If your young one is showing interest in the sport of dance, then it may be time to enroll them into a dance class or two. However, with the plethora of dance class options available at today's dance studios, picking the right one for your child can get tricky. Read through this simple and straightforward dance class guide to get a sense of which style may work for your child.
Ballet was established in Europe during the 19th century. This classical style of dance requires stamina, flexibility, and balance in order to execute its precise patterns of fluid movement. Almost every ballet performance is done in groups and will depend upon working well with others.
Tap was founded in the United States during the 19th century. This style of dance requires special shoes with metal plates attached to the bottom. These metal plates create beautiful rhythms as a dancer performs a routine of slides, taps, and clicks. Tap dance has been compared to that of a percussion instrument. A great understanding of improvisation, tone, and rhythm are the basic fundamentals of tap dance. Tap can be performed alone or in small groups.
Jazz is heavily influenced by the music of its same name and showcases improvisation as well as individual skill. This high energy style of dance features explosive movements such as leaps, fast footwork, and quick turns. Independence and individuality are emphasised in jazz as each child is taught the same routine but highly encouraged to make every dance move their own. Jazz is a great way for a child to express themselves. However, we recommend placing your child in a basic ballet class to learn dance fundamentals before enrolling them into a jazz class.
Similar to jazz, hip-hop was derived from the music of its same name and is showcased in many different styles. Popping, locking, and breaking are considered styles of hip-hop dance and have developed from street dancing techniques. If your child possess a good sense of rhythm, we recommend enrolling them into a hip-hop dance class as it requires children to create their own moves to this special music.
Contemporary dance, also known as modern dance developed in the 1900s as a rebellion to the classical structure of dance. Modern dance is the exact opposite of ballet as it features free movement of the body from head to toe. Typically, this dance style is performed barefoot as it allows dancers to grip the floor effectively with their entire foot. The main goal of contemporary dance is to express one's emotions and life purpose by any dance movement necessary.
Lyrical marries the styles of ballet and jazz together creating a medium paced kind of dance that is both fluid and expressive. Each dance transition found in a lyrical routine is made with a supreme amount of ease and usually coincides with the paired music's lyrics, hence the title of this dance style. Lyrical features a massive amount of leaps and turns while expressing love, anger, or any emotion the dance may be trying to emote.
Ballroom dance is a partnered style of dancing and features step patterns that pair exquisitely with the accompanied music's rhythm. The Waltz, Foxtrot, and Quickstep are all classified as a style of ballroom dance. No prior experience is required to take a ballroom dance class as most routines are simple and contain repetitive steps.
Originally from Latin American, the latin style of dance is comprised of both social and ballroom dancing elements. The Samba, Salsa, Rumba, and Merengue are all considered styles of latin dance. Similar to ballroom, latin dance is typically performed in partners but can be executed as a solo artist as well. The latin style of dance requires full body movement with an emphasis on the hips.
Swing is yet another partnered style of dance! Swing features movements like swinging, flipping, and even throwing a dance partner through the air. Performed to fast paced, uplifting music a swing recital will consist of several flips, turns, and twists. West Coast, East Coast, and the Lindy Hop are all classified as styles of swing dance.
Broadway can also be classified as musical theater and marries the styles of ballet, jazz, modern dance with singing as well as acting. Broadway is a very unique type of dance due to the fact that it is comprised of three major dance styles and uses body parts not normally included in dance. Theatre props like canes and hats as well as intricate costumes are always involved in broadway performances which drive up tuition prices.