Graduates of the Margot Fonteyn Academy of Ballet will not only be trained with the highest standards of classical theatrical dance, but will be schooled in other aspects of the arts. A professional ballet dancer must know how to maintain their body as a tool, have proper hygiene, adhere to a healthy diet, know how to sew shoes, know proper conduct in both the studio and the theater, be able to work in union and non-union companies, coordinate well with others in a company, be able to adeptly deal with members of the press, etc. A successful career is much more than simply doing the technique.
At a dance school, students are taught technique and are often given choreography to perform and rehearse. This is good, and is most often the basis of professional careers. But among the ranks of dancers in professional companies, focus on the artistic delivery of choreography often is side tracked by the process of learning how to do all of these other skills. Academy graduates will be prepared in advance for these aspects of dance and will therefore have more energy to focus on the ballet as they progress through the ranks of a company.
To learn classical technique piece-meal is possible, but often produces dancers who do not have an in depth understanding of their art form, or even their technique. Academy dancers are educated in a tradition, brought up along the way to understand and perform with wisdom in their bodies, which is far different from just being able to do the steps. Having been so schooled, Academy student will be ahead of others in the field, and empowered to achieve their goals. Ambition without clear vision of the future is reckless. But when a student is properly and thoroughly trained, ambition becomes another tool with which to build a career.
The career span of a classical dancer is very short, particularly if they have bad habits in their technical or hygienic routines. The field is very competitive, and every sort of choreographic style is performed even in large classical ballet companies. Dancers must be able to deliver whatever the choreographers, directors and teachers require, but also must have a healthy and balanced outlook on life.
Preparation for a career on the stage is important, but in the view of the Academy, that preparation must also give an eye to what happens when dancing stops. Will you teach? Will you direct? Will you do public relations? Will you do something else all together? Academy students will be prepared, as much as possible, for these inevitabilities.
MFAB’s Lower School is located a short walk from downtown Prescott, Arizona in the Mile High Middle School Campus at 300 S Granite St. The facilities span 23,000 square feet and includes 4 state of the art spacious studios, each with a sprung floor and Marley vinyl. The fully air-conditioned building is also home to recording studios and a full audio-visual technology suite including TV and radio broadcast, classrooms for music and drama and both wet and dry visual art making spaces. Students can make use of the student lounge, change and shower rooms, a Physical Therapy suite and workout station.