The aim of the School is to help each pupil to gain as much benefit and enjoyment as possible from the classes. Pupils are given individual help and encouragement to develop imagination, self-confidence and dance quality as well as technique and musicality, and the classes are carefully graded to suit pupils at different levels. An experienced pianist accompanies all the classes.
Children can start dancing at the School from age 2 and a half years. These classes consist of songs with actions, stories and movements to develop co-ordination. The half hour classes ensure that the children get maximum enjoyment without getting overtired. Simple balletic movements are introduced at this stage but more formal teaching of technique does not begin until pupils are old enough to enjoy a more structured approach.
Children who wish may be entered for exams from about 6 years of age. The School organises examination sessions two or three times a year with an examiner sent by the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing. Pupils take the Grades or Class examinations in the Cecchetti Method. Usually children entering for Grade examinations will need more than one class a week to reach the necessary standard.
Parents are invited to watch the classes at the end of term, and at other times by special request. However it is helpful if a parent stays when a new pupil who may be shy at first, joins the class. On the final day of term pupils may “dress up” in a costume. On these occasions parents may take photographs or video, provided that no other parents object to this. If you would prefer that photographs or video are not used during your child’s class, please let the teacher know beforehand.