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Ballet Talk for Dancers

George Washington University


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Does anyone know if George Washington University has a dance minor or major and also Georgetown? If you did not want to major or minor in dance, is it possible to take classes at Washington Ballet or to even be in their dance company and go to college?

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It's not possible to be in the company and go to college. It might be possible to take a course or two online, but when you are in class and rehearsal from 9:30-6:15 during rehearsal weeks, and then performances at night during performance weeks, it would really be impossible to attend classes at a college, IMO. It is, however, possible to take classes at the school. There are morning open classes that are a pretty high level, and some evening classes that are beginning and intermediate level.

 

As to majors or minor at GW or Georgetown, I don't think so. They do have some classes at GW.

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I went to GW and they do have both a minor and a major (I obtained a minor). At the time, the program was very contemporary focused, and they were going through a transition period with their ballet teachers (unfortunately the one I took a class with when I went to visit the school left over the summer).

 

At GW, I did really appreciate the opportunity to choreograph, and learned a lot about the process in their composition and then, later, their choreography classes.

 

I know I've written about the programme elsewhere on the board... do a quick search and if you can't find anything, let me know.

 

I did know some who took classes at WBS. I never did for a variety of reasons.

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  • 1 year later...

hi everyone! I'm very interested in George Washington University and other schools in D.C. I was wondering if someone could expand on the ballet program at GW. There is very little information on the webstie although I do know there is Major and Minor in Dance. At most I would like to be a dance minor. So I was wondering if students could still partcipate in the dance program even though they aren't minoring. Thanks for any information

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My D was initially interested in GW and applied there about 3 years ago. It is very expensive and only because she received a large scholarship could we consider it. She too wanted to continue dancing, either a double major with biology or minor in dance. She did arrange for an audition, but we discovered that the opportunities for pointe were either very limited or non existant at that time (I believe the issue was lack of proper floors, but I can't really remember for sure.)

 

I say all this because we ultimately cancelled her audition at somecost to us (nonrefundable airline tickets). Ultimately, she took this school off her list because of the availability of strong ballet. Although she very nearly attended the SI at Washington Ballet, and would have loved taking class there, she decided she wanted a college where, for once, she could take class where she studied academics, and not have to commute.

 

I'd strongly suggest you contact the dance department and have a list of questions ready to make sure that this school will meet your needs. D "needed" to take pointe--that's her 1st love in dance.

 

She would have LOVED being in DC though! Best of luck to you...it could be a fabulous school for the right person.

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I obtained a minor in dance from GW many moons ago.... at that time, non-dance students (non-minors/non-majors) were able to take classes, but after a certain amount no longer would receive credit towards their majors, if that makes sense.

 

Dana is the ballet teacher, although he started teaching there after I left, so I cannot provide any personal experience.

 

The programme is very modern focuses. If you've not seen this, check it out:

http://theatredance.gwu.edu/dance.htm

 

There are links there for the presidential arts scholarship, which allows you to audition for a scholarship but also meet the faculty and other students. I organised college visits in the area around that. Also, there are many links for faculty members from the webpage, which will give you a good idea of their interests and focus. Further, there are calendars of GW performances - there is a dance company performance every term, and usually there is also some student choreography/senior projects presented in these as well.

 

While I missed intensive ballet training during my time there, I did benefit from having my dance vocabulary and understanding expand (through courses like movement analysis), having to write about dance, and especially from the opportunity to improvise, make short compositions, and choreograph - including doing spacing, costuming, lighting, music, etc....

 

Feel free to ask any questions, but please remember that my experience is not recent.

 

There were some who could manage, and did go to classes at Washington Ballet, etc. I had a tough academic schedule, was often performing in *something* (whether it be dance shows or cultural shows, etc) every term, and often was interning or working.... extra dance classes were not possible for me due to both time and financial constraints. Those who did go elsewhere for their dance training (note I say training, and not occassional recreational classes), most often did not participate in classes/shows on campus.

 

Bluebirdmom is correct - although I had a different ballet teacher than is now there, we did no pointe basically.

 

Dana might be different - it is worth asking. Both Maida and Mary are nice, and *very* honest. I'm sure they will answer your questions.

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  • 2 years later...
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  • 1 month later...
Guest chappiedancemom

My DD and I will be visiting in a couple of weeks so I will provide an update upon return. I was told by the department that the program is modern focused but we are going to look anyway. My daughter is very ballet focused, however, there are such limited options that she decided to keep an open mind. Would love to be in DC.

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  • 1 year later...

Hello! Very interested in George Washington University. What's their dance program like? Is it ballet based, technique/pointe classes offered daily?

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  • 3 years later...

I have a similar situation as chappiedancemom's DD and would love to hear any info about purpledancer999's questions or any new information on the program!

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Based upon the descriptions given on the website along with the courses offered, it does appear to be a very modern based program:

http://bulletin.gwu.edu/arts-sciences/theatre-dance/ba-dance/

As the only ballet classes offered are beginning ballet and intermediate ballet.  In addition, their BA in Dance only requires 4 units of a wide variety of classes that includes the ballet classes.  So, I would not expect it to be a highly ballet-focused program.

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