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Ballet Talk for Dancers

University of North Carolina School of the Arts/UNCSA


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Wow, thanks for the specifics, balletbooster. That is good info up front to know. My dd has never been cut from a piece once cast and knowing that can happen ahead of time can save the shock! :)

 

I want her to know all this because (as I'm sure many of the dancers who go to this next level have experienced) she has had many great performance opportunities at home and has been used at a young age to dance some parts that have normally been for the older girls. I want her to understand that it will be a very different experience with so many talented dancers!

 

Again, I too want to thank you for your time. I feel so blessed to have found this website and great parents with honest info like you!!

 

Now, I'm really going to show my ballet ignorance- what is residency?

 

And, ballet booster, I would love to have my dd meet some dancers before she goes. It was hectic the weekend we were there because of the May 12th audition and the Spring Dance. She only talked to one dancer. Would your daughter talk to her? Can you PM me even though I don't have 30 posts?

 

Oh, also, what year is your daughter and how long has she been at the school?

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balletbooster

bontemps, I just sent you an email! :) Residency indicates that a student is attending a boarding school.

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I was accepted to the year round ballet program as a high school senior and am trying to figure out whether it is worth going this late in my high school career. I want to become a professional ballerina and I don't know if I would be over looked at this school comming in so late in the game. At home, I have a wonderful teacher who has turned out many professionals to big name companies however I don't know if I will be able to get enough hours of dancing from her. I can drop back my scheduale at school but I will probably have to look some place else to get additional hours of dancing. So I guess my question is should I stay at home for one more year with a teacher that will give a lot of individual attention but less hours of dancing, or should I attend NCSA's year round ballet program as a high school senior?

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Kitri - my daughter is graduating from NCSA in a few short weeks. I personally do not think it would be worth it for you to attend the school for 1 year. Unless you are an absolutely phenomenal dancer you might not be given much notice and therefore will probably not be cast in any worthwhile roles at the main performances. The training is very good, but you also said that your training at home is good and that you get individual attention. How many dance classes do you take per day? Perhaps you could take in some extra classes on the weekends or find another solution. What makes you think that attending NCSA can give you a better chance at finding a job at the end of your senior year? Please don't take this negatively. My daughter has had a wonderful experience at the school and we are very happy she left home to train at the school. She attended 2 years and she will tell you that one year is not enough. If your training options at home were not satisfactory then my answer would be different.

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thedancingj

Kitri - actually, one of my best friends from high school went to NCSA for her senior year of high school and just loved it. She is a beautiful dancer, really talented. She ended up staying at NCSA for a second year (so she did get a full two years in - that would have been her freshman year of college), and she got good parts and great training. She now has just finished her first year in the second company of a well-known company. She just got a contract to stay with the second company next year but with a large pay raise, making her officially AGMA. Definitely a sucess story. B) So don't rule it out!

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AsleepATheWheel

If you have a wonderful teacher at home, with good connections, who can give you full attention, why leave? I agree with ddm3.

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In general, two years would be preferable to one at just about any residency program. The beauty of many, such as NCSA, is that you would be able to continue on after senior year with training. And at NCSA, this could also garner college credit. If you are open to the fact that one year may not be enough, it is a consideration. But I would agree that a worthwhile commitment might be two years and not one. And the costs of two years would need to be factored in.

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If if you would consider staying for a year of college, then it could work out better for you. There is always a chance that you will have a wonderful experience after one year, but it really is a gamble. This year's junior class is very talented. There are certain girls who are heavily favored at the school. There are several downsides to training at the NSCA with regard to preparation for your auditioning year. You will need a lot of support from your teachers and help in putting together the proper materials, getting together a video tape, etc. It is difficult to get all of this together when you are far away from home and I think your teacher at home might be more inclined to really be of help. You said that your teacher at home has had much success with her students getting into to top companies. I do not think that NCSA's record has been that good with regard to the top companies, at least not in recent years.

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Will a dancer be guaranteed admission to freshman college year at NCSA if he/she attends the senior HS year there? Kitri would need to know this. It seems that this kind of school that has training post-HS is perfect for dancers who may need more training and exposure before heading to a professional company.

 

 

Thank you for your email balletbooster :thumbsup: We will talk to you soon. My daughter will be so glad to have someone she knows before starting. One friend/mentor can make all the difference!

 

What SI programs are the dancers of NCSA heading off to this year?

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balletbooster

Admittance to the college program is not guaranteed for current students. Dancers must fill out the application and their jury class in February serves as their audition. They are notified within about 4-6 weeks. As long as the student is making good progress in their senior year, admittance does not seem to be a problem. They do have the advantage of already knowing the teachers who make the admissions decisions! :thumbsup:

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Guest dancerboy90210

ddm3, you have to factor in that there is not many contracts being given out for new dancers. This year various seniors have contracts at many different companies including, Ballet Austin, NCDT, Zurich Ballet, Carolina Ballet, Cincinnati Ballet, Boston Ballet 2, etc. It was only two years ago that Ali Miller, who at the time was in her 11th grade year at NCSA (I believe), joined ABT Studio Company. Also many students go on to attend prestigious universities and colleges.

 

Also this summer students are going almost every major ballet school. Such programs include, ABT, SAB, San Francisco Ballet, Miami City Ballet, Houston Ballet, PNB, Jacob's Pillow, The Rock School, Stiefel and Stars, Boston Ballet, Washington, Ballet Austin, Julliard, CPYB, there is probably a lot more that I can not think of right now.

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I agree with you dancerboy90210 about the shortage of jobs recently, but Kitri has pointed out that her teacher at home has had success with her students placing in big name companies. Perhaps I am not interpreting this correctly, but in my mind the big name companies are SFB, NYCB, Boston, PNB, Houston, Joffrey and ABT, followed closely by Miami City Ballet, Milwaukee, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Kansas City, etc. Is this correct Kitri? NCSA hasn't placed too many in those companies in recent years that I am aware of. The training is excellent, I am not putting down the school. I am well aware of where the list of companies the students are placing as well as the college programs. I would have to give lots of credit to the training at the school for my own dancer's successes. However, in order to find employment these days, you need a really good package and you need connections and a lot of help from your teachers. Speaking from experience this is not optimal when you are far away from those who are actually willing to help you. My daughter received more help from her teachers back at home. In putting a video together, this had to be done on school breaks back at home. You cannot purchase video tapes of any NCSA performances, therefore making it impossible to get any video performance footage!

 

I hope this information is helpful to you Kitri. You have a lot of things to consider before making your decision. I would sit down and talk to your present teacher about this. Ask her what she will do to help you achieve your objective. Give her an opportunity to discuss this with you. You may find that she is more willing to help you out with those extra classes you think you need! Much luck to you!

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NutsaboutBallet
ddm3, you have to factor in that there is not many contracts being given out for new dancers. This year various seniors have contracts at many different companies including, Ballet Austin, NCDT, Zurich Ballet, Carolina Ballet, Cincinnati Ballet, Boston Ballet 2, etc. It was only two years ago that Ali Miller, who at the time was in her 11th grade year at NCSA (I believe), joined ABT Studio Company. Also many students go on to attend prestigious universities and colleges.

 

Also this summer students are going almost every major ballet school. Such programs include, ABT, SAB, San Francisco Ballet, Miami City Ballet, Houston Ballet, PNB, Jacob's Pillow, The Rock School, Stiefel and Stars, Boston Ballet, Washington, Ballet Austin, Julliard, CPYB, there is probably a lot more that I can not think of right now.

Am I to understand you correctly dancerboy that CPYB now has a year round residency program or is this a post High school program whereby everyone finds their own off campus housing?....just wondering

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balletbooster

nutsaboutballet, dancerboy was responding to bontemps' question about where the NCSA year round students were going for their SIs this year. :wacko:

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