Ballet Training

What to Know About the Top Methods

Several different training methods exist for learning the art of ballet. Each training method is unique in style and appearance, yet produces brilliant ballet dancers. In your ballet training, it is likely that you may encounter a ballet instructor who combines the training methods of two schools. Some very respectable teachers use one method as a base and add style elements of another to create a unique approach.

The major methods of ballet training include Vaganova, Cecchetti, Royal Academy of Dance, the French School, Balanchine, and Bournonville.

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A ballet teacher and student practicing a position together
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The Vaganova method is one of the main training techniques of classical ballet. The Vaganova method was derived from the teaching methods of instructors of the Imperial Ballet School of Soviet Russia.

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The Cecchetti method is one of the main training techniques of classical ballet. The Cecchetti method is a strict program that enforces planned exercise routines for each day of the week. The program ensures that each part of the body is worked evenly by combining different types of steps into planned routines.

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Royal Academy of Dance

The Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) is the leading international dance examination board specializing in classical ballet. RAD was established in London, England in 1920. Initially formed to improve the standard of classical ballet training in the UK, RAD has become one of the world's leading dance education and training organizations, boasting over 13,000 members and operating in 79 countries.

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The French School

The French School of ballet, or "Ecole Française," developed in court ceremonies of French monarchs many years ago. The French School is considered to be the basis of all ballet training.

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The Balanchine Method is a ballet training technique developed by choreographer George Balanchine. The Balanchine Method is the method of teaching dancers at the School of American Ballet (the school associated to New York City Ballet) and focuses on very quick movements coupled with a more open use of the upper body.

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Bournonville is one of the main methods of ballet instruction. The Bournonville training system was devised by Danish ballet master August Bournonville. The Bournonville method appears fluid and effortless, even though it is technically challenging.