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Ballet Talk for Dancers
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A Real Live Dance Recital

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danceintheblood

Just to add my two cents worth regarding manners - my wide-sweeping generalisation is that manners are sorely lacking these days (God I sound so old!!). Children learn manners from their parents, whether through being taught or through imitation.

 

How many times has someone cut in front of you on the road, failed to indicate, sat on your tail? How often do you encounter rudeness from other customers in the supermarket or mall? How often have you been ignored when you are trying to be served? Shoved on the footpath? Talked down to? The list goes on. And these adults are now parenting children.

 

Sorry - I've started to rant again :P - but I just abhor bad manners. I treat others as I would wish to be treated (without being a doormat). I taught my kids manners from when they were very little and as they got a little older introduced the concepts of mutual respect and tolerance. I am proud to see my eldest daughter is doing the same with her children and my little three year old grandson always says please and thankyou. My children have beautiful manners and as a result tend to be treated well by others. It really comes down to respect, doesn't it?

 

As for audiences, enthusiastic clapping - good

Brava, Bravo - good

Whooping and cat-calling - save it for the football

Talking and moving about during a performance - absolute lack of respect and should be asked to leave :thumbsup:

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Gremlin

Why do people no longer remove small children and babies when they begin to cry? I wish I had a dollar for everytime crying drowned out the music. In cases like this, I wish the parents would adopt the 10 second rule used by that football dad on Oprah.....if they don't stop crying after 10 seconds, LEAVE THE AUDITORIUM! Other parents want to watch their children uninterrupted.

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calamitous

May I ask, why people bring infants and toddlers to programs that are several hours long. They will cry and get bored, the child will be unhappy, the parent unhappy and others in attendance will be unhappy. It seems like it defeats the purpose of being at a performance if everyone is unhappy.

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2thepointe

Our studio just completed 11, yes 11 shows last weekend--one on Friday night, and 5 each on Saturday and Sunday. DD was in all 11 shows, so I volunteer to work backstage for 5 shows and usher for 5 shows (I actually sat to watch a show this year!).

 

Anyway, do I have stories to tell! We had a husband bring his wife into the theater in a wheelchair. They got to their seats and realized they arrived too late and missed their daughter's performance (9 yr old). The husband turned to his wife and slapped her across the face during the show. He was escorted out by security but left his wife there!

 

At the next show, I was working at the security desk when a parent dropped her child off and signed him in at the wrong show and went to sit in the audience waiting for this little boy to come on stage. We couldn't reach this mother on her cell phone because it was turned off in the theater. When she came to pick him up, she started yelling at us that it was our fault that this happened and that she was certain he was supposed to be in this show. Needless to say, no other children in his class made this mistake. The good news was that someone had extra tickets to give her so she could see his show afterall.

 

During another show, I was responsible to open and close one of the rear doors to limit access during the show and minimize disruptions. A woman, decked to the nines, arrived with only 3 numbers to go until the end of the show. She showed me her ticket and said, "I'm a little late dear." I showed her to a seat in the rear of the theater. 2 minutes later she got out of her seat to use the ladies' room! She never actually saw any of the numbers!

 

Flash photography and video-taping? The rules never seem to apply to everyone!

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b1

But, honestly, it is all about TRAINING the audience. Boston Ballet has (and has had for YEARS) a hard and fast rule about entering the house after the lights have gone down. You just don't enter. They do have a small room where you can watch the performance on tv, and enter during a break in the performance. MANY patrons were not happy, but believe me, they probably were not late more than once! :devil:

 

In my other life, I was a flight attendant. All passengers hate when we enforce the rules. But, if they break the rules, there truly are consequences to be paid. And, even in the day and age after sept 11, 2001, we still have people who always want to break the rules. Now there are severe consequences. We just don't mess around anymore. Before, the customer was always right. Now, the rules are always right.

 

It is all about training. And, treating in like kind. If you treat the audience lackadasically (gosh, what a hard word to spell), you will get the same back from them. They will have candy and food in the house, wrappers on the floor, and flash photography. Hold hard and fast to the rules, and you will be surprised at how many 'veteran' parents will train the new parents on what you can and cannot do.

 

b1

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vicarious
I do think there's a line between appreciative whooping and rudeness

Thank you Treefrog. I have to admit to being guilty of whooping with others and I've recieved a few scornful glares. I've justified my behavior based on what I heard about Italian opera. I understand that's quite a ruccus. It's so hard to contain myself with those jumps. Bravo, just seems so dis-passionate.

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vagansmom

Slightly :devil: but related to flash photography: Daughter just returned from a tour in Russia. She reported that the audiences there in the Moscow theater paid no attention whatsoever to the admonitions about no flash photography. The company needed to stop and re-announce this a couple times throughout each performance. In one dance, daughter is standing on a male dancer's shoulders while he spins around quickly in subdued lighting. It's hard enough in optimum circumstances. Imagine the shock they both encountered at the very first show when what appeared to be lightning strikes (or worse) suddenly burst onto the stage! She said it was always a danger even though they learned to expect it.

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BW

Much of this sounds like fodder for a new Bravo special! :thumbsup::)

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tutumonkey

About audiences and their behaviour: our youngest is in a choir, we attend at least four concerts a year plus festivals. All parents are required to read and sign a small acknowledgment or contract at the beginning of the year at one of the mandatory parent meetings on how to behave as an audience member. Things include not flash photos, no waving, no talking no leaving or entering during performance etc. Kids in the choir are also required to sign a similar form and they practice audience manners at rehearsals and dress rehearsals. I have never been more impressed than to see 25 6-8 year olds sitting quietly and politely listening to other choirs perform. Parents behaved very well too as everyone knew what was expected of them. Smaller siblings are not encouraged to attend and babysitters are strongly suggested. Our daughter (8) quizzes us before performances to make sure we remember the rules! Tutumonkey

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Memo
  The husband turned to his wife and slapped her across the face during the show.  He was escorted out by security but left his wife there! 

 

At the next show, I was working at the security desk when a parent dropped her child off and signed him in at the wrong show and went to sit in the audience waiting for this little boy to come on stage. We couldn't reach this mother on her cell phone because it was turned off in the theater.  When she came to pick him up, she started yelling at us that it was our fault that this happened and that she was certain he was supposed to be in this show.

 

OMG these are great. I must say that I am always apalled when a parent gets upset when they have obviously made a mistake since the whole rest of the class is there or not there and they blame the studio and swear it is not on the paperwork or the internet or on the board, or they were not called. If it were me I would slink away or just aplogize.

 

I was also at a competition where a lady asked another woman to sit down after the woman had crossed in and out of the seats 4 times while her child was dancing the the woman who would not sit down pulled the hair of and slapped the other woman. Apalled is not even the word.

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Taradriver

We always announce no flash photography at every performance and there is ALWAYS someone who thinks it doesn't mean them. I have been sorely tempted to just stroll on over sometimes and ask the paparazzi/mamarazzi to stop or leave the theatre. Our no flash plea is a little too polite for me; I'd like to get up there on stage before the show & tell them if my DD is injured because of their flash, they can meet us in court.

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Gremlin
Our no flash plea is a little too polite for me; I'd like to get up there on stage before the show & tell them if my DD is injured because of their flash, they can meet us in court.

 

I thought I was the only one who felt this way.

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icbeckyc

I don't understand while people don't know how to behave in public. Growing up we were always expected to sit quitely during performances and wait for intermissions, even school plays.

 

We had to flash photography at one recital. The lady didn't just take pictures she stood up in front of me waited for the best time and took the picture. After a couple of time I asked her to stop it that it isn't allowed and I can't see. She got VERY mad at me. Then got mad because I was making her miss her daughter's dance. Well I was missing my daughters dance as well.

 

My youngest was in the 5thgrade stings program at school. At the first performance the director would stop between numbers and explain things the children were learning and about the music they were getting ready to play. Well one time he actually had to tell two boys to quit playing on the banister at the top of the second level. Why?! Would a parent allow that to happen. In my opion they were old enough to know better - (probably 3rd grade).

 

At the elementary they the kids didn't behave approiately at a special performance they had at the school. The Pricincipal actually stopped it sent eveyone back to class. Then they had grade level meetings and a school meeting where he talked about how you are to behave at such events. Everytime I would go for something at the school there was no talking and they were very well behaved. Some parents ought to try this concept on their own instead of waiting for someone else to do it.

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jazzyme

*knock..*

 

This are all very funny. :)

We've never had a problem with photography.. but the talking is a huge problem, particularly in the first few numbers, when people are still coming in for some reason. As for the whooping and hollering... In the 5-year old group there was a little girl who was really, REALLY into the song. She knew the steps, and she was in boogie-down mode. She got three rounds of applause from the audience, hehe.. but it was totally cute.

 

What I can't stand is when people LEAVE when the kid they know is done performing. Our studio director works very hard to put everything together and the students work very hard on every dance. To see your student perform then pack up and leave... that's just very rude.

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robinmc

Dispite working hard on teaching students and parents theater ediquette, there is always a group who whistle, hoot or holler at the kids. Most of the time these kids turn red, and forget their dance or the steps. Some, even miss music ques.

 

Another thing is cell phones, even after numerous times asking people to place them on silent or vibrate you always get a few rings in the middle of a number.

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