Large group of dancers smiling in a dance studio at hong kong intensive

Spring training in Hong Kong: a retrospective

Last month, The Royal Ballet School’s Artistic and Teacher Training teams welcomed over 150 passionate dancers and dance teachers from Hong Kong and surrounding areas for a week of enlivening classes, seminars and workshops.

Held in the lively Hong Kong Ballet and Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts studios, dancers and dance teachers joined the School over the break for our annual Spring Intensive, Inspire teacher training seminars, and Affiliate Programme Insight workshops.

Hong Kong Spring Intensive

130 aspiring dancers joined our Artistic teaching faculty, comprising Ricardo Cervera, Rachael Hunt, Paul Kay, Sarah Kundi, Gillian Revie, and Didy Veldman for six days of masterclasses.

Our annual Spring Intensive provides young dancers worldwide with a glimpse into what it is like to be a student at The Royal Ballet School. Intensive courses offer a supportive environment where dancers can engage with ballet and take their skills to the next level.

Spring training in hong kong: a retrospective

Rachel Hunt, International Artistic Manager at The Royal Ballet School, said, ‘The purpose of the programme is to deliver an exceptional Intensive Course for students worldwide. The intention is for students to experience what we do at The Royal Ballet School and have the opportunity to work with our talented teachers.

This year, we introduced the Intensive Course for dancers aged 10-11, which was the most popular age group. We had over 130 students from Hong Kong, Australia, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, China, and Sri Lanka. After six days of classes, the students had a small performance for parents and guardians at the end of the week. The students made new friends, and it was an engaging and enjoyable course for all those who participated.’

From classical ballet technique to contemporary, repertoire, pointe work, focus classes, stagecraft and Pilates, each day consisted of a range of classes and Q&A sessions, allowing dancers to gain exposure to different movement styles and teaching methods of the School. 

Spring training in hong kong: a retrospective

Didy Veldman, Contemporary Programme Manager at The Royal Ballet School, delivered contemporary classes in Hong Kong as part of the intensive. She praised students for their dedication to their craft and eagerness to learn.

‘I loved it! The students were eager to learn and keen to absorb as much information as possible. Hong Kong is a vibrant city, and the team of teachers are generous and fun,’ Didy said.

Teacher training

Dance teachers were given the opportunity to elevate their teaching skills by attending our Inspire teaching training seminars and Affiliate Programme Insight workshops.

During our Inspire and Inspire to Be seminars, participants delved into key elements of classical ballet technique, including barre work, centre work, allegro, and pointe work and good teaching practice, gaining fresh insights and inspiration to use in their practice.

Helen Farrell delivered the Inspire to Be seminars, commending the infectious energy of the participants.

It was an absolute pleasure to deliver the second series of the Inspire seminars in Hong Kong this Easter. Most of the teachers had already completed the first series and now had the opportunity to apply this pedagogical knowledge by observing students in class and reflecting on the skills and strategies required when teaching very young through to vocational-level students. Each day was a mix of pedagogy, observation, and practical sessions, and their enthusiasm to continually learn was infectious.

We were warmly welcomed by Associate Director of Training Irene Lo and her team to the wonderful new studios for the Hong Kong Ballet School. We were also supported by an incredible pianist, Nicholas Lau, who played with such expertise that we were left in no doubt about how important it is to use a diverse range of musical rhythms within class in order to challenge our student’s movement versatility.

We were thrilled to also hold our first Affiliate Programme Insight workshops in Hong Kong, where we brought together nearly 30 dance teachers to learn more about our innovative approach to private dance training and assessment.

For a recap of our Hong Kong Intensive, Inspire and Affiliate workshops, browse the gallery below.

Hong kong spring intensive

Learn more about training opportunities with The Royal Ballet School.

 Our Hong Kong Training Hub is generously sponsored by The Croucher Hong Kong Charitable Trust