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Pre-Professional Companies

Stage Door Dance Arts offers Pre-Professional training for those students who are serious about the study of dance.  Students are placed in one of our Pre-Pro companies by audition or evaluation only.


Pre-professional ballet is an intensive study of classical ballet, and students will continue to be educated through our graded syllabus that incorporates the Cecchetti, Vaganova, Royal Academy, and Balanchine methods.

Students will learn ballet barre and centre work along with across the floor progressions. Each year students will become increasingly more familiar with musicality, balance, coordination, position of the arms, legs, and feet, and the use of proper French vocabulary.

Pre-Pointe and Pointe

When a student is strong enough, they may begin the art of pointe work. In general, students must be at least 12 years old, have at least 4 or 5 years of ballet training, be enrolled in 1.5 - 2.5 hours of ballet per week, and have proper ankle, core, and back strength before pre-pointe classes can begin.


It is necessary for students to have a professional evaluation, by a qualified pointe teacher, before enrolling in pre-pointe and pointe classes.  It should be noted that a child’s stage of development, work ethic, turn out, strength, and height/weight ratio must be taken into account when considering pointe readiness.  


At Stage Door Dance Arts, students are invited to take a pre-pointe class when it is appropriate for their stage of development and training.  If you have questions, please contact the owner, Mrs. Michelle Knell.


At SDDA we use a graded tap syllabus, which is influenced by the techniques of the Al Gilbert method. Tap classes are designed to develop rhythm, style and sound. Students will learn a variety of tap styles from Broadway to Rhythm tap.


Classroom exercises focus on building flexibility of the knees and ankles, coordination, and speed of movement.  Emphasis is on developing proper tap technique, producing clear tap sounds, and having fun.


SDDA teaches both contemporary and traditional styles of jazz.  Our curriculum is based on ballet technique layered with various styles of jazz movement and includes a proper warm-up, stretches, isolations, across-the-floor progressions, and relevant combinations.


Because jazz requires a sound knowledge of dance technique, it is offered to students who are kindergarten and older, as long as they are also enrolled in a ballet class.

Contemporary Lyrical

Contemporary Lyrical classes are offered to intermediate and advanced level students who are also enrolled in a ballet class. This class draws on the fundamentals of ballet, jazz, and modern, but has evolved over the years to pull from every other style of dance, allowing the performer to express personal interpretation to the audience.  Contemporary Lyrical is a form of artistic expression that is usually performed with the intent of interpreting the lyrics and mood of the music.


Modern is a style of dance that, while largely based on ballet technique, is not confined to traditional form or expression.  Often, it combines other forms of movement such as contemporary styles, and even dancer improvisation.  In this class, students will learn and experiment with interpretation, spatial awareness, rhythm, intention of movement, and awareness of body.

Stage Door Dance Arts focuses primarily on Lester Horton and Martha Graham modern techniques.

This class is only open to Level 3-5 pre-pro company students.

Ballet is a required pre-requisite class.

Musical Theater

Musical Theater is a pre-pro company-level offering that allows students the opportunity to perform dances in which they portray characters from Broadway, Vaudeville, Hollywood classics, and musical comedies.

Special attention will be paid to song study, character development, entertainment quality, acting, and truth in performance.  This is a strongly recommended class for the serious dancer.

Ballet is a required pre-requisite class.

Student Choreography

A practical experience focusing on the choreographer’s creative process.  Emphasis will be placed on critical evaluation skills for dance, use of choreographic devices, use of improvisation for generating movement, and creating meaning through the use of time, space, energy/force, and weight.  Students will collaborate to create and perform a choreographic work of art with the gentle guidance of a teacher/professional.  Course objectives are to understand how to use music, rhythm, time, space, shape, costume, lighting, and other theatrical elements to clearly and effectively create a unified dance with a personal and identifiable artistic statement.


Student Choreography is open to Intermediate and Advanced dancers in Levels 2 - 5.


Hip-Hop is offered to children who have an interest in more contemporary dance styles made popular by the music video industry.  Hip-Hop is less technical in nature and does not require the student to be enrolled in a ballet class.  Hip-Hop is an excellent choice for beginning level dancers with little or no classical training.  


Students will learn balance, strength, coordination, stage presence, and basic elements of “funk” and “urban” styles which include house, popping, locking, freezes, waving, and gliding.

Pre-Pro Acro

Acro teaches flexibility, balance, strength, & discipline. Students should always come to class in dance attire with bare feet. This is not a power tumbling class. Only skills that can be utilized in a dance routine will be addressed. 

Open to all students enrolled in Level 1-4.

Stretch and Body Conditioning

This class assists dancers with body strengthening and toning, proper stretching technique, and improved stamina. Class exercises will be based on dancer-friendly conditioning such as Yoga, Pilates, barre fitness, and ballet/jazz technique.  Education about the anatomy of the body and good nutrition may also be introduced.

​Active Isolated Stretching is a major tool used by students to heal troubled muscle areas, but it can provide numerous other health benefits, as well.  When stretching actively, the entire body, as well as the brain, becomes involved.  With each additional opportunity for stretching, the dancer becomes more fluid and flexible, and takes on a more beautiful line.  This class is noncompetitive, however students will be greatly challenged and encouraged.

All dancers, especially those in a pre-pro company, or on a competition team, are encouraged to enroll.

Turns, Tricks and Skills (TTS)

This Pre-pro, Company, and Competition level class focuses strictly on dance technique.  Proper turns, body placement, pointed feet, higher kicks, improved leaps, better coordination, and faster footwork are all core components of this class.


It is the perfect supplement for any intermediate or advanced ballet, jazz, or contemporary dancer.

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