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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Unhappy with Nutcracker Part


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I have to post this. My part in our schools nutcracker is horrible. I am in the second to last level and yet i am an understudy for a dance two levels down. Its awful. My ballet teachers are really mean to me and they give other people unfair advantages and parts. I HATE MY BALLET SCHOOL! :yes:





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Nutcracker casting is dependent on so many things, most of which are not under your control. They depend a great deal on size for the costumes, to start. Then, your technical and articstic ability. Then, the whims of the director. Life in the ballet world is not always "fair". Most directors try very hard to be as fair as possible and to cast as many students as possible. But, the facts are that not everyone will be cast, and not everyone who is cast will be in the roles they think they should have. One either decides to dance in the production because they love to dance and to perform, or they choose to not dance because the role doesn't suit them. Your choice.

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Guest skyadancer<3

>>>>I understand what its like for the dancer and the teacher. My aunt runs a dance studio(directs the shows and teaches most of the classses) and she was telling my mom how tough it is to give out parts with out being unfair. But I also know what its like as a dancer to get parts lower then my abilty of dance.


>>>Mabye you should look into different dance schools, or if its more time on stage your looking for, I would suggest tring theater arts. Mabye you could tryout for the school play.





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You might want to look at it with a little perspective, too. What you don't do this year, you might do the next. If you stick with dancing, there will almost inevitably be a Nutcracker to perform in every year, with all of the different parts waiting to be filled. So work hard, and don't give up! :)

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Guest dancer522

I undersand it from your perspective, but I think the fun part about being in The Nutcracker is gettng to be backstage and having fun with your friends and most of all getting to be on stage, no matter what you're doing. I don't know about your school, but with our school it is always based on size first. They even give us a list of height and level guidelines so we know what parts we are eligible for. Picking students for parts is a huge job, and to tell you the truth, their main concern is probably just organizing those parts so that they are all filled. Our school even has written in our pamphlets about auditioning - if you aren't prepared to accept any role you are given, then don't audition in the first place, and if you decide to audition and quit because you don't like your role, you aren't allowed to audition the following year. Don't worry about it - there are much worse situations you could be in dance-wise, but I know what it's like to feel like you know you're better than where you were placed. It stinks, but I'm sure you'll get over it once you get there and have fun.

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I completely sympathize - it's really frustrating when you feel like you're being overlooked or underestimated, and it seems like the teachers have favorites. Just commit to learning your part and doing it well this time, and maybe you'll catch somebody's eye and get a better part next time.

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Guest primadonna

I can relate. I am new in my school's production of the nutcracker and even though i am in the highest level, I am dancing trivial parts with two levels down and was not even cast in every show. Its so frustrating and im still trying to come to terms with the fact that at my old school i got starring roles and now i am not even cast in snow corps.

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My teacher completely favors like five students and she gives them all the good parts and I like being on stage but people always try to make me feel terrible and it works. I think I am a terrible dancer all becuase of the other people who go to my dance school. Its soooo annoying.

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A quote to live by for rightleftmiddle: "Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent". Eleanor Roosevelt.

You have to truly believe in yourself; if you do, then you will not accept less from others.


Work hard and believe!

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RLM, your ability as a dancer has to do with how hard, how well, and how intelligently and diligently you work for what you want. It is not based on others. I know it is very tempting, and certainly human nature, to want to lay the blame on others, but most often this is just a way to make it easier to accept. If you examine the situation realistically, you might be able to learn WHY certain dancers get better roles.


Casting is generally done in terms of which dancers are best for the roles. This would apply to Nutz, but one has to add in the 'size to fit the existing costumes' factor. While teachers are not out to put dancers down, or keep them from becoming good dancers, they must still cast the way they think is best for the ballet. This will involve the right look, the technical ability, and the dancers who have shown the most willingness to work, who are consistent and never miss classes and rehearsals, focused when they are there, and have a good attitude to work with. No director has time to deal with dancers who are difficult to work with, for any reason. They are not there to handle personal problems or problems between the dancers, they are there to TEACH and to choreograph or stage a ballet.


Good roles must be earned, they are not automatically handed out because someone is there, or in a certain level.


Maybe all of this is tough to deal with and to hear right now, but, if this whole experience teaches you anything, then it will be a most valid time and a benefit in the future.

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I was busy writing my somewhat lengthy post when popballet posted it all in one quote! :shrug: So, even though it was posted by a Mom (who is not supposed to post on the YD board), I 'm going to leave it, because it says what I was saying too, and just reinforces it.

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I don't like my part either. I got walz of the flowers which I guess is a good thing, but I hate being the corps because I'm allways the youngest and everyone else is in a higher level than me. I need more expirience though so guess it is all for my good.

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So sorry about posting on the incorrect board! When I read the rules I understood that I was not supposed to post on the YD board, and yet when I checked for new postings, I didn't realize that some of those posts were, in fact, from the YD board. I am still learning the ins and outs- please excuse my mistake. :cool2:

I will certainly be more careful in the future.

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That's okay, popballet. It happens frequently, because we all use the View New Posts, and forget to look at what forum it is on. :cool2:

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Knock Knock, adult dancer here (mods please remove if neccessary)...


It might be different for young dancers who are aspiring to a professional career in classical ballet (which I cannot relate to because I've never experienced it! But anyway...), but some of us adults would just *kill* for an opportunity to perform.


On one hand it might sound very frustrating, but on the other hand, maybe you want to keep in mind that it's a blessing to be able to have the choice to dance, and be able to be on stage.


From an-adult-dancer-who-can't-even-get-an-extras-spot-at-Nutcracker,

Fish :shhh:

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