Dance – Basic Level

The Basic Level of dance instruction is meant to help students develop a strong command of basic skills for classical Chinese dance with attention to training in form, flexibility, and coordination. After acquiring basic conditioning in the waist and legs, students will begin learning the grand styles of Chinese dance as well as basic jumps, turns, tumbling, and movement sequences. This training lays an important foundation for further studies in Chinese dance.

Fundamentals of Classical Chinese Dance I, II

This course is designed for students to learn the basic concepts and terminology of classical Chinese dance and to develop a command of the fundamental techniques and dance movements. The training focuses on developing correct posture and alignment, flexibility, strength, and mastery of the standard forms and movement pathways.

This course includes:

Basic forms and movements of classical Chinese dance

Barre exercises

Center exercises

Floor exercises

Jumps and leaps

Basic technical combinations

Shen Yun (身韻 
) I, II

Shen Yun (身韻) is one of the major components of classical Chinese dance and may be roughly translated as “body rhythm,” “appeal,” or “characteristic style.” This course introduces the basic terminologies and elements in shen yun, including steps; hand and arm movements; postures; and breathing. The course will cover the eight primary movements of ti, chen, chong, kao, han, tian, yi, and pang ti (提、沉、衝、靠、含、腆、移、旁提), and introduce the three fundamental types of circular movements of ping yuan, li yuan, and ba zi yuan (平圓、立圓、八 字圓
). Upon completion of this course, students should be able to integrate shen yun into basic floor exercises with awareness of rhythm, breath control, and aesthetic feel.

Special Techniques in Chinese Dance I, II

In these courses, students learn to safely perform the basic tumbling and aerial techniques used in classical Chinese dance. Upon completion, students should be able to perform basic aerial techniques, as well as a wide range of special techniques such as fan shen (翻身).

Chinese Folk and Ethnic Dances I, II

These basic training courses primarily focus on learning the characteristics of the folk dances of the Han, Tibetan, Mongolian, and Korean ethnic groups. Students develop a solid command of the techniques, steps, and movement sequences attributed to each folk dance style. By learning the different yun wei (韻 味) and rhythms of these traditions, students learn to convey through dance things such as humor, cultural values, and elements of dance acting. Students will also deepend their understanding of each ethnic group’s customs and way of life, and explore how they are portrayed in dance and music.