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An Introduction to and Discussion of the Hill Method of Dance & the Hill Quadrivium
We are often asked what makes
Discovery Dance Group unique, and what it has to offer, vis-a-vis
Dance, first let us tell you a little about our organization. We
are not a commercial dance studio, we are a 501(c)3 Nonprofit
Organization, certified by the Internal Revenue Service, we meet
the qualifications of an Arts & Education Company. Our
company was founded in 1965 by the late Camille Hill, a highly
regarded Texas Dance Teacher/Choreographer. In 1967 we were
certified by IRS as a Nonprofit, and this year, in 2000, we are
celebrating our 35th Anniversary Year.
Discovery Dance Group began as
a performing company and all the dancers in the group had to
learn the distinct style originated by Camille Hill. In 1982,
after years of re-training adult dancers, Camille Hill and her
assistant, Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman decided to open a training
facility for the company, so that young dancers could learn the
Hill Method and be prepared for the Company. Since 1982 the
Institute of The Dance Arts has focused on training dancers,
teachers and choreographers in the Hill Method, that unique
system of dance & training pioneered by Camille Long Hill.
All teaching conducted at the
Institute of The Dance Arts is based on a curriculum derived from
the writings of Camille Hill. Her Hill Quadrivium is a collection
of four textbooks she wrote between 1960 and 1980. All the
Institute's teachers are Certified Hill Method Instructors, who
have been trained under the guidance and mentor ship of a Hill
Method Master. Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman is our current Hill
Method Master, it is she who directs all the training of those
who wish to be certified Instructors. By her personal guidance
and instruction, those in training at the Institute learn from
someone who studied directly under Camille Hill for 20 years (1967
to 1987). Today more than 180 Certified Hill Method Instructors
teach the Hill Method in the United States, Mexico and Canada, as
well as such far away places as South Africa, Australia, Germany,
France, Holland, Malaysia and the United Kingdom. Since our
founding we have produced numerous noteworthy choreographers,
including Margot Sappington, Kathleen Parker-Lobue, Michael R.
Wilson, Lauren Davis and Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman.
1 - Apprentice; 2 - Certified Noviciate; 3 - Certified Instructor; 4 - Certified Master. Certified Hill Noviciates may teach, but must be supervised by a Certified Hill Instructor, Certified Hill Instructors may teach unsupervised, but may not Certify, only Certified Hill Masters may Certify Hill Noviciates and Instructors.
We offer 3 Intensive Training
Programs for Dancers, Teachers & Choreographers, they are:
Level I - An Introduction to the Hill Method of Dance Instruction - A basic 1-week introduction to the Methodology of Instruction as laid out in the Hill Quadrivium, it covers the Teacher Syllabus for Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Adagio and Choreography. This 1-week program emphasizes the importance of the 4 texts that make up the Hill Quadrivium and the unique Method of Teaching initiated by Camille Hill, and completed by her protegé, Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman. Includes a set of Hill Quadrivium Text Books (4), 10 hours of class room work under the personal guidance of Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman (a Hill Method Master Teacher) and unlimited access to rehearsals of Discovery Dance Group. Trainees who qualify may be accepted as a Hill Method Noviciate. Cost for the 1-week course is $600.00.
Level II - A 2-week Intensive Workshop that includes 20 hours of class room work (10 of which are teacher-assisting classes) under the direction of Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman, Hill Method Master Teacher, and an Introduction to Choreography assisting Ms. Ybarguen-Stockman on a new work for the Company. Trainees who have completed Level I & II and qualify, may earn a Hill Method Trainee Certification. Cost for the 2-week course is $1,100.00.
III - A 4-week Intensive
Program for Hill Method Instructor Level Certification. Qualified
trainees may apply for certification as an Instructor of the Hill
Method. Includes 40 hours of class work (minimum of 20 hours as
Teaching Assistant to Hill Method Instructor or Master Teacher),
and an opportunity to set new Choreography on company for
possible use in concert. Trainees will be tested, those found to
be qualified will be certified as Hill Method Instructors. Cost
for the 4-week course is $2,600.00.
Trainees may also elect to pay for the entire program(Level
I, II, & III, a total of 8-weeks of intensive &
concentrated training) with a single payment of $4,000.00.
The David Quintero-TCA Artist-in-Residence Apprenticeship
We are Funded in 2000-2001,
and are offering a single Annual Artist-in-Residence
Apprenticeship to a Texas Resident who is a dedicated dancer/teacher
willing to commit a year to studying the Hill Method at the
Institute. This program is supported in part by a grant from the
Texas Commission on the Arts, and the David Quintero Scholarship
Fund. It not only offers an opportunity to be Certified at no
cost, but in addition the Quintero- TCA Apprentice also receive a
stipend. Application for the TCA Apprenticeship program is open
from January 1st to July 31st, with
notification by August 31st..
Applicants may use the forms found on this webpage. For
information about this year's program requirements for
applicants, please contact us immediately at 713- 667-3416 (Voice)
713-667-4717 FAX or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Discovery Dance Group has been offering the
HILL METHOD INTENSIVE TRAINING PROGRAM for Artist-in-Residence
Apprenticeships since 1987 and we are proud of the over 166
Certified Hill Method Instructors (now teaching in Texas,
Louisiana, New York, Oklahoma, California, Australia, England,
Holland, France, Germany, South Africa and Malaysia) that we have
trained and Certified. Our organization's mission is to train
Dancers, Teachers and Choreographers in the Hill Method, and this
program is the heart of our efforts. Dance disciplines covered by
the Hill method include: Ballet, Jazz, Modern, Rhythm Tap, and
All Dance disciplines are
taught utilizing the strict guidelines incorporated into the Hill
Method, including: concentration on kinesthesia or self-imaging (internalizing
movement, that is learning how movement feels); eliminating
student's reliance on mirrors in class; musical literacy, and the
ability to count music. It is important to point out that in some
cases our Training Programs can be custom-tailored to meet the
specific needs of interested individuals with unique Dance
Teaching Experience or Training (as in the case of
individuals who have studied some training method that is
similar, a current curriculum vitae and a personal interview with
the candidate is usually needed to ascertain relevance of prior
training and to detect possible overlapping).
Apprentices are responsible for their own transportation to
Houston, arrangements can be made to assist them in securing
inexpensive lodging and reasonable meals for their stay at the
Institute. It is important that all applicants advise us of their
housing needs in advance, so that satisfactory arrangements may
be worked out prior to their arrival.
For example: an Apprentice-candidate
may enroll in the Level I Introductory Course for a fee of $600
plus a 1-week food & lodging fee of $350 for an expenditure
of $950 plus airfare to Houston. We would recommend arriving on a
Friday evening, and returning to city of origin the next weekend
on Sunday evening, for a total time in Houston of 9½ days, with
every single day crammed to overflowing with information about
our methods and philosophy of Dance Instruction, offering a
wonderful opportunity to the dancer who can appreciate and be
enriched by the exposure.
Should an Apprentice-candidate
elect to come, please notify us at least 60 days in advance of
the date when he or she would like to attend the Institute of The
Dance Arts and begin the program, so that we may make necessary
schedule adjustments, and so that we may advise the Applicant of
any conflicting prior arrangements.
Discovery Dance Group, Inc., a 501c3 Non-Profit Educational Arts Organization, offers an Artist-in-Residence Apprenticeship Program for Certification of Dancers, Teachers and Choreographers. Interested Applicants should download and fill out the form below and return it to:
DISCOVERY DANCE GROUP : A.I.R. HILL METHOD TRAINEE
POB 1953, Bellaire, Texas 77402-1953
|Applicants are required to be a minimum of 18 years old, have extensive experience or training as a Dancer, Teacher or Choreographer and a keen desire to explore and learn the Hill Method of Dance as developed by Camille Hill and taught by Hill Method Master Teacher, Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman. In addition, those applicants who wish to qualify for certification as a Hill Method Instructor, have an opportunity to do so. Applicants are requested to submit an application at least 90-days prior to the date Hill Method Training is to begin. Applicants for the David Quintero-TCA Apprenticeship Program must be Texas residents.|
Address, City, State, Zip
Date of Birth
Social Security Number
Please attach your current resume or C.V. with information about any performance work you may have done. Also include a brief essay describing your career objectives in Dance and how you plan to achieve them. A VHS video of any work you may have done is optional and tapes submitted will not be returned. We are interested in helping further your career objectives in Dance and want to be certain you have a clear image of where and how you want to proceed. These Artist-in-Residence Programs include: taking advanced level classes in dance and choreography, class-room teaching assignments, and a unique opportunity to work with the Artistic Director of Discovery Dance Group in the capacity of Artist-in-Residence Apprentice. Successful candidates who complete the entire program of study, who are deemed qualified by the Artistic Director, and who pass the Hill Method Written & Oral Exams, will be Certified as a Hill Method Instructor.
Please attach a
list of all Dance Training you have had in your career,
including Master Classes that you feel are important (denote
with *MC to indicate Master Class).
Please include addresses, names of teachers and phone
numbers for all schools listed, as we may ask for
recommendations from previous teachers/instructors.
Signed ______________________________________ Date _______________
Discovery Dance Group is an Equal Opportunity Company and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, sex, ethnicity or national origins in its employment policies, programs or offerings.
copy and print this form, fill it out and forward it to us via email or US Mail.
TWELVE STEPS FOR THE MAKING OF A DANCER
program for dancers by Camille Hill - copyright 1999 Discovery
Dance Group ©
1. CORRECT PLACEMENT - hips level, ribs level directly over the hips, back lengthened, chest pushed up not out, body supported, yet relaxed. Important for steps of elevation, balance and turns.
2. WEIGHT IS ALWAYS CENTERED - whether on both or one foot, flat or half toe. Body weight rest on bone structure with the muscles holding the bone structure in place.
3. ALWAYS PULL INTO OR PUSH OUT OF THE FLOOR - knees are pulled bent and pushed straight. Always pushed straight up and pulled straight down.
4. BOTH FEET WORK TOGETHER - they are your roots, connecting you to the floor.
5. ALL MOVEMENT IS SUCCESSIVE - from floor or base up through body and arms. Arm movements are also successive and activated when the successive movement reaches the chest area.
6. RESISTANCE - always resist the floor or base, your arms should also resist space.
7. BODY HELD IN ONE PLACE - when moving, carry body in one piece.
8. PULL UP OUT OF THE HIPS AT ALL TIMES - never thrust them forward.
9. THREE POINTS OF CONTACT - big toe, little toe and heel, whether on one foot or both, flat, half toe or on pointe.
10. DANCE IN A BODY DIRECTION - in your box at all times. Be aware of what all the body is doing, as well as awareness of the other dancers and your relation to them.
11. MUSCLES ALWAYS LENGTHENED - avoid tightening muscles - no tension. (Tension destroys balance and weakens movement).
12. BREATHE FRONT AND BACK - do not expand ribs to sides.
Additional Information on The Theory & Technique of All Movement may be found in The HILL QUADRIVIUM, 4 Text Books written by Camille Hill, and the Official Curriculum of Discovery Dance Group, information about the Hill Quadrivium is at the end of this section.
Nine Rules for a Professional Performance
by Camille Hill © 1987 Discovery Dance Group
1. (#1 Because it is the most important!) You must always be totally prepared to dance... No distractions, forget everything but what you are about to do!
2. Keep your body in good technical & physical condition. Maintain proper placement at all times so that your body is always centered, balanced and under control so that no movement is thrown away and you are always able to show strength in both dynamic movement and dramatic intensity.
3. Exercise body-awareness at all times. Be aware of others on stage and their relationship to you. Feel their movements and conveyed feelings. (No unauthorized solos please...you are not alone on stage when others are dancing beside you!)
4. Maintain body directions and formations... stay with your fellow dancers.
5. Listen to the music... feel the music in your body... let your body make the music... become the music!
6. Maintain eye focus and communicate with your fellow dancers and the audience.
7. Totally immerse yourself in and become involved in what you are dancing about... relax, let it happen... be the character or feeling you are supposed to portray.
8. Do every rehearsal as though it is a performance! Don't slip into doing anything you wouldn't want to do in a performance (pulling at costume, brushing hair from face, etc.) or you just may repeat it during a performance! Develop good stage habits before you go on stage, discipline yourself!
9. Never stop, no matter what happens! Be prepared to adjust for others. There has never been a perfect performance! Practice recovering from mishaps, especially lifts and other contact movements with other dancers.
Always remember: You have to use what you've learned, for it to be of value!
contains Love, Vitality and Serenity and is made up of Theory,
Technique and Theatre.
Freedom of movement comes from complete mastery of the body, but there can be no freedom without discipline..."
Camille Hill, 1967
Some of us in Dance are always concerned about "steps", Camille Hill was once asked what she thought were the most important "steps" in Dance. Camille smiled with a twinkle in her eyes and answered the questioner:
"You're too concerned about steps, individual steps are just isolated events that mean nothing until you choreograph them into a Journey through Life or Dance. At Discovery we're not so concerned about the "steps" you have taken in your life, we're much more concerned about where they may have taken you."
Camille Hill, 1973
"There is no wrong "style or type" of Dance, only bad technique and poor placement. Dancers who have studied under a teacher who tells them a particular style of Dance is wrong or bad, have been mis-served by their teacher. Only Technique can be bad, not style. I have seen students who danced in a manner where they injured themselves repeatedly because some teacher didn't correct bad technique, but never have I seen a student hurt by a style of Dance. Show me your worst, and I can clean it up technique-wise and make it into real Dance!"
Camille Hill, 1978
Show me a room of Mirror-Dancers and I'll show you a group who will panic on stage, because the only reflections they will see will be in the cold eyes of a dissatisfied audience!
Mimic Dancing or Imitative Movement only teaches a student how to mimic or imitate, and he or she is destined to repeat the mistakes of those they copy. On the whole I would much rather teach a total novice then try to undo all the bad mimicry of a student who has used only his or her eyes to learn movement. Sadly, that is how most Dance is taught in the world, just by observation and imitation, and like most imitations, it's usually not quite up to the real thing."
Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman, 1989
The best way to teach anything
is to involve as many of the senses as possible: seeing, feeling,
hearing, smelling and even tasting. We try our best to teach
Dance at its atomic level, defining each element on the Dance
Periodic Chart. We want a student to be aware of his or her body,
to feel the movement. It is also important that the student be
music literate, that is, to be able to count music and feel
rhythms, that is one of the reasons we place so much importance
on Tap for the young student, it helps a student become aware of
the rhythm and beat in music. We stress vocabulary, a student is
expected to not only learn the positions, but also to learn the
correct French terms, to know how to spell them, and what the
French actually means. This emphasis on multi-layered and
reinforced education helps the student to improve memory skills
and to fully understand what we're talking about in class.
If you want your child to be
competitive, enroll him or her in a soccer program, and make room
for someone who wants to study Dance as Art! Dance competitions
are simply devices designed to move large quantities of cash from
your pocket into the bank account of the dance teacher or studio
owner. They love to take your $ 25.00 registration fee for a
competition and give your child a $ 3.00 trophy for attending,
it's not high Dance, but it is high finance!
And of course if you fall for the competition gambit, they are
quick to suggest private tutoring at $ 50.00 an hour, so that
your little Margie can win more $ 3.00 trophies! And then there
are the costumes, $50.00, $ 60.00, or $ 100.00, and still the
judges (other dance teachers and studio owners who are licking
their chops over the pile of registration fees stacking up)
aren't satisfied! The stress children are put under by parents in
little league, ice skating, gymnastics and dance programs is
horrible, soon the child hates the very thing he or she used to
love. Say it again, Dance is an Art!
Students take Dance for
various reasons, often it is a parent who steers the child into a
study of Dance, still others have a strong inner desire to dance
from an early age, and some take Dance because of peer pressure,
they have friends who are taking Dance. Most students who take
Dance from an early age, do so until they find some other avenue
of expression that better fits their personal likes and talents.
What we try to do at the Institute is to stimulate each student
in a positive way, encouraging them to explore movement, hoping
that those who are really interested will continue their studies
and make Dance, in some form, a part of their adult life. Those
who have a deep love of Dance and want to perform are encouraged
to work hard, those who aren't as interested can benefit from
class by becoming better audience members. We try to teach each
student not only how to Dance, but also how to teach Dance. Some
students are highly motivated and will take up the challenge in
their adult life, and the others will some day in the future
bring their children to those new teachers.
Ultimately all our efforts are directed at making new Dancers, Teachers, Choreographers and educated audience members. Poll any audience at a Dance Concert and the percentage of former Dance students is always near 75%, they may not have gone on to become professional Dancers, Teachers or Choreographers, but they know and appreciate the efforts of those who have! Dance is God's way of proving we all have souls...
Camille Hill began her long career in Dance as a small child in Austin, Texas. Born a "blue baby" in 1910, Camille's health was precarious, but at an early age she made it clear she wanted to dance, when her family doctor was asked if it was a good idea, he confided to her mother "let the poor little thing dance, so she can enjoy what little of life she has left." Needless to say, Dance didn't do her any harm, in fact, it apparently strengthened her heart enough to allow her to live a rich and rewarding 76 years. Camille began her studies in Austin and studied Dance all her life, never assuming that she knew it all.
During her teen years Camille continued to grow after other girls her age had leveled off, and she was soon considered too tall to Dance in a Corp de Ballet. At that time her interest in Dance turned away from ego-satisfying performance work to teaching and choreography. At the age of 18 she opened her own studio and began to teach, a vociferous reader, she read everything she could about Dance and took master classes from all the recognized leaders. Early on she became aware of Ruth St. Denis and Ted Shawn of Denishawn. Her friendship with Ted Shawn lasted until his death. Mr. Shawn introduced her to the writings of the fabled French Elocutionist and Teacher, François Delsarte (1811-1871), whose Delsarte System, Shawn felt, offered a valuable and unique perspective on Dramatic Presentation. The teachings of François Delsarte made a tremendous impact on Camille, and would later manifest themselves over and over again in her choreographic efforts. Another young dancer who had studied and danced with Denishawn was a gentleman named Jack Cole, much of what we call the Hill Method evolved from theories and ideas developed during conversations between Camille and Jack Cole.
By the mid-forties Camille had married and moved to Houston, Texas. While still intensely interested in Dance, she no longer had a studio. One day she ate lunch at the Rice Hotel in downtown Houston, after lunch she browsed the lobby of the hotel, and saw a gorgeous bronze sculpture on display in the glass case of an art gallery in the lobby. The price was a staggering $300. Camille fell in love with it, she wanted that piece of sculpture in the worst way, but she just couldn't afford it. That afternoon she was talking to Emma Mae Horn, a friend who owned a dance studio, Emma Mae had been pestering Camille for months about coming to her studio and teaching Dance, each time Camille had reluctantly declined. When Camille began to describe the beautiful piece of sculpture she wanted so dearly, Emma Mae's ears perked up, and she asked Camille why she didn't just buy it. To which Camille replied, "Its $300, I just don't have that kind of money to spend on a bronze." Emma Mae laughed and said "If you taught for me you could buy that lovely piece, why I'd pay you $300 a term for each class you taught." The deal was made and Camille got her statue and her career back.
Camille continued to teach Dance to Houston students like Tommy Tune, and his little sister Gracey. Over the years she had developed some very firm ideas about how Dance should be taught, and in her involvement with the Texas Association Teachers of Dancing (TATD) she saw an opportunity to put those theories down on paper. She was the Principal of the TATD Normal School and decided to write a syllabus for Teachers of Dance. She and several committee members set about putting together a booklet to guide teachers preparing to be tested for certification by the TATD. The result was a slim book filled with the necessary information a teacher would need to not only be certified, but also to teach Dance properly. Over the next 20 years Camille would write numerous books on the Teaching of Dance, Choreography, Adagio, and Tap.
In 1965 Camille hosted a summer workshop and invited Houston's best Dancers to participate, at the end of summer she had a great idea, she would form a dance company, Discovery Dance Group. In 1966 the company performed in Beaumont, Texas to a highly appreciative audience. By April of 1967 Discovery Dance Group was incorporated in as a Non-Profit, and certified by the IRS as a 501(c)3.
Camille set about recruiting dancers for her young company, and in an effort to secure rehearsal space, she made a trade-out with the fledgling Houston Ballet, she would choreograph a piece for the Houston Ballet and teach in exchange for studio space. At that time the Houston Ballet's Artistic Director was Nina Popova, Michael Lland was the Ballet Master, and they were assisted by Holgar Linden. The Houston Ballet's day-to-day operations were directed by a gentleman named Arnold Mercado, whose Administrative Assistant just happened to be a young dancer named Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman. This young lady, a former student of Alexander Kotchetovsky, was a scholarship student at the Houston Ballet Academy. She also acted as recording secretary at all Houston Ballet Foundation Board meetings. She was efficient, enthusiastic and just a little too tall for Ballet.
As a scholarship student at the Academy, Pamela was allowed to take dance classes from the guest choreographer Camille Hill. Camille took an immediate liking to the tall young dancer (23 at the time) and asked her to come to a Discovery Dance Group class-rehearsal the next Tuesday. Pamela went to the rehearsal and struggled through it, uncomfortable with the non-classical movement Camille's dancers did with ease. She didn't return the next Tuesday, and a few weeks later Camille called her to ask why she hadn't returned. Pamela confided to Camille that she was "too old" to start learning a new style of dance. Camille laughed and told her to be at the next Tuesday night class-rehearsal. Pamela did return and this time she stayed, performing and training with her, until Camille's death in January of 1987.
Between the years of 1967 and 1987 Camille taught Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman, and as is so often the case, the student taught the Master, too. In the seventies Camille was approached by the University of Houston about teaching Dance in the Drama Department, the course was to be taught on Tuesday and Thursday, but Camille had a schedule conflict and asked Pamela to teach on Thursdays. Pamela realized that for the class to be consistent, she would have to take the Tuesday class, too. For 4 years Pamela drove Camille to the University of Houston each Tuesday and then went by herself on Thursday. It was a learning experience for both of them. They taught on the stage of the Cullen Performance Hall, with its raked floor and no mirrors. Camille was at first unsettled by the lack of a studio to teach in, but Pamela, who had learned dance in a mirror-less studio (Kotchy's) pointed out that without mirrors the students weren't wasting time looking at themselves, and that since they were ultimately going to dance on a stage anyway, learning there was a plus. In a short time Camille realized that, indeed, the students seemed to be able to concentrate on feeling the movement much better without mirrors. From then on Camille began to de-emphasize mirrors with all her classes.
Camille was a stickler for perfection, often rehearsing a piece of choreography for a full year before presenting it in a concert. Often dancers would leave the company due to this demanding attitude about perfection and constant rehearsal of the same pieces over and over, while others thrived in the atmosphere of absolute perfection.
In 1974 Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman was made Associate Director of Discovery Dance Group, a position she held until Camille's death. Also in 1974 Pamela had been hired by the Jewish Community Center of Houston to teach dance, by 1976 she was promoted to Dance Coordinator.
In mid-1982 Pamela had a meeting with Camille and told her that the competition for her time between the JCC and Discovery was wearing her out, that she was going to have to choose one over the other. Pamela explained that one of the problems with Discovery was, that for 15 years they had spent a huge amount of time re-training and re-making adult dancers into Discovery Dancers, and she felt that it was time to start training children to become Discovery Dancers, instead of waiting until they were adults and often having to undo the poor teaching of others. She said Discovery needed a school, a place where children could be trained from an early age in the Hill Method, and a place where future Hill Method Instructors could be trained. Pamela pointed out that a permanent home would also allow the Company to offer its dancers a place to work as teachers, so that their efforts wouldn't be divided, as her's had been. Camille listened and agreed, it was time to test her theories and apply them to a new generation of young dancers. After 8 years, 6 of them as Dance Coordinator, Pamela left the JCC in August of 1982. The Board of Directors agreed that the time had come to open a training center for future Discovery Dancers, and a suitable building was purchased.
Many things have happened since that decision was made. In 1987 Camille passed away at the age of 76, her old family Doctor in Austin had been right, when he told her mother to "let the poor little thing dance, so she can enjoy what little of life she has left", he just didn't realize how long "what little of life she has left" would be, time being a relative thing. Following Camille's passing, Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman, Camille's "daughter-in-dance", was promoted to the position of Executive & Artistic Director of Discovery Dance Group by the Board of Directors. Since its founding in 1965, Camille Hill's dream, Discovery Dance Group, has continued dancing. The theories, ideas, and values formulated by Camille Hill, refined and articulated by Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman are still as fresh and right today as they were over a third of a century ago!
It is amazing how well the basic ideas embodied in the Hill Method work. First, there is a conceptual foundation laid, what is the reason for the Hill Method? Obviously Camille and Pamela realized that the basic reason for the Hill Method was to codify the Teaching of Dance, but they also considered why they should do this work, and who would benefit from it. They realized that of all the students who take that first Creative Movement Class at age 3 years, only a tiny percentage would continue their training after age 12, and out of that small number of students, an even smaller percentage would ever do anything with their training in Dance. It has always been the goal of Discovery Dance Group and the Institute of The Dance Arts to Teach Dance via the Hill Method, and those who come to us and are inspired by our example to continue their involvement in Dance, are encouraged and supported. But what about those who come and only take a few years because their mother pushed them or their friends were taking dance, what about them? Our efforts are to teach those students not only the French terminology, proper placement, and all the other things one learns in dance, but also how to appreciate the work of those who stay at it, in other words, we are in the business of creating future audience members, people who grow up and love Dance.
To teach the Art of Dance,
to Train Dancers to Perform, to Create Teachers of Dance, to
Encourage Choreographers & to Instill Appreciation of the Art
The Hill Method is a
systematic program of Dance Instruction that follows a concise
& clearly described pattern laid out in the Hill Quadrivium (4
text books by Camille Hill). The Hill Method codifies the
teaching Methodology developed and refined by Camille Hill during
her over 60-year career in Dance. It stresses a program of
teaching students how to focus on self-imaging or self-
visualizing movement, or kinesthesia, the ability to be aware of
and understand how your body feels during movement, what the
limits of movement are, and how a particular gesture feels.
We are serious about de-emphasizing
the use of imitative-movement or mimic-dance, where the student
is taught by demonstration only. In this era of obsession with
physical appearance, and constant critical appraisal of the looks
of others, often resulting in self-loathing and numerous
psychological impairments, the use of mirrors is discouraged in
the Hill Method.
This not to be interpreted as
a rejection of physical beauty, on the contrary, the Hill Method
celebrates the beauty of the human body, but where we differ from
others is that we do not care how you look when you come to us,
we instead work on perfecting your abilities and believe that
inner perfection always shines through to make your body more
beautiful. We believe a healthy mind is necessary to have a
healthy body, and that a healthy mind and body is what true
beauty is all about. This is especially true with children, in
our classes we strongly discourage any discussion of body shape
or weight with young students, and never criticize a student by
demeaning his or her physical appearance.
Students are taught Classic
French Ballet Terminology, not only the proper placement and
position, but also the actual spelling of the words, the proper
pronunciation, and the exact meaning of the French terms. While
there may be some who may consider this an unnecessary classical
arrogance, it does have an important side benefit. This multi-layering
of information is a crucial part of our program, and it is a
corner-stone of the Hill Method to bring as many of the senses
into play as possible to develop and re-enforce memory skills.
Music Literacy is another important facet of our program, teaching students to listen to the music for cues, as opposed to watching a mirror so that the student is cued by the movement of others. We strongly recommend Tap for young students because of its focus on rhythm and beat, allowing a student an opportunity to learn count-awareness.
DISCOVERY DANCE GROUP : EDUCATIONAL OUTREACH
Since 1965 Discovery
Dance Group has been involved in Educational Outreach Programs
ranging from Master Classes in Dance Programs at leading
Southwestern Universities, highly successful Collaborative
Projects with MECA (Multicultural Education and Counseling
through the Arts, a Houston 501c3) bringing professional-level
dance training to inner-city youth (with a NEA/CACH OutReach
Grant in 1988/89/90), two successful Young Audiences of Houston
Curriculum-Related Dance Projects (Jazz Dance : Made in
the Americas, and Hispanic Dance in Texas : The
First 500 Years), and its new TCA Touring Arts Project
for K-5 Students (Rondônia:The Rain Forest in Words,
Music & Dance). Combining the creative development
efforts of former Managing Director Jacqpea Franco-Stockman (who
developed the Young Audiences of Houston and TCA Touring Arts
Educational Projects), with the imaginative choreography of
Artistic Director Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman, Discovery Dance Group
has since 1993 enlightened and entertained well over 30,000 Texas
secondary and elementary students.
Jacqpea Franco-Stockman combined his life-long overseas experiences, his training (BS
Psych. & MS Psych. at Sophia Jesuit University in Tokyo) in
Psychology and literary skills (BA English at Sophia Jesuit
University) to bear on conceptualizing, planning, researching and
producing exciting and entertaining educational programs for
students ranging from Kindergarten to High School level. Pamela
Ybarguen- Stockman and Jacqpea Franco-Stockman have successfully
utilized their long association with each other (since 1964), and
their ability to correlate and combine literary and choreographic
elements into cohesive and authoritative educational programs.
Programs that can effectively deliver tightly focused curriculum-related
information in an enjoyable and entertaining manner for student
A major element in the success of Discovery Dance Group Educational Outreach Projects is the underlying awareness of the Value of Education. At the Institute of The Dance Arts all teaching is based on the core-curriculum afforded by a collection of 4 texts written by Discovery founder, Camille Hill. Over a period of 20 years from the early 1950's to the mid 1970's, Hill wrote 4 textbooks on Dance, these 4 texts were combined together to form the Hill Quadrivium, the curriculum-base of the Institute of The Dance Arts. The basic philosophy and approach to teaching embodied in these 4 books are the heart of the Hill Method of Dance Instruction and strongly influence the development of Educational Projects created and produced by Discovery Dance Group.
The single most
important element of the Hill Method of Dance Instruction is the
discarding of total reliance on Teaching by Imitative Movement (monkey-see,
monkey- do), so prevalent in American Dance Education. Instead of
studying Dance by relying on Demonstration/Observation/Imitation,
the Hill Method relies on creating a multi-level teaching
environment, one that allows each level to reinforce the other,
focusing on the development of strong vocabulary knowledge,
comprehension and recognition and then correlating these learned
verbal skills with a heighten awareness of the elements of human
kinesthesia (sensory experience or awareness of the body's
movement; that is, knowing how movement feels) developed through
a well-organized class of exercise and movement.
Over the last decade Discovery became acutely aware of how this utilization of multi-level reinforcement of educational elements through the use of various stimuli and concurrent (though not always obvious) methods, was applicable to other educational areas besides Dance.
The success nationally of such programs as Young Audiences in cities across America is proof positive that combining the various elements of performance art with curriculum-related educational programs can result in immediate benefits for students studying subjects outside of the traditional performing arts, such as history and social studies.
Discovery Dance Group is
committed to offering educators and students a unique opportunity
to experience and enjoy performance dance in a manner that
involves the exposure of students to more than just the music and
movement typically associated with Dance, but also exposes them
to concepts and ideas related to their classroom studies,
everyday lives, and hopefully, some measure of positive social
|DISCOVERY PRESS, Discovery Dance Group's in-house publisher, is proud to present this exciting foursome of Dance Textbooks by noted Dance Writer/Educator, Camille Long Hill, offering the perfect foundation for students and teachers of Dance. The Hill Quadrivium offers beginner to advanced students a well organized and intelligently written curriculum for Theory and Technique of all Dance. The collection covers Ballet, Jazz, Modern, Tap and Adagio. With a strong emphasis on proper vocabulary, placement and posture, the books explain Camille Long Hill's theories on the physical, emotional and psychological commitments needed to become a dancer. The Hill Quadrivium is the textual part of the official curriculum of Discovery Dance Group's "Institute of the Dance Arts".|
CAMILLE LONG HILL (1910-1987)
An illustrious career in Dance that spanned over sixty years of teaching experience in all forms of Dance. She specialized in teaching the Theory & Technique of All Dance Movement, Adagio, Tap & Choreography. Ms. Hill served as President of the Texas Association Teachers of Dancing for eleven years. In her long career she helped many students become Performers, Teachers and Choreographers. Among her former students are Tommy Tune, Margo Sappington, Gracey Tune, David Quintero, Kathleen Parker-Lobue, Pamela Ybarguen-Stockman & numerous others.
by Camille Long Hill
Published in 1954, Revised in 1960 & 1974 and Reprinted in
1982 & 1990
purpose of this book was to provide a means by which aspiring
teachers of dance could study the art of teaching and prepare
themselves for the entrance examinations of the Texas Association
of Teachers of Dancing. It served for many years as the textbook
for theory and terminology in the Normal School classes and as
the syllabus needed to pass the examination for the State Board
Teachers Certificate of that organization. It is divided into
four sections covering Ballet, Tap, Acrobatic Movement and Modern
Jazz, it is an excellent handbook that effectively stimulates the
teacher and encourages further and more intense study of the Art
Paperback $ 15.00
US prepaid + shipping & handling
by Camille Long Hill
Published in 1972
A study of the
Theories and Techniques of Movement, with photo illustrations by
Horace Oleson, noted photographer. A great source of, not only
Instruction, but also Inspiration for both Teachers and Dancers.
A discussion of the necessary skills and motivations to make
"dance technicians " into Dancers. An excellent
combination of illustrations and notes which quickly and clearly
explain the movement or position being discussed. Has long been
recognized as the Choreographer's Compass, pointing out the path
to successful choreographic development with proper attention to
projection of feelings as well as technique.
Paperback $ 15.00
US prepaid + shipping & handling
by Camille Long Hill
Published in 1977
The classic Tap
Primer, a must for beginner to advanced students and teachers of
Tap. Camille Long Hill was a nationally recognized leader in
Dance Education, her "Rhythm Time", with its codified vocabulary of Tap
terms, offers excellent resource material for anyone interested
in teaching or learning Tap. The basics of Tap are made clear and
understandable in this well-written and enthusiastic textbook on
divided into 15 sections that cover the Theory and Technique of
Tap plus Tap Exercises, Combinations and sample Routines.
Paperback $ 15.00
US prepaid + shipping and handling
by Camille Long Hill
Published in 1978
photographs of lifts, detailed notes and directions, it is
considered by many to be the perfect course on Lifts &
Support Adagio for both Teachers and Students. Divided into 47
easy-to-read sections, it covers all the major lifts, their
variations, combinations and the theory and technique of their
execution. No serious Teacher or Student of Dance should attempt
Lifts or Support Adagio without this book, it is an excellent
resource and guide for the choreographer in search of a lift!
Paperback $ 15.00 US prepaid + shipping and handling
All Titles ©
1988 Discovery Dance Group - All Rights Reserved
worldwide as The Dance Textbook Collection, The Hill Quadrivium* is now available for individual Students
of Dance and Schools by Mail or Phone-order. Each book offers an
in-depth study of Dance as an Art Form. Individual copies cost $
15.00 US prepaid plus shipping cost, a complete set of four (4)
are offered for $ 50.00 US prepaid plus shipping cost. Educators,
Schools and Studios may place volume orders of ten (10) or more
copies priced at $ 12.00 US prepaid per copy ordered, regardless
of title-mix, plus shipping cost (1-10 books $3.00). Texas
Purchasers must include 8.25 % Sales Tax on purchases or a signed
copy of Tax-Exempt Documentation. Allow 10 days shipping time.
Phone Orders: (713) 667-3416 & FAX Orders: (713) 667-4717
Mail Orders: DISCOVERY PRESS, P. O. Box 1953, Bellaire, Tx77402-1953
E-Mail Orders: Buy_Books@discoverydancegroup.org
*Quadrivium - (kwäd-rivi-em) n. [ML.; L.; see QUADRIVIAL], in the Middle Ages, the higher division of the seven liberal arts, consisting of arithmetic,geometry, astronomy and music.
"Textbook for Teachers of Dancing"
"The Art of Lifts and Support Adagio"
"For Dancers Only" & "Rhythm Time"
Written by the renowned Choreographer/Dance Educator, Camille Long Hill, THE HILL QUADRIVIUM represents a compilation of all the theories and techniques she utilized in developing her unique style of teaching, the Hill Method of Dance Education. The Hill Method stresses non-imitative instruction, students are taught to know and be aware of the physiology of their bodies, to understand and move on verbal commands, without the crutch of mirrors or imitating the movements of the teacher, to be intellectually aware of the choreographic elements of Dance.
a subsidiary of Discovery Dance Group, Inc.
EQUAL OPPORTUNITY COMPANY
|Discovery Dance Group, Inc. does not exclude participation or access by persons of any race, color, creed, sex or national and ethnic origin, in its programs, privileges, activities or rights. Nor does it discriminate in the Administration of its Educational Policies, Scholarships or other Programs. Discovery Dance Group has been an IRS-recognized 501c3 Non-Profit since April, 1967, and a City of Houston - Office of Affirmative Action Certified MWDBE since 1996.|
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Last Updated March 21, 2003 Jacqpea Franco-Stockman