Winter Camp, Winter Break, & Steppin' Out December News

December has arrived! This month, students will continue working on technique. Winter dance choreography and combinations allow students to practice learning and remembering choreography.  Our young dancers will learn the story of The Nutcracker as well as choreography to its music by the famous Tchaikovsky. It's a wonderful time of year.

  • Winter Break for Steppin' Out classes runs for two weeks, from December 21st-Jan 4th. The studio will be closed for classes during that time (but open for Winter Camp; see below). Your tuition already reflects this closure.

  • After break, please come back! Fall classes will resume on January 5th, and our fall semester classes run through January 31st.

  • Mark your calendars for January 7th for our spring registration. A reminder will be sent out in the January newsletter with instructions for registering for our spring classes. Spring semester runs from Feb.1st-May 31st.

Winter Camp registration is now open! Steppin' Out offers a super flexible, fun, and enriching option for kids to enjoy winter break. Whether you need coverage the whole break or just for a day here or there, we've got you covered. Come take advantage of our magical winter days packed full of delightful, age-appropriate activities and surprises. Register now or learn more on our Winter Camp page.

This month we're focusing on first-position demi plie, though more advanced dancers can move on to second and fifth position plie. To find your own first position (using your own natural "turn out" without forcing your feet out), stand with your feet together, lift just your toes and, keeping your knees straight, rotate from the hips to open your toes, then place your feet on the floor wherever they naturally land from this hip rotation. Your first position should look like a slice of pizza. For the demi plie, bend your knees slowly, making sure your knees track over your toes (which should create a diamond shape). Demi means half, so keep your heels on the ground as you bend your knees only halfway down, then push into the floor and lift your core to rise back up. Demi plies in second and fifth position follow the same practice of turning out the feet from the hips and tracking the knees over the toes while the heels stay on the ground. 

It's time for our annual "nutcracker" reminder! During this time of year, many families choose to see this classic holiday ballet performed live. While there are many excellent options in the Bay Area, here are a few of our favorites:

The classic, featuring breathtaking performances and spectacular sets: 
San Francisco Ballet Nutcracker

The 50-minute version, perfect for the younger crowd featuring Steppin' Out's ballet teacher Sonja Dale!
Mark Foehringer's Nutcracker Sweets 

The whimsical, audience-participation option:
Dance Along Nutcracker: Clara and Potter

We at Steppin' Out think watching a recorded version of The Nutcracker shouldn't count as screen time, right? In any case, we recommend it, as watching dance is a great way to improve dance skills and get inspired to perform.