Colombo Dance Factory, Zurich, Switzerland

March 18, 2012 § 6 Comments

Heinrichstrasse 267
8005 Zürich
Tel 044 272 55 30
http://www.colombodance.ch/

It is tricky to find so be sure to look at their map before going.

Well lucky you! You get to visit the Zurich Colombo Dance Factory‘s website AFTER the update. It was a nightmare before, there wasn’t even the schedule on it! Arrgh! Now it is all complete and navigable, yay!

Sadly, I only took two classes here since I have been quite ill for some time. I was in Zurich for a month and only took 3 dance classes. :O(

Since I was so out of shape, I took the beginner/intermediate (‘A/M,’ meaning ‘Anfanger’ [beginner] and ‘Mittelsuffe’ [intermediate] in German) class with Daniell’ Ficola on Monday evening, and another ‘A/M’ class on a Wednesday evening. I think the Wednesday teacher was a substitute though, I don’t recall her name. She was not very technically professional…it was strange!

The dance center has that urban dance center feel, which I like…reminds me of taking class at Broadway Dance Center in NYC. At Colombo Dance Factory, there is an acting, singing and dance program gearing students toward a career in show business. Much like many NYC dance centers.

Daniell’ Ficola (above)

Daniell’ Ficola’s class was very enjoyable, nothing magic but satisfactory. She is a fun, smiley and relaxed teacher. Combinations were not too complicated, so I would say the class is more beginner than intermediate. Be sure to try to be close to the studio door once the previous class lets out; her class is quite popular and therefore crowded, so try to get in to get a good place at the barre. Studio size…average. Though with so many people it feels small! If it is winter and the heaters are on, try to get on the portable barre that they drag out into the center, and not on the barres attached to the rear wall right above the HEATERS!!! It gets so hot even after pliés! hehe

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Zurich Dance Studio Reviews, Coming Soon!

February 14, 2012 § 3 Comments

I have not written anything here for a while….perhaps I didn’t think there were any ballet studio reviews to write after Marameo hehe.

But! I am in Zurich, Switzerland now until the end of February 2012, and I have already taken classes at two dance studios: Ballett-Tanz Institut Franziska Frei and Colombo Dance Factory.

SADLY I was not able to attend ANY events on the various days of the Prix de Lausanne :O( I was busy getting married! What the hell!?? So not fair. hahaha

Anyhow, I need to take more classes between the two dance centers to develop a more-informed opinion about each studio, so I will be reviewing my little tail off in just a bit! See ya soon!

Dance Studio Review: Marameo, Kreuzberg / Mitte, Berlin, Germany

September 7, 2011 § 6 Comments

Wallstrasse 32
D – 10179 Berlin
U-Bahn: U8 Heinrich-Heine Strasse or U2 Markisches Museum
http://marameo.de

Space, the final frontier….that ballet studios in Berlin have yet to conquer. Seriously, at every dance studio in Berlin, the ‘saals’ become unpleasantly crowded once attendance reaches 15. I did not realize this until I FINALLY went to the enormous, beautiful and perfect Marameo, but in these crowded dance studios, you actually train yourself to hold back, to make your movements smaller.

It is HONKIN'! I could not even get the whole studio in the photo.

I am so red and sweaty because I can actually dance at 100% at Marameo.

Want to go all out and give 100% in a small, crowded studio? Go for it, but you are going to smack someone upside the head with your jete’ entrelace’, or run into the mirror (see my review of Dock 11)

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Tombe’ Pas de Bouree: ‘The Gateway’ and Kicking Yourself in the Butt :O)

September 1, 2011 § 2 Comments

I have been learning so much these past few months going between various teachers in several ballet studios in Berlin! Now it is nice to finally sit down and share one of the things that I discovered is super-important in moving from beginner’s technique into intermediate and advanced technique.

It seems so easy, it is a series of steps we always do and forget to focus on improving…perhaps we feel it is just a way to get from point A to point B, rather than an important part of the dance itself. It is the wonderful transitional step, the traveling tombee pas de bouree (let’s abbreviate it to ‘TpdB’ from now on, yikes!). Remember, in this post I am talking about a traveling TpdB that often leads up to a pirouette, or in grand allegro, not the smaller pas de bourre’ by itself in petit allegro.

There were 2 big TpdB things that I learned recently in Matthew Thomas‘ 3-day adagio summer ballet workshop in Berlin:

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Don’t Make Your Ballet Teacher Depressed: Give 100%

May 20, 2011 § 6 Comments

I know, it sounds funny, but it is something I never have thought about. Thanks to my current teacher, Mirco Fila at Escuela de Danza María Carbonell  in Valencia, Spain for quite vocally showing his frustration at the class today for looking like zombies just going through the motions. I appreciated this as it shows he cares about our progress and thinks we can DO IT.

Many teachers spend much of the day teaching, or if not, perhaps they have a day job from which the come to do something hopefully fun and engaging. Imagine spending all day watching students not giving 100%, looking dead when they execute steps (and not dance!)….that must be depressing!!!

But trying to keep your adult beginner ballet teacher off the anti-depressants not only benefits her/him, it benefits YOU. « Read the rest of this entry »

Dance Studio Review: Pro-Stage, Kreuzberg, Berlin

May 3, 2011 § 4 Comments

U-Bahn: U7 or U8, Hermannplatz

Urbanstrasse 71
10967 Berlin

+49 30/61209261
http://www.pro-stageberlin.de/ballett.html

(note: the review below is of the old studio on Mehringdamm; once I take a class in the NEW finished Urbanstrasse studio I will update! I did take the very first class in the new studio, but the construction was not yet complete so I can’t give a fair observation of the space.)

Pros: nice morning classes to start your day/Matthew/bright unobstructed studio/great price

Cons: studio is a little small (see note above)/not a lot of variety in teaching styles

Teacher: Matthew Thomas- English National Ballet

I can only say good things about Pro-Stage, really. Matthew Thomas is the main ballet teacher and teaches 4 days a week. I wish there were other classes to take, but I think the studio is starting out and still operating on a small scale. The only bad thing is that the studio is kind of small, but Matthew seems to create the combinations with that in mind (contretemps!) so it really isn’t an issue. Plus the prices are reasonable. 7 euro to try any class for the 1st time, then 9 euro after.

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Dance Studio Review: Domus Danza, Buenos Aires, Argentina

May 3, 2011 § 4 Comments

Tacuari 477 at Venezuela
Barrio: San Telmo/Monserrat
Subte: Independencia
4334 6379
http://www.domusdanza.com.ar/horarios.html

Yes! WOOD FLOORS! And great teachers….who teach in flip-fops and jeans :O) They can still do 4 pirouettes in flip-flops, it is incredible.

Another great thing is the price. You can buy an ‘abono mensual’ (monthly pass) choosing 1, 2, 3, or 4 classes a week. I buy the 3 classes a week pass, so I get 12 classes a month for 260 pesos (currently about $65 US)….that works out to less than $5.50 US a class! A one time drop-in class is 40 pesos, or $10 US.

This is my favorite adult ballet school in Buenos Aires. And my second favorite in the world. Alas, it is hard to beat the dilapidated Centre de la Danse du Marais in Paris when doing dance studio reviews.

Sala 1:

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