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Redstorm

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One of dd's new teachers had a discussion with me regarding dd's dreams and aspirations. It was a kind of impromtu discussion that kind of took me off guard. When I told him dd wanted to become a professional dancer he said she will need to make some changes. He said she has great potential, a burning desire to succeed, is very foccussed and a great facility for ballet but needed to change some bad habits. Has this happened to any other dancers out there? Especially when changing to a new school?

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I think that you should feel very good about a teacher approaching you with not only concerns but a possible solution! It may seem like a step back, but with your daughters positive attitude toward it, it sounds like a giant step forward. How kind of your daughter's teacher to take the time to identify problems and want to work with her. This is a wonderful thing. :thumbsup:

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Redstorm - I forget (if I knew) from your earlier posts how old your daughter is - but this is great and your daughter has an excellent attitude. Somewhat similar, in one year of training in a company related professional school, where my daughter (as a relatively new student there) had been at the highest level for some months, after they identified certain weaknesses, they asked her to take additional classes at the next lower level. The idea was that by working on certain technical weaknesses at a slower pace, she would get to the other side of the problems (well, major paraphrasing on my part).

 

Keep your eyes on that long term prize if she hopes for a career. Whenever they identify weaknesses and come up with a plan to give extra attention and help the dancer overcome them - that's excellent!!

 

Cheer up, mom! :thumbsup::wink:

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I am not a teacher, but I have seen this happen. And your DD has the correct attitude about it. Taking a lower level class in conjunction with regular classes will, if used correctly as the teacher has specified give your DD a chance to really concentrate on the technique of a specific skill.

 

Specifically I have seen this in dancers who have struggled getting over pointe shoes (not the shoes but the strength in these cases), dancers who struggle turning, and in our case a dancer who wants to work on her feet and extension as a personal challenge. Being in a class that you might be able to do in your sleep, means you can concentrate on HOW something should be done more easily. My own DD does this at least once a week and follows it with her regular classes so that she can concentrate during the slower combinations on pushing off the floor or working her feet against the floor with no pressure to "perform" she can do it or at least she feels she has seen some strengthening because of it.

 

Give it a chance. You will probably be pleasantly surprised. Again, this from a mom who has seen girls work this to their advantage. Not from a teacher's prospective.

 

vj

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I echo everyone's theme by saying how fortunate your daughter is and hope that if you hadn't just happened to bring this up in passing that this teacher would have brought it up himself. :thumbsup:

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I applaud that teacher. Sometimes it seems like many things in life should go back to the basics. :yawn:

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This also happened to my son when he changed to a new school. He started ballet training young and one of his former schools rushed him into doing things his little body wasn't ready for. As a result he had a few bad habits like foot rolling, etc. I think it is more of a blow to our egos than it is theirs, as my DS has been nothing but thrilled by getting to work on his foundation skills. I guess it is fortunate that he is still pretty young.

 

It sounds like you have a great teacher that is really interested in what is best for your DD. :yawn:

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This is not at all an uncommon situation, especially with a child who has all of the "gifts", in terms of facility for ballet, but the previous training has not been the best. They are "advanced" because they have all this facility, but they are lacking a LOT of the basics. They are able to jump to XYZ without really having nailed ABC, but they are probably not doing XYZ quite the way it should be done. There are some technical elements missing that, in the long run, will render the ability useless. Doing the slower work MUST be done!

 

When I was 15 I went to what was probably one of the first SI programs that existed. It was in Canada, at The National Ballet. I was placed in Advanced classes and Beginning classes on a daily basis! I had no placement, no knowledge, no clue what I was doing, but I had this body that could do anything, with rotation, extension, feet, proportion, coordination, everything. I could do all the steps, the turns, the jumps, etc., but heaven knows what it must have looked like! And I don't even want to think about my port de bras at that time. :firedevil: Everything was there, but it was all wrong and just had not had the training that taught you from the beginning. But, it all worked out, and I did most certainly end up with a very nice career as a dancer, and a much longer one as a teacher. :yawn:

 

Just adding an edit here to say that I think that that experience was a very important part of my becoming the teacher that I have become. I learned to seek the training, and I found it, and I found it where I also had the opportunity to be trained as a teacher, even before I danced professionally. This was, to me, a totally invaluable experience, and it made a totally different dancer out of me as well as a teacher.

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I completely agree with everything above. My dd has a bit of the same problem (I am told) as Miss Leigh had, facility, natural line, turnout, flexibility, espression, extension, everything. But I am wrestling with her to convince her that YOU CANNOT BUILD A HOUSE UPON THE SAND! If the training is not sound, not bedrock, later they will have nothing to stand on, much less dance on! Thank goodness your dd's teacher and your dd herself are so wise! Kudos to all three (or more) of you!

 

Now where is that kid? I gotta drag her over here to read this!!

:unsure::dry:

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Thank you all so very much! I do feel much better. DD's teacher talked to her today and told her he was going to be giving her different combinations during her regular classes and asked if she was okay with this.

It is so nice to hear other stories of dancers this has happened to...especially you Ms. Leigh! DD is only 13 so I am secure in knowing that she still has time to correct these issues and can still have a chance at a professional career.

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Redstorm-Your dd is very lucky to have the opportunity to enrich her training! My only other suggestion would be that you pick a Summer Intensive that would compliment what your dd is learning now. Knowing you I am sure that you will do this! :dry:

 

I know that in the past you have stated that your dd would like to have a lot of dancing hours at her SI. If she is working on specific skills that might be something she needs to adjust for this year. The teachers sound like they could help you choose the right SI and teachers for her. Luckily the teacher approached you in the middle of the audition season!

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Redstorm,

 

I have read your post with interest because a similar situation happened with my dd recently. We were attending a class with a new school. Afterwards, the teacher evaluated my dd encouraging us to pursue a professional track with her BUT she wanted to place her with children a year younger than her in a very simple class to correct mistakes and bad habits learned at her current school. I immediately thought my dd would be upset as she has always been in classes with children older than herself. Much to my surprise, dd was thrilled to have a "slower" class so she could as she stated "really think about what I am doing." She has been doing pirouettes for years now and can do a lovely triple but in this new class they are only doing preparation for pirouettes. THAT was hard for her at first but WOW the changes I have seen just from her slowing down a little have been amazing. It is hard to admit but I think I am the one who had a harder time with the placement. Didn't realize it... but it seems this Mom was a tad puffed up from all the interest the other school has always taken with dd. Now that was hard to admit...lol

 

FairyofMine

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  • 8 months later...
This is not at all an uncommon situation, especially with a child who has all of the "gifts", in terms of facility for ballet, but the previous training has not been the best. They are "advanced" because they have all this facility, but they are lacking a LOT of the basics. They are able to jump to XYZ without really having nailed ABC, but they are probably not doing XYZ quite the way it should be done. There are some technical elements missing that, in the long run, will render the ability useless. Doing the slower work MUST be done! 

 

When I was 15 I went to what was probably one of the first SI programs that existed. It was in Canada, at The National Ballet. I was placed in Advanced classes and Beginning classes on a daily basis!  I had no placement, no knowledge, no clue what I was doing, but I had this body that could do anything, with rotation, extension, feet, proportion, coordination, everything. I could do all the steps, the turns, the jumps, etc., but heaven knows what it must have looked like! And I don't even want to think about my port de bras at that time.  :o  Everything was there, but it was all wrong and just had not had the training that taught you from the beginning.  But, it all worked out, and I did most certainly end up with a very nice career as a dancer, and a much longer one as a teacher. :thumbsup:

 

Just adding an edit here to say that I think that that experience was a very important part of my becoming the teacher that I have become. I learned to seek the training, and I found it, and I found it where I also had the opportunity to be trained as a teacher, even before I danced professionally. This was, to me, a totally invaluable experience, and it made a totally different dancer out of me as well as a teacher.

 

 

 

 

 

I feel very encouraged by your wonderful post! You could do anything, but your lack of training did not enable you to do anything correctly. Although my dd has also struggled to overcome a dibilitating injury because of this, it is very heartening to know from another's experience that it can all work out. :P She is now relearning everything!

 

I appreciate your having said that this is a totally invaluable experience. It has enabled me to see that perhaps there is a silver lining in this cloud! :o

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