Greenwich Ballet Academy follows a classical ballet curriculum modeled after the Vaganova Academy in Russia. All traditional ballet classes follow a very similar pattern of exercises.
Barre work: plies, ronds de jambes, fondus, frappes, developpes, ronds de jambes en l’air, grand battements then stretching.
Dancers then move to center and again follow a traditional order of combinations: adage petit allegro, grand allegro, turns and movements from the corner.
Flexibility is developed through the active movements (such as grand battement) in addition to static stretching.
Upper school consists of classes in levels 3-8. Female students in upper school dance on pointe. The uniform for Upper School changes to visually reflect the progression of the students. A skirt is added to the uniform when the students begin pointe work.
(ages 10-13, 1st year on pointe)
Meets 5 times per week, for 1.5-2 hrs per session. This level performs multiple dances in the Nutcracker and Spring Gala Performances. Character classes continue. The focus of the level 3A class is proper technique on pointe to create a foundational basis for progression through the upper levels. Turnout, flexibility and strength are also emphasized.
(ages 11-14, 2nd year on pointe)
Meets 6 times per week, for 1.5-3 hrs per session. This level performs multiple dances in the Nutcracker and Spring Gala Performances. Character classes continue and Contemporary classes begin at this level. Students in the 3B class improve their abilities on pointe, focus on larger jumps and mastering multiple pirouettes. Pilates & conditioning classes are introduced at this level to increase endurance and provide the muscular strength to perform more advanced combinations.
(ages 12-15, 3rd year on pointe)
Meets 6 times per week, for 1.5-4 hrs per session. This level performs multiple dances in the Nutcracker and Spring Gala performances. Character and contemporary classes continue. Pilates & conditioning classes continue.
(ages 13-18, 4+ years on pointe)
Meets 6 times per week for 2-5 hrs per session. This level performs multiple dances in the Nutcracker and Spring Gala performances. Character and contemporary classes continue. Pilates & conditioning classes continue. Variation classes begin and partnering opportunities become available at the highest levels. More advanced technical skills are introduced.
In upper school, as the class sizes decrease, we often combine some classes. Students will often have classes with levels above or below their own, in addition to their classes that are only with their level. Combined classes with lower levels give students a chance to be leaders and examples to their peers. Combined classes with higher levels motivate students and help inspire and encourage them to progress. Combining classes also helps foster friendships across class levels. Combined classes will also sometimes be combined in order to allow adequate preparation and rehearsal time for our Nutcracker and Spring Performance.