The Studio, School of Classical Ballet, Santa Cruz, CA
line art

What to Look For in a Ballet School

Be sure that your ballet school has sprung floors, which help to prevent injury. The Studio facilities feature fully sprung floors in each studio. Our largest studio has "donuts with basket-weave" construction, which means not only are the floors aflexible basket weave, wood underneath, but that they also feature spongy donuts in between layers. This is important for our floor, as the highest level of dancing is practiced on it daily. Students joints are protected against continuous impact from jumping and landing. Studios B and C feature fully sprung, basket-weave wood construction. All floors are covered with professional marley surfaces, which add a layer of cushion as well as a consistent surface. This is safe for pointe shoes, technique shoes, and bare feet alike.

Professional Instruction
Our faculty is fully trained and professional. Each of us brings our own unique background to our classes, yet we all coordinate the advancement of our classes because we follow a comprehensive syllabus. Students are guided with warmth and professionalism and held to the same high standards, which increase as the levels increase in difficulty.

Check for Hidden Fees
Many schools offer an end-of-the-year recital experience, for which most charge extra fees. Don't let this be a surprise to you! The Studio's end-of-th- year Student Demonstration requires no additional fees. The only costumes worn are provided by our large inventory of accessories. There are no "smoke and mirrors" in our Student Demonstration, only the showing of each class' progress, showcascing technique mastered during the year, which is wonderment in itself. Our Demonstration is held in the completely professional atmosphere of the Cabrillo Crocker Theater. Students learn the importance of backstage and onstage protocol and performance concentration.

Compare Advanced-level Classes
Be sure to view at least one advanced-level class of each studio you are considering joining. The class should be executed in a positive and professional manner, with corrections given by the instructor to each student as they practice the exercises given, as well as the instructions given to the class as a whole. Objectives should be clearly defined by the instructor as they set the combinations for execution. The dancers should be in good physical condition, show determination and enthusiasm, as well as demonstrate a high level of accomplishment. You should feel at ease watching the students work, and if you are a dance or art enthusiast, you should be impressed by their level of technique. The Studio is proud to have trained not only many professional dancers, but to have achieved Honor status recognition through Santa Cruz Ballet Theatre, as recognized by Regional Dance America. This high level of recognition comes in large part due to the technical prowess of our students.

We realize that most students do not aspire for a profession in dance. However, when professional quality instruction is available to you, why not choose that? Our students learn the importance of having, persevering, and achieving long-term goals. Our students gain confidence as their skills increase. Our students are challenged and mentored to reach the height of their abilities. Many students who thought they just wanted to have fun realize after a few years that they really love the challenge and rewards of this beautiful art form. Be sure to start your little dancer out right. Basic skills are necessary for success. Re-training improper or bad technique is possible, but it is difficult and can be very frustrating for the student. Spend your time and money in a school that has proven results.

It's Not About Us Anymore
You will never see our faculty dancing alongside our students in the Student Demonstration. Other schools feature faculty dancing amongst their students as well as the teacher's filling solo roles in productions. We are committed to teaching our students how to achieve success onstage, on their own. Even our four-year-old students learn how to prepare for the stage, how to count the music, to have spatial awareness on the stage, how to conduct themselves backstage and everything else their sharp little minds are ready for. It is our goal to prepare each student with these skills, no matter how much or how little experience they have. Ballet is, after all, a performance art. We have had our own respective, successful performing careers, now it's time for our students to shine!