Level Divisions

Dance Institute of Washington is organized into divisions that guarantee a progressive learning experience as students develop through our program.

Our Mission

Early Division (Ages 2.5-7)

Training at the Dance Institute of Washington begins in the Early Division. This division has 4 levels: First Position I, First Position II, Plié I, and Plié II. Early Division is an intentionally creative realm that is age-appropriate. The overall objective is to engage in and enjoy dance while building a solid foundation of balletic movement. This division focuses on imaginative play, coordination, energy words, spatial awareness, directionality, balance, and motor skills.

Note: All young dancers must be potty-trained in order to participate in our Early Division.

Lower Division (Ages 8-11)

The Lower Division consists of 4 levels: Tendu I, II, III, and IV. In this division, we introduce additional dance genres and have higher expectations of students so that we can effectively teach these styles. At this stage, our instructors begin to provide extensive support to the students so that they understand how to correctly execute movements and minimize the risk of injury long term.

Successful completion of the Lower Division means that a student has a serious approach to their training, proper class etiquette, commitment, and a firm grasp of basic techniques in dance.

Middle Division (Ages 11-14)

Upon entry to our Middle Division, students begin cultivating their personal development. Middle Division consists of 3 levels: Relevé I, II, and III. They are introduced to Ballet Theory and expand their genre training to include African, Modern, Repertoire, and more.

Our female-identifying students are introduced to pre-pointe and beginner pointe classes. In order to complete the middle division, female-identifying students must pass the end-of-the-year assessment and complete beginner pointe training; this is a prerequisite.

Upper Division (Ages 14-18)

Our Upper Division caters to High Schoolers, ages 14-18. They are separated into 2 levels: Upper Division I and Upper Division II. This division is focused on preparing our students for their exit from High School and their entrance into college careers. Whether they hope to matriculate in higher education, join a professional dance company, and/or get an agent, our Upper Division curriculum prepares them for it.

Upon graduation from the Dance Institute of Washington, our students will be smart dancers who prioritize long-term health and wellness. Our graduates will also have a mastery of technique that embodies an iconic performance quality – captivating everyone who watches them dance.

Allegro (Ages 18-24)

The Allegro Program offers a critical career bridge into the dance industry for SNAP-eligible youth and recent high school graduates through paid professional training, performance opportunities, and mentorship.

While Dance Institute of Washington’s Pre-Professional school serves K-12 students, our groundbreaking Allegro Program paves the pathway to the professional dance industry for recent high school graduates and SNAP-eligible youth (ages 18-24).

Allegro is a comprehensive, equitable professional dancer development program, with artist-led mentoring and emotional support, living-wage paid rehearsals, and performances at prominent cultural institutions and city stages.

Allegro students access daytime training (9 am-3 pm), artistic coaching, early career advancement, paid rehearsals and paid performances, mentorship, creative space, and a robust network of relationships with industry experts invested in their passion to become professional artists.