“Our model is preparing them in the art of ballet,” Kirt said. “What [students] really get are lessons for a lifetime, in a sense—really following the proper development of the ballet technique as the students grow older.”
This style of teaching makes students more prepared to handle the demands of higher-level ballet, he said.
Hathaway’s offers jazz and modern classes as well, but the training for those classes is unique, Kirt said. This is because Hathaway dance classes follow a ballet technique-based syllabus that increases in difficulty by level, creating a way for each level to work on the same skills regardless of the style of dance, he said.
“We’re not training them for conventions or commercial competitions,” Kirt said. “Our primary emphasis would be what you call performance emphasis—main stage—where you go to the ballet, you go to the theater.”
The academy offers instruction for kids age 3 and older, and those who reach a pre-professional level can graduate into the Collin County Ballet Theatre, Hathaway’s official performing company.
Before reaching the pre-professional level, students are taught how to rehearse and prepare for a performance. This development of their academic skills later translates into an expression of students’ artistic skills, Kirt said.
“They become very passionate about sharing their passion and their love for their art,” Kirt said.
Both Kirt and Linda have a lifetime of experience in classical ballet, having performed with the Dallas Ballet Company and a number of other professional performing companies. Being able to pass on their knowledge is important to them, Linda said.
“I feel very fortunate to be able to do what I started out doing as a little girl,” she said. “[We get to] continue passing along what we were taught.”
Hathaway Academy of Ballet
2865 McDermott Road, Ste.140, Plano
Mon.-Fri.: 3-9 p.m.
Sat.: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Sun.: 12 p.m.-3 p.m.