The Ballet School is the guardian of a precious knowledge: the classic academic ballet. Though today’s dancer needs a wide diversity in education, he must first receive the legacy of this oral tradition which is 300 years old already.
Ballet is taught at six levels. It is open to girls and boys.
It is a multidisciplinary course which, as well as the different dance lessons (classic, character, contemporary, jazz and folk), offers additional lessons in music, mime, theatre, entertainment law, history of dance, anatomy and gymnastics. General teaching (national curriculum) is dispensed at the school from primary school to the baccalaureate (literary section). As long as the student is enrolled at the ballet school, he or she must continue to study, even after the age of 16.
© Francette Levieux / ONP
The following are an integral part of the curriculum :
These three events take place on the stage of the Palais Garnier in front of an audience. In some years, tours in France or abroad may be added.
Accommodation and meals
The School possesses a canteen open from Monday to Friday and a boarding house open from Sunday evening to Friday evening. Half-board is mandatory but not the boarding house which is a service proposed to families.
Families must be able to collect their child in the event of sickness or accident (at the School or the Clinique at la Defense or another emergency service). For this reason, it is imperative for families living beyond the Paris region to have a correspondent in the Paris region. Teaching is free of charge, only the boarding house and the canteen.
© David Elofer / ONP
Examinations and competitions
Teaching goes from the 6th to the 1st Division.
Course work during the year is marked, a quarterly report is sent to parents.
Marks represent half the points needed to move up into the next division, the other half comes from the results of the end-of-year examination.
Students in the first division have priority recruitment to the Opera’s corps de ballet. An internal competition is organised for this. Candidates having passed the competition and satisfying the general training conditions (having at least the French Certificate of General Education) join the corps de ballet as trainee “quadrilles”.
All students achieving the 1st Division will get the end-of-studies diploma.Students not joining the corps de ballet may remain at the Ballet School if they have not reached the age limit or leave.
© David Elofer / ONP