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Correct Protocol?


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Okay, I would like everyone's opinion as to what is "correct" when given a compliment in class. If I turn my head towards the teacher to say thank you, I usually end up losing my balance. I don't like to speak to someone without looking at them. Or what about when you're asked to demonstrate a step and the teacher points out you're the only person doing it correctly. Now, I like to be given kudos and compliments as much as the next person, but it really makes me uncomfortable to be singled out. Of course there are those times when you think you're completely pulled up and you think your leg is at least 90degrees, and then the teacher tells you to pull up and lift your leg higher, I am actually more comfortable with that! So, what do you folks do when complimented, other than just blush! :P

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  • Administrators

When given a compliment in the middle of a combination, keep going. No acknowledgement is necessary or expected! If you are singled out to show how to do it right, just do it. The teacher will thank you. :P (In our classes when this happens and the student demonstrates it well, the class will applaud, which I think is great. The student blushes, but that's okay too. ;) )

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Guest Leigh Witchel

To further what Victoria said, here's the common sense behind it. Class is for everyone, not any specific student. Your behavior in class should be what's needed to move the class forward. If your teacher says "Good!" during a combination, and you stopped to acknowledge it, you'd throw the class off by stopping. Just keep going. (Parenthetically for the same reason I think that students should ask general questions - ie, "could you show that transition again?", "is this on count 3 or 5?" or any other question that might also be asked by another student during class, but should withhold lengthy specific questions that would stop the flow of class - ie, "I'm having trouble with my pirouettes" until after class is over.)


If your teachers asks you to demonstrate and then compliments you, thank him or her briefly, and then continue on with class. And be proud of yourself! It's an honor.

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Guest beckster

I am dreadful at being complimented. The teacher will say "very nice beckster" at the end of a combination and I will go "Oh, but I wasn't doing my arms right" or something. Why can't I just say thanks? :wink: I guess I got used to being the dunce at the back and now I find it quite strange being one of the more advanced beginners and getting asked to demonstrate things or do extra arms or something on my own. I actually don't like it much, I feel like a swotty teacher's pet or something!

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In my class you see the phenomemon that every time we're doing a combination across the floor and the teacher says "very good, So-and-so!" the So-and-so immediately loses balance, steps to the wrong direction, or does something stupid with her arms. The teacher has threatened to only say nasty things to us from this on, since it seems to work so much better... :wink: (Not completely serious, though.)

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Well, I feel much better about this. What I understand is that no acknowledgement is needed when in the middle of a combination (whew - that helps!), but if given a compliment after asked for a specific demonstration, then it's okay to say thank you (and that's much easier than in the middle of a combination). I agree with beckster, that I feel like a "swotty teacher's pet" (not knowing what a swotty is, I still get the drift), and I am used to being in the back because I am the oldest (sometimes three times older) and also the largest person in the class, I am not used to these comments, more familiar with the negative. Thank you all very much for your help on this. :wink:

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Mind you I don’t get that many complements, but if I do and it is just general, something like “good Gary,” I don’t acknowledge them other than to perhaps smile or nod, assuming of course the exercise is finished. But if the complement is more specific, I cannot resist trying to turn what was said into something of a joke. Stern, unsmiling faces in adult ballet classes are depressing.

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Banter, up to a certain point, between the teacher and the student, is usually all right. I think I used to flirt with the edges of propriety, though, sometimes, as (and I am divulging a great dark secret here) I like to make wisecracks. :thumbsup:


I don't think that I am divulging a great secret however, when I reveal that fellow member glebb and I have known one another for quite a long time. One time when our teacher in Miami, Thomas Armour, was having a conversation with me while we were doing the post-rond de jambe stretches at the barre, he was questioning me about my pre-Miami studies, and glebb was right across the barre from me. Mr. A. said, "You're a very strong dancer," which was a nice compliment from a man who didn't hand them out easily, but I answered, "Well, odor isn't everything!" Mr. A. went, "harrumph," glebb went, "Hee! hee! hee! hee! hee!" :)


And dancepig, a "swot" is like a "grind", a bright student who slavishly obeys the teacher's every word. :thumbsup:

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Guest joodiff

Well, I usually flash my teacher(s) a quick smile or a cheeky grin if we're still right in the middle of an exercise. Otherwise, I'd just crinkle my eyes slightly into what I think are my "smiley" eyes. I know it's not right to make such faces when i'm dancing (especially in classical ballet) but I feel a little perturbed if I don't show my teacher/teachers that I've heard what they've said. :rolleyes:

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I think that's the problem, if I don't make some form of reply, I feel as though I'm being rude, but if I reply, I usually lose my balance, or worse. But it seems as though it's really not rude to simply soak it all up and not make much of a response. Gads, you'd think I was a teenager, but then again, perhaps if I was a teenager I wouldn't worry so much about being rude :lol:

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Guest Giselle83

I try my best to keep my face as she had said nothing but sometimes I cant hide my surprise!!! or if the teacher is right next to me I might make a little nod. But Usually I do nothing...I'm kinda shy. And I always think in my mind 'well maybe my arms really were good but she didnt notice my horribly pointed toes' lol =)

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Oh, I feel SO MUCH IDENTIFIED with the one who said she loses her balance or steps wrongly after a compliment!!! It nearly always happens to me so :)



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( . . . I am divulging a great dark secret here) I like to make wisecracks. :wink:

I'm stunned! :o:innocent:

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