Ballet Mississippi offers classes and opportunities for students of all ages, from age three to adult. Our students are equally valued by our faculty, who have dedicated their lives to dance. Our aim is to provide the best training possible, prepare our dancers for the stage, and to develop skills of self-motivation, confidence, poise and respect. We hope to create a work ethic that remains with our students throughout their lives and careers. Our curriculum is divided into the Lower School and Upper School.
Lower School provides a nurturing environment for children who wish to learn ballet technique and discipline. Each level is designed to teach the fundamentals of classical ballet, increasing in difficulty according to the class level and training of the students.
Creative Movement is a class designed for children ages 3-4. This class teaches the elementary concepts of classical ballet and tap, while incorporating coordination, rhythm, and movement to music. Students learn to follow simple instructions as a group. This class meets 45 minutes once a week.
Pre-Ballet slowly introduces the more structured and disciplines movement necessary for formal ballet training, while continuing training in tap for students ages 5-6. Class meets for 1 hour once a week.
Foundations I begins formal ballet training for children ages 7 and 8. The class expands and explores ballet vocabulary. Disciplines develops a stronger mental focus while strength and flexibility are slowly increased to properly develop the body for classical dance. This class meets 1 hour once a week.
Foundations II continues formal ballet training by increasing strength, stamina, and technique. Barre and center work focus on combining elements practiced in lower levels while adding more complex movement. At this level, the Artistic Director may place a student according to ability rather than age. Classes meet from 1 hour and 15 minutes twice a week.
Upper School provides strenuous training in classical ballet for students who possess a gift for movement, musicality as well as a love for dance, and who are willing to commit to the high standards of the Ballet Mississippi School. All Upper School placement is by audition or previous class experience and at the sole discretion of the Artistic Director.
Intermediate builds on previous ballet training by increasing strength, stamina, and technique. Barre and center work focus on combining elements while increasing focus and technique. In the center, students learn more complicated petite allegro and grand allegro to develop greater stamina and fluidity of movement. Students at this level begin preparation for pointe work. Intermediate students are expected to attend ballet technique class 1.5 hours two times a week with an option for a third class.
Intermediate/Advanced continues the training described in Intermediate. Students begin to learn variations of the classical and neoclassical repertoire. These students are expected to attend ballet technique class 1.5 hours three times a week with an option of attending advanced level classes at the discretion of the Artistic Director. A pointe class is also offered once a week at this level at the discretion of the Artistic Director.
Advanced students continue to develop the proficiency of technique, strength, and stamina necessary to produce the artistry in movement. Students are expected to attend ballet technique class 1.5 hours four times weekly as well as pointe, variation, jazz, and modern classes.
Master Classes – Occasionally, master classes in ballet, jazz, modern, or tap may be offered to the Advanced Ballet students throughout the year. All advanced students must be in regular attendance for their ballet classes in order to attend master classes.