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Changing Studios???

Guest 2-opposites

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Guest 2-opposites

My 14 yearold DS has been taking ballet for about three years, we spent the first year at a very recreational studio. Knowing this was something he wanted to take seriously we moved to another studio. We checked out a few in the area and he choose this one mainly because he liked the teacher and the fact that they put on a full length dance based on a disney film every Jan. instead of the Nutcracker. He is doing well and has improved greatly. His teacher, through a mutual friend has suggested that as much as she would hate to lose him he really needs to go to a more pre-professional studio. He's having a problem with all this, he doesn't want to leave his teacher, he doesn't want to do the Nut every year, and he doesn't know where he wants ballet to take him. He says he likes ballet but its not a passion for him, he wants to be a Vetenanrian although talks of dancing through collage. We have been told over and over how much talent he has. We checked out one studio that has an excellent reputation and a male instructor, they wanted to put him in senior company on full scholarship but they also wanted him at the studio six days a week. He would not be able to take tap which he also loves and the whole place was based on training professioanls. He decided this was just too much for him and didn't want to go there. There are two other studios around that are preprofessional both have good reputations, one has a male instrutor the other doesn't. The one without the male instructor has one male dancer and my DS performed the soldier doll for them in the Nutcracker last year. This is the studio he would pick(mostly from a comfort point) since he know the studion, teachers and a few dancers. The other has more males, a very good male instructor, but we haven't gone to a class there as of yet and he doesn't even know if he wants too.

If we change studios again I want it to be the last time so I want to make sure we are making a smart decision. I'm afraid if I push too hard he'll just want to quit, he's already complaining if he goes to another studio he'll be doing the Nutcraker every year and saying that the other studios will not let him take tap and the fact he doesn't want to leave his teacher. He will be going to Ballet Austin for six weeks this summer on full scholarship. If he's just doing ballet for fun he's probably where he needs to be and we should just stay put. How hard do I push? He takes ballet four times a week and tap once. I guess my questions is, How old were your DS or how many years did they take ballet before they knew this is what they wanted to do? I feel like I'm hitting the 14 year old brick attitude wall when we try to have a discussion, any advise would be welcome.

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Which area in Texas are you? I am the mom of a dd who switched studio's last year. I would recommend researching each school option very carefully if you want this to be his last move. Also the staff at Ballet Austin might be able to help you at the end of the SI with school recommendations for your area.

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My instinct might be to wait until after the SI and see if his motivation and wishes change or stay the same. In other words: let him see what the possibilities are. His decision will then be better informed.

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Guest PAmom
...he doesn't want to leave his teacher, he doesn't want to do the Nut every year, and he doesn't know where he wants ballet to take him. He says he likes ballet but its not a passion for him...

Changes and transitions are hard for everyone. It sounds like he isn't clearly ready for another move nor the sacrifices that come with it. Leaving tap classes, his teacher, and the studio he likes might not be worth changing to a studio where he would get more focused training in ballet if it is going to eliminate his passion for dance all together. He may have huge potential to be the best ballet dancer ever but it means little if it's not something he is clearly interested in.


Do you have the option of putting off making a decision to change studios until after his SI? Things may change after he gets a taste of a what it can be like to dance ballet intensively at his SI. He may then have a more clearly defined feeling for how far and seriously he wants to pursue ballet at that point.

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Guest 2-opposites

Thank you all, I was going to wait to make a final decision untill after SI although I wanted to get as much information prior to him leaviing as possible and try out different studios to see all his options. He does not get home until July 31st and I know most of the studios around here start thier programs the first week in August. I hate not having a plan in place.

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I think you've gotten great advice from everyone. Wait until after the SI, and go along with his comfort zone. My son won't be 14 for four more months and has been clear about his intent to pursue ballet for about the past year and a half. Despite that, I wouldn't push him either.


I think one of our jobs as parents is to help our kids keep as many options open as possible and experience as much as possible. But at this age, our involvement shouldn't always include making decisions for them based on what we think is best.


If it happens that your son stays where he is, I can't imagine that it will affect him that much one way or the other, particularly if he has as much facility as you indicate. If he's comfortable there, great. He can always choose to move on in the future.

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I agree. Wait and let him either fall in love with ballet, and the challenge of ballet....or not. If he does, then move him, but if not, let him stay where he is. If he is not ready for a move this year, then maybe he will be next year. He has a lot of advantages in being a talented male dancer. The schools will take him, probably on scholarship, no matter when he decides to go there.

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My DD (age 13) will be attending Ballet Austin, 2nd session. Congratulations on your DS's scholarship. :pinch: We're also having to seriously consider switching studios and are having to deal with a lot of emotions, mostly because DD doesn't really trust that what's offered at her current studio isn't all she needs. She's having to rely on my word and that's a difficult pill to swallow at age 13. Our experience with Ballet Austin this summer will no doubt have the same potential effect -- either she'll come away ready to do whatever it takes or that'll be that -- she'll be a good recreational dancer and content to stay at her current studio and the trust wars with Mom will be over.


If it would help, my DD is trying to hook up with DKs who are members and going to Ballet Austin. She's going to the SI alone and is a bit nervous. Just let me know. :helpsmilie:


This is a great forum for advice.

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