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Ballet Talk for Dancers

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jas- Both PK's daughter and my daughter came out of the same dance school and are now attending USF. Can't believe they are finishing their 2nd year already. My DD has been very happy with the program. She's actually voiced some "complaints" that she's dancing too much this year!!! The faculty are top notch. And the facilities are lovely. And USF's dorms are very nice. Let me know what else I can help you with. Perhaps we can exchange email addresses since you are unable to PM.

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Oh, Thanks, crzctldt, you can reach me at [ ]. I'd love to hear from you about the program. Also, let me know if your d is involved in the "final showings" next week, especially on 4/25.




[edited by moderator to remove e-mail address now that member received it.]

Edited by dancemaven
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Great! We're coming down to the wire in terms of decisions, but have not yet visited Goucher or USF. We're going to make that happen later this week. Some questions... I think I remember seeing that admission to the BFA program isn't determined until later in the first year, but I haven't found that info on their web site. How selective is that program (#s auditioning vs #s accepted) What is instruction like in the 1st year? I know there are placement auditions. Have your daughters' found the instruction to be consistently good? Are they as serious about their teaching of BA's as they are BFA's

What about the surrounding area? Are there "must see" college student hang-out areas that might help my d get a feel for the social climate?

Re: academics...have your d's been pleased about the quality of teaching and ability to get into their desired classes?

Anything else that might help us take in the climate of the place in a very short period of time would be very helpful. Thank you so much for responding.

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I can speak for Usf as dd is a BA student there. It is easy to get accepted into the dance program but not into an upper level. I know of dancers who started in lower levels for different reasons (one was due to injury recovery-she was moved up and became much happier in this level)! The quality of dancers is amazing within this system. The instructors are the best possible-check out the website. My daughter has Gretchen Ward Warren daily ( ballet dancers know who she is). The BA is taken very seriously, lots of dance hours. I do believe the BFA is determined at the end of the first year. It is becoming harder to get into the university-dance audition and university entrance are separate.

The campus is pretty, and huge, but as a dance major you always have the closeness of that department. Although it's said to be a commuter campus, it's buzzing with students, new dorms, pools, outdoor rec, movies on the lawn. Most students live off campus in apartments (like my daughter) but walk right to campus. Life is fun while working hard. I suppose a must see would be Ybor City, the Botanical Gardens on campus, the west coast beaches, a Bulls football game.

Like most other schools it can be hard to get into classes at some point. My dd usually does some classes online each semester to make it easier. She got closed out of a needed bio class and finally got into it three weeks late, but she has a tougher schedule as she's focusing on sciences as well as dance. She's been assigned her BA junior project in dance science. Upper classmen get priority for classes but usually it works out.

Finally it really depends on what your student is looking for. Goucher is very different form USF. You have to shop for what meets your own needs.

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I hope you received my email answering many of your questions. Yes, my DD will be performing later this week.. Maybe you'll get to see her. Unfortunately, I have yet to see her in any USF productions.

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  • 4 months later...

What has been everyones experience this year? My daughter is a freshman placed in level 1 by video audition and is unhappy with the ballet class. They haven't even worn pointe shoes! She likes her instructor and he has told her she should be moved up, but there is no room in the upper levels and that is unlikely to change by next term. She is very happy with every other aspect of USF though. The dorms are great, the food is good, she likes her academic classes, and she has made a lot of friends.

Edited by ruth
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Ballet 1 does not do pointe. When my daughter was admitted a couple of years ago, they told everyone this. Ballet 2 had pointe, but I believe they said it was only twice a week. (Note: DD went to another school.)


Nice school, lovely campus, good football team!

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My dd is ballet focus. She wasn't available for placement class (we are out of state) so that may be why she was placed where she was. She met with her advisor this week and was told that dancers are evaluated at the end of the term, so dd must of misunderstood when she said that there will be no opportunity to move up. dd was pleased at the end of the meeting with her advisor. She really does enjoy USF. I believe she is in good hands. Thanks!

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  • 3 months later...

We just drove my daughter to the airport to head back to college after winter break. I am happy to report that things are going very well for my daughter at USF. She was fortunate enough to be moved up in ballet and was cast in their next performance. She was also placed in the variations class. She couldn't be happier or more excited.

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  • 1 year later...

Time flies, doesn't it :grinning: There hasn't been a USF update since last year - wondered if anyone had more to say about how its going and/or any changes in the program. It sounds like might be a great fit for my dd.


PK, I was especially interested in hearing more about your dd and her "science" interest. Is this "dance sicences" or more general biology or the like? My dd is really focused on trying to do both academics (science & writing are her favs) and high level ballet (she currently dances 25+ hrs/ 5-6 days wk at prepro studio, lots of pointe). Is this sort of approach possible at USF? Can BA Dance minors take advanced classes if placed there? Double major possible / do-able?


Taradriver - I have so appreciated reading all of your great info on these college (& the SI) threads. I know your dd ultimately chose a different program and looked at many of the ones we are very interested in (Iowa for e.g.) - would it be possible for you to share where she did end up going? I think I am close to 40 posts but have never done the pm thing before.


Large size and therefore possibility of those mega large lectures is a negative - but dd will have some APs under her belt, can a savy student negotiate getting into some smaller classes? We'll have to find out more about this and possible "honrs program/seminar style" courses. USF will be at a college fair in our area this month and so will talk with their representative and hope to visit sometime this year (dd is sophmore in hs).


We have also inestigated Goucher and I noticed several comments on this thread about it...particularly interesting was Hans' comment that it is not where he would reccomend a dancer go. Can anyone, esp. Hans say more about this. Granted this comment was posted in 2005, perhaps things have changed or improved in the interim?? Perhaps I should post this part of my question on the Goucher thread...


OOPS - just went back and reread the Goucher thread - Hans does in fact elaborate on what he meant and since 2005 there have been updates from dancers in the program. We'll have to visit and dd will have to decide over the next 2 years about her dance "goals" she is still unsure about a professional dance career but for now wants to dance and train as hard as she can and improve and grow ... its her passion :thumbsup:

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DD ended up at TCU. TCU was a great fit for her, but, unfortunately, the ballet program was not. DD had issues with dancing for grades and left the program after the first semester.


TCU was GREAT about her major transfer. She's now a junior there, majoring in Secondary Ed, and was just accepted to one of the graduate programs. Her grad study will begin senior year, so she'll have a BS in 4 years and an MS a year after that.


CSU Long Beach offers dance science. It was dd's second choice school. She was accepted at USF but it was just not the right fit. No knock on the school or the program, you either feel it or you don't.


It is very important that your dd considers how she will feel about dancing for grades. There's a thread about this out there somewhere.

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