This book is all a beginning teacher needs to immediately begin to create young dancers with a sound ballet technique and beautiful dancing quality from the first day. Containing complete syllabi for each of the first three years of beginning ballet instruc tion, the guide is perfect for helping dancers transition into becoming dance teachers and refreshing the skills of current dance instructors.
Ms. Newman's book not only details the basics, discussing the source and mechanics of every ballet step, but includes images, teaching strategies, checklists and tips to help teachers feel, and be, prepared.
How to use your voice, where to stand in the room, how to interact with and correct young dancers, how to compose a class, and to use French terminology and teach your students to do so, are all fundamentals of teaching that Ms. Newman recognizes and reminds us of throughout the book.
Her example exercises and progression of technique are designed to create success for the student and the teacher as well—by laying out the desired outcome/goal for each exercise, offering tools to help you get there and common errors to look out for along the way. Yet Ms. Newman is providing a guideline, not a timetable—she allows for adapting the syllabus to the needs of your students.
Judith Newman grew up in Miami, Florida, and began her serious ballet training with Thomas Armour at the Miami Conservatory. At the age of 17, she received a Ford Foundation Scholarship to study at the School of American Ballet. While taking classes, she attended Columbia University and Barry College in Miami. She has performed as soloist with the National Ballet of Washington (D.C.), the Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich, Germany, and the Pennsylvania Ballet.
She began teaching in 1970, opening her own studio in California. After returning to Miami, she taught at Fusion Dance, Momentum Dance Company, and the Miami Conservatory. In 1984, she became part of The Miami Dance Theatre School and, together with Mariana Alvarez, directed a performing company for young dancers called Miami Dance Theatre. In 1992, she joined the faculty of the New World School of the Arts and later became Associate Professor.