Jump to content
Ballet Talk for Dancers
  • Announcements

    • Helene

      2018 Joint Fundraiser for Ballet Talk for Dancers and Ballet Alert!   02/03/2018

      We have launched our 2018 Fundraiser.  To donate, please see the instructions on our home page for checks (US dollars only) and credit card donations via PayPal.  We close the fundraiser as soon as we raise enough to sustain us for the next year, and we thank you for your support!

Recommended Posts

Lady Elle

My dd will be auditioning next weekend.  Just praying she doesn't get this really bad cold that has had me and her dad down for the oast week! đŸ™đŸ» congrats on your daughters college decisions!

Share this post


Link to post
Jules73

I'm so glad that they could connect, AKM : ).   Lady Elle, thank you and best wishes to you and your daughter!

Share this post


Link to post
Lady Elle

For those of you who have dk's in this program now, or have recently graduated or even those who have committed to going into OU ballet program next year, I would love to know what other programs you turned down to go to OU and why you choose OU over the others,

Share this post


Link to post
dancemaven

LadyElle, it is BT4D policy to not compare college programs—same policy as for SIs.  These are individual decisions and choices.

Share this post


Link to post
Lady Elle

Okay, thanks.  

Share this post


Link to post
leaper

Ladyelle, I encourage your DK to request to talk with a current sophomore to get some perspective on his/her decision. Our DS has been very happy with his choice. We had the opportunity to meet the new Director of the School of Dance last fall. We liked him and think he will bring great organizational strength. 

Share this post


Link to post
glissade_jete

Because I was a student there under the "old guard," some of the things that drew me to OU would be outdated at this point, but here are some of my reasons for why I ultimately chose OU over other selective programs which are still relevant today:

I LOVED the campus and I LOVED the dance facilities and the theatres (there are two different theatres you mainly perform in, one of which is a BEAUTIFUL newer venue). While there are older studios used as well, the main dance building, which is shared with the opera department, is gorgeous and prominently displayed on camus. To me, it showed that OU really valued the performing arts. I also loved the fact that OU is in a college town while being a very quick drive away from Oklahoma City. To me, that was the best of both worlds.

The university president (although about to retire) was a big supporter of the performing arts majors and loved running into the dancers on campus. The current Dean of the College of Fine Arts is the former, longstanding director of the School of Dance, so if anything, the dancers now are even more supported than they were when I was there.

I enjoyed being able to be classically focused in my training, rather than being required to take a lot of other genres beyond the required modern classes. That being said, you can take other genres if you want. During my time, dancers often took extra modern classes, and some were even able to fit dance classes from the musical theatre department into their schedules, such as tap and jazz.

For a public university, OU has a large percentage of National Merit Scholars on campus, which made me feel great about joining their Honors College. It was important for me to feel academically inspired. In fact, I worked with a professor who was formerly on faculty at Yale to write my honors thesis before graduation. As an Honors College student, I had the perk of having my advisor automatically be the Director of the School of Dance. The School of Dance holds their Honors College dancers in high esteem.

OU is very supportive of dancers working toward professional careers, and the faculty supports them after they graduate, as does the social media for the School of Dance. The dancers don't just "disappear" from the eyes of the School of Dance after they leave. This seems like it would be obvious, but there were other top programs I auditioned for who very explicitly stated that due to the competitive nature of the field, a professional performing career in a ballet company after graduation would not be likely.

Seniority is not a factor in casting. There are other programs out there where dancers shouldn't necessarily expect to perform much their freshman year. Freshman can and will be called to rehearsals for soloist roles or any other part.

Obviously, everyone has different priorities but those are some of the things that sealed the deal for me.

Share this post


Link to post
Lady Elle

Wow, thank you Glissade-jete.  The campus IS beautiful!!

Share this post


Link to post
gcwhitewater

I have two perspectives on OU: as a parent of a current ballet performance major; as a professional in the ballet world for 29 years.

glissade_jete’s assesment of the program is consistent with my daughters views as a current freshman.

As a parent: My daughter loves the program. She remains challenged and has commented that her training has continued. Meaning the staff “teaches” a lesson and doesn’t just “give” class. She also feels guidance and mentoring outside  of the training which is wonderful. The staff has a personal interest in those students who have an interest in the craft. She has enjoyed the dorm and dining hall. The schedule can be long depending on casting but, that is why she is there. 

As a professional: I am in the unique position of having a dear friend on staff, and an additional colleague as well. (As a result of those friendships I may appear to have a bias, however, if I felt differently, I wouldn’t send my daughter there!) They are both vested in training healthy dancers as well as healthy adults! The program has a good balance of technical training and performance training. It is a highly selective program...I believe they accepted less than 20 freshman last year. 

Without going into a comparison of specific programs I will say this: my daughter had several different programs to choose from. They ranged from company affiliated trainee positions and other universities. Why OU...she and I felt it was the best opportunity for her training to continue to grow with equal focus on classroom training and performance. It was the best fit for her.

Share this post


Link to post
Lady Elle

Gcwhitewater - thank you.  I really appreciate your perspective.  Great information.  DD really wants a program that continues her training so this sounds like a great fit in that regard.

Share this post


Link to post
dancingjet

Had DD gotten into OU I think it would have been hard for her to not go there. She loved everything about it when she visited and auditioned. Alas, the program did not love her back.

Share this post


Link to post
glissade_jete

I also want to add that I loved the fact that the program is so small. The entire ballet program is the size of single graduating classes at other schools. When I was there, we always had roughly 40 ballet majors total, men and women combined. It made it feel like a legitimate company, as opposed to a program where there are many, many more dancers. It also gives rise to a true family feeling amongst the dancers because everyone knows everyone else so closely.

Share this post


Link to post
Lady Elle

Yes and I hope it stays small.  With the big national tour they had this year I wonder if they are trying to grow the program. 

Share this post


Link to post
gcwhitewater

They are not trying to grow the program! They enjoy the intimacy of a smaller program. The extended tour this year is to reach more students and be even more selective than they already are. :wink:

Share this post


Link to post
Lady Elle

đŸ˜© well, I hope my dd has the opportunity to consider this program!  She felt good about the audition and they seemed to like her.  Fingers crossed, prayers lifted!!

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×