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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Stuck In The Middle


cosprballet

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I have a 2 DK, a 13 DS and a 10 DD. They both grew up at a fairly large well rounded studio, of which I am the business manager. I danced at this studio until I was 13 and life took me in other direction. No regret's, although I will always wonder "what could have been..." if my parents would have followed the advise of my teachers and let me go to a year-round program. I very much enjoyed the whole process of learning, but wasn't very seasoned in the performing arena.

Anyway, on to to my present journey of this life in ballet. My DS is somewhat talented, has received alot of good feedback and encouragement both locally and and abroad. His determination and drive are exact. He KNOWS that he want's to be a dancer. His answer to the poll on the Men's Forum: What do you want to use/or be in ballet in the future? His answer was a matter of fact: A principle dansuer, and then a choreographer! He does have to work very hard in the daily grind of learning his craft, but lives for classes every day. In fact his goal is year-round so he can "live it, breathe it, be it." I am in awe of his resiliance as being a 13 yr old 7th grade boy who loves ballet, and everyone know's it. He has the attitude of "you take me as I am, or not, it's your choice."

On the other hand we have DD who has more natural talent in her little pinky than I could have ever dreamed of. Problem? She has no spirit or drive :P . I know that we have no say in this. It's a gift that has to come from inside. We will be exploring swimming, drama, singing, volleyball, ect. in the coming future because this is what she wants. Ballet will take a back seat for her, so she can explore all the things she say's she missing out on.

My question is: has anyone had this experience with an extremely talanted child who does not have an interest to pursue their gift? How do we as her parents guide and support her? We don't want to her to resent ballet, but are hoping that given the opportunity to explore other things, that she will eventually come full circle and return to ballet.

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You are so wise to let her back off and explore other interests! Drive, ambition, and interest are as much a part of the "natural talents" package as the rotation, musicality, line, etc. What may be hard for you is that we often feel we have more control over the former than the latter. Height, proportions, natural rotation, or foot conformation are all things that we know we can't change. We can always hope to influence the less tangible things.

 

But, it might be a false hope. I think, in the end, you can feed a passion, but never create one.

 

It sounds as though you are grieving for your own lost dreams for your child. That's entirely natural. When you are ready, perhaps you will find it useful to concentrate on the other "natural talents" she surely has. I truly believe that the biggest "push" a parent can give a child is the confidence and freedom to find their own niche in the world.

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She has no spirit or drive  . I know that we have no say in this. It's a gift that has to come from inside

 

If I'm reading correctly your DD is 10 and that is still young for her to key in on what her true gifts are. You may find that she has bigger and better gifts around the corner that you have not seen yet.

 

Whatever her life choices, I'm sure you'll be the supportive mom who will help her pursue her dreams and honor her gifts.

 

vj

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yes, cosprballet, I don't think you can force it. She will come to it on her own if she is meant to. For all my moaning over losing ballet (I, too danced once), I did discover I had a whole lot of other talents, and several of them viable for making a living. By contrast, when I was in college, my professors tried to talk me into an academic career in the field of my major. They really thought I had potential, but I just knew I didn't want it, and no amount of talking would have made a difference. Inside, your dd must know her own temperament. Maybe she doesn't think she has her brother's drive, but will try it out later...You are doing the right thing, don't worry. :wub:

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Thankyou all for responding, an outsiders perspective is always a welcomed relief. To set the record straight I do not regret not "living the dream". I have always enjoyed the inner workings of ballet, the disipline, the artistry, the daily nose to the grindstone of working, rehearsing, and creating. I get that everyday working at the studio that I once danced at. Being a mom to my children while having a job that is flexible enough for me to participate in their school function's, outside activities other than dance is something I feel fortunate to have.

As for DD, I think her tender age of 10 leaves plenty of time for self discovery, mcrm55, the point you brought up about following her brothers path might be a factor in NOT wanting to go there. We have 3 very headstrong children.so I know our best influence is consistent support. They will make up their own minds for their future!

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I wouldn't give up. If your daughter is only 10, she just may not like the repetitiveness and discipline of ballet. Does she like to perform? Does she like to watch ballet? Sometimes really talented kids are bored in the lower level classes. They don't have the maturity to understand why all the barre work is important. If she still wants to go to class at all, I would let her go on a part-time basis and see what happens.

Sure it would be a good idea to expose her to other activities - all dancers should try other things when they are 10. However, you don't want her to grow up and say "why did you let me quit ballet?" If we let kids quit everything they did not like at first, how many kids would go to school? I also don't know many kids who like to practice musical instruments.

The bottom line - does she like to perform? In my opinion, if the answer is yes, I would keep her in ballet on some level and hope that when she gets a little older, she will understand the importance of class. GOOD LUCK.

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