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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Fordham University/ Alvin Ailey Affiliated program

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Balletgirl, so sorry to hear about your injury earlier this year. I'm glad you're well and strong again. Along those lines, I was impressed with the school's physical and wellness facilities. As I understood it, and please correct me if I'm wrong, every student is physically assessed at the start of school, any vulnerabilities identified and is there a program designed to help strengthen and balance out these weaknesses? Also in case of injury is there facility and personnel for physio or other rehabilitation right there within the school?

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Every student in the BFA program is screened and physically assessed at the start of their freshman year but not every student in the school. If you due become injured or even just want to strengthen your weaknesses there is a physical therapy on site, which house the same physical therapists that the company uses. They are really helpful and very nice people.

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  • 1 month later...

My daughter is interested in this program for fall 2010, and all posts have been very helpful! Is it possible to double major, or minor in something else, or is the busy schedule a barrier?

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When my DD and I visited, we specifically asked about that. As I recall, the opportunities for double majoring are very limited. I think, though, that English was one that might have been possible. It is a matter of not only the number of hours spent in the dance studio, but the fact that Lincoln campus has rather specialized majors located there. So, there is not as big a variety of courses offered as there would be at Rose Hill campus.

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prettypaquita- I apologize for responding back so late but I have been busy with finals, papers, rehearsals, and performances during the past few weeks. It is really hard to double major as dancemaven pointed out but relatively easy to minor in something else. In fact more than half the students in the BFA are minoring or considering minoring in some other subject. I myself am currently working towards obtaining a visual arts minor with a concentration on photography. Hope this helped!

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As a Proud Fordham Alumnus (Undergrad Business) I had to share the good news!

Fordham also received permission from the NYC council to dramatically expand the Lincoln Center Campus!



From Fordham.edu...



The job market may be grim for most college graduates, but for recent graduates of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater/Fordham University BFA program, the future could not be brighter. Of the 16 graduates in the class of 2009, 13—or 80 percent—have signed contracts to dance with companies nationwide this fall.


Ana Marie Forsythe, administrator of the program, noted that the average graduating class is traditionally 20 students, but the percentage of those who land contracts right after graduation averages only 65 to 70 percent.


“It was a small class, but they made up for it in talent,” she said.


The class of 2009 is also distinct for the variety of jobs its members have embraced. They include contracts with the Hubbard Street Dance in Chicago, the Brooklyn-based Ronald K. Brown Evidence Dance Company and a touring production of The Lion King.


“It is a very eclectic group of companies and venues,” Forsythe said. “Some dancers are doing Broadway-type work. Some dancers are doing Ailey II, of course, and some are doing companies that we’ve never before had dancers asked to join.”


Forsythe credited the success rate to the talent of the dancers, coupled with the program’s artistic and technical training, and intense networking with choreographers around the country.


That certainly was the case for Sarah Daley, who worked as an apprentice with Ailey II while attending Fordham. Ailey II is a junior company made up of the Ailey School’s most-gifted graduates.


With three others from her graduating class, she was offered contracts with the company this fall. Daley said the apprenticeship was particularly helpful in preparing her for life after college.


“I learned how to rehearse with an actual company, because it’s a little different from rehearsing in a school setting,” she said. “It was great to be around a company environment, learning the ins and outs of what they do on tour.”


Landing the job was important for Daley, who hails from South Elgin, Ill. because it enables her to stay in New York City, where there are more dance opportunities.


“It’s pretty cool that in Ailey II next year, there will be four from the graduating class,” she said. “It’s exciting for us, because our class was very close and we like to work together.”


Samar Haddad King, founder of Yaa Samar! Dance Theatre and a 2006 Ailey/Fordham graduate, recruited one of the class of 2009, Sara Genoves-Sylvan, to dance for the company she founded not long after graduating with a concentration in choreography.


Haddad King said it was natural to gravitate toward dancers from her alma mater since there’s an inherent familiarity that makes it easier to work with them. It is also important for a young dance company to recruit performers who are willing to help out with all aspects of a production, from writing proposals to helping with music and theatrical elements of shows.


“They’re all so well rounded and brilliant, and I do think they were drawn to the Ailey/Fordham program because they weren’t in a bubble and in one form of art.”


Founded in 1841, Fordham is the Jesuit University of New York, offering exceptional education distinguished by the Jesuit tradition to approximately 14,700 students in its four undergraduate colleges and its six graduate and professional schools. It has residential campuses in the Bronx and Manhattan, a campus in Westchester, and the Louis Calder Center Biological Field Station in Armonk, N.Y.

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Good to know. They have an excellent program; one of my former studiomates went through it and I'm happy to say she was in the majority who was offered a job.

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Has anyone auditioned for this program already this year and wants to share their experience?

I will be auditioning next weekend and am a little anxious as this program is one of my top choices for next year.

Also, can you tell me what was worn for the audition.

It is stated to wear the dress code for the school; however, I know from others experiences as well as posts I've read that for summer intensive auditions, this instruction was not followed by many dancers and there didn't seem to be a problem with it. I would like to wear something that may stand out a little more if it's acceptable. Any information on the audition would be great though.




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Hi dancer2010!

I auditioned for the BFA program a little over a week ago. Everyone at the audition was in dress code (black leo and pink tights) with no "junk" on. They seemed pretty strict about everyone following the dress code, though I don't think anyone wasn't already following it.

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Thanks HTK!

I was afraid of that. My plan was to be safe rather than sorry.

Would you mind sharing a little bit more about the audition process.

I know what takes place in general, but any extra details about how it was run would be great!

Thanks again.

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DD also has an audition for BFA program in a couple of weeks - Regarding dress code do most change to black tights for the modern section What about lunch is there a lunch break or would you suggest she just take something with her to nibble on if needed Thanks.

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Hi to everyone on this thread. I am currently a junior in this program and have worked the NYC auditions for the past two years. If you have any specific questions feel free to ask :)


dancer2010- Definitely wear the dress code at the audition. They take it very seriously and if you do not wear it they take it as you not being able to follow directions. If you want to stand out be as neat as possible without any type of necklace, wear some nice studs and a cute flower, ribbon, or something of that nature. Don't forget to smile! You will start with watching a video about the program followed by a ballet class, short break to change tights, modern class, about a 30 minute break or so, then solos start in alphabetical order, and then finally the interview process which goes in reverse alphabetical order.


dancerparent- all of the dancers auditioning tend to change to black tights for the modern class. There is a short lunch break about 30 minutes but it depends on how much time they have so I would definitely suggest sending your dancer with something to much on.


Good luck to everyone on their auditions!!!!

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Thanks Balletgirl!!

I was all prepared with a uniform and some cute hair accessories, but unfortunately my audition was in DC this weekend. With the snowstorm the audition was canceled. Hopefully I will be able to reschedule soon. I'm looking forward to auditioning whenever it does come. :shrug:

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