Oreo

Question about scholarships

28 posts in this topic

My son has just reached the age cutoff to audition for the bigger name schools. He is a very hard worker and loves to dance. He gets attention at the auditions and has been accepted to the places he auditioned for but has not been offered any kind of scholarship. I hear other moms talking about how their son's ( ages 14+) have received full tuition and housing from different schools. Is this a sign that he does not have what it takes to choose this as a career path? Does this mean they do not see any potential in him, or is this an age issue because he is so young? Can someone please share their experience? I hear there is such a demand for boys. I don't know what to think anymore.

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Oreo, how old is he? I don't know what you mean by age cutoff to audition for the bigger name schools.

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He just turned 12. For a lot of the schools, 12 years old is the minimum age.

Edited by Oreo

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Most likely age, Oreo. They need the older boys more, as they are ready for pas de deux classes.

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My son received his first scholarships at 13 1/2, full to a smaller program and a 25% to a big name program. I wouldn't worry about it, your son is still very young.

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Oreo, I would agree with the information you've received above. I have two boys. At 12 the oldest was around some "prodigy" dancers who were getting a lot of attention. It was disheartening sometimes to hear about other dancers getting more in the way of attention and scholarships. My oldest has had dramatic physical changes in six years. He followed the growth path of one side of our family. At 18 it seems the playing field is a bit more even. There definitely have been rewards for hard work, determination and patience. My youngest followed the other side of the family's growth path and always had a more athletic physique. But he took a break at 12 and now we are in the process of seeing how that translates in auditions.

 

They all grow differently. If he loves what he is doing and is happy and healthy and dance works for your family, get the best training you can and let him dance away. Enjoy your journey, don't worry too much about the others' journey.

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At twelve, there are lots of scholarships for boys at non-company schools - Harid, Next Generation Ballet, Nutmeg, The Rock. When the boys are old enough for pas de deux (15+), the scholarships can be there at company schools. That said, there are no guarantees. At 14 my son received acceptances from big name company schools with no scholarships. At 15, my son was not accepted to those schools. We are still in the midst of audition season, but so far, he has received acceptances with scholarships - he is now 16.

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Not all boys get scholarships. We are at a company school and we have never gotten more than 25%. My son is 14.

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Don't read too much into scholarship offers. I feel like there is an over exaggeration sometimes and it's "expected" that just because you're a boy, and "everyone needs boys", they'll be offered scholarships. It does a disservice to the boys and the hard work that they do. Yes it's flattering, but you honesty can't judge the dancer as a whole by scholarships. At 12, he is still young. As he gets older and stronger, I'm sure that'll be a little more common place. But it is also true that it also depends on where he is auditioning. And there is more to picking which intensive he should attend than what scholarships he gets offered.

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My son is 15 years old, and now he receives full tuition/housing scholarships to several big name schools, but when he auditioned for one of them (he was 12), he didn't get anything. But when he was 13, he started getting scholarships to all the schools he auditioned for. I've seen some boys who started receiving offers even when they were young and have kept receiving offers as they get old, and some boys who started getting some offers later, and some boys who used to get offers when they were younger, but not anymore, and it is good to remember that there are some boys who have never received anything.

 

12 years old is a little too young to tell if he is talented enough to be able to be professional, so you don't need to be disappointed even if your son doesn't get any offers now. He might be a late bloomer :)

 

Edited by Nishigen

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I concur. When DS was 12 he got very small scholarships or none at all. DS didn't go to a SI until he was 14 and when he did, he mentioned the boys younger than him really struggled with being away and the demands of dancing all day at the SI so he was glad he had waited until he was more mature. Scholarships are not a given, especially if DS isn't what a company is looking for. At 16 he was accepted to 4 big company SI's - 2 with no scholarship at all, 1 on full room/board/tuition scholarship, and one full tuition. The two no scholarship ones came down to body type and training style. His training has mostly been cechetti with a smattering of Balanchine, where the two no scholarship offers were strictly Balanchine in nature.

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I hope I am not hikacking this post, We are on the opposite end of the spectrum, DS, 16, has been offered full tuition scholarships for the last 3 years to various big 3 letter schools. This year he was offered a modest scholarship to a larger school (smaller than last years' offer), a 1/2 tuition scholarship to a big three letter (which waitlisted him the previous 2 years) and has results pending from the last (but first choice) SI. Should we consider the decline in scholarship offers a decline in DS professional potential? I do know he is on the smaller side still for boys his age. I can't figure out which direction to guide him. I keep reading about scholarship offers increasing with age.

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Theyalldance-- That's certainly something to at least think about. At age 16, young men are nearing company-readiness. Is he in a pre-professional school with a strong men's training program? Is he taking enough class hours to be competitive with the other teen boys auditioning?

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He is definitely at one of the best (if not THE) best school in our area. It is highly regarded in the area as well as often being recommended on this board multiple times. The studio produces professional ballet dancers, male and female. He gets regular mens training with other boys as well as weekly partnering. Ballet classes 6 days/week.

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theyalldance,

 

I think your sample of audition results is too small to reveal anything about your son's progress or lack thereof. He's probably doing just fine, and any number of flukes might account for the decreased scholarship at one program. The admission to the other is a success after his having been waitlisted in previous years. I will keep my fingers crossed that you get excellent news from the third.

 

But even if you don't, I still think you should take flukes into account. Was your ds auditioning with older groups? Were the adjudicators different? Did he have an off day? Did competition suddenly increase at any of your target programs this year and were the auditions more crowded than usual? Is your son going through a growth spurt? You've probably got more experience than I do with this whole process, but do remember that factors other than your d.s.'s progress and potential can throw off an audition.

 

Good luck!

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