Look at life all around; everything is growing, everything is moving forward. Therefore, I recommend keeping in touch with life and with art. ~Agrippina Vaganova
Ashkenazy Classical Ballet (ACB) has a unique approach to training that involves small class sizes with weekly group and private lessons. Much care is taken in the accurate development of ACB students, as our designated levels have a truly significant standard. Direct attention to details in regularly attended classes creates versatile, focused, dedicated students who exhibit excellent awareness of artistry and technique. ACB students work in a warm, friendly atmosphere infused with joy, etiquette, and high expectations. Our environment is a place where positivity and grace reign supreme as students are sincerely invested in and nurtured.
All classes are taught by Founder and Director, Elesia Chéree Ashkenazy. To register, click here.
FULL-TIME CURRICULUM LEVELS
Level 1: Cygnets
Introduction to classical ballet and its related etiquette and terminology. The focus of this level is placed on the earliest concepts of ballet training and--most importantly--falling in love with the serious work of classical dance. Students learn dynamic exercises that build upper and lower back strength, as well as leg and hip strength and flexibility. Absolute-beginner level barre and floor exercises are introduced and repeated throughout the year of study in order to train correct placement and use of muscles, with emphasis on precision. By the end of the year, Cygnets can effectively demonstrate elementary exercises for mastering the placement of the body, the legs, the arms, and the head while demonstrating basic coordination of steps.
Level 2: Bluebirds I & II
Two years of study, with expansion and refinement of Level 1 curriculum with increased attention and detail paid to discipline of movements, muscle coordination, timing, musicality, and control. Repetition of former exercises while further stressing the development of strength in the legs, feet, and demi-pointe positions. Port de bras is given specific attention and students begin to more accurately coordinate the body to effectively demonstrate advanced-beginning épaulement. Increasingly challenging combinations and "brain teasers" are introduced and Bluebirds are expected to break down movements into their finest elementary details, as well as to build back up with precision. As with all other levels, there are two Parent Observation Days, and by the end of this year, the Bluebirds are officially little dancers in the making. They're much more confident in their connective steps, adagio and allégro. Artistry is truly beginning to show!
Level 3: Firebirds Expansion of Level 1 and Level 2 curriculum with the expectation that students can easily understand, process, and perform exercises on command with accuracy. This level also begins working in center on demi-pointe. Concepts of en tournant, tours, and pirouettes begin. Strength, speed, and accuracy are hallmarks of this year. Artistry and flexibility are much more pronounced and Firebirds are well on their way in their early pre-professional careers upon earning their Firebird graduation certificates on the final Parent Observation Day.
Level 4: Swans
The focus is placed on increased strength and stability in various turns sur les demi-pointes -- high on the balls of the feet on half-toe. The defining characteristic of this year is the development of smooth connection of movement throughout the entire body. Older Swans who demonstrate exceptional alignment, strength, and core and ankle stability will have an opportunity to start beginning pointe work at the barre. Younger Swans are encouraged to repeat this year.
Upon earning a Swan certificate, students who would like to pursue a career in classical ballet or dance will be referred to our feeder schools that offer excellent advanced training. The conclusion of this year is met with a performance for parents on the final Parent Observation Day; it's a magical day filled with joy, completion, new beginnings, and beautiful emotions.