age 3 and a half
to early teenager
We accept children for our children’s ballet classes from three and a half years of age. Our Early Years Children’s Ballet programme encourages a sense of rhythm, movement and musicality to improve coordination and attention skills, which makes for a captivating and fun introduction to ballet and dance. We seek to include elements of folk and character dance as early as possible, which are accessible to and lovely for the very young student to dance. All children’s ballet at the London Russian Ballet School begins with floor work, and from 5 the little students are introduced to the barre during the class. Over time, exercises at the barre become more demanding, to develop the child’s technicality and skills. All children in our children’s ballet classes are encouraged to enjoy centre work and free movement where they are able to gain in confidence and personal expression while learning simple dance and steps in time to the music.
At the London Russian Ballet School we are proud of our artistic staff, all of whom have years of experience performing with some of the world’s most renowned ballet companies. Our Head of Children’s Ballet, Ekaterina Krasyuk, is a former soloist at the world-famous Mariinsky Theatre. Working alongside Ekaterina is the much loved Sophie Richardson who has spent many years in the Russian system.
Children’s Ballet Classes from Age 8 – 12
From around eight years of age, children with both potential and enthusiasm are encouraged to take ballet classes more than once or twice a week if they would like to. Many also maintain attendance once a week and are very happy. The London Russian Ballet School wishes to encourage interest and participation to whatever degree matches the desire of the child. We also ensure that financial assistance is available for children’s ballet where needed when ballet classes are taken more than once a week.
At this point in our children’s ballet programme, we introduce classes with more formal structure. These classes include barre work and serious and repeated exercises which build the foundation of children’s ballet and develop the required posture while working on turnout and the recognizable port de bras of Russian ballet training. Floor work is still considered very important at the start of class, and stretching exercises are a central part of this work. Simple dances are taught to lovely music which are a source of great pleasure and pride for the young student.
Children’s ballet may remain recreational for very many young students. These ballet classes are genuinely enjoyable and many youngsters remain wonderful enthusiastic participants of the school without moving to more serious ballet training. For some, however, children’s ballet at the London Russian Ballet School is the foundation for entry to the pre-vocational programme which begins from the age of 9/10. Marina Kamburova and Ekaterina Krasiuk select young children with a desire and aptitude to join this serious level of ballet training during the summer. All children already at the school are welcome to apply and children from outside.
Children’s Ballet – Stretch Classes
These classes take place twice a week on Saturday and Sunday. They are ideal as an addition to ordinary children’s ballet classes for the young enthusiast, both boys and girls. They are enormously helpful in understanding how to develop flexibility and turnout safely and enjoyably. These ballet classes are recommended for the serious and recreational youngster alike. They are also for those who are taking gymnastics classes or other forms of exercise to help build a rounded physique less prone to injury. These children’s ballet classes last one hour.
Children’s Ballet – Teenage Classes
at the London Russian Ballet School
The school runs classes for teenagers during the week. These build on physical skills and knowledge already acquired and are taken by students who wish to study recreationally at a high level. They build stamina and increase musicality, while focussing on the world-class Russian Ballet technique. For teenagers looking for an introduction to dance evening classes are available Monday to Thursday at 7.00pm with Inga George or Naomi Norris. There are also classes at the weekend on Saturday and Sunday for teenage girls with a knowledge of ballet.