5 Famous American Ballet Schools You Should Know


5 Famous American Ballet Schools You Should Know

Tabinda Mustershad
January 23, 2024
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No. You’re never “too old” for ballet - or dance in general. Most actors and stage performers learned how to dance later in their careers. 

Dance, like all forms of art, is a way of expression. And like all ways of expression, dance is also bound by certain elements such as musicality, body, action, space, time, and energy. All of which are measurable, which means that they can be understood and communicated, which means that they can be taught.

If you’re interested in learning more about ballet schools across America, or perhaps brush up on some old childhood ballet skills, we’ve curated a list of schools we think you should know:

1. Joffrey Ballet School, NYC

The Joffrey Ballet School in New York City was founded in 1953 to train and develop professional dancers. The school is practically synonymous with the American ballet style and its graduates go on to perform for one of the most prestigious ballet companies and theaters in the world.

The Joffrey Ballet School has a variety of dance classes available for adults of all levels of expertise, starting from beginner to more advanced classes. 

You can easily register online by signing up on their registration portal and registering for a class at least 5 days before it starts. Proof of COVID-19 vaccination is not required however masks are mandatory in closed rooms and areas.

The classes are in-person and are charged at $20 per class. The school doesn’t place restrictions on the dress code as long as students wear comfortable attire that complements their body’s movements when they practice and perform ballet.

2. Houston Ballet Academy

The Houston Ballet Academy has provided one of the highest quality ballet training in the country since its inception in 1955. Located in the center of Houston, the academy provides a variety of programs for adults to learn ballet dancing.

The Houston Ballet Academy Summer Program runs from June to August and takes in adult students regularly. 

Adults can also join dedicated, year-long programs for adults. These classes are for all levels of learners including beginners, intermediaries, and advanced students. If you know some ballet but are not sure what your skill level is, the Houston Ballet Academy will assess your skills and place you in the appropriate class.

The academy also offers drop-in classes and regular classes that last for up to 6, 8, or even 9 weeks. You’ll have to pay $20 per class for drop-in classes. The academy has professional attire requirements which include: leotards and tights, t-shirts, and/or leggings.

Related article: Top 10 Dance Studios in The World You Just Can't Ignore

3. Pacific Northwest Ballet Academy

The Pacific Northwest Ballet Academy is one of the most renowned ballet training academies in the United States. The academy is famous for providing some of the best ballet classes in the US. 

The Pacific Northwest Ballet Academy has two schools in Washington in the cities of Seattle and Bellevue.

The academy offers an Open Program that is open to the public who want to learn beginning to advanced level ballet dancing techniques. The academy has a strict vaccination policy.

You can easily register for classes 1 hour before they start on the MindBody website. You have the option of choosing a single class or packs 5, 10, or 20 classes in one registration. A single class costs around $16, whereas a pack of 20 classes can cost up to $270.

4. San Francisco Ballet School

The school’s foundations date back to 1933. It is known as one of those schools that push the boundaries of dance. It is also one of the only schools that offer ballet lessons for students suffering from Parkinson’s Disease.

The San Francisco Ballet School offers one of the best ballet classes in the US and the entire world. The school offers both virtual and in-person drop-in classes and summer workshops for adults. The school has a strict COVID-19 vaccination policy. 

The school charges a flat $22 per class or $200 for a 10 class pass. You can easily register to their classes via their MindBody registration. You can opt-in for both virtual or in-person classes. The school doesn’t have a strict attire policy.

5. Cincinnati Ballet Academy

The Cincinnati Ballet Academy is a prestigious US ballet academy that has produced one of the finest ballet dancers in the world. It has one of the most celebrated faculty in the US and offers one of the best ballet classes in the US.

For Adults, the Cincinnati Ballet Academy offers an Adult Dance + Fitness program that allows you to gain strength in your body as you learn various ballet movements. The Ballet Basics class is perfect for those of you who’re just starting with ballet. You can easily sign up to their classes on their MindBody registration page.

The academy has an optional mask policy for its students and encourages its students to wear form-fitting attire while attending classes. It also recommends wearing ballet shoes.

A single ballet class at the Cincinnati Ballet Academy will cost you $17 whereas 5 class, 10 class, and 15 class passes can be purchased for $75, $140, and $180 respectively.

Usual Ballet Classes Rates

The usual ballet class rates are $15-$30 across the United States for a single class. Most dance academies and ballet schools offer packages that allow you to purchase classes in bulk at a reduced rate.

If you’re looking for summer programs, expect to pay around $200-$500 for the entire season. 

Work From Home, Dance From Home

You won’t have many excuses for not pursuing unleashing your inner dancer. The post-pandemic world hasn’t changed many things. Work is still remote. So are your dance lessons. If you want to learn ballet or dance but don’t have the time to commit to joining in-person classes or even scheduled online classes, there are several options available at your disposal.

All of these dance studios above offer online classes that you can tune in to. You can even opt-in for both so if you can’t make it to a class in person, you can just turn on your computer and let the grooves kick in.

Apart from these dedicated ballet academies and dance studios, you can even access thousands of videos available on online video platforms like YouTube. Channels like the DNCR Academy and the Learn How To Dance teach you to dance moves from beginner to advanced. You can also find dance tutorials for songs that you like.

We know that it can be overwhelming to start. Not all of us want to learn how to dance and someone of us just want to get a few songs under our belt. That’s okay too! Understanding your dance goals is an important step toward figuring out which online dance classes to choose from. 

If you know what your dance goals are, you can make better-informed decisions on what to look for in a dance studio

If you’re looking for a single platform that curates all the dance techniques that you’ll need, including those to perform dance covers you like the most, then STEEZY is your go-to platform. 

With STEEZY, you can learn ballet in as little as 25 days by tuning in to the best online ballet classes in the US!

It has thousands of videos of all your favorite dance moves and songs, taught by professional dancers, athletes, and industry-admired choreographers

Tips On How To Learn Ballet Easily

If you’re curious about ballet and dancing in general, you’ll be surprised that you don’t need much to start learning ballet dancing from your home. Here are some tips to learn ballet easily: 

Related article: Everything You Need to Know About Beginner Ballet

Have an Essential Starter Pack

The essential starter pack begins with finding the right flooring. If your floor is slippery, just use wet paper towels to add friction between your feet and the floor. 

You don’t need an actual ballet bar. You can simply use a chair.

You don’t need a leotard, a tutu, or even a tiara. You can simply begin in your workout clothes. The important thing is that you feel comfortable.

Know The Ballet Inside You

Like dance goals, you should be aware of your ballet goals as well. It’s okay if you don’t know them from the get-go. As you do ballet, you’ll soon realize what your goals are with this art form and which of its areas motivate you.

Knowing what your ballet goals are will also help you make better decisions when choosing ballet classes. 

Just Dance!

We know that it can be overwhelming at the start. What’s important is that you feel comfortable doing ballet and have fun in your learning process.

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