Our Dance Program at The Performing Arts School at bergenPAC is an electrifying dance program under the direction of Roberta Mathes. With our NYC professional faculty and our facilities, our dance program has had resounding success in reaching children and members of the community, offering them the opportunity to receive excellent dance training in a positive setting whether they become performing artists or simply dance for fun!

We offer a wide variety of classes for all ages and abilities (children through adults): Classical Ballet, Contemporary, Modern Jazz, Horton, Afro Modern, Tap, Hip-Hop, and Acrobatics.

For more serious-minded students we have a Pre-Professional program which offers college guidance for dancers and have more performance opportunities.

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Earn College Credit!

Learn more about the Dual Enrollment Program at Bergen Community College. High school juniors and seniors can receive college credit for just $73.25 per credit plus a one-time registration fee of $15.25! There are currently six classes at The Performing Arts School at bergenPAC where students can receive college credit from Bergen Community College: The Performing Arts School Show Chorus, Advanced Jazz Dance, Teen Acting Technique, Summer Musical, Private Voice Lessons and Private Piano Lessons. These college credits are transferable to many colleges in the state of New Jersey!

Application form/Registration instructions here.

Class Schedule

Early Childhood Dance


  • Jazzy Movers (45 yrs): Wednesday  3:15pm3:45pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)
  • Twinkle Toes for Tots (45 yrs): Thursday  3:30pm4:00pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)
  • Hippity Hoppers (45 yrs): Friday  3:30pm4:00pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)
  • Dancing Tots (35 yrs): Saturday 10:15am10:45am (VIRTUAL ONLY)

About Jazzy Movers

This class is designed as an age-appropriate introduction to the exciting world of dance. Parents and children work together to explore new ways to move and dance at a very early age. Students learn the basic elements of movement through storytelling, imagery, rhythmical patterns, improvisation and direction in using space.

About Twinkle Toes for Tots

This class is designed as an age-appropriate introduction to the exciting world of dance. Parents and children work together to explore new ways to move and dance at a very early age. Students learn the basic elements of movement through storytelling, imagery, rhythmical patterns, improvisation and direction in using space.

About Hippity Hoppers

This class is designed as an age-appropriate introduction to the exciting world of dance. Parents and children work together to explore new ways to move and dance at a very early age. Students learn the basic elements of movement through storytelling, imagery, rhythmical patterns, improvisation and direction in using space.

About Dancing Tots

This class is designed as an age-appropriate introduction to the exciting world of dance. Students learn the basic elements of movement through storytelling, imagery, rhythmical patterns, improvisation and direction in using space.



  • Open Preteen Acro: Saturday 10:0011:00am 

About Acro

In this class, the focus is on balance, agility, and coordination. Students practice gymnastic floor exercises, while increasing their flexibility and improving their endurance. Acro can be found in many of the performing arts, as well as in sports. Dancers learn jumps, leaps, and splits, as well as tricks done on mats, including cartwheels, handsprings, backbends, walk overs, and etc.



  • Child Ballet 1 (57 yrs): Monday 4:005:00pm & Saturday 10:0011:00am
  • Child Ballet 2 (712yrs): Monday 5:106:10pm & Saturday 11:1012:10pm
  • Child 3/ Preteen Ballet: Monday from 4:005:00pm
  • Pre-Pro Preteen Ballet (1013yrs): Wednesday 6:007:00pm
  • Basic Teen/Adult BalletWednesday 7:108:10pm
  • Pre-Pro Intermediate Preteen/Teen Ballet: Thursday 4:005:00pm
  • Pre-Pro Intermediate PointeThursday 5:005:30pm
  • Pre-Pro Intermediate Teen/Adult Ballet & Adv. Pointe: Thursday 5:457:00pm
  • Advanced Preteen Ballet: Saturday 1:002:00pm
  • Intermediate/Advanced Teen Ballet: Saturday 2:103:10pm
  • Pre-Pro Advanced Teen/Adult Ballet/Pointe: Saturday 3:204:50pm

About Child Ballet

These classes are progressive in structure introducing the discipline of classical dance. Students learn the basic positions, the use of turnout, and the importance of proper posture. Children develop coordination and footwork skills through barre work and center exercises. They continue to learn ballet terminology and slowly begin to put steps together. 

About Pre-Teen/Teen Ballet

Teachers build from the child ballet syllabus and strengthen the exercises at the barre to increase students’ physical strength and ability. At this level instructors attempt to improve flexibility in crucial muscle groups, to strengthen dancers’ lines, to work on expression and basic performing skills.

About Pointe

Students learn the fundamentals of pointe work. Dancers MUST have at least three years of proper ballet training and MUST take at least three ballet classes a week. Pointe is demanding on the body and especially on the feet; sore feet and blisters often occur. At the beginning level, we make sure pointe shoe fits properly and show students the correct way to tie them. Correct ballet technique, alignment, and balance along with proper turnout and strength in the legs are required in order to avoid injury. The mastering of basic pointe gives the dancer proper use of the floor and allows for freedom in complicated steps. “En pointe” students will learn short excerpts of classical repertory.


As students continue their education in classical dance, the focus is on technique, perfecting lines, refining their movement and gaining more control and mobility at the barre and in the center. Exercises are more demanding and footwork is more complicated. Performing skills are also emphasized.

Modern & Contemporary


  • Pre-Pro Preteen/Teen Contemporary: Tuesday 6:207:20pm
  • Open Preteen/Teen Modern (Horton): Tuesday 4:005:00pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)
  • Child Afro Modern (810yrs): Thursday 4:005:00pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)
  • Teen/Adult Afro Modern: Thursday 7:308:30pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)


These classes are done barefoot and emphasize balance and control, weight shifting and use of gravity. Our contemporary class draws on a more aggressive way of moving and builds strong, athletic dancers.

Modern will explore numerous contemporary techniques, including Graham, a modern dance method devised by the esteemed Martha Graham, Cunningham and other modern styles.

Horton, the training system of the Alvin Ailey School in NYC, is a grounded and structured modern dance technique allowing dancers to strengthen their lateral muscle groups. 

Afro Modern will focus on combining traditional African dance stylings and modern strenth and movement techniques. 

*All Pre-Professional classes: it is mandatory to take two ballet classes per week.



  • Child Hip-Hop (57 yrs): Friday 4:305:30pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)
  • Open Preteen/Teen Hip-Hop: Friday 5:306:30pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)

About Hip-Hop

This class emphasizes urban and street movement, popping and locking, along with jazz isolations, new style reggae, body waving and break dancing techniques all done to the beats of popular and Hip-Hop music. 




  • Breakdancing (712 yrs): Wednesday 6:107:10pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)

About Breakdancing

The NEW Olympic Sport/Dance (from the Youth Olympics in 2018)! Come learn Hip-Hop’s first Dance style (including popping and locking and many other techniques).  This is a great way to stay fit, be coordinated and be empowered!  Come to our classes to become the party starter, freshest dancer and be a student of true HIP-HOP culture! 



  • Child Jazz 1 (57 yrs): Tuesday 4:005:00pm
  • Child Jazz 1/2: (57 yrs) Saturday 11:3012:30pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)
  • Child Jazz 2/3 (810 yrs): Tuesday 5:106:10pm
  • Pre-Pro Adv. Teen/Adult Jazz 'Mathes Technique'**: Monday 7:008:00pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)
  • Advanced Beginner Preteen/Teen Jazz 'Mathes Technique'*: Tuesday 7:008:00pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)
  • Pre-Pro Intermediate Preteen Jazz 'Mathes Technique'*: Wednesday 4:305:30pm & Thursday 6:007:00pm(VIRTUAL ONLY)

*All Pre-Professional classes: it is mandatory to take two ballet classes per week.

** Earn College Credit.

*** Two Ballet classes per week required for Preteens and Teens.

About Jazz

All jazz warm-ups embody a strong ballet and modern foundation, based on the “Mathes Technique” with an emphasis on correct posture, torso exercises, footwork, leg extensions, floor stretching, sit-ups, and pushups. Dancers repeat progressions across the floor (grand battements, turns, leaps) and learn to put the steps together in different sequences all done to popular and contemporary music. At the end of each class, students will learn a combination varying in style from week to week.

In more advanced classes, Roberta continues the “Mathes Technique” training system. Abdominal (core) strength and endurance are emphasized through body alignment including a series of contractions and releases, isolations, and floor work. At this level students gain more muscular control while increasing flexibility, improving extensions, learning how to sustain movement with more ease, linking one step with another and forming artistic expression. Progressions are more challenging and choreography is more diversified including Latin, lyrical, soulful, upbeat or theatrical jazz, working on one style for several weeks.



  • Child Tap 1/2 (68 yrs): Friday 5:306:30pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)
  • Child Tap 3/Preteen: Friday 4:305:30pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)
  • Advanced/Intermediate Preteen/Teen Tap: Saturday 12:301:30pm

About Tap

There are different techniques and a range of styles that cover the basics of tap dancing: soft shoe, hoofing, and Broadway tap. At beyond dance we cover the fundamental use of musical patterns with footwork (heal toe) and the shifting of weight. These classes are also progressive in difficulty beginning with simple relaxed footwork, across the floor exercises and then in more advanced classes, students develop separation of sound, use of swing rhythms and more challenging rhythmical patterns done a capella or to music.  



  • Yoga for Kids (68 yrs): Friday 4:005:00pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)
  • Yoga for Preteens (912 yrs): Friday 5:006:00pm (VIRTUAL ONLY)

About Yoga

In this class the basic, foundational yoga postures are practiced to align, strengthen and promote flexibility in the body. Breathing techniques and meditation are also integrated.

Preteen Ensemble

  • Preteen Ensemble Choreography: Wednesday 5:006:00pm

Pre-Professional Program 

The PRE-PROFESSIONAL PROGRAM offers a diverse but set curriculum for dancers between the ages of 13 and 18. Each pre-professional student is required to take a minimum number of classes in classical ballet, partnering, modern (Horton or other), contemporary jazz “Mathes Technique,” enriched by other dance electives – composition/choreography, ethnic, tap, voice and theater dance, or Hip-Hop. Proper technique and dance training are emphasized in order to develop strong, well-rounded dancers. Evaluations are done annually. Masterclasses along with workshops are offered.

The pre-professional dancers will be a part of the Dance Ensemble and will have opportunities to perform in NYC and throughout the community.


ADVANCED LEVEL: (for ages 13-18) 3-4 ballet including pointe/character/variations and partnering. 1 Horton-modern, 2 "Mathes Technique," and 1 or more electives (8 classes per week minimum).

Tuition & Policies


Click here for tuition and payment information. 

Attendance and Lateness

Consistent attendance is crucial for the development of each dancer. Make-up classes are encouraged and should be taken during enrolled session. Please inform us of all absences and be sure to make-up in the proper level. Call to schedule make-ups. Students who arrive more than fifteen minutes late will be asked to observe class.

Dress Code

Proper dance attire and neatness are required for all classes.

All dancers must have hair secured back and away from their faces. Jewelry is not permitted. Appropriate footwear must be worn for each class. Students who do not comply may not participate in our program.

We suggest all dress code items be purchased at The Performing Arts School.


Ballet students are assigned specific colors for their level. Students must wear the camisole leotard with pink ballet tights and pink ballet slippers. Ballet slippers must fit properly and elastics must be sewn on. No skirts please! Hair must be pulled back into a secure, neat bun. 


Color Camisole

Dancing Tots

Light Pink


Light Pink

Child Ballet 1


Child Ballet 2

So Dance Purple

Child Ballet 3


Pre-teen Ballet


Adult Ballet

Any Color

Male Students

Males students are required to wear a fitted white tank t-shirt or leotard, black tights or leggings with a dance belt. White socks and ballet slippers must be worn for ballet.

Jazz, Contemporary and Tap

Jazz, Contemporary, AfroModern, and Tap students may wear any style leotard with black or tan tights. Unitards are permitted; t-shirts, shorts and baggy pants are not proper attire.


Hip-Hop students must wear black dance pants and a white PAS t-shirt. Separate footwear is required for these classes.

Cultural Dance 

Cultural dance students' attire is determined by the teacher. Please consult with the instructor on the first day of class.

Please do not wear street shoes into the studios.


In the event that classes are cancelled, students will be notified via telephone/email or a notice will be posted on our Website, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.


No refunds. Credit may be given due to prolonged illness with a medical note.

The Performing Arts School

The Performing Arts School provides arts education to students age 3 months to 21 years throughout Northern New Jersey. With classes in all types of performing arts, outreach programs throughout the state, and programming for children with special needs, every donation helps create more opportunities for new artists.