Periodically throughout attendance in the Upper School, students will
experience a weekend called “In The Company For a Day” so they can
experience what it is like to be in a professional company. This helps them
understand the kind of stamina a professional must have, and the pace of the
work day professionals must endure. Students will experience a day as a
professional dancer. Ballet students rarely have a view of what the rigors are
each day in a professional company. Not only will you learn a great deal
about dancing, you will understand what you’ve been working toward for
your many years of training.
The flow of the day is listed below:
10AM – 12 noon - Ballet Technique Class – based on fundamental principles
of movement in the classical theatrical dance idiom, the class will enable you to
assess your current level of technique, your physical type and technical abilities,
and the direction that will best serve you. A portion of the centre floor
exercises will be dedicated to male dance technique, followed by pointe work
for the women.
12 – 12:30 Break
12:30 – 1:30 Partnering – having explored the principles of movement, you
will now apply them to pas de deux work. You will learn an exerpt from
Ludden’s historic “Symphonie Fantastique”, choreographed in 1993 in
Moscow for the Russian National Ballet. The work is new-classical style, and
represents a new use of sophisticated partnering for corps de ballet, an
acclaimed feature of Ludden’s work.
1:45 – 2:30 – Male Variation – also from Symphonie Fantastique, the male
ensemble dancing is strong and expressive, demanding male technique as a
foundation for expression, rather than simply as expression itself.
2:30 – 3:15 – Female Variation – working on their own, continuing with the
same section of choreography, the women will blend the unique abilities of
female dancing into the overall expression of the classical stage.
3:15 – 4:00 – Putting It All Together. Dancers then work on the entire section
of choreography, from pas de deux, through male and female variations, to the
end of the section. Ludden will conduct this session as he would any rehearsal
of classical dancers, making sure technique is accurate, choreography is tidy,
but more importantly that the overall expression of the choreography has been
From this experience, dancers will grow to understand how the job of dancing
is far more than the perpetual struggle to expand technique. At any given
moment you only have the technical ability you have, and that remains a work
in progress throughout your entire career. The ‘job’ of the dancer, then,
becomes using your technical level to fully express the intended vision of the