I am Natasha Connell, I studied ballet under Lidija and Gustavo Franklin at Escuela Ballet-Arte in Caracas, Venezuela, as well as with Julio Lamas And Graciela Diaz. More recently, I trained as an adult with Linda Kinlaw, Randall Marks, and Heidi Winton-Stahle, among others. I have been teaching ballet to adults for about 3 years. I came back to ballet about in 2013. I was going through some tough times and felt depression creeping in. At the time, I was an active duty service member in the US Army. I began a journey of personal growth, and one piece of advice kept constant across many teachings; find something that brings you joy, and practice it for that reason. I remembered how doing ballet when I was younger made me happy. Suddenly I yearned to feel that way again. I was terrified of going to a class, but I made myself go. All my fears soon fell away, as I discovered a friendly and encouraging community. To my surprise, my body remembered, and I advanced pretty fast. Soon after, I met my now-husband, Chris Connell, my unicorn soul mate. I left the army in 2014 and began graduate school. I also opened a fitness studio where I first did personal training, and later added other group modalities, beginner adult ballet being one of them. Due to my husband being still in the Army, we had to relocate, and I had to close the studio. I continued to teach ballet and fitness classes at our new city, Columbus Georgia, but spreading my time between different class modalities left me tired and unsatisfied, so I decided to concentrate all my efforts on ballet and teaching adults because they can reap life-changing benefits from the practice. I now run the adult ballet program at Company C Academy of Dance, and I hope to share all things adult-ballet-related with the community via this site, and the rest of my social media platforms. I hope my content can serve you in your own journey. As of August 2019, I am proud to be part of the faculty at Columbus State University, where I will share my love for dance with the new generations of scholar-practitioners. Feel free to ask any questions!
Update! In September 2020, I auditioned for the Columbus Ballet Nutcracker production, and that led not only to participating in the production, but also being offered the chance to take class at the conservatory, and I took that chance! So I am now concentrating on refining my own training 5 days a week, and I am still offering private lessons, as well as my digital Adult Ballet Primer course (find it in the shop)
WHY DO BALLET
Discipline and Grace
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Frequently asked questions
What is the Meaning of "Transcend Normal" ?
To Transcend Normal, means to go beyong living a life on auto pilot; going trough the motions of everyday routines, paying the bills, doing the chores, etc. It means to find purpose, joy and mindfulness, to cultivate awareness of self and the world we live in at a deeper level, and in this way, to deepen our connection to our inner best self, our families, friends and communities. A Transcender is someone that always does their best in every situation, no matter how challenging, or how mundane. For me, practicing ballet as an adult, has been the perfect catalyst to Transcend Normal, because of the rigurous nature of the practice, and because of its beauty. Ballet combines strict self-discipline and high standards with a sense of effortless and profound elegance in every gesture. This world we live in, needs more of that.
It's adult ballet really a thing?
Definitely yes!!! In the last few years, adult ballet has been embraced by thousands of people worldwide. Now you can find at least one studio that offers adult specific classes in most large and medium sized cities worldwide. A lot of online classes are also availble. There is a lot of research being conducted on the benefits of the practice, and more and more people embrace it every day. So If you are an adult that yearns to dance ballet, trust me, you are in very good company! A few years ago, adult ballet dancers were a rarity, but this is no longer. Now we are a thriving, growing, energetic community that welcomes all with open arms.
What can I find on this website?
This website was created to be a place for the adult ballet dancer to find information, resources, and inspiration to start or continue their jjourney. TN is a living thing, constantly evolving and growing with the input from the community.Some specific things you will find here are:
Where do you offer classes and what is the schedule?
I am now offering private lessons on demand in Downtown Columbus, at the Plug and Play Namaste Studio. Please email me at email@example.com if you are interested.
How old do I have to be to attend classes?
Anyone 14 yearrs old and above can attend. 14 to 18 years old must have an adult sign their paperwork. My oldest student to date is 77, and any ages in between are welcome as well as anyone older!
How can I pay for classes?
You can pay by cash, credit card or CashApp at the studio. If you want to prepay for classes, I can send a PAyPal invoice.
What should I wear to class?
You can wear workout clothes, such as leggings and a top, or traditional ballet garments, like tights and a leotard. For men, the tipical attire is black leggins and a white tank top or t shirt, but it is your choice. Avoid wearing anything extremely lose, so the teacher can see and correct your lines.
Are men allowed in your classes?
Absolutely! In my classes, we welcome men and boys. I even make sure to teach some steps that are traditionally performed by men. This might be different in other studios, but we are super inclusive and all for diversity. That applies to transgender individuals as well. Come as you are!
Do you offer private lessons?
Yes! Currently, due to COVID I am only focusing on private lessons!
Do you offer online lessons or courses?
The adult Ballet Primer Course hosten on the Teachable.com platform can be found on the shop section, under digital courses tab!
How often should I practice adult ballet??
You will certainly benefit from even one class per week, but if you want to progress faster and see faster results, try to attend at least twice a week.
Do I need to have attended classes as a kid in order to do adult ballet?
Absolutely not! I have developped a specific technique to teach absolute beginners with no experience, so no worries there!
Can I do adult ballet if I am pregnant?
Yes you can! Just make sure to let the instructor know, and consult with your doctor if you have a pregnancy that is in any way sensitive. Modifications will be given for certain exercises.
Do I have to pre-register online to come to a class?
Since currently, due to COVID restrictions, only private or semy private lessons are available, you do have to pre-register for your classes. This way we can ensure proper sanitation before and after your class.
Can you perform at my event?
Yes! we offer event performances on a custom basis. If you are interestet in having ballet dancers at your event, email firstname.lastname@example.org so we can discuss. We have a few ready to go choreographies or we can create something special for your event. The rates are $100 per hour per each dancer. We focus on classical and contemporary ballet but are also knowledeable in other styles of dance.