Advanced Principles in Teaching Classical Ballet

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Insights and guidelines for teaching the best students

"Not since Noverre and Fokine has a master teacher sought to clarify the present state of ballet. The goals John White sets for each level of training, the psychological philosophies he sets forth for teachers, the emphasis on a positive approach to teaching and forming relationships with students and parents can be read over and over again throughout a teacher's career."--Charles Flachs, Massachusetts Academy of Ballet

"It has been an inestimable privilege to have worked with John White for more than ten years. This book, along with his first, provides an outstanding opportunity for generations of teachers to learn from him as well. Bravo!"--Michele MacDonald, St. Louis Center of Creative Arts

Staying true to the Russian Academy of Ballet (St. Petersburg) pedagogy he has taught for forty years, Advanced Principles in Teaching Classical Ballet is a continuation of the work John White began in his first book.

Designed for teachers, company directors, and advanced dancers, the book explores the importance of disciplined dancing, choreography, acting, conditioning, and performance. White's writing style is as straightforward as he is unyielding in his insistence on excellence.

White also confronts serious issues dealing with the future of classical ballet and what is needed to maintain its rightful place as an important theater art. He argues that theatergoers with high expectations deserve nothing less than masterful choreography performed by superior dancers.

Decidedly not a primer, Advanced Principles in Teaching Classical Ballet is a must-read for anyone serious about teaching and performing ballet.

John White, former soloist and ballet master of the Ballet Nacional de Cuba and interim ballet master of the Pennsylvania Ballet Company, is codirector of the Pennsylvania Academy of Ballet.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813032979
  • Publisher: University Press of Florida
  • Publication date: 3/28/2009
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 202
  • Sales rank: 1,001,420
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 8.70 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

John White, former soloist and ballet master of the Ballet Nacional de Cuba and interim ballet master of the Pennsylvania Ballet Company, is codirector of the Pennsylvania Academy of Ballet. He has been conducting seminars for dance teachers for nearly thirty years. A contributing editor and writer for Ballet Dancer Magazine, he is the author of Teaching Classical Ballet.

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Table of Contents

Ch. 1 The Teacher's Role in Classical Dance 8

Ch. 2 What Makes a Good Ballet Teacher? 17

Ch. 3 Teachers and Master Teachers 22

Ch. 4 The Application of Rules 30

Ch. 5 Recommended Lesson Format for Intermediate Levels and Above 34

Ch. 6 Learning Process 46

Ch. 7 The Basic Stance 51

Ch. 8 Balance Imperatives 57

Ch. 9 Jumping Imperatives 61

Ch. 10 Turning Imperatives 72

Ch. 11 The Poses of Classical Ballet 81

Ch. 12 Advice to Students 85

Ch. 13 General Instructions to Pupils 89

Ch. 14 Practice Makes Perfect 93

Ch. 15 Discipline 96

Ch. 16 The Mind 100

Ch. 17 Music and Musicality 105

Ch. 18 Sprain or Strain? 111

Ch. 19 Partnering Principles 115

Ch. 20 Introduction to Pantomime for Dancers 127

Ch. 21 Which Is More Important, Learning or Self-Esteem? 135

Ch. 22 Geido (Artistic Ways) 138

Ch. 23 Choreography's Role in Classical Ballet 141

Ch. 24 What Is Wrong with Ballet in America? 151

Ch. 25 Ballet Camp 157

Ch. 26 The Legacy of Agrippina Vaganova and Her Influence on Russian Ballet 161

App Bits and Pieces 171

"Procrastination," A. Sage Sage, A. 185

Suggested Reading 187

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