Forum: Ballet / Character Ballet

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re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By Caitlin_love Comments: 21, member since Sat Dec 22, 2007
On Sun Jan 06, 2008 01:23 PM
gawd I dont even properly know if i do this character dance thing.
Is it basically acting as you dance and dancing to a piece of music that has a feel?
like if it was a sad piece of music you have to act sad
etc. etc.

I don't have to wear the skirt or anything either!
I jst wear my leo and ballet flats
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By tresbienmember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 1104, member since Sun Feb 17, 2008
On Sun Feb 24, 2008 08:57 PM
Our character class is russian( we do polish sometimes) and we just wear our normal ballet clothes and slit-sole ballet shoes. For the recital we wear character shoes. Ooh when you put your heel to your ankle too hard you feel pain you never felt before.
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By drifter_chick Comments: 114, member since Sat Jun 07, 2008
On Sat Jul 05, 2008 12:41 AM
i did hungarian character dance in a concert one year it was really fun
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By mickeymouse Comments: 115, member since Tue Aug 15, 2006
On Mon Dec 29, 2008 05:51 PM
i understand the definition here. but once while reading a dance competition's rules and regulations, i noticed that you could do a "character routine."

it said:

Character Dance: A routine portraying a character, i.e.: scarecrow, sailor, or gypsy, incorporating 75% dance.

^thats not the same type of character dancing as this thread speaks of, is it?
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By TutuU222 Comments: 1250, member since Thu Aug 14, 2008
On Sat Jan 03, 2009 09:16 PM
mickeymouse - From your description, the Character dance you are referring to is like a certain "roll" you are playing -- a kind of "character" or "acting part" with dancing involved. It has nothing to do with real Character Dance which is actually a part of classical ballet training and seen in so many of your big "story" ballets.

Not many schools teach Character Dance, but for those looking for a career in dancing, it's a must.
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By mickeymouse Comments: 115, member since Tue Aug 15, 2006
On Sun Jan 04, 2009 12:15 AM
oh I see...ok that's what I figured. thanks =)

my studio doesnt offer character :/
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By LittleButFierce Comments: 882, member since Sat May 05, 2007
On Sun Jan 04, 2009 12:48 AM
My school has character and historical dance. :) But I go to a big professional school. None of my other schools before this one had character or historical. I only had some character workshops and we did it in class at the end of the year, also sometimes in summer intensives. I love it!! :)
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By kaileykat Comments: 122, member since Wed Jun 24, 2009
On Wed Jul 01, 2009 12:17 PM
But how do you know what kind of ballet you are doing during your exam? Or do you learn it on the spot? I am taking my second year of ballet and my first exam in June 2010, so I have no idea. Help!
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By dancer_aimyXomember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 962, member since Wed Oct 15, 2008
On Thu Dec 10, 2009 01:02 PM
I do character I did Polish Character for my grade 6 exam. I liked the dance it was kinda fun and easy
x
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By Lebo1213 Comments: 15, member since Mon Nov 12, 2007
On Thu Feb 11, 2010 01:25 PM
So glad to see a thread was started about Character Dance! It's what I've done primarily for the past 9 years, so holds a special place in my heart. I was trained in Cechetti and although we did have some character training it wasn't until I moved to a Vaganova (Russian) syllabus school where my character training really took off.

I firmly believe that ballet and character MUST go hand in hand. One gives you technique and the other gives you performance. Plus, it's always good to move in new and different ways!

For a company that specializes in folk and character dance, see komenka.com.

Have fun!
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By balletgirly22 Comments: 24, member since Wed Feb 10, 2010
On Mon Feb 15, 2010 11:30 AM
Ive been doing character, ballet, modern, and jazz ever since i was about five and i absolutley love character. I love all of the stomping around and in mycharacter classes, we also do spanish and flaminco dancing. character is so much fun and i encourage everyone to try it! :D
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By driessv Comments: 23, member since Fri Aug 07, 2009
On Fri Apr 16, 2010 01:49 PM
Character dance is a nice change of pace in ballet class, learn dance technique but in a different and fun way. It is worth learning if you have the chance.
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By tonihowe Comments: 32, member since Sat Sep 19, 2009
On Sun Jul 18, 2010 03:27 PM
The original character definition on this thread is only really for RAD.
I have studied all main syllabi and RAD is only syllabi that does Polish, Russian etc as 'Character'.
In all other syllabi I have studied the dances from other countries are classified as 'National'. In all dance festivals I know of they are classified as National also. In the National section at festivals you get dancers dancing Tarentella, Mazurka, Highland, Hornpipe, etc.
'Character' in other syllabi and at most dance festivals is classified as a dance which displays a character and generally should tell a short story. You can get a right mix of dances as it is generally quit free. At the last festival I saw there was a girl who acted as Juliet from Romeo and Juliet. It was mainly classical ballet with mime. She started on window, reaching out etc and finished 'finding Romeo dead' acting sad and killing herself. Another girl acted as 'Baby' from Dirty Dancing. She bagan 'seeing dance and trying it' making her movements stiff and rigid and then advancing into a good dancer, it was a great character. Littlens will often act as clowns, dolls, horses etc. We have had dancers be cinderella, and fairy tale characters too.
It uses balletic moves. However you will find some competitions that will have jazz and acrobatic moves as part of character. Though in the other syllabi I've studied if the character breaks away from ballet movements then it is classified as 'Show' or 'Theatre/Theatre Craft'.

I believe RAD based school's call acting a character 'Demi character'.

I personally feel the other syllabi's description seems more accurate. It makes sense to call dances from another country 'National' as it's generally the National dance of the country, and to call dances that act out a character 'Character' dance.

Hope this helps provide a good alternative explanation for other definitions of Character.
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By angel_dancer7 Comments: 1, member since Wed Aug 11, 2010
On Wed Aug 11, 2010 11:16 PM
ok no offense to anybody here, but where have you been the past like 50 years? Those 'tap shoes without the tap plates' are called jazz shoes. They are extremly comfortable and at my studio, we sometimes use them for like all our classes. They come in stretchy type boots and boots that tie. I hope that helped on like obtaining them or something. Now does anybody know about the white ballet Silfides? I can't find anything on it.
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By SABHope Comments: 34, member since Sat Sep 25, 2010
On Sat Oct 23, 2010 07:00 PM
Edited by hummingbird (128773) on 2010-10-24 14:42:36 both of these replies could have gone in the same post, next time use the edit button please.
I took character once and i'm hooked !

Its great funn and it is a cool way to use ballet tequnique outside ballet

Comment #9297048 deleted
Removed by hummingbird (128773) on 2010-10-24 14:43:13 This reply is edited into the previous message

re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By kitri4life Comments: 33, member since Tue Nov 09, 2010
On Sun Nov 14, 2010 11:58 AM
so is russian character like ballet? because you know russian ballet . . . just wondering ive never seen character before but it sounds cool
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By dancer_aimyXomember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 962, member since Wed Oct 15, 2008
On Thu Feb 10, 2011 01:51 PM
My grade 6 is polish :D
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By dancer_aimyXomember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 962, member since Wed Oct 15, 2008
On Thu Feb 10, 2011 01:56 PM
I think you need to explain a bit more maybe give examples of some moves or something.If I didnt do it and I did Istd ballet for example,If I was to read this sticky id think maybe ballet wearing skirts and different shoes? Do they do plies on a barre etc etc.It needs more explanation you only siad what was worn luckily enough I know what it is.Maybe you should do some research!
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By dancer_aimyXomember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 962, member since Wed Oct 15, 2008
On Thu Feb 10, 2011 03:34 PM



angel_dancer7 wrote:

ok no offense to anybody here, but where have you been the past like 50 years? Those 'tap shoes without the tap plates' are called jazz shoes. They are extremly comfortable and at my studio, we sometimes use them for like all our classes. They come in stretchy type boots and boots that tie. I hope that helped on like obtaining them or something. Now does anybody know about the white ballet Silfides? I can't find anything on it.
for you angel_dancer7 here is what character shoes look like ! not like JAZZ
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By Ballet_Master Comments: 8, member since Sun Mar 07, 2010
On Wed Apr 27, 2011 11:24 AM
Great comment... Character is far older than tap or even ballet! Character dance is basically the ethnic regional and national dances of people groups throughout the world. Because Ballet was founded (or codified) in Europe, most character dance comes from Europe, however every region in the world has their specific style and/or "character" of dance. While the form or "character" of each dance reflects its national and/or cultural origin. For instance, the 'square dance' in America while considered a "commoner's dance" originates from the court dances of England, France, and Spain. Most character dances 0are based upon cultural stories and the "personality" of the people who come from each area. Certainly you've performed a Pas de Basque? Well, that step is based upon and comes from a character dance in north-eastern Spain, the step of the Basque, 'mazurka' steps are based upon the nomadic horseman that traveled and conquered the Polish plains, and the 'csardas' (char-dash) is similarly based upon the history of the Hungarian people, the Magyars and Gypsi-nomads. The formation of classical ballet was assisted by character dances, because character dances could only be learned (and taught) where they were danced, the original ballet masters or troubadours began learning dances from each area that they traveled through, and eventually they connected the similarities and differences. These "character steps" became the basis for the fundamental elements of classical ballet! This is one reason why ballet is considered the foundation of all dance, not because it was first, yet because it is based upon the simplest forms of all other dance steps. I.e. the plie or "bend" is in almost every dance step, that is why it is considered essential to beginning a class on technique. Please contact me if you'd care to know more! thx!
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By Ballet_Master Comments: 8, member since Sun Mar 07, 2010
On Thu Apr 28, 2011 05:44 PM
BTW... I was trained in character by Mansur Kamaletdinov (Bolshoi), and Robert Davis (National/Washington), also had classes with Keith J. Martin (Royal), Ivan Nagy (National Hungarian), and Basil Thompson (Milwaukee after Royal), and a few other also... I guess I was privileged and blessed... I teach character as should be taught, a technique and not just as "national folk-dance choreography"
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By liv5 Comments: 20, member since Sat Oct 29, 2011
On Sat Nov 05, 2011 11:03 PM
I used to enjoy doing character dancing when I was little but may i just point out that character dancing is not ONLY done in RAD (Royal Academy of Dance) but it is also practised in Cecchetti. :)
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By saoirse77 Comments: 44, member since Fri Feb 17, 2012
On Mon Apr 30, 2012 09:48 PM
Edited by saoirse77 (246468) on 2012-04-30 21:50:17
This is so interesting, I had no idea! I like the idea of including different cultural styles.
re: for people who dont know about character this is for you!
By saoirse77 Comments: 44, member since Fri Feb 17, 2012
On Mon Apr 30, 2012 09:49 PM
This is so interesting, I had no idea! I like the idea of including different cultural styles.
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