBER & CONDITIONING

Our conditioning & limber classes enable students to achieve greater flexibility and strength through correction and perfection of technique, isolated muscles & focuses on working on the exercises in depth without focusing on spatial awareness & use of port de bras (arms).  This allows the students to focus on the anatomy and correct technique or application required for each movement within the dance vocabulary.  In these classes, students are able to utilise equipment such as yoga mats, fit balls, Thera bands (along with many other contraptions) to aid in achieving great flexibility and strength.

JAZZ

 Jazz has become one of the most popular dance styles in recent years, mainly due to its popularity on television shows, movies, music videos and commercials.  This style is fast, fun and energetic, consisting of unique moves, fancy footwork, big leaps and quick turns.  Jazz dancing is a form of dance that showcases a dancer’s individual style and originality.  Every Jazz dancer interprets and executes moves and steps in their own way.  To excel in Jazz, dancers need a strong background in ballet, as it encourages strength and balance and develops a good foundation of technique.

MUSICAL THEATRE

 Musical theatre is a form of dance that combines songs, spoken dialogue, acting, and dance.  The story and emotional content of the piece – humor, pathos, love, anger – are communicated through the words, music, movement and technical aspects of the entertainment as an integrated whole.  Musical Theatre is a great class to take if you are looking at a career on Broadway or as an actress, singer.

TAP

 Tap dance is a form of dance characterised by using the sound of one’s tap shoes hitting the floor as a percussive instrument.  As such, it is also commonly considered to be a form of music.
Two major variations on tap dance exist: Rhythm (Jazz) Tap and Broadway Tap.  Broadway Tap focuses more on the dance.  It is widely performed as a part of Musical Theatre.  Rhythm Tap focuses more on musicality, and practitioners consider themselves to be a part of the Jazz tradition.