Dance

About Nutcracker Twist 2016

Schedule

Classes

Dance Companies

Dance Attire

Faculty

About the Dance Department:

 

This year’s annual dance recital will be held at
Berks Catholic High School on
Saturday, June 10, 2017 at 2 pm.

There will be one show and general admission for ticket sales. These tickets will be on sale at the Yocum Institute or on this website.

If you have any other questions, please feel free to contact the Director of Dance, Nina Balistrere.

 

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The Yocum Institute dance program offers training in many styles of dance for all ages and levels of experience. Students will have many performance opportunities. Dancers will develop a positive body image, self-confidence and creativity in a nurturing, educational environment.

All dance classes are ongoing. Ongoing classes (from September to June) are billed equally in 4 session installments based on the actual number of classes or lessons for the year. Each of our dance faculty holds a degree in dance as well as background clearances. For information on our talented instructors, please scroll down.

The Dance Department classes are structured to provide pre-professional training while offering the greatest value to each family. More advanced classes combine technique and pointe to maximize the dancer’s experience in the studio. For younger students, exploration and introduction classes are offered.

Ongoing Schedule for 2016-2017

Session 1:  September 5, 2016 – November 12, 2016

Session 2:  November 14, 2016 – January 21, 2017

Session 3:  January 23, 2017 – April 1, 2017

Session 4: April 3, 2017 – June 10, 2017 (no new students may join core classes)

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Please refer to Calendar for closings and holidays.

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Open Enrollment through January 2017

Ongoing Dance Classes

See Session Dates above

Ballet and Intro Classes

BP20 Pre-Ballet 1                                                                (Ages 3 – 4)
Kristina Dennis
Pre-Ballet will go over introductory ballet positions, basic terminology, and proper stretching in preparation for the discipline of a formal ballet class. This class is for those who have had little or no ballet experience.
Tues. 11:45 AM-12:30 PM10 week sessions   $110 ($100 members). Click here to register

IN31 Intro to Tap/Ballet I                                                (Ages 4 – 5)
Kristina Dennis
Students will expand their dance vocabulary, refine technique, and focus on becoming stronger dancers.
Tues. 10:15 – 11:00 AM                10 week sessions   $110 ($100 members). Click here to register

BP21 Pre-Ballet 2                                                                 (Ages 5 – 6)
Laura Gaydos
Pre-Ballet II reviews ballet terminology and moves towards the discipline of a formal ballet class. This class is intended for those who have had experience in ballet and/or have taken Pre-Ballet I/Intro classes.
Tues. 4:30 – 5:15 PM                   10 week sessions    $110 ($100 members). Click here to register

BP10 Ballet 1                                                                         (Ages 7 – 8)
Laura Gaydos
This class is the start of formal ballet instruction. Students will learn basic vocabulary and the basics of classical ballet technique. This class is for those who have at least 1-2 years of formal ballet discipline.
Tues. 5:15 – 6:15 PM               10 week sessions    $135 ($125 members).  Click here to register    

BP11 Ballet 2                                                                         (Ages 9 – 10)
Laura Gaydos
This class is for students interested in formal training with 2+ years of experience. Students will learn more vocabulary and technique, as they are challenged on an individual level. Audition required unless discussed with instructor or previously enrolled.
Tues. 6:15 – 7:30 PM              10 week sessions    $110 ($100 members)  Click here to register            

BP40 Beginner Pointe I                                                     (Ages 11+)
Nina Balistrere
Students will learn the proper way to sew, fit, and tie their new pointe shoes. They will learn the beginning strength exercises, rolling through their shoes, going up on pointe correctly while using proper technique and alignment. In order to take this class, the student must also be enrolled in Ballet 3 technique. Students must have teacher approval to take this class.
Mon. 5:15 – 6:00 PM   10 week sessions   $110 ($100 members)   Click here to register                

BP31 Ballet 3: Technique                                                  (Ages 11+)
Nina Balistrere
This class is a continuation of strong ballet technique, with a focus on proper body posture and alignment. Students must have 3+ years of strong ballet classes. Auditions are required unless instructor approved or previously enrolled.
Thurs. 5:00 – 6:30 PM           10 week sessions   $190 ($180 members)  Click here to register         

BP60 Strength and Conditioning Class                       (Ages 11+)
Laura Gaydos
A new offering this year designed to incorporate into the dancer’s weekly schedule. Improve a upper body strength, abdominal, and quadricep muscles, and flexibility. Important skills enhance the overall mind and body awareness.
Thurs. 6:30 – 7:00 PM                     10 week sessions  $75 ($70 members)  Click here to register

BP33 Intermediate Pointe 2 (Ages 12-14)
Nina Balistrere                                                                                    Begins Sept. 12
Students will continue the progression of their beginning pointe work utilizing the barre and center floor combinations. Technique and proper alignment is reinforced during this class. This class is for students also taking Ballet 3 and 4 technique class.
Must have at least one full year of proper pointe work.
Mon. 7:00 – 8:00 PM             10 week sessions   $135 ($125 members) Click here to register

BP41 Ballet 4: Technique (Ages 12+)
Laura Gaydos 
This is a continuation of Ballet 3. Students will continue their progression of classical ballet technique. This class has more difficult barre exercises and more intricate center floor combinations. Must have teacher approval to take this class.  Moderately advanced.
Thurs. 5:00 – 6:30 PM            10 week sessions   $190 ($180 members) Click here to register

BP42 Variations Class: Intermediate/Advanced Pointe (Ages 12+)
Karen Houck  
This is a continuation of pointe technique allowing the student to strengthen footwork, maintain proper alignment, while improving leg and core strength. Students will learn the choreography from famous ballets while strengthening their pointe work and performance abilities.
Must have at least 2 years of previous pointe work.
Thurs. 7:00 – 8:15 PM              10 week sessions     $165 ($155 members) Click here to register

BP34 Intermediate/Advanced Pointe 3 (Ages 13+)
Megan Maslar 
This class is added for the dancer who would like to improve her pointe work and add an extra pointe class to her daily workout. It is a continuation of pointe 2 with more challenging barre and center floor work.
A great way to continue to get stronger and become a more advanced dancer.
Wed. 5:00 – 6:00 PM                10 week sessions    $135 ($125 members) Click here to register

BP52 Ballet 5 Technique (Ages 14+)
Nina Balistrere 
This is a continuation of Ballet 4 technique. Strenuous barre with intricate center floor exercises will be used to improve your core, flexibility, alignment and technique. Students must have at least 4 years of classical ballet training. Highly advanced.
Tues. 5:00 – 6:30 PM 10 week sessions $190 ($180 members) Click here to register

BP32 Adult Ballet (Ages 18+)
Holly James
Anyone who has ever wanted to experience ballet, late beginners, childhood dancers, come and enjoy the relaxing exercise of ballet class and learn ballet technique.
Wed. 7:30 – 9:00 PM                       10 week sessions    $190 ($180 members) Click here to register

Tap/Jazz/Hip Hop Classes

TP30 Tap/Jazz 1 (Ages 4-5)
Ann Burkot
This class is for dancers who have completed at least one year of Intro classes and are ready for the next level. They will expand their dance vocabulary, refine technique and focus on becoming stronger dancers.
Wed. 4:30 -5:15 PM                         10 week sessions    $110 ($100 members) Click here to register

TP29 Tap/Jazz 2 (Ages 6-7)
Ann Burkot  
This class is for dancers who have completed Tap/Jazz 1 and will continue to improve their technique. They will expand their dance vocabulary as well become stronger dancers.
Wed. 5:15 – 6:00 PM                10 week sessions    $110 ($100 members) Click here to register

JZ11 Jazz Level 1 (Ages 6-8)
Ann Burkot
This class is for dancers who have completed 1+ years of Intro classes and are ready for the next level of jazz. They will expand their dance vocabulary, refine technique and focus on one style of dance.
Mon. 5:15 – 6:00 PM                             10 week sessions  $110 ($100 members) Click here to register

TP31 Tap 2 (Ages 8-9)
Ann Burkot
This class is for those who have completed 2+ years of Tap. Students will continue to build strength, coordination, expand dance vocabulary, and refine technique.
Wed. 6:00 – 6:45 PM                        10 week sessions    $110 ($100 members) Click here to register

JZ10 Jazz Level 2 (Ages 9-12)
Ann Burkot
This class is for those who have completed 2+ years of Jazz. Continues to build strength, increase flexibility, expand movement vocabulary, and refine technique with plenty of attitude.
Mon. 6:00 – 6:45 PM                          10 week sessions   $110 ($100 members) Click here to register

TP32 Tap 3 (Ages 10-11)
Ann Burkot
This class is for those students who have completed 3+ years of Tap. Students will continue to build strength, coordination, expand dance vocabulary and refine technique.  Combinations will be longer and more intricate.
Wed. 6:45 – 7:30 PM                         10 week sessions   $110 ($100 members) Click here to register

HH21 Hip Hop 2 (Ages 10+)
Ann Burkot
Students will learn basic hip hop techniques and beats to their favorite songs. Tailored to the skills of the class. Learn the technique, diverse movement skills and body strength in true Hip Hop style.
Mon. 7:45 – 8:45 PM                           10 week sessions    $135 ($125 members) Click here to register

TP33 Tap 4 (Ages 12+)
Ann Burkot 
This class is for those students who have completed 4+ years of Tap instruction. Students will continue to improve strength, technique, coordination and vocabulary. This class will involve highly advanced percussion combinations.
Wed. 7:30 – 8:30 PM                         10 week sessions   $135 ($125 members) Click here to register

JZ12 Jazz Level 3 (Ages13+)
Ann Burkot
This class is for those who have completed 3+ years of Jazz. Continues to build strength, increase flexibility, expand movement vocabulary, and refine technique with plenty of attitude.
Mon. 6:45 – 7:45 PM                            10 week sessions   $135 ($125 members) Click here to register

 

Creative Movement/Modern Classes

MO20 Modern 4 (Ages 13+)
Nina Balistrere
This class will emphasize advanced Limon Modern technique incorporating longer and more complex combinations. Students must have already taken at least two years of modern technique.
Tues. 6:30 -7:30 PM                           10 week sessions   $135 ($125 members) Click here to register

MO30  Lester Horton Modern Technique (Ages 14+)
Holly James
Emphasizes stretch, strength, expression, body line and proper body mechanics. Compliments and enhances other dance techniques. Improvisation explored.  Excellent strength and conditioning class for athletes!
Wed. 6:00 – 7:30 PM                         10 week sessions  $190 ($180 members) Click here to register

 

CM50 Without Limits Dance (Ages 13+)
Debbi Silas   
Created for young adults with special needs 13 to Adult. This performance based class will focus on social dance and creative movement culminating in a final performance. The students should be able to communicate, follow directions and move independently. Jazz shoes are required.
Fri. 4:30 – 5:30 PM   $75 ($70 members)  (Class is currently not taking new members. Please call for information)

 

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Dance Companies:

DE01 Yocum Dance Company
** Begins in January 2017 ** (Ages 12+)
Nina Balistrere & Karen Houck
Designed to allow students from any dance studio to experience a
formal pre-professional dance company. The Yocum Dance Company begins with sessions focusing on a structured ballet or modern warm-up and then choreography rehearsal. Performance opportunities will be available at the Institute and in the community.  Two-hour sessions meet every Saturday except holidays.
Requirement: Students must be taking at least 2 dance classes per week.
Audition is required.
Sat. 10:30 AM – 12:30 PM
$60 per session ($120 per 1/2 year) for Institute dancers
$75 per session ($150 per 1/2 year) for non-Institute dancers

DE02 Yocum Jr. Dance Company
** Begins in January 2017 ** (Ages 8-11)
Nina Balistrere & Karen Houck
Designed to allow students from any dance studio to experience a formal pre-professional dance company. The Yocum Jr. Dance Company begins with classes focusing on a structured ballet or modern warm-up and then choreography rehearsal. This is intended to prepare students for the Yocum Dance Company. Hour and a half sessions meet every Saturday except holidays.
Requirement: Students must be taking at least 1 dance class per week. Audition is required.
Sat. 9:00 – 10:30 AM
$45 per session ($90 per 1/2 year) for Institute dancers
$50 per session ($100 per 1/2 year) for non-Institute dancers

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Dance Attire:

Boys/Men
– White t-shirt, black dance pants/tights

Hip Hop
– Hip hop shoes or new sneakers reserved specifically for class
– Black converse sneakers for recital
– No jeans, comfortable clothes

Tumbling
– No shoes needed
– Leotard
– No tights (footless tights acceptable)

Ballet
– Pink ballet shoes with elastic strap; NO slippers please
– Leotard (solid color, black preferred for beginning ballet classes)
– Pink tights

Jazz
– Black jazz shoes preferred, black ballet shoes or barefoot permitted
– Leotard (any color)
– Tights (black preferred)

Tap
– Black tap shoes
– Leotard (any color)

Modern
– Leotard (any color)
– Footless tights, black preferred

Adult Classes
– Leotard
– Tights preferred

Yocum Dance Companies
– Pink ballet shoes
– Black leotard
– Pink or black tights
– Hair in bun

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Faculty:

Nina Balistere

Nina Balistrere

Nina Balistrere (Director of Dance) began her dance training with Berks Ballet Theatre, where she later became ballet mistress, guest dancer, choreographer, and teacher. She received her BA in dance from Goucher College. There she received the Phi Beta Kappa award for her choreography which was selected at the American College Dance Festival for national recognition in Tempe, AZ. Her choreography has been performed at several Regional Dance America festivals where she has reached Gala status. Nina has been on the faculty at Wilson College and Alvernia University where she taught ballet, jazz, and modern. Currently, she is on the staff at the Institute teaching ballet, pointe, and modern. Nina is also the Director of the Yocum Dance Company. Beginning this summer, Nina has taken on the role as Director of Dance with Karen as her assistant. Her love for choreography is immense but her greatest love is her family; her husband, Tony, and their two daughters, Natalie and Nicole.

Karen Houck (Assistant Director of Dance) is a graduate of Wilkes University with a BA in Elementary Education and a minor in Dance. She was the recipient of the 2007 Wilkes University Dance Award. Karen danced with Ballet Northeast under the direction of Kristin Degnan dancing various soloist and lead roles in ballets including the Nutcracker, Coppelia, Giselle, The Firebird, Les Slyphides and Etudes. She also trained with the Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, formerly the Ballet Guild of the Lehigh Valley, under the direction of Oleg Briansky and Mirelle Briane. She has also studied with Barbara Weisberger; founder of Pennsylvania Ballet, Margaret Tracy, and Harlan Bengel. She has been with the Institute for six years teaching traditional ballet and various summer camps. Karen was also on the 2012 summer faculty and current guest faculty for Viktor Yeliohin’s International Ballet Academy and Lancaster Ballet Company. Karen also holds her PA Certification as a K-6 elementary educator and is a RTII Specialist at Cumru Elementary School. Karen completed her Masters of Education in Reading at Kutztown University and completed principal’s certification through Alvernia University. She enjoys spending time with her son, Connor. 

Ann Burkot is a 2011 Kutztown University graduate with her BA in Dance Production and Management, and already received her Dance Certificate. At Kutztown, Ann was on the Lenhart Dance Company for two years, as both a dancer and choreographer. The company worked with professional choreographers, such as Karen Fuhrman, of Grounded Aerial and Roger Prince of the Ailey School. Ann demonstrated college level ballet classes and a yoga class for Prof. Joyce Campbell. Ann has choreographed for high school productions including, Seussical for Central Catholic High School (2009), and My Fair Lady for Holy Name (2011)

Kristina Dennis graduated from Cedar Crest College in 2007 with a B.A. in Dance. She was a member of the Cedar Crest College Dance Company, performing in the modern, ballet, tap and jazz ensembles. She also performed in five student companies as well as having her own. Kristina was a founder and the president of the CCC chapter of Nu Delta Alpha (a dance education honors society). She has taught dance to all ages in a variety of styles, since the age of 16. She also choreographed a musical at Raub Middle School in Allentown, PA. Her routines were performed and honored at Cedar Crest College and she continues to earn overall high scores and choreography awards at dance competitions! Since her college graduation, Kristina has stayed busy teaching and choreographing at an established dance studio in a suburb of Philadelphia.

Holly (Allwein) James ( Former Dance Director 2000 – 2011) – has been teaching here at the Yocum Institute since 1999 where she began her dance training with Charee Noble, of Pennsylvania Ballet. Holly is a member of the original Berks Ballet Theatre where she was a soloist, guest artist, ballet mistress and teacher. Her roles include: Sugar Plum in their first Nutcracker production; Snow Queen, and Fairy Godmother in Cinderella. She has an extensive background as a performing ballerina, dancer and instructor in ballet, modern and jazz dance. She started her BFA in Dance / Ballet at Point Park University in Pittsburgh and completed her degree at The University of Cincinnati, College Conservatory of Music in 1983 and pursued her MA Dance there as well. She has trained with numerous teachers including: David Howard, Melissa Hayden, Luigi, James Truitte, Nicholas Petrov, Gus Giordano, Oleg Sabline, Joe Lanteri, Maryland Ballet, among many others. Holly’s accomplishments include: DMA 1985 Chapter 25 Contestant for Miss Dance of America where she finished in the top ten finalists; performing semi-professionally with The American Dance Ensemble ( Pittsburgh, PA) and professionally with The Cincinnati Opera Ballet ( AGMA Union). Holly holds her PA certification as a Special Education Paraeducator and facilitates inclusion in the arts whenever possible.

Megan Maslar (Ballet Instructor) is a 2011 graduate of West Chester University with a BA in Communication Studies and a Minor in Dance. She was a performer, choreographer, and soloist of WCU Dance Company and WCU Dance Team. Megan began her dance training at 3 with the Berks Ballet Theatre. Her main concentration in dance was in ballet where she performed as a company member & soloist at Regional Dance America and in many productions such as The Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, and Tin Soldier, just to name a few. At 16 Megan was granted a full scholarship to attend Governor School for the Arts, majoring in ballet. Megan is a Retail Merchandiser at Bills Khakis by day, and ballet instructor by night.

Angela DeAngelo is happy to be returning as a teacher for the little ones again this academic year! Angela studied theatre and dance at Muhlenberg College, and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 2012. While a t Muhlenberg, she taught an intro to movement class for Allentown community. She was also a resident advisor and a camp counselor for the middle school performing arts kids. Angela is also a professional actress and performs in the Berks, Lehigh, and Lancaster counties. She has been performing, dancing, and singing on stage since the age of 2 1/2, and is thus thrilled to teach children in that very age bracket!

Laura Gaydos began her training in Maryland at Cecil Dance Center and went on to receive a Bachelor of Fine Arts in dance education from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. Upon graduation in 2005 Laura performed with “Simply the Best”‘ a traveling Tina Turner revue starring Suzette Dorsey. In 2011 she toured internationally with Sesame Street Live as Zoe in “Elmo’s Super Heroes.” Laura has served as dance faculty at Camden Country College in Blackwood, New Jersey and dance team coach at Alvernia University. She has taught at numerous studios and her students have gone on to dance for the 76ers, Sesame Place, Philly Soul and the prestigious Rock School for Dance Education. Laura has a genuine love for performing and teaching, and believes that versatility is the key to success as an artist. She is excited to be teaching at the Yocum Institute for her second year!

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