This article identifies the advent of diagnoses and solutions concerning the goals and procedures of dance education in Portugal, which resulted in the continued advocacy for a Conservatory to come. It detects two moments - the 19th century and the First Republic - during which a discourse built on the natural aptitude vs. universal learning polarity came to prevail. The theatrical dance syllabi created in 1911 were an attempt to end this dichotomy. However, these discursive formations continued to reinforce the notions of aesthetic grace and individualism of the genius, bolstered by the perception that was then cultivated of foreign vanguards (Isadora Duncan and the Ballets Russes).
Conservatory; Dance Education; Pantomime dancing; Genius; History and historiography