Create and Dance Nutcracker Explorer

During this course you'll take your class through the basics of motif-development and character dancing - completing the programme with your very own piece of choreography.

This is the start of your five-lesson project. Before you begin working with your dancers, think of where your dance will be performed as a conclusion to the project. Think creatively about where this performance can take place, it doesn’t have to be in a theatre. A school hall, a classroom, the yard or school field are all possible performance venues. The event might be a school assembly or summer fate, a Christmas show or even a less formal performance offered up to another year group in a classroom. You can then roll out the lessons with the chosen performance opportunity as the focus for the project. Although there are 5 lesson plans offered, this can be delivered across any timeframe (it could be five days or five weeks). The characters of the ballet provide the main movement stimulus in this project, but other themes from the ballet can also be explored and there are options to choose a different theme throughout.

Each of the five lessons is accompanied by a film, taken from the Immersive course, which will help to support and enhance your creative process. In these films you will meet key people who work at the Royal Opera House including professional ballet dancers and you will be helped to think about important strategies that will help you and your children to create a really successful dance.

Please note, in these films there are references to additional features of the Immersive course. If you are interested to explore these further, you’ll find the course here.

  • Explorer Lesson 1: Getting Started

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Lesson Film
    • Clear empty space
    • PE kit and bare feet
    • Means of capture
    • Choreographic ideas

    This is the start of your five-lesson project. During the first lesson, you will explore the characters and themes of The Nutcracker and devise some useful motifs that you’ll be able to build on as the project progresses. Each lesson will include activities that will help create and refine the dance you and your dancers are working on.

    Units/Activities

    • Nutcracker Video: Getting Started
      5mins
    • Ballet Warm Up: Getting Started
      10mins
    • Creative Exploration: Choosing a Theme
      20mins
    • Ballet Cool Down: Port de Bras
      5mins
  • Explorer - Lesson 2: Developing Movement Patterns

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Lesson Film
    • Clear empty space
    • PE kit and bare feet
    • Record of last performance
    • Music

    Your task this week is to help the dancers develop their movement phrases so that they start to grow and become even more interesting to look at.

    Units/Activities

    • Nutcracker Video: Developing Movement Patterns
      5mins
    • Ballet Warm Up: Levels and Dynamics
      10mins
    • Creative Exploration: Developing Motifs
      30mins
    • Ballet Cool Down: Port de Bras
      5mins
  • Explorer - Lesson 3: Developing Character

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Lesson Film
    • Clear empty space
    • PE kit and bare feet
    • Record of last performance
    • Music

    In this lesson, the focus will be on developing the characters that populate your dance and also thinking about how you are using the performance space to enhance the development of your dance.

    Units/Activities

    • Nutcracker Video: Developing Character
      5mins
    • Ballet Warm Up: Character and Intention
      5mins
    • Creative Exploration: Developing Pathways
      30mins
    • Ballet Cool Down: Port de Bras
      5mins
  • Explorer - Lesson 4: Working Together

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Lesson Film
    • PE kit and bare feet
    • Clear empty space
    • Record of last performance
    • Music

    This week we are going to be thinking about a very particular aspect of The Royal Ballet’s performances, and that is the role of the corps de ballet.

    Units/Activities

    • Nutcracker Video: Working Together
      5mins
    • Ballet Warm Up: Together
      10mins
    • Creative Exploration: Unison Phrases
      30mins
    • Ballet Cool Down: Port de Bras
      5mins
  • Explorer - Lesson 5: Performance Skills

    60mins

    Requirements

    • Lesson Film
    • PE kit and bare feet
    • Clear empty space
    • Costumes
    • Music

    This week is all about getting ready for the big performance.

    Units/Activities

    • Ballet Warm Up: Performance Skills
      10mins
    • Nutcracker Video: Performance Skills
      5mins
    • Creative Exploration: Final Rehearsal
      30mins