RAD launches ‘Discovering Repertoire’
The Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) today launched Discovering Repertoire, a new, classical ballet performance programme for students aged 12 upwards and adults of all ages. Drawing on some of the most famous and much-loved works from the classical ballet repertoire, students can study choreography from Coppélia, Giselle, Paquita, The Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker and Swan Lake. This unique programme provides the opportunity for students of all ages and levels to develop their musicality, expressiveness and artistry, whilst learning more about ballet’s most popular stories and music.
Discovering Repertoire is modular and flexible to cater to a broad range of experience and to be practical for all ages. It comprises three levels, with three units within each – a class and two classical ballet variation units – for male and female, and can be taught in addition to or instead of RAD syllabus work. There is also the option to take an exam at the end of each unit.
Each unit of the programme is designed to stand alone or allow students to progress from the barre to the variation with ease, using development exercises to build up to a well-known work from the classical repertoire. The programme’s flexibility and focused content mean it can be enjoyed by a wide range of students, from those with a little ballet experience, to adults returning to ballet, or vocational dancers of all levels.
RAD Artistic Director Paula Hunt said, “I am delighted to introduce Discovering Repertoire. It is my hope that this new programme will contribute to promoting the future of our ballet heritage, not only by inspiring people young and old to dance, but also inspiring them to go to the ballet and experience these productions for themselves.”
Approximately 150 RAD Registered Teachers in 28 countries have been trialing Discovering Repertoire for over a year, with students ranging from ages 12-65.
Grace Nemeth, aged 14, who has been trialing the programme with RAD Registered Teacher Alison Pond in New Zealand, said:, “I really enjoy the way that the repertoire classes break each variation up, letting me get to know each step really well. It is a great way to work on my technique, which helps me in my vocational classes.”
Tienie-Louise Roelofse, aged 24, who has been trialing the programme with RAD Registered Teacher and Examiner Janet King in South Africa, said, “I love that Discovering Repertoire allows me to apply the technique learnt in regular classes with a touch of splendor and performance. I could really imagine myself being a performer on stage and living out a character. When the music comes on, I turn into the Sugar Plum Fairy.”
Ian Horner, aged 60, who has been trialing the programme with RAD Registered Teacher Imogen Knight from the UK, said, “I’ve found that classes make watching ballet more interesting; seeing the professionals performing steps that we have done – but they do it so easily! It’s important for me to try taking an exam. It’s partly age-related, to say, ‘I can do this’, and I am not being put into a box.”
Knight, his teacher, explained the unique appeal to teaching and learning famous repertoire: “Performing variations from classical ballets can be a challenge but also a bit of homage – like touching history.”
Also, global launch events are taking place throughout January and February. Learn more about these events at www.rad.org.uk/news/discovering-repertoire-international-events.
Image courtesy of RAD Australia.