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  • Writer's pictureAerin Holt

Learning Proper Dance Terminology: Why is it Important?

California DanceArts Recommends iPhone Application as An Important Tool for Students!

At California DanceArts, we urge dance students to understand the French terms, translations and definitions of each ballet exercise as a top priority. The ballet school has found that grasping the meaning behind each term assists the student dancer in properly executing the steps which ultimately will be used in a variety of movements comprising classical technique and in the choreography that will ensue.

At California DanceArts we encourage students to use apps created by Pocket Video Arts. For ballet, we use, Say Ballet. They have also created Say Jazz and Say Tap. Using a phone app is a great way to get to the students on their own (tech-savvy) level using their iPhones. Using this iPhone app will allow students to learn terms in a fun way.

On the app, most of the ballet terms are accompanied by videos and voice activated pronunciation. From an alphabetical list, the user can click on the first word “plié“. The app will tell a translation of the word as, “Bend”, along with a short video display of a girl performing the deep bend. Each term can be selected in French, the way ballet is generally taught. The app is also great for hearing the proper pronunciation of these French terms. Fun quizzes are included for students to test their knowledge which then allows them to achieve higher and higher scores.

This iPhone application allows young dancers to study their ballet terms during a car ride to the studio or waiting for class to begin. California DanceArts Director, Aerin Holt, says, “This application is a great supplement to any dance education curriculum where students are expected to understand ballet terminology. We hope that students use the app to increase and improve upon the skills taught in their classes and to improve their scores for upcoming ballet examinations.” California DanceArts provide its advancing student body with annual exams for level placement and evaluating progress. Since 1987, California DanceArts has been dedicated to the purpose of grooming and nurturing the talents of beginning to serious career dance students. The school has established a reputation as a career preparatory studio for dancers transitioning to the professional level. Its current location in beautiful La Canada is nestled among several schools and recreational facilities. Director Aerin Holt also runs California Contemporary Ballet, a ballet company dedicated to providing full-scale original ballets and concerts every year.

For more information about California DanceArts and the programs offered by the school, call 818-790-7924, or visit the school online at


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