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COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

INTRODUCTION TO DANCE group I ages 3-4, Group II ages 4-6. Basic skills, listening, following directions, understanding of body movement, and development of rhythm and movement to melody and beat are introduced. Children break out of their shells, and let’s not forget they have tons of fun!

BALLET  has become a widespread, highly technical form of dance with its own vocabulary based on French terminology. It has been globally influential and has defined the foundational techniques used in many other dance genres. Classes emphasize the development of classical ballet skills with a focus on proper placement and alignment. Students will learn ballet vocabulary through barre and centre work while building strength and flexibility. Ballet will maximize technique and longevity in a career or practice of dance.

Ballet will focus on posture, balance, self-discipline, grace, self-confidence, fitness, and individual expression. The benefits of ballet will strongly support other styles of dance as well.

WHAT TO WEAR?  Attire is simple but specific. Dancers wear a black body suit, pink tights and pink ballet slippers. Hair must be up and tied in a bun.

HIP-HOP this style of dance is a broad category that includes a variety of techniques such as urban/street dance and other styles which are primarily performed to hip-hop music or that have evolved as part of hip-hop culture. What distinguishes hip-hop from other forms of dance is that it is often freestyle (improvisational) in nature and fosters self-expression, confidence, and skilled biomechanical coordination. It includes a wide range of styles like breakinglocking, and popping that have arisen from mainstream exposure such as television, film industry, and dance crews. The dance industry has responded with a commercialization of studio-based versions of hip-hop - sometimes called new style - and a hip-hop influenced style of jazz dance called jazz-funk. Funk-style hip-hop led to derivatives of street dance such as turfing, jerkin’, and krumping; all dance styles that have emerged. Classically trained dancers developed these studio styles in order to create choreography from the hip-hop dances that were performed on the street. Because of this development, hip-hop dance is practiced in both dance studios and outdoor spaces. Such styles of dance are a sample of the many that have appeared since hip-hop developed into a distinct dance style. Like hip-hop music, hip-hop social dancing continues to change as new songs are released and new dances are created to accompany them. Dance Virtuosa prides itself on keeping itself on the pulse of new creative styles of movement.

JAZZ has become a very popular dance style in recent years, mainly due to its popularity on television shows, in movies, music videos, and commercials. People enjoy watching jazz dancers, as the dancing is fun and energetic. Jazz dancing is a form of dance that showcases a dancer's individual style and originality. Every jazz dancer interprets and executes moves and steps in their own way. Jazz consists of unique moves, fancy footwork, big leaps, and quick turns. In order to excel in jazz, dancers need to learn technique, an element of grace and balance, and, very importantly, injury prevention. Dance Virtuosa instills ballet, technical, and strength based skills into every dancer so they experience the best that Jazz has to offer!

WHAT TO WEAR?  Jazz classes are casual and relaxed, but it’s important to select clothing that is more form fitting. A dancer's body lines need to be visible, so baggy clothes are less than ideal. Tights and leotards are fine, but most jazz dancers prefer to wear jazz or dance pants. Jazz pants are usually boot-cut or flared styles, as tight bottoms would restrict ankle movement. Tops usually worn for jazz include form-fitting tank tops, t-shirts or leotards. Dance Virtuosa has a full line of Jazz clothing perfect for any student. Check with your instructor before buying jazz shoes, as many classes have preferences.

CONTEMPORARY dance is the exploration of the total movement potential of the body. It differs from commercial or competitive dance in that it is not bound by set standards, or by defined styles such as ballet or Jazz dance. Instead, it seeks to express a personalized vision, often through experimentation and collaboration for the development of new, more individualized approaches to the moving body and choreographic possibilities.

Our artistic director and choreographer has a particular love for lyrical and especially for contemporary dance, and either makes the creative decisions or has oversight in ensuring the honesty with the direction choreography takes. She chooses whether the piece is an abstract or a narrative one. Dancers are selected based on their skill and training. The choreography is determined based on its relation to the music or sounds that are danced to. The role of music in contemporary dance is different than in other genres because it can serve as a backdrop to the piece. The choreographer has control over the costumes and their aesthetic value for the overall composition of the performance, and also in regards to how they influence dancers’ movements.

WHAT TO WEAR?  See Jazz

SUMMER CAMP  is a highlight and exciting time for all dancers of Dance Virtuosa. Always held near the beginning of the month of August, this one-week intensive camp draws dancers from all over North America.

Dance Virtuosa seeks out the finest instructors from all over the world to provide dancers with an experience and flavor of dance that diversifies their training. Different styles of dance within the genres of Urban, Hip Hop Culture, Contemporary, Jazz, Ethnic Dance, and more are offered. Much emphasis is placed on conditioning, and to this end the camp also includes Yoga not only for conditioning but also for balance, flexibility, and focus. 

Educational and Artistic Achievements

SHOWCASE  from an educational standpoint, involvement in the arts through class work and stage performance provides each dancer with a positive and personal growth experience. It promotes self-esteem, confidence, and lifetime achievements, which benefit students in all areas of education and leadership.  From the young dance student to the aspiring dancer, performance plays a significant role in their development as a dancer and entertainer.  From a student's view, performing is an opportunity to display the dance skills they have worked hard for all year. It is their moment to shine and excel as stars on the stage.  Performance provides each student with a personal achievement and fond memory, which will last a lifetime.

DEMONSTRATOR TRAINING PROGRAM  dancers that stand out or reach out to become more active in classes may be welcomed into our Demonstrator Training Program. A Demonstrator will assist an instructor in class with technique, choreography, and arrangement, and help to maintain order in the class. It’s a wonderful opportunity that builds leadership and group skills, aids in personal development, and creates a great foundation if one chooses to pursue dance instruction in the future.