Focus class: introducing allegro at the barre

Incorporating allegro in barre exercises, understanding the importance of the use of plié and strengthening relevé to prepare for allegro steps.


  • 1 Class
  • Suitable for 16+

This focus class contains exercises to introduce jumps at the barre and develop the range and depth of plié to raise awareness of how this can change for different allegro steps. In preparation for jumps, we will look at relevé action, aiming to build power and strength ready for the allegro section of the class.

This lesson is also included in the Intensive course for 16+: Series 1 package.

What you will learn

  • Performing allegro at the barre
  • The importance of the use of plié for jumps
  • How to strengthen the relevé in preparation for allegro.

Your Tutors

Jessica Clarke

Artistic Manager of the Vocational and Pre-professional Programmes

Jessica trained at The Royal Ballet School before joining the Sadler’s Wells Royal Ballet in 1988. She relocated to Birmingham when it became Birmingham Royal Ballet.

She danced many varied soloist and principal roles and created roles in works by Kenneth MacMillan, David Bintley, Vincent Redmon, Oliver Hindle, Matthew Hart and Mikaela Polley.

Since her retirement from the Company in 1998, Jessica attained the Associate Teachers’ AISTD qualification of the Cecchetti Branch of the ISTD and in 2007 The Royal Ballet School’s PDTC with distinction.

Jessica taught for one year at the Rambert School for Ballet and Contemporary Dance and joined the staff of The Royal Ballet School in 2008.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who can participate?

These classes are recommended for students aged 16+ and reflect the training given to students aged 16-19 studying at The Royal Ballet School. The classes are not suitable for beginner students, students with limited experience or students under 15 years old.

For these classes, we recommend that:

  • Students are regularly training in a recognised classical ballet syllabus at a vocational level of Advanced 2 or above, or studying at an equivalent level in full-time vocational training
  • Students have an excellent and broad knowledge of ballet vocabulary and can follow the class using only verbal instruction if necessary
  • Students will have strong and secure basic technique with an understanding of correct placement
  • Barrework should be strong with clean execution and secure demi-pointe work
  • Adage will have strong, secure placement and extensions will be at 90 degrees or above
  • Pirouettes are secure and students will have the ability to execute multiple turns
  • Allegro, including batterie, should be executed with good understanding of secure take-off and landings
  • Students undertaking pointe work will be confident in advanced exercises.

What do I need to participate?

These classes are designed so that they can be executed in a smaller space than a ballet studio. We ask that students/parents ensure that:

  • The student meets the technical standards required for the class
  • Any apparatus used for a barre is stable and safe
  • The floor is not slippery, uneven or hazardous
  • The area used for dancing is cleared of any items which could hinder the student’s ability to fully extend their arms and legs. There should be enough space for reasonable movement. If a student cannot fully execute an exercise, they should either adapt appropriately or not participate
  • The student is able to clearly hear the teacher’s verbal instruction, see the teacher’s practical delivery and hear the music
  • The student is appropriately dressed to safely execute a dance class. Soft ballet shoes should be worn for ballet, not pointe shoes. Bare feet, socks or suitable shoes should be worn for contemporary and Pilates
  • The student’s hair is suitably tied back
  • The student is fit and well in order to take part.

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