What Is This?

The Cheeky Monkeys at Tom Ball Live is designed to pull together the younger students in the Academy and give them a special group with lots of fun things for them to improve their learning experience with us.  Classes with Cheeky Monkeys start from age 2 ½ until year 2 at school.

What Do We Do?

The classes are broken down as follows;

  • Ballet – This is an introduction to ballet to set down strong foundations required for the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) Syllabus.
  • Jazz – This class is to start to understand movement to music with all the latest children’s hits from top TV shows and suitable Chart Tracks.
  • Tap – This is an introduction to Tap giving the students their first chance to develop skills in rhythm and prepare to move into the Show Tap classes when they join the main Academy.
  • Musical Theatre – This class is an introduction to performing arts with singing, dance and acting taught in the class each week.

What is Ballet?

At Tom Ball Live’s Cheeky Monkeys we offer Ballet classes as follows (please note the ages below are approximate)

  • Level 1 Ballet (2 ½ yrs to 3 ½ yrs)
  • Pre-Primary RAD Ballet (3 ½ yrs to reception)
  • Primary RAD Ballet (Reception to yr 1)

The classes are split roughly on age taking into account ability too.  Children all develop at different rates and so some children may be ready to move up before they reach the age stated above.

Ballet is a very disciplined class and is very technical and detailed.  It is brilliant to help with posture and carriage of the body and also helps to develop movement, rhythm and co-ordination.

Will we take an exam?

There is no exam for Level 1 Ballet this class is designed to build up the technique required for Pre-Primary.

The students will do an in house assessment when the teacher believes they are ready to move up.  This prepares them for taking exams from Grade 1 but is less stressful for the students than an exam.  Especially since they don’t know the examiner.

What is Jazz?

At Tom Ball Live’s Cheeky Monkeys we offer Jazz classes as follows

  • Tap and Jazz Level 1 (2 ½ yrs to 4yrs)
  • Jazz Level 2 (4yrs to 6yrs)

The classes are split roughly on age taking into account ability too.  Children all develop at different rates and so some children may be ready to move up before they reach the age stated above.

Jazz is the class which prepares the students for choreography that you will see on TV.  They will develop the necessary skills required to move up to the Beginners Jazz Level one when they join the main Academy.  The music used in the class is music they will be able to relate too.  All music is appropriate for the age of the students.  They will learn exercises that repeat every week as well as short routines and corner work.

Will We Take An Exam?

There are no graded exams in this class.  However, some students may be selected to do a Jazz exam once a year with the International Dance Teachers Association (IDTA) or United Kingdom Alliance (UKA).  This is at the discretion of the teacher.

What is Show Tap?

At Tom Ball Live’s Cheeky Monkeys we offer Show Tap classes as follows;

  • Tap and Jazz Level 1 (2 ½ yrs to 4yrs)
  • Jazz Level 2 (4yrs to 6yrs)

The classes are split roughly on age taking into account ability too.  Children all develop at different rates and so some children may be ready to move up before they reach the age stated above.

Show Tap is just the name we use for non-syllabus classes.  The Show Tap classes are great to help build the students understanding of rhythm.  It also helps the students to be able to master the techniques of Tap so they are ready to join the main Academy when they reach the correct level and/or age.  The class will include technical exercises that will repeat each week to help to build up the techniques required for this discipline.

Will We Take An Exam?

There are no exams in Show Tap.  This is a performance based class and is designed to help the students perform tap within a show.  We may select some students to participate in an examination with the United Kingdom Association (UKA) but this will be at the discretion of the teacher and is not available to all students.

What is Musical Theatre?

In addition to these classes we also offer a Musical Theatre class for Reception and Year 1. Once the students reach Year 2 in September they would automatically move up to Class 2 Musical Theatre which is not part of the Cheeky Monkeys program.

  • Musical Theatre – This class is all singing, all dancing fun for the students developing skills in confidence, speaking, movement and singing.

This class is great to give students an insight into the performing arts as it covers all 3 disciplines, Dance, Acting and Singing.  From here they will be able to learn which of the disciplines suits them the best which will help them to choose their new classes when they are ready to move to the main Academy.

Will We Take An Exam?

There are no exams as such in Musical Theatre although some students may be selected to do an Early Learning Musical Theatre Exam with the London College of Music (LCM).  This is at the discretion of the teacher and is not available to all students.

Do We Do A Show?

Of course we do!  Here at Tom Ball Live, we believe there is no point in learning how to be a stunning performer but not having the chance to perform.  There will be performance opportunities throughout the year.  However, we are constantly looking for more ways that we can show off our talented students doing what they do best.  Performing!

The Cheeky Monkeys are able to perform once a year in an outside Theatre.  This is a great experience and means they are included in the main Academy performance.  This allows them to learn how to perform from the older students who have been performing longer.  We think that no matter what age you are you should have the chance to tread the boards.  This builds students’ confidence and helps them to realise what fun performing really is.  Once you get that bug, you just can’t stop.

In addition, Musical Theatre will perform an end of term Musical at the end of the summer term.  Please check your events list for further information.

What Else Can We Fit In?

Well as if that all wasn’t enough.  This year we are welcoming back the UKA Uni-Ted awards.  These low cost examinations with very friendly and supportive examiners are a brilliant addition to the Academy. There will be more information at reception regarding these nearer to the time of the session.  These exams do not run every year.  They are only booked when the teachers feel they have enough students at the required standard to book a session.

Are There Any Other Perks?

Yes there are.

To try and teach the students good attendance and hard working in classes, we have Cheeky Monkeys Star Cards. The students have a little card that they take to their classes and if they show they have improved or have worked exceptionally hard in class then they will receive a hard worker sticker.  This is not something they will receive each week.  It is only if they do something exceptional in class.

Once the students have 5 Hard Worker Stars they get a Certificate.  This is designed to encourage the students to push themselves to achieve the best they can achieve within each class they attend.

What Happens When We Move Into Year 2 At School?

Once the students are in Year 2 at school they will become part of the main Tom Ball Live Academy.  They will move up to Grade 1 Ballet, Junior Musical Theatre and the Beginners Level 1 Jazz and Show Tap.  If you would like to know more about the main Academy and the classes we offer then please request the main Academy Prospectus from reception.