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chauffeur

Ballet schools in Australia - Canberra

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Our family's going to be spending March, April and May in Canberra, Australia, while my husband, a university professor, works there on sabbatical. I think I've found a good ballet school for my daughter to attend while there, but I thought I'd just throw this question out to the masses, on the outside chance that anyone here has any knowledge of schools in Canberra. Good schools? Bad schools?

 

And if you don't know, but you do have any helpful tips about the ballet school culture in Australia (more or less formal than in the US?) or how to be a good visiting student (try to occupy as little of the teacher's energy as possible?), I'd appreciate that also.

 

And I hope it's not a breach of board protocol, but I'm going to post this message on the teacher site, too.

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I am not a Canberrian so my information about schools there is very limited.

 

From the ads in Dance Australia there is one school in the ACT mentioned, Canberra Youth Ballet School teaching RAD from littlies to professional level (Grades and Majors) also classes in contemporary, jazz, tap, drama and singing. They also have a full-time school.

 

Dancetrain also has a list of schools however the list does not contain information about the syllabus taught. The schools listed are; DanceCo, Braemar School of Performing Arts, RAchel Strong DAnce Academy, Legs Dance Pty Ltd, Anderson School of Dance, Kim Harvey School of Dance.

 

Also keep in mind that some schools don't have the budget to advertise or rely on word of mouth for their students. You could also use the Australian White Pages on line to find more schools and another excellent resource is to use the Australian RAD site to locate teachers.

 

If your child does not want to learn RAD there are other syllabuses taught here but you may need to contact the head office in the ACT ( if they have one) or HO in of NSW. The ACT is a small territory within NSW and it is not a long drive to attend a school if it happens to be just outside the ACT.

 

Ballet school culture in Australia is diverse there are schools that cater to students and parents who just want to play at ballet and dance in general (and I don't just mean that in a derogatory way- some people are happy with schools like that)

Then there are accredited teachers and serious ballet schools that will take all types of students who want to lean to dance and schools that audition students for pre professional classes - these are often within one of those serious schools that will take all students. We don't have Summer Intensives in the same sense as that of the US we have holiday schools which are more intense then usual classes but not to same extent I understand the US SI's are.

 

Serious schools will require the student to wear a uniform of a particular colour (and maybe style) leotard, pink tights and the appropriate shoes. Some teachers may specify the student needs to wear a full sole shoe in flats. My experience is that unless the student is in an advanced level the teacher will require full soled shoes. Split sole pointes are not allowed and GM's are frowned on (of course I can only speak from experience at a couple of schools and hearsay from other parents at different schools.)

 

To be a good visiting student, I think it would be the same as anywhere else. Australians are fairly laid back but do not like pushy show off people. Just be friendly, smile, let the other students take there usual place at the barre, if the teacher places your daughter at the barre that is her place for the class. Work hard, do your best. Another point, the students may be close and your daughter may feel that it is difficult to join the clique but if she remains friendly toward the others joins in the conversation occasionally, I'm sure it won't be too long before she is made to feel right at home.

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Here are some links for you

 

White pages online http://www.whitepages.com.au/wp/

 

Yellow pages online http://www.yellowpages.com.au/search/searchEntry.do

 

RAD Australia http://www.rad.org.au/default.cfm

 

And just reread your post Australian school holidays are different to the US and we will have school holidays in April

ACT school term dates http://www.dest.gov.au/schools/dates.htm#ACT Most ballet schools close during holidays but some places have holiday schhools which dance students attend

 

If you want any more information just ask I might be able to help.

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Thank you, floss! that's the school we've made contact with, so that's very reassuring to hear they're big enough to have caught your attention in a search. I started getting a little nervous because they didn't show up on the RAD.au site, nor do they seem to have a Web site, but, from the very friendly contact I've had with them, I don't have any other reason to doubt they'll be a fine school to hang out at for three months.

 

And excellent point on claiming a spot at the barre: I'll be sure to remind my daughter about that. At her current school, people don't get quite as territorial as they did at her old school, but you just never know. She's a very social creature, and she's looking forward to making new friends there.

 

thank you again!

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You might also scout around at the Blochworld forum, which is sort of a down-under version of Ballet Talk. You can link to it here. Everyone there is very friendly and I'm sure you'll get lots of help if you post on either the "Ballet" or "Aussies" board.

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No problem :blink: CYBS sounds like it might be a good choice. The principal is also an examiner for the RAD. I don't recall hearing anything about the school on the ballet grapevine but that doesn't mean anything, I can be a bit vague about listening to who does what, when and how. Hope you and your family enjoy your stay in Australia and that you can manage to get about and see some of the country. :thumbsup:

Also don't be discouraged by the fact a school does not maintain a website, some teachers don't have the time or the staff to maintain a web page. I even know of some excellent schools that advertise infrequently so even if a school is only mentioned in the telephone book they could still be quite reputable.

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Thanks, Dave, and thank you again, floss!

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I'm new to this forum (and to ballet), so I hope this is an acceptable question and the right place to ask it...

 

I am wondering if there are other adult beginners who are taking or have taken classes in Canberra, and whether they can recommend one. I have been to a couple of different places and found them pretty good, but having read some posts on this forum by other adult students describing their experiences it leads me to wonder if there is a 'perfect' adult class to be found in my little town.

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I'm in Canberra, but attend classes with the teens. I started ballet in Queensland in an adult beginners class, moved interstate several times, and when we moved to Canberra I rang a few places that had adult classes offered. One place had classes at different levels but only once a week, while the other places didn't ever call me back.

 

So I decided to go to a studio with lots of classes and some very welcoming teachers, but it does mean that I'm dancing with kids more than 20 years younger than me! However, by the time that I arrived in Canberra I had been learning ballet for 3 years, so I wasn't exactly a beginner, although I had to work very very hard to keep up with the teens (and still do have to!).

 

Wembley

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Thanks for your replies wembley and innopac :)

 

I guess what I'm looking for is a school where there is scope for progression to a higher level (in time), rather than staying in the same beginner class forever. And coming from a competitive figure skating background I'm used to measuring my progress through tests, so I'd like to have the option of doing exams (I enjoy having something to work towards).

 

I wouldn't mind being in a class with teens (I often forget that I'm not one anymore myself), but I'm not sure I could handle being in with a bunch of 5 year olds!

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Oops, I just looked at the first sticky at the top of the page and realised that I have started this topic in the wrong place!

 

Sorry :)

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No worries, barre belle! :) I merged your topic with one in existence. Perhaps there are additional suggestions for you in the previous posts. (I didn't really read it . . . )

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