School of Ballet Curriculum

LEVEL AND AGE REQUIREMENTS:

Placement will be determined by Portland School of Ballet Staff. In order to properly progress and prepare our students, students will be placed in classes based upon level and experience first, then age. It is not uncommon for a student to stay in any particular level until achieving the curriculum set in that level.

ATTIRE:

All uniform attire is available for purchase through the school. Syllabus students are required to purchase specific Portland School of Ballet uniform leotard and skirt for the Year-End Performance. You may also purchase other leotard styles of your syllabus level's color to wear to class if desired.

For Young Dancer Program, Syllabus, and CORPS:

Girls: pink ballet shoes, pink tights, hair in a bun, assigned leotard color specified below

Boys: white t-shirt, black tights or spandex shorts, black socks and black ballet slippers.

Teen Workshop: any solid colored leotard, pink tights, pink ballet shoes, hair in bun.

 

Other Styles:

Modern, Jazz, and Contemporary can all be done barefoot; dance shoes are optional.

Girls: any solid color leotard, black or tan tights, or dance shorts, hair secured away from face.

Boys: any solid color t-shirt or tank, black tights or any color pants or shorts.

Adaptive/Inclusive Dance: students should wear clothing they are comfortable moving in, ballet shoes, and hair secured away from face.

Teen/Adult Drop-Ins: any clothing the students are comfortable moving in. Ballet students should wear ballet shoes.   Modern and all other styles of class may be taken barefoot or in shoes or socks.

CLASS CURRICULUM/DESCRIPTIONS:

Young Dancer Program: ages 2-8

Note: Progression through the Young Dancer Program is at the discretion of the faculty; it is common for students to spend an entire year/multiple sessions in a level. Students and parents will be notified when it is time to move to the next level. For new student placement, please contact the office to set up a placement evaluation. We may ask that you attend a specific class or set up a private lesson for placement purposes.

Creative Movement 1 ages 3-4

Pink Leotard

Classes will be set around a theme incorporating imagination, creativity, and games in order to introduce movement. Rituals and etiquette will be introduced in order to foster good learning habits and appreciation of dance. Students will learn age-appropriate stretches.

Creative Movement 2 ages 4-5

Pink Leotard

(Pre-requisite of 2/3 sessions of Creative Movement 1) Creative Movement 2 curriculum expands on previous foundations set in Creative Movement 1, in preparation for Pre-Ballet 1.

 Mixed Creative Movement ages 3-5

Pink Leotard

This is a mixed-age class following the Creative Movement 1 curriculum, with the possibility of expanding on that curriculum based on student ability.

Pre-Ballet 1 ages 5-6.5

White Leotard

(Beginner students ages 6.5-8 with no prior experience will also be placed in Pre-Ballet 1) Students will learn a strong foundation of posture, placement, musicality, coordination, and movement fundamentals.

Pre-Ballet 2 ages 6.5-7.5

Pale Blue Leotard

(Pre-requisite of 2/3 sessions of Pre-Ballet 1 and a teacher's recommendation).

Pre Ballet 2 curriculum expands on previous foundations set in Pre-Ballet 1 in preparation for S1 level

Adaptive/Inclusive Dance

Designed for students with special needs to foster confidence, connection, and creative expression through the love of movement. Students will explore dance in a caring and exciting environment.

Introduction to Syllabus age 8-12

Pale Blue

Designed for students who have not participated in our Young Dancer Program as an introduction and catch-up for Syllabus 1. Introduction to Syllabus is a one-hour class that sets and expands on foundations set in Pre-Ballet while preparing students for curriculum taught at the S1 level. 

Young Men’s Class

Designed to give our male students a chance to be in class together with a male instructor working specifically on men’s technique. This male-only environment fosters strong/healthy attitudes of gender equality in dance as well as the need for men in ballet.  

School Year Division:

 The Syllabus Program

For dancers age 7 - 19, the syllabus program has 6 levels, and dance skills are taught according to a developmental curriculum. Placement will be determined by Portland School of Ballet staff. In order to properly progress and prepare our students, students will be placed in classes based upon level and experience first, then age. It is not uncommon for a student to stay in any particular level until they achieving the curriculum set in that level.

Level S1: Meets once per week for one hour. (Sunshine Yellow Leotard)

Level S2: Meets twice per week for one hour. (Sunset Coral Leotard)

Level S3: Meets twice per week for an hour and a half. (Teal Leotard)

Level S4: Meets twice a week for an hour and a half and once a week for one hour and 45 minutes. S4 may include an introduction to pointe work: eligible dancers will be evaluated by instructor and company physician. (Raspberry Leotard)

Level S5: Meets four times per week for an hour and a half and includes pointe technique. (Fuchsia Leotard)

 Level S6: Meets five times per week for an hour and a half with an additional hour once per week.  Includes pointe and variations. (Royal Blue Leotard)

Portland School of Ballet also offers classes in Modern, Contemporary, Conditioning, and Repertory for Level S3 and above.

Once a dancer reaches her/his teens, there are three paths s/he can follow:

    •       Continue in the Syllabus Program. Many dancers will study in the syllabus program throughout their high school years. This is a good choice for the strong dancer who wants a daily class.

·           Teen Workshop: designed for students who want to take on a lighter class load but continue their love of dance. Students have the option of designing their own schedule to include 1-3 of the teen workshop classes as well as any supplemental classes they would like to add with the exception of the Junior and Senior Repertory classes.

    •       CORPS: This intensive program is for the most serious high school dancer. This class meets for 3 hours daily. Acceptance into the pre-professional CORPS program is by audition only.

Supplemental Classes for Students:

We recommend all of our students take as many of our supplemental classes as possible in conjunction with their regular classes to enhance their training and make them well-rounded dancers. Other styles/forms of dance help students to create balanced musculature and dynamic movement quality.

Supplemental Classes for S1/S2:

Jazz: Exploring the foundations of classical, Broadway, and contemporary jazz. Jazz dance is a linear and rhythmic style.

Supplemental Classes for S3/S4:

Supplemental Package Discount: save 10% when you register for all four supplemental classes.

 Modern: Modern is a free, expressive style of dance started in the early 20th century as a reaction to classical ballet. Modern classes at PSB explore the foundations and roots of modern dance, including a mix of modern techniques/styles such as Horton, Limon, Taylor, and Cunningham.

Core Conditioning: Works on strength, flexibility, and conditioning in a safe non-impact way. Core exercises will strengthen and tighten the abdominal muscles while protecting the lower back, aiding in injury prevention, posture and spinal health. Flexibility exercises will work to increase range of motion in order to make movements of ballet easier. Conditioning exercises will work to promote strength in the muscles necessary to achieve stability and power in ballet.

Pre-Pointe: Designed to prepare students in S3 and S4 for pointe work. Focusing on strength and alignment in the legs and feet that will allow students to progress to pointe in a safe and easy manner. Students will not be placed on pointe without faculty and medical consent.

Junior Repertory:  Introduces the dancer to a variety of repertory, ballet variations, and character dances. Dancers will learn choreography to be performed at Lecture-Demonstrations, community performances, and other outreach events. You must attend all syllabus classes at your level to be eligible for this class.

S5/S6 Supplemental Classes:

Supplemental Package Discount: save 10% when you register for all five supplemental classes.

Seminar: Focusing on dance academics, Seminar will explore topics such as: dance history, anatomy and kinesiology, alignment, injury prevention, resume writing, audition preparation, music for dance, etc.   Also available to teen workshop students.

Modern:  Modern is a free, expressive style of dance started in the early 20th century as a reaction to classical ballet. Modern classes at PSB explore the foundations and roots of modern dance, including a mix of modern techniques/styles such as Horton, Limon, Taylor, and Cunningham. Also available to teen workshop students.

Core Conditioning: Works on strength, flexibility, and conditioning in a safe non-impact way. Core exercises will strengthen and tighten the abdominal muscles while protecting the lower back, aiding in injury prevention, posture and spinal health. Flexibility exercises will work to increase range of motion in order to make movements of ballet easier. Conditioning exercises will work to promote strength in the muscles necessary to achieve stability and power in ballet. Also available to teen workshop students.

Senior Repertory:  Introduce the dancer to a variety of repertory, ballet variations, and character dances. Dancers will learn choreography to be performed at Lecture-Demonstrations, community performances, and other outreach events. You must attend all syllabus classes at your level to be eligible for this class.

 Contemporary Ballet: Incorporates elements of ballet and modern dance and explores various forms of movement.  Also available to teen workshop students.

PRIVATE LESSONS

Private lessons for any age and level can be scheduled with all Portland Ballet instructors at a $60 per hour rate. ($10 per hour for studio rental, $50 per hour for instructor. Students must be up to date on tuition payments before signing up for private lessons). For information on available instructors please contact our office.

PERFORMANCE OPPORTUNITIES

 Because ballet is a 'performing' art, the Portland School of Ballet provides numerous performance opportunities for its students. These opportunities also serve to educate and engage the community.

Students of all levels also perform at special events, schools, senior communities, and other community organizations.

Many Portland School of Ballet students perform in the annual production of The Victorian Nutcracker, as well as the spring production of a children's show, such as Peter and The Wolf, or our original ballet Around the World with Flat Stanley--The Case of the Reed Shoes. Permission to use Flat Stanley was granted by the estate of the author Jef Brown. Hundreds of school children come to the theater to enjoy these presentations, and teachers appreciate the extensive pre-performance educational guide that is provided to all participating groups.

Every June, Portland School of Ballet presents its annual Year-End Student Performance. Portland School of Ballet students in levels S1 through CORPS present classwork and variations, demonstrating what they have learned throughout the year. This is a wonderful opportunity for family and friends to enjoy the accomplishments of their dancers.

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Portland School of Ballet offers summer classes, camps and intensives for all ages, abilities and styles of dance.

For online registration visit our Parent Portal