School-Aged, Preteens, Teens, Young Adults, Adults

Parent Reviews

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My daughter has been attending Danspace in Rockridge for the last 11 (!) years and the recitals happen once a semester, in the studio, for about 1/2 hour.  No extra cost, no extra time.  Families are asked to bring a snack to share for a gathering at the studio afterward.  As my daughter has gotten older, she has participated in the Secret Nutcracker which does require extra money (about $100) and an extra one time a week Saturday rehearsal. But this is optional.  There have been other opportunities to participate in dance productions, but we've found them to be really reasonable with regards to money and time.  In fact, we have never paid extra for costumes.  I don't know how they do it, but they provide the costumes.  Danspace is a small, low-key, but well-run studio that has given my daughter a great foundation in dance, while building her confidence.  She feels like she is part of a caring dance community.  Check it out: https://danspace.com

Try Danspace in Oakland.  Free recitals.  No costumes.  That was about 7 years ago.  In the studio, guests sat on folding chairs.

Check out Danspace in North Oakland. They have a beginning hip hop class he might enjoy.

Archived Q&A and Reviews

Feb 2011

Re: Ballet class for 10 yo girl, beginner
Our family has had a great experience with ballet classes at Danspace in Rockridge. Our older daugter is 7 and has been attending classes for 4 years and our younger daughter is 4 and has been attending for 1 year. We find the studio to be supportive, nurturing, and a lot of fun for our daughters. All the teachers we've worked with have been excellent and most have been working there for many years. While we don't have experience with ballet classes at the 10 year old level, I encourage you to visit Danspace to see what they have to offer. dt

Oct 2009

Re: Berkeley area ballet school?
You didn't mention how old your child is, but either way would suggest observing same-age class at the schools you're interested in. My now teenager started at Danspace at age 7. Is now 14 and just finished a year at Berkeley Ballet Theater. Danspace is very developmentally appropriate and has a variety of movement classes. My child is not interested in pursuing ballet professionally but really liked the technique training she received at BBT. They are very different in approach and disciplines so I'd recommend you observe and age-appropriate class at each school you're interested in. Anon.

Re: Dance classes for 7-year-old BOY (Feb 2005)
Danspace in Oakland- Rockridge area definitely has ballet and pre-ballet for boys classes. chris

Re: Ballet for almost-3-year-old (Sept. 2003)
I recommend Danspace. They do good creative movement w/o getting serious until 6/7 year-olds. JB

Re: Dance class for 16-year-old novice (Aug 2002)
A while ago I posted a request concerning a ballet class for a teen who had not danced for a long time and did not have ballet body. I found one ! and wanted to share the info with anyone else who mght be looking for same. Dancespace on Hudson St in Rockridge has a class of ballet for all ages and all bodies - my daughter loved it. Suzan

July 2002

Hi! Does anyone have experience with ballet and/or pre-ballet classes for kids at Danspace on Hudson in Rockridge? Thanks - Judith

Danspace is very well respected in the local dance community. Beth Hoge is very picky and only hires great instructors. They have a philosophy that every body can dance and stress having fun rather than hard core technique for kids. Many professional dancers beleive that the technical aspects of dance should not be taught until prepubescence, or later. I would keep away from both Russian style (for technical reasons that are too complicated to get into), and studios that are very competitive, the world of baby ballerinas is very bitchy and tends to foster body image/self esteem problems, so beware. Helene

Re: Non-formal dance class for child (March 2002)
Danspace in Oakland is a ''Ballet Studio'', but they don't introduce any formal ballet type structure until at least age 6. Our daughter's teacher, Brooke, is wonderful with the kids, she incorporates some very basic skills but participation and enjoyment does not depend on how skilled the kids are. Our daughter started there at age 4 and really enjoys it, I don't recall if they have a younger class or what age they start, but I do know that there have been younger siblings around once or twice the directions were often simple enough for them. JB

Re: Non-formal dance class for child (March 2002)
Try Danspace, on Hudson St., in Oakland. Beth Hoge, the director, always hires terrific teachers, and her philosophy for young ones is to facilitate the love of movement and the joy of being oneself through artistic expression. retired professional dancer

Re: Pre_Ballet for 4.5 yr old (Dec 2002)
Our 4.5 YO daughter really enjoys the classes at Danspace on Hudson in Oakland, near Claremont exit/onramp from Hwy 24. The pre-ballet class is very low stress, not real ballet, which we find appropriate for this age. JB

Re: Adult Ballet Classes (October 2002)
I love ballet classes at Danspace in Rockridge (Hudson off Claremont, 420-0920). I was so happy to find that ''adult'' didn't mean 16-18 year olds exclusively! We have a big range of body types, ages, and abilities. There are three elementary classes a week, as well as intermediate and advanced. They call themselves ''ballet for real bodies'' which gives some indication of their philosophy. Danspace folks have ties to the Mills College dance program, and I believe many of the advanced students perform outside of Danspace. You don't say your level, but I recommend ballet at Danspace even for those who never danced before: the atmosphere is very comfortable, the studio is very handy to hwy 24 and Rockridge BART, and the teachers are great. Charis

Re: Dance Class for 3 Year Old (Sept. 2002)
As a former professional dancer, I would choose Danspace, on Hudson St. in Oakland, to send my kid. At that age you want them to experience the joy of movement, and the creative side of dance. Helene


As a retired professional dancer, I highly recommend Dancspace (on Hudson St., Oakland) for their kid's programing. They teach creative movement and preballet for the young ones and always employ great teachers. I would steer away from studios that say they can teach a five year old ballet, per se, and also avoid any of the Russianbased studios. At this age dance should be fun, playbased and non technical Helene