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Ballet Talk for Dancers

RDA National Festival


Treefrog

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The kit is the registration packet. In a tangible way it includes a bag, t-shirt and a few give-away kinds of items. What it also includes are the things one registers for - the classes, various meals, etc. You're basically paying a share of the meeting space, fees for master teachers, overhead and food. Most of the time the hosting school(s) will also seek other funds to help underwrite the cost so that the price of the kits can be kept within reason.

 

The accomodations are extra. There will be a special room rate as for any professional conference. And then, there's travel. Folks traveling from the Southwest Region will surely have to fly.

 

Our Guild raises funds generally to cover the packets and transportation for normal regional festival. However, for Nationals the transportation costs will be significanly more. The directors have not decided how many people are going. We're still in a fact-finding mode, and they will know more when they return from the Regional meeting to be held later this month.

 

I more than likely will not go this year since dd is away at residency. However, I'm still on the Guild board, and we are actively raising money to help cover as much as we can.

 

As a side note, we had quite a few mom's who attended (regional) Festival for the first time last year. Seeing the magnitude of the instructors, the intensity of the dancing, and experiencing for the first time what can happen when a bunch of really passionate kids come together to practice their craft at such a high level, caused them to have a really strong AHA moment. They finally got what this small, non-profit, pre-pro stuff is about. It was also good for them to see their dk's in relation to other's out there. It inspired strong confidence in what we have at our local level. Being a part of RDA is very significant, and the new parents finally got it.

 

I would really love to go. It's just hard to justify the cost - unless the ballet company needs me in some capacity. However, I think we probably have enough parents of dancers who would be willing to go. I'm going to live vacriously through all of you who do get to go! :yes:

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DancesInHerSleep

The RDA information we received, which includes hotel information, meals and the cost of the kits, states that in order to attend the national festival a dancer must be 12. Our director is under the same impression Treefrog is, that only senior company members can attend. I emailed one of the contacts on the RDA website and she confirmed there is only an age requirement. I'm wondering where the confusion or mixup is coming from.

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Interesting! It would certainly be useful to know, for planning purposes, what the real criterion is. I suppose the thing we really need to know is will they offer junior classes or not?

 

Our AD sent around a message today, also saying that kits would be about $300 and housing about $200.

 

mini-cooper: you can come chaperone our kids!

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I emailed the RDA office asking about junior classes. This is the answer I got from Gretchen Vogelzang, RDA president:

 

We will have an apprentice track at the festival. The Artistic Director will make the determination as to which dancers go where.
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The kit for Pacific region is usually around $160. This is for the classes, performances and dinner (no lunch or breakfast, although sometimes the hotel provides breakfast).

 

When I went to the National Festival in '97, I was a senior in high school and it was basically the last week of classes (so I missed some "senior-type" events like senior picnic, etc). I remember flying home on Monday (landed at the airport after 11pm) and then having to take 3 final exams the next morning.

 

I don't know if they would allow dancers to attend for only a few days. I suppose one could pay the entire amount but not stay for the whole time... but it would difficult to arrange the logistics (e.g. how many students in each class) if there's a large number of dancers who would be there only on certain days but not others.

 

At our studio, each dancer pays for his/her own expenses (although some of the guys do get some sort of assistance - possibly even a full ride, from the company). One of the companies in our region did pay for all the dancers' expenses (well, the kit, housing and travel) from the company's funds but last year, I believe the board couldn't afford it and they asked the dancers' parents to pay the cost (which is how it is for us). The parents/dancers decided not to, so that was a big surprise not to see them there for the rest of us as that company is one of the long-standing, strong companies in our region.

 

I believe each region has a "ghost host" (?) - so I think if companies have questions, they can communicate with the "ghost host" company, rather than everyone trying to contact the main hosts (whoever that may be?). For Pacific region, they announced at last year's festival that the ghost host is Santa Cruz Ballet Theater.

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Mini Cooper,

 

Just got back to the computer after our nightly commute to classes. Thank you for your reply to a "newbie". At our last company meeting there was so much information that I failed to ask many questions that came to mind later. Thank you for including the perspective of some other first timers. We are looking forward to attending this year.

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DancesInHerSleep

This is the information we have received although I'm confused as to how we have received it and no one else has! There was of course a lot more but this seems to answer the questions on the thread. We're new to RDA, so if it makes a difference we're in the Pacific region.

 

$300 (plus region surcharge) for members staying at the Festival hotels

$450 (plus region surcharge) if not staying at Festival hotels. This is a $150 penalty for not staying at the Festival hotels

Non member registration $375/$475

One day observers $100 (Sat doesn’t include Gala banquet; must purchase separately)

Gala Banquet only $60

NO one day dancer kits

All payments for registration will go thru ghost hosts and Helen.

 

Hotels: Omni William Penn Hotel ($129) #800-843-6664 or #412-281-7100 530 William Penn Place, Pittsburgh, PA 15219 and the Westin Convention Center ($132) #412-281-3700 at 1000 Penn Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15222

 

Breakfast and lunch carts will be set up in lobby of Omni. Weston?

Working on pre-ordered box lunches

Dinner – on your own

Will be a Gala Sat night banquet after the performance

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Momof3darlings

Is the hotel charge a per person charge or per room charge? Since it's an Omni and Westin I'll assume per person.

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Good question about the room charge. When I go to conferences (in the next month and a half I'm going to 3), the rate quoted by the hotel is per room. Sometimes there may be a surcharge if it's double occupancy or higher. I don't know how expensive Pittsburgh is on hotel rates. That price for an Omni or Weston is really good in Houston. In San Antonio that would be really, really good. In Boston that would be unheard of. Generally, the bigger the group, the better the room rate that gets negotiated.

 

I've been lazy about gathering data for this so thanks for posting the information here. I'm charged with trying to come up with a budget for our company's excursion to PA. It looks like I can narrow down the cost of Festival itself. Airfare will be interesting to estimate!

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I think for most hotels, the room rate is the same for 1 or 2 people, may be a higher rate for a 3rd or 4th person. For our region, the room rate quoted in the festival information is usually per room. So if it's $139, then it would be split 3 ways if there are three people.

 

I don't remember how much the kit was back in 1997, but I think it was somewhat less. But with inflation and the cost of goods going up these days, what can you do?

 

No dinner as part of the festival? That'll be a first for us...

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Victoria Leigh

Knight, were you brought in as a Guest Artist to perform with your former regional company?

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Guest kathy1856

Just got back from meetings in Pittsburgh for the RDA National Festival. The city is amazing and there will be great venues (although due to space constraints there may be some classes held in hotels and at the Convention Center). The hotel room cost is $129 at the Omni for up to 4 dancers... I'm not sure about the Westin (i.e. if they charge more for more than 2 people in a room)... their charge is $132. There will be boxed lunches available, which your company can elect to participate in at an extra charge. There is some information about the festival on RDA's website (www.regionaldanceamerica.org)... and more will be posted as the time gets closer. Watch for information there or through your local RDA company

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Welcome to BT4D, kathy1856!

 

Can you give us some details about the venues? Where will classes be held besides the hotels? How will dancers get to classes at venues outside the hotels (and how far away are these)?

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