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Ballet Talk for Dancers

2018/19 Full Company Contracts: Apprentice, Corp, etc.

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The time is here! While it's still early for Trainees, conferences are beginning for current Ballet Company members. We want to celebrate, congratulate and share in the joy of our parents, dancers and even teachers who have students reaching the goals of one of the following: An actual company contract which is Paid Apprentice or Paid company member corp or renewed contracts Paid Apprentice or higher


The purpose of this thread is to congratulate those who have accepted a paid position with a professional company. This listing includes paid apprentice, corp positions or movement upwards to Soloist, Principal, etc. This is for signed contracts only not acceptances.


In prior years, this thread has not only been used to celebrate, but also to track, confirm and debunk some of the "beliefs" out there about who and how contracts are received. So we do ask that you share a bit about your journey without too many specifics. This helps our younger members see the wide variety of training, acceptances, etc. that come from our membership. We understand that we are but a very small segment of the ballet world here at BTFD, but over time, we've learned that we can see trends within our membership.

Feel free to either write the information in paragraph form or use the guideline we've developed over time.

So as coined by one of our members, Let the "Contractuballetions" begin:

(Sample form)
Main/Most recent training
: (ex. small local school, small company affiliated school, residency, etc. Do not list the program unless you want to)

Level of school completed: high school grad, partial college, college grad
Audition method: SI audition, Company Class, Cattle Call, Video, YAGP, etc.
Position granted: Secured Trainee position as school, Trainee as company, Apprentice with pay or without, Corp, Soloist, etc.
Position process/progress: promoted from Trainee, promoted from Apprentice, from "outside", 2nd year in same position, etc.
If Trainee: School Trainee, Bridge Trainee or if 2nd company does it function as school/company
Location of company: US, Canada, Europe, etc., not the actual city or company itself unless you'd like to share
Was this contract offered at a competition or because of competition attendance? Yes/No, explain if necessary


What words of wisdom would you offer those coming behind you about your journey or what you've learned being in the journey?

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Oh please know I am holding my breath for all of you out there moving towards this goal. :sweating:

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(written by parent)

Gender:  Female
Main/Most recent training: large school attached to large company

Level of school completed:  high school grad
Audition method: Cattle Call
Position granted:  Corps de Ballet

Location of company: US
Was this contract offered at a competition or because of competition attendance?  No

What words of wisdom would you offer those coming behind you about your journey or what you've learned being in the journey?

I wish I had some magic words of wisdom.  The company audition process was brutal.  If you thought waiting five days for a summer intensive result was bad, try waiting over five weeks for company results.   My daughter (age 17) did many cattle call style auditions.  Almost every audition had at least 100 dancers - sometimes split into groups of 50, sometimes not.  Most auditions cut large numbers of dancers right after barre.  In the end, she heard back from almost every company.  Many companies indicated that they were interested in her and she should PAY to train there as a "trainee" or top level of their school.  Their reasoning was that she was too young to be considered for the company but they would invite her for the summer and more of their training.  Several companies invited her to programs with a full scholarship but still part of their school.  Other "apprentice" (paid and unpaid) positions were offered but there was no guarantee of any actual dancing with the company.  In the end, she was fortunate enough to receive a corps contract offer.  Now seeing the climate of auditions, we feel truly grateful that she had any options at all.   This contract is for one year.   We are certain she will have to navigate more auditions ahead.   

I also want to add this observation: Most dancers at the company audition level are good dancers.  There is no such thing as "best dancer in the room."   Many dancers who were auditioning were already in other companies.  Every dancer is unique and brings something different.   "A flower does not think of competing with the flower next to it, it just blooms." (Zen Shin quote)


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Lady Elle

That's fantastic Narfie - congratulations!

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Congratulations Narfie!!!💕💕💕

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Congrats Narfie ! And thanks for the insight 

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Congratulations and thank you for sharing with us!

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Wow, that's really amazing that she got a Corps contract at 17. It's so much more common for 17 year olds to start out as Trainees or in the 2nd Company. A big congrats to your daughter!

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