vicarious Posted December 15, 2004 Report Share Posted December 15, 2004 After reading the thread on Jobs and US Trained Dancers in Cross Talk, I felt validated in the role I have taken as a mom in providing a part of the “emotional aspects of training”. Some people on this board seem to disagree with my parenting style. The government of my home is a Benevolent Dictatorship and I control the treasury. If my dd wants “the government” to pay for ballet she needs to have the physical form and health for it and take it seriously. This “government’s” treasury doesn’t have the luxury to do something just because its fun. I want it to be fun but it also needs to be something my kids can be successful at. Part of ensuring that success I think, is ensuring discipline. A large part of my role in encouraging that is insisting on class attendance and proper class appearance (hair ect.). Here’s what happened this weekend. DD was in a dressing room for Nut with several dancers that were recreational students. Out of that group she had one of the more complicated parts. I noticed she was getting a little puffed up. As things progressed she starting acting less serious. After the first performance she melodramatically announced “I’m sick of this and we still have seven more performances.” Most parents can tell when their kid’s are saying or doing something just to be cool or fit in. This was one of those times and it sounded just like one of the other girls. I told her that this was a very tiny taste of what she wanted to make her career and if she had second thoughts to let me know before I wrote next month’s check. The next thing was after the second and third performance. Again being dramatic, she said she didn’t do as well because her toes hurt. She could go hours in pointe shoes at the summer program, but not for a 20 min part in each performance. I told her to work through the pain. Lastly before the fourth performance she told me she didn’t have to go to warm up with everyone else. She said her dress was difficult to put on so she’d warm up in her dressing room. No one in her dressing room was intending on going to warm up. She and another dressing room mate made the fortunate mistake of going into the theatre. The instructor told them to promptly get dressed for class and on the stage. I won’t fall for the “dressing room warm up” again. After that I told the executive director I thought she wasn’t taking things as seriously as usual and if he could find out if the instructors had observed that as well. Well the next day at class the instructor told everyone that during performance time students tended to slack off in class and that she wasn’t going to let that happen. DD had quite a work out. In the next night’s class the other instructor “worked her buns off”. I am glad I spoke up. With other students and being in the middle of a performance it might have taken a little while longer for them to catch her. After those two classes she’s acting more like herself and not Prima Donna ish. Here’s the question. As parents how do you help encourage the discipline necessary for ballet? As teachers what do you need from parents to encourage this discipline? Once I heard an instructor say the progress of a student had a lot to do with the mother’s efforts. Quote Link to comment
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