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mom2

Ballet Schools in Canada

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balletbooster

Thank you Ottawamom for your kind congratulations! Not living in Canada, we really don't know whether it is a big deal or not to be accepted to RWB, but our impression is that the training would be very good.

 

My daughter is 12yrs. old. She will be 13 before the summer session begins. She auditioned via video, as we do not live anywhere near the US audition sites.

 

We are looking at RWB because it is our understanding that the head of the Royal Ballet School in London was a principal at RWB. My daughter really liked the training and the teachers at White Lodge (RBS) and would like to continue in that style.

 

She has already attended several SI's in the states and is auditioning for others this summer. Last summer she attended the Kirov Academy as well as RBS. The differences in style and teaching were quite dramatic and while she learned a great deal at both programs, she feels a definite affinity with the Royal Ballet's teaching style.

 

As to the question of residency, we will cross that bridge when we come to it! In previous years, my daughter has not been ready to seriously consider living away from home. I am not sure if it is something she will decide to do or not. I am a single parent, with no other children, so if she earnestly wants to attend a program full-time, we might make the choice to move to that locale. At this point, I feel she is still so very young and I am just happy that she is having the opportunity to experience several excellent schools who do offer full-time programs so that she can make good judgements when/if she is ready to pursue such a course.

 

There are a number of well-known full-time programs in the US (Kirov, SAB, North Carolina, Harid, VA School of the ARts). All have very different teaching styles and school cultures. I think it is a good idea to look very carefully at the total environment each offers. It is awfully easy to be swayed by the "big name" and forget that there is so much more to consider. Our experiences have proven that you can never fully assess boarding programs until you go and "test the waters" during the summer session. So, that is what we have been doing over the last couple of years and it has yielded some very interesting results! biggrin.gif

 

I am still hoping there is someone out there who can tell me about personal experience at RWB. I did enjoy the posting about all the Canadian schools. Banff sounds very exciting. I looked at their website and we have missed this year's cutoff. What a beautiful place to dance!

 

[ February 05, 2002: Message edited by: balletbooster ]

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BW

Balletbooster, congratulations to your daughter! I'm sure there must be someone here who can respond to your questions about RWB. Perhaps, there is another section of this board upon which you can post this question - maybe somewhere under the General Discussion area, so that more readers will see it?

 

The Royal Ballet must have been a wonderful experience for your daughter! I, too, have a 12 plus year old daughter and can relate so well to all your concerns. A very wise mother you are. smile.gif

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balletbooster

Thanks BW! This parenting thing is tricky business, isn't it?

 

I will take your suggestion about posting the question elsewhere. I am new to this forum, so I appreciate the suggestion.

 

Yes, the Royal Ballet School is a wonderful program. The teachers were all kind and supportive. The girls did not seem to be particularly competitive with each other,as about half of the girls in the summer session had already been accepted to the full time program and the auditions for the following year are not held during the summer session. They begin in the fall/winter period of the next year. The classes are very small (about 15 per class - and only 50 in the whole program) and the training is slow and concise. The students take classes in Eurythmics to help with musicality and National and Greek dance as well.

 

It is a beautiful location, in what used to be Henry VIII's hunting lodge. There were 3 Americans there and one from several other countries as well(France, Italy, Portugal, Japan) so it has a very international flavor. The students got to see Swan Lake and Coppelia at Covent Garden, so it was a real treat in many ways!

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Guest Karen Vallevand

mom2 - Sorry I cannot send this privately but I haven't posted enough yet. On a previous topic you had suggested Quinte as a good school, given that NBS is further from Ottawa. Just wanted to let you know that my daughter is doing their open class this weekend in Ottawa, but will not do the audition. Does/did one of your daughters ever attend the school? As you might recall, I didn't think I would send her to Quinte full-time as I feel she is getting a good dance education here in town right now (of course, the fact that I still hate the idea of her not living at home and how much these programs cost $$$$ also factors in). I will let you know how she enjoys the class, if you're interested.

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mom2

Hi Ottawamom,

 

Yes I'm very familiar with the Quinte program. I'm sure your daughter will enjoy the class. If you'd like any further info perhaps I could e-mail you privately?

 

Let me know how it goes! smile.gif

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Guest Karen Vallevand

My daughter did the Quinte open class yesterday and did enjoy it but I was surprised, there were only nine students there (including herself) and this was a combined class for Junior and Intermediate levels. I always wonder why more kids don't come out for these classes, even if they aren't interested in auditioning - great experience with wonderful teachers and not too expensive ($15 for one hour).

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mom2

I'm glad your daughter enjoyed it Ottawamom! Who was the teacher for the class? Do you remember?

 

I think open classes are always a good thing, but I know a number of folks who don't like the expense (even though it is so minimal really).

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dancindaughters

There is so much talk of the two "big" Canadian schools, Royal Winnipeg and the National Ballet School. These schools have developed such fine reputations (I'm sure well deserved), that people seem to forget that there are a few other options for good summer or year-round training in Canada. A few that I have heard of are:

School of Alberta Ballet and Arts Umbrella (both associated with pro companies), Quinte, Edmonton Ballet School, Goh Ballet (Vancouver), and Banff (summer only?- heard this one is quite prestigious and hard to get into, but in a very nice setting!)

 

Does anyone have experience with any of these? Or are you aware of any other good programs in Canada?

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BW

Great new thread, dancindaughters! :rolleyes: I'm certainly familiar with two of the three you just listed but I know there are others who read this board who are much more in the know - I'm sure they'll reply as the day wears into evening.

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mmded

The summer program in Banff is the only one mentioned that has residence facilities as far as I am aware. It is strictly a summer program with perfomance opportunities at the conclusion of the program.

We do have experience with the Alberta Ballet summer school and the billeting was not a positive one. I am much more comfortable with a residence scenario with trained residence staff on 24/7 and a professional kitchen providing proper, well balanced meals and commercially licensed drivers transporting my child.

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tutu14

Quinte has residence facilities for the summer program but so far, not for the full-time. I do know that it is very high on their list of priorities though.

The billeting situation can be good but it can also be disastorous. I'm with mmded about the residence option, much easier on the parents' peace of mind.

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dancemomCA

Banff is a very good arts program, but really designed for the older dancer, say 17 and up. It is a 6 week program but is not supervised so the students lives essentially on their own. The dance program is part of the Summer School of the Arts, where they also offer drama, music, and writing programs. The program also attracts many adults and I think they also have a writer-in-residence. Many graduates go there for the summer to work with choreographers and to perform. Banff is where Godden put together his "Requiem" piece - the tribute to 9/11. The dance program is run by Annette au Pav, who was a Swedish ballerina - Mel is this right??

 

Other than the RWB and NBS, no other school offers a residence for full-time training. Quinte offers a residence for their summer program, not sure of the others.

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balletmom311

Banff has three dance programs that run in the summer. One is for professionals, one is for dancers that have just finished or are about to finish their formal training. The other is for students aged 13 to 17 who have at least an intermediate level of training. The Dance Training Program starts in late June and finishes early August , two weeks later than the other two programs. 60 Students are accepted through the audition process. The students dance 4.5 hrs per day , rehearsals are on top of this (the program ends with 4 workshop performances). The students live in residence and an RA is assigned to each floor.

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rosentom

I am pleased to see the mention of the other fine Canadian programs :yes: My daughter attends the School of Alberta Ballet in the Professional Division where we are so lucky to have such fine teachers as Murray and Nancy Kilgour and Joyce Schietze (and others). The progress my DD has made in less than 2 years is wonderful. Classes run 6 days a week, ballet daily, pointe 3-4 times per week, modern and character class offered as well. The program does not offer a residential experience with the exception of the 3 week summer school where a limited residence is available. Most away summer students are billeted with school families. The ballet school has an agreement with both school boards and my daughter attends high school with around 25 other prof. division students. They have early dismissal and are bussed to the ballet school.

The prof. division students are working through the Cecchetti syllabus with Joyce Schietze being the head of the Cecchetti Society of Canada. All I can say is how very pleased we are with the program and the progress DD has made.

DD also attended the Banff Centre Dancer's in Training Program last summer.

 

Rosentom

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dancemomCA

balletmom311 - Thanks for all of the additional, correct info on Banff - I was told that it was NOT superivsed by an RA, so did not want to send DS out there. Are there many 13 year olds at the school in the summer?? I do know that many graduates go there as they love the performance opportunities and the beautiful surroundings.

 

rosentom: - Does your daughter live at home, or at a billet??? How many students are from out-of-town? Just curious. Also, when did Joyce Schietze join the school? She taught at the "School of Dance" in Ottawa for many, many years, then when to Quinte - I assume she has left Quinte. She is a very good teacher.

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