Ballet is a form of performance dance that originated in the Italien Renaissance courts of the 15th century, and later developed into a concert dance form in France and Russia.
Since the 15th century it has become widespread, a highly technical form of dance with its own vocabulary based French terminology.
Ballet has been globally influentical and has defined the foundational techniques used in many other genres of dance.
A video of Ballet Dancing for Kids
Information on ballet dancing for kids in South Africa
Is ballet dancing right for your kids?
Ballet dancing is a physically demanding art form and requires physical and mental discipline and practice. It thus develops many skills and has numerous benefits, including:
- Promotes strength, flexibility, coordination and balance
- Helps posture in many children
- Teaches skill, grace, poise, self-discipline
- Fosters self-confidence and positive self-image
- Promotes a love of the arts
- Develops a passion for rhythm and movement
- Encourages friendships with children who have similar interests
Get your kids started!
In most cases kids do not start formal ballet lessons until the age of eight, although they can attend pre-school dance classes from quite a young age. Here they learn to enjoy music and may learn some basic ballet positions. Generally, these types of classes focus more on fun and allowing parents to watch their child's participation, rather than being considered the start child's formal ballet journey.
For children who seriously aspire to be dancers The South African Mzansi Ballet is the most prestigious ballet company in the country, and holds lessons for children of all ages
To find a suitable teacher or academy, search the ActiveActivities directory. The directory provides all the information you need to know on ballet in your local area and has a comprehensive list of Ballet Classes and Lessons.
What to look for when checking out a ballet school
- Professional set-up
- Qualified teachers and experience
- Appropriate flooring and bars
- Class size suited to your child's needs
- Reasonable prices
- Follows Royal Academy of Dance syllabus
- Enters the competitions that your child is interested in competing in
As well as tuition fees, which vary with the school and the location but are usually in the vicinity of $15 a lesson, your child will need:
- A leotard - Approx. R200
- Tights - Approx. R150
- Ballet shoes - Approx. R60-80
- A tutu (not usually compulsory)
Always check with the teacher before buying clothing; many schools have their own strict dress codes. Prices really can vary depending on quality and where you buy. Buying from the school is often convenient but can be more expensive.
Most little girls love pink, dancing, and being a little ballerina. Most mums love seeing their daughters doing ballet. So get them dancing, no matter what age they start.
Events not to be missed
If your child has an inclination towards ballet, attendance at a live performance will certainly inspire him or her, though some academies recommend that children be at least six years old to attend. Prices vary with the company, the performance, the location, seating, and any concessions available, but are similar to those for opera and other live entertainment.
For all these reasons, ballet dancing is one of the ultimate kids activities!