Dear Katie: How Important Are Private Dance Lessons?

February 18, 2020

In our “Dear Katie” series, Miami City Ballet soloist Kathryn Morgan answers your pressing dance questions. Have something you want to ask Katie? Email
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Dear Katie,

Do I need private lessons? I’m a professional-track dancer, and my teachers say that I should start scheduling privates to advance more quickly. But they’re so expensive. Will I make it if I stick to group classes?


Dear Jenna,

Well, I can start by speaking from my own experience. I never did a lot of private lessons growing up, and now I’m dancing professionally. So, no: They aren’t absolutely necessary!

That said, private lessons can be a wonderful way to get personalized attention and corrections. The teacher will be able to pinpoint exactly what you need to work on, and to make sure you’re applying their advice correctly.

But the key to improving, private lessons or no private lessons, is in how you work on a daily basis. If you’re pushing yourself in group classes—not cheating, working on your weaknesses, and staying focused—you will improve. And if you’re not approaching your training this way, even multiple private lessons a week won’t help. The teacher can’t do it for you! In the end, it’s entirely up to you.

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