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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Age and Technique


Guest nabema

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Guest nabema

Well, lately, I have been wondering whether my technique is strong enough for my age to be able to go on with a professional career in ballet with a good/major company. I'm 15 years old (but turning 16 in March, which makes me uneasy because it seems that 16 is the cutoff year for most places) and I would say that I am an advanced intermediate dancer. I study at a good school in New York as well as taking class at my high school (which is also in the city), and the students in my level are in my age group, if not my exact age. My teachers say that I am improving a lot and that I work well, though none of them mention my potential as a professional dancer just yet (should I ask them?). I just want to be realistic, because I have seen dancers at 13 and 14 who are practically professional. I am aware that everyone reaches their peak at different times, but would you think it ridiculous for someone who is approaching 16 with solid advanced intermediate training to pursue a career in ballet? Thank you.

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  • Administrators

Nabema, it really depends a great deal on your physical ability and potential. The age is not as important as whether you have the "equipment" to do it in the long run. If you do, then a couple of extra years of training may be all that is necessary. If not, then no amount of training is going to do it. So, at some point or other you are going to need to talk to someone about that potential. You might get some idea from how well you do at SI auditions. Have you been to some in the past, and do you plan to audition for some this summer?

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Guest nabema

Yes, I've been attending summer intensives (including a major one this past summer) since I was 13 and I plan on auditioning for several this season, including ABT, Boston Ballet's Summer Dance Program (I was accepted last year, but I could not go), Kaatsbaan, and a few others.

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Good! Then let's see where you get accepted this year, and the level. But mainly getting accepted is the key. You may be a bit below level, but getting accepted to good programs means there is a facility there to work with :huh:

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Guest nabema

Thank you for the encouragement, Ms. Leigh, in addition to getting into a good summer intensive this year, I'm also sure that this year in total will be a big one for me due to the amount of hours I've been training since September (on average 16 1/2 hours a week, the least 13 1/2 hours a week) and starting in February, I'll be adding additional classes and upping my total to an average of 22-28 hours per week. I just hope that the technique I have now will get me into a good summer intensive!

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I hope so too, nabema! Keep us informed of your progress :huh:

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