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Ballet Talk for Dancers
mmded

Royal Winnipeg Ballet School

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Newbie

I, too, would love to get a sense of the number of dancers - esp. boys - accepted to the SI (Aspirant group), and the number who are invited to the year-round Aspirant program!

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mom2

My dd is a graduate of the school, however that was a few years ago so my information is not overly current. At the time dd was at the school, it was rare for aspirants to be invited to the year-round program who were not graduates of the school. It did happen, yes, but less than 5 per year I would say. If ascballerina says there are more from outside the school taken now, that would be more current information. I am not sure how many dancers were accepted for the SI - classes I observed were never overly large.

 

In the summer there are more students than the year-round residence can handle, so the older dancers are housed in a residence a short distance away from the school.

 

During the year, aspirants wouldn't typically be in the residence either, but that was more from personal preference. There are a number of apartments within a close distance.

 

I hope this information is helpful - sorry it isn't up to date!

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Newbie

Thank you - any information is helpful right now! We're facing the agonizing decision - discussed in other threads re: SIs - as to whether my ds should attend the RWB SI and hope he's asked to join the year-round program (with no idea as to the success rate), or go somewhere else where perhaps he has a better chance of admission. It would be dreadful to come up empty after the SI, with nowhere to go in September (he's graduating this June)...

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ballerama

we are in a similar situation, its such a gamble to know where to do the SI in the summer. I have noticed that Arts Umbrella in Vancover BC has their summer intensive from August 7 - Aug 28 this year so we are thinking perhaps my dd will attend two SI's. We are considering RWB if anyone has any more info on current full time experiences it would be very helpful.

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ascballerina

Do you have specific questions? I can try to get answers for you. I'm under the PD umbrella at RWB, but not a part of their Ballet Academic Program. I have several friends in that stream to whom I can inquire if I can't answer a question myself.

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ballerama

I would love to know what the level of training is like for a grade 10 student. Is is an ok place for her to live year round her first time away from home? Is it a school that has a culture of kindness? I have heard they get a lot of injuries there is this true. How is the food? Anything really about the school. I believe she will be accepted into the fulltime program if she goes for the summer and want to make sure it's a good fit for her.

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mom2

Hi Auntie,

 

It's hard to answer your questions as personal opinions and preferences vary so widely. In addition, my information is dated as it's been a while since my daughter graduated from the school.

 

During the years my daughter was a student there were injuries of course, but I really doubt that the injury rate was any different than it would be for another school. Dancers do need to learn to listen to their bodies - and this is something perhaps more challenging to do when you're away from home, especially if you're getting used to new teachers and not sure what to say to the teachers. That said the teachers at RWB always expected the student to inform them before class of any health issues.

 

Food is about what one would expect I guess - ascballerina would probably be able to give you a more current description. The kitchen tries to offer healthy choices, and have things available at various times (particularly after school and in the evenings).

 

I believe the highschool students still go to the University of Winnipeg Collegiate? The Collegiate always worked to be flexible to meet the needs of the dancers (sometimes they were stuck with provincial curriculum expectations though, such as phys ed). Dancers do need to be pretty independent in study/homework.

 

Hope this helps.

 

mom2

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ascballerina

I'll expand where I can on mom2's information.

 

In terms of food, I'm a vegetarian (although I eat fish if the opportunity presents), and there is always a meat option, and a veggie option for the "main course". Even in cases where I am not a fan of the vegetarian option, I can always find adequate food in the salad bar to make a sandwich or a wrap. Often the salad bar has leftovers from the previous day, so I sometimes hit the jackpot and find, for example, salmon from last night's dinner, which is great on salad. Should the student have special dietary needs (such as gluten-free), the kitchen will make them a special dish, in cases where the main meal is not gluten-free. I find there's good variety in the meals. There's also often at lunch (not sure about dinner) a treat of some form, like a muffin, or yesterday, brownies! There's also a snack that takes place later in the evening. There is a fridge where students can put their own food in (labeled!), as well. The salad bar seems to be open basically all day, too.

 

Yes, that's still true. RWB students must attend the Collegiate; homeschooling in any form is not allowed. That said, sometimes the students do take online courses, which I believe are arranged through the Collegiate, and supported by a teacher that Residence has on staff. I'm not sure exactly how that part works, as I think some students do it and not others.

 

Hope that helped.

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ballerama

thanks very much, that is helpful! My niece keeps to a vegan diet so it sounds like she will be able to manage there.

 

so do you like studying there is the ballet training of a high standard? Is it a hard school to get accepted into?

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mummy2three

Ballerina, what did your neice decide?

The ballet training is of the highest calibre, students go on to many companies including the Royal Winnipeg Ballet.  

The residence staff is amazing, they are very supportive.  The food is good, lots of choice, salad bar always open. There is also a kitchen where they can bake during the year.

How old is your niece?  

In younger ages it is more about raw talent, attitude and ability to hold corrections as they have time to mold and teach technique.  As they get older past training is more important in getting accepted.  Just my own personal observation it seems to be ie turnout, good feet, musicality, work ethic, attitude that are being sought as opposed to other narrow features like specific heights or a very specific body shape/type.  The girls are not all cookie cutter replicas of each other.

The school is investing in the children they do not want to have them have a career ending injury.  There is on site physio available and Dance restrictions are taken seriously, they have a great Healthy Dancer Policy, it should be in your Summer Acceptance package.  

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ascballerina

David Moroni is back this summer to teach, if anyone is interested!

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jwolfenden

Wow! He started the professional division at RWB School. What an honor!

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Ryn's Mom

I am wondering how many (girls) are picked from the SI for the aspirant program? Have they already filled their spots with their current year round students who are ready for the next level? How many spots do they really have open to fill from the SI students? 

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ascballerina

While it’s true that graduates do often end up Aspirants, I think there are four or five new girls attending who were taken from the SI this year.  Of the Level 7 graduating class of 4 ladies last year, 2 of them are Aspirants this year.  There are a couple second-year Aspirants also.  I know of two more ladies invited to join Aspirant in the summer who ultimately did not attend.

This year, the anticipated number of Level 7 female graduates is 6.  

I don’t know how many spots are “open” so to speak, as in the several years I’ve been here the size of the program has fluctuated somewhat, but I can assure you that there are invitations to the program for SI auditionees. :D

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Ryn's Mom

ascballerina - thank you so much for the information! I appreciate it! This will help in our decision making this Summer! 😊

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