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Pointe 1 at Fresh Pond Ballet

Studio Fresh Pond Ballet
Website url www.freshpondballet.com
Price $15/class $115/10 class
Levels and Freq 3 Levels: Pointe 1, Pointe 2, Int/Adv Pointe (all once a week)
Location 1798A Massachusetts Ave Cambridge, MA
Reception You pay her directly before class begins. I asked her if this was an open pointe class since I only saw pre-teens/teens and she said it was but that she had never seen me dance so she wasn’t sure what level I should be in. I told her “Definitely beginner” and that I had taken her open class a couple of weeks prior. She was a little hesitant but I told her I stay at the barre and I’m careful. She responded “If I’m worried about you, I’ll come over to you.” I really appreciate that she did that. It means she cares about her students and doesn’t want them to get hurt. 😉 The website does say director’s permission is required for pointe so I would recommend taking a couple of regular classes with her before hand.
Class Pointe 1. November 16, 2012. Friday 5-6:15
Teacher Nina Rubinstein Alonso
Music CD
Size 8, 0 men. All younger girls (10-13?) except me and maybe an undergrad? I was feeling a little overwhelmed by this but chugged on.
Attire The class uniform seems to be green leotards and pink tights. The undergrad wore a black leotard and tights. I wore black as well.
Barre Timing 45 mins soft shoe barre, 15-20 pointe barre, 10-15 pointe center/across the floor
Type of Corrections Group and individual
Correction Notes She definitely corrected the girls more in this class than she corrected her adult class but I think that’s normal for a pointe class. She said as you continue to build strength, your echappe second will be wider and more stable. Until then, a small one is fine. I’m glad she said that because when I tried to do a wider one in the center, it definitely was not fun.
Combo Notes I love that she did a soft barre first so that you’re all warmed up. Most of the exercises were tailored for pointe work. Lots of echappes. Everything done twice, once on flat, the second time on demi-pointe.
General Vibe Relaxed. I found the girls to be pretty mature. They ignored me (not in a bad way), I observed them. One seemed a little aloof and I kept thinking. Girl…if you only knew. Now is the time. I actually didn’t mind being the oldest one since we seemed to be on the same page technically. It was nice to see fellow shiny pointe shoes rather than “I know what I’m doing and this is how hard I work” pointe shoes. Nothing wrong with that, just nice to have fellow newbs.
Level true to class Yes, beginner. She said she really walks them through slowly from the beginning of the year (Sept). Works very methodically. The girls were more comfortable in their shoes than I was but I still felt ok doing all the exercises except for the turns on pointe. Not ready for that yet.
Temperature (Scale 1-10 5 comfortable 10 hot, hot, hot) It can get a little stuffy and dry but there’s a door to the outside that provides some air that she opens up when this happens. 6ish
Body Assessment My right big toe was bothering me a bit. When she broke out the turns on pointe, I decided to sit that one out. Nina was fine with it and said if your feet are killing you, sit for a bit.
Corrections given to me specifically She told me not to be scared and that if I didn’t feel comfortable doing something, to not do it. “You can always just come down from pointe.” So true! I have to hold my tummy in more!!!
Pointe Firsts
  1. First echappe without the bar
  2. First walk across the floor
  3. Second time doing bourres across the floor
Notes
  • I don’t think I am able to get fully onto pointe because I could see space between my pointe shoes and the floor. I’m not sure if that’s how it’s supposed to look. I also feel myself pointing in my shoes…maybe they are too big? I don’t think so.. I need to fashion some toe spacers, the ones you can buy aren’t long enough for me.
  • I need to figure out the perfect tension for tying my ribbons. They were WAY too tight at first and then too loose. I could see a little gap in one of the laces across the right front of my foot.
  • Note to self: I will NOT FORGET to put on deodorant. Gross.
  • Echappes at the barre are kinda funny since you’re not doing them like jumps but how you would on pointe. There’s too much traction from the floor.
  • The girls were definitely a lot more fearless – walking around on pointe, doing quick echappes, one girl even did an ARABESQUE on pointe. Nina smiled and said “we’ll get there.”
  • The way I combat adult fear is not to think – just do it! Nina wanted us to do “plie, pique, sousous, echappe, and fifth” in the center. I wasn’t sure if I could do it but before I could freak myself out I just tried it and it wasn’t so bad. 🙂
  • I spoke to Nina after class and she said I could come back whenever I wanted and asked about my shoes and if they were working for me. She was a little concerned that they were tapered at the vamp but not as much at the pointe. I have Bloch Heritages. Nina said to keep trying them out and see how I like them. Oh, perfect pointe shoe where art thou?
  • Nina gave me a hug which was so nice but I was smelly and sweaty and felt bad so I had to give her a one arm hug to spare her. 🙂

Here are some pictures from my second pointe class at Fresh Pond Ballet:

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