full-time classical ballet
ballet syllabus
spanish dancing
jazz and tap
teachers courses
teaching staff
holiday schools and seminars
studio concert

Hilary Kaplan
0414 337 624

Archibald Mckenzie
0411 707 419

Alegria's Full-Time Classical Dance Course offers a thorough preparation for entering a company or company school. Alegria's first year of full-timers graduated in 1999. “Old Alegrians” are now dancing in The Royal, The Australian Ballet, The Royal Canadian Ballet, The Queeensland Ballet, German companies such as Theater der Stadt Koblenz, as well as in professional dance careers on cruise-ships and as teachers in Australasia, Europe and Asia. A recent success story is that of Steven McRae who went straight from Alegria to half-way into second year at The Royal Ballet School and who has been rapidly promoted to First Artist and Soloist and is International Rising Star 2006.

Students have progressed from Alegria directly to The Royal Ballet School, the Australian Ballet School, the New Zealand School of Dance, the Canadian Ballet School, the American Ballet School, the English National Ballet School, and German company schools such as that of the Bayerische Staatsballett in Munich.

Alegria's Full-Time Classical Dance Course offers training in Alegria's own technique and methodology and in all aspects of the classical ballet technique including:

Alegria's Full-Time Course offers students tuition in ballet (Royal Academy of Dance and Cecchetti Society syllabi, Alegria's own technique and methodology, all aspects of the classical ballet technique including:
  • Pas-de-Deux and competition Classical Solo Variations,
  • Contemporary (a minimum of two classes a week with Mr Patrick Harding-Irmer);
  • Spanish and other Character dancing (Spanish Dance Society syllabus, Italian, Russian, Polish, Hungarian groups and solos);
  • History (includes studying outstanding classics on video) as strictly relevant to appreciating and performing various styles of ballet in preparation for a professional career;
  • Music - as strictly relevant to classical dancers and including rhythmic notation;
  • Composition - this involves analyzing, writing out and discussing the stylistic characteristics and merits of selected solos and group numbers from existing ballets, and encouraging any students with choreographic talent and inclinations to create new works.
  • Benesh Notation

The core of the Full-Time Classical Dance Course is taught by Hilary Kaplan and Archibald McKenzie, with regular or guest teachers (all distinguished dancers and teachers) taking classes in Martha Graham-style Contemporary (main teacher: Patrick Harding-Irmer) and open classes and pas-de-deux (dancer/choreographer/teachers such as Vicki Attard, Adrian Burnett, Sergiu Pobereznik). From time to time, visiting guest artists such as Jane Beckett or Paul Boyd are invited to teach and choreograph, but Alegria's regular teachers are amply capable of giving the Full-Time students the technique and artistry they need to start out in the world of professional dancing.

Alegria's own highly effective technique and methodology (senior UK ballet critic Clement Crisp keeps referring to the “Australian training” of former students of Alegria such as Steven McRae) is a product of ongoing collaboration, discussion and practical experimentation by Hilary Kaplan and Archibald McKenzie. The main ingredients are our interpretations of the Old French School of Auguste Vestris through the mediation of Bournonville, the Cecchetti Method and the synthesis of the two in the hands of Vaganova and Vera Volkova, as well as certain aesthetic values of our own. Our guest teachers contribute their wide professional experience and mature artistry. The Martha Graham technique as taught by Patrick Harding-Irmer and Anca Frankenhaeuser plays a special role in the training of Alegria Full-Time students, contributing emotional intensity and groundedness to their repertoire of technical devices. Alegria's history goes back only to 1998, but when it comes to auditions in Australia and overseas, students find that our contacts are extensive and that our name carries considerable weight.