Dance Genres


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

Vaganova Method

RAD (Royal Academy of Dance)

AICD (Australian Institute of Classical Dance- Borovansky)

ICDS (International Character Dance Association)

ACB (Australian Conservatoire of Ballet)

Vaganova Method

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.

The Vaganova method that has created some of the world’s most acclaimed dancers, choreographers, and teachers: Anna Pavlova, Mikhail Baryshnikov, George Balanchine, Rudolph Nureyev, Svetlana Zakharova, Diana Vishneva, Natalia Osipova, Uliana Lopatkina, Vladimir Malakhov, Alexei Ratmansky, and so many more!

MA Arts prides itself on providing students with the best professional ballet training available and made possible by employing a systematic and consecutive method of instruction.

Open Class

Open Ballet are non-syllabus/examination classes that are designed with all unseen classical enchainments (series of steps linked together).

Students are given the chance to extend their classical vocabulary outside of examination syllabus work and are able to learn more advanced & challenging steps in preparation of their next level progression. This means by the time they are in that level they can focus on perfecting and mastering the desired technique and not just learning how to do it.

Syllabus VS Open Class: 

Examination Syllabus work is based on a series of 10-30 set exercises that are repeated each lesson, this improves the dancers long term memory.  In open classes you have a new exercise pattern (enchainment) each week based on various steps the students need to have achieved and studied for their level and the level above, this aids with developing a short term memory and the ability to retain information and learn quickly.

Open class content is delivered quickly and on occasion with no visual demonstration, students will hear the french terms and enchainments (and will need to be able to execute them immediately.

Auditions & Competitions: 

Auditions into schools, companies and competitions are all open work classes. Open ballet aids the students to work towards developing a quick mind, greater dance vocabulary and more time to perfect their technique in order to perform and maintain a high level of technical and artistic proficiency.

Royal Academy of Dance (RAD)

The R.A.D offer an internationally recognised portfolio of exams to motivate students of all ages and abilities. These are endorsed by state awarding bodies with credits towards the Certificate of Education.

Students may start with the levels of Pre-School (Tiny Tots, Pre-Kinder, Pre-Primary & Primary) classes and move up through to the Graded levels (Grades 1, 2, 3, 4, 5).  They will then at the Directors discretion move into  higher Graded levels (6, 7, 8) or if they are ready for pointe work and vocational training they will progress towards the Vocational Graded levels (Intermediate Foundation, Intermediate, Advanced Foundation, Advanced 1, Advanced 2) and upon completion of Advanced 2 with Distinction become eligible to participate in the ‘Genee International Ballet Awards’ and are provided with the opportunity to sit their Solo Seal examination.

RAD syllabus, examination and technique training classes involve the student to perform exercises demonstrating;

  • Classical Ballet
  • Character & Historical Dance
  • Contemporary & 21st Century Dances
  • Jazz Ballet Dances

The RAD classes are augmented with developing a great understanding in allied classical ballet subjects. 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


Pointe preparation classes are designed to assist the students prior to or during their progression on to pointe. Students may be wearing ballet shoes or when ready they may be eligible to progress onto demi-pointe or pointe shoes. The focus of this class is strengthening & conditioning the body, legs and feet  to ensure they are all strong enough 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- pointe or pointe.  Students will also be required to see the Academy’s allocated Physiotherapist for a pre-point or demi-pointe assessment.

These classes usually commence for students aged 10 years and above.  It is at the discretion of the teacher and  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 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.

Students will be required to perform at a high level on pointe once they are in the Senior/Vocational Division of the Academy. Pointe work is inlcuded in their RAD Syllabus classes, their Open Ballet classes and almost all of their repetoire and variations are performed on pointe.

Pointe shoes can be made my various stockist such as Bloch, Gaynor Minden, Sansha, Energetiks, Feed, Capezio and many more.


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.



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 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.


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.


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.