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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Can you please evaluate this schedule?


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Scouting is important to my son and husband-- they see it as a great way to stay immersed in "boy culture" despite his daily dose of pink tights and bun heads. The ballet director is very supportive of my son's goal of earning his Eagle rank.


I'm glad to hear he's on track with his training. Thank you for taking the time to evaluate his schedule!

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  • 2 months later...
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  • Victoria Leigh


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My daughter is 13.5 and has aspiratons for a professional career someday. She attended PNB SI last summer and was accepted again this year at the same level (five) w/out a scholarship (she was given one last year). Last summer she was one of the youngest in the class and definitely at the bottom of the ability level. We became concerned at that time about her being behind for her age level. Her teacher allowed her to add the Friday pointe class to help challenge her. Anyhow, I'm concerned that her training is laking for her age. We have also added a private lesson on Fridays which is mostly pointe. Here is her schedule:


M: tech 1.5 hrs and jazz 1.5 hrs

T: tech 1.5 hrs

W: tech/pointe combined 1.5 hrs

Th: tech 1.5 hrs and pointe 1.5 hrs

F: pointe 1.5 hrs

S: tech/pointe combined 1.5 hrs


Thanks for your help!

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Victoria Leigh

The schedule is not so bad, HMLK, but the question has to be the quality of the training, IF she is actually behind. Just getting accepted to PNB is a fairly big deal, and the lack of scholarship this year could be due to many things, including the economy. In terms of the same level, it seems that she was the youngest and at the bottom of the level last year, so, it is not at all unusual that she would be in the same level this year. That age is full of changes and growth spurts and the progress is not always continually upward. I would not be upset by this placement or the lack of scholarship at this time. However, if she attends the program, I would definitely suggest a meeting with at least one of her teachers, at the end of the SI, to ask for feedback on where she stands and their opinion of her training.

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My DD just turned 13. She trains at a small local school, and also has aspirations of dancing professionally. Her schedule is:


Mon: tech 1.5 hours, pointe 0.75 hours

Weds: tech (en pointe) 1.5 hours

Thurs: tech (en pointe) 1.5 hours

Fri: tech 1.5 hours, pas de deux 1.0 hours

Sat: tech 1.5 hours


She has been accepted to several big name SI programs. Last year she attended KAB on partial scholarship. This year she has been accepted to SFB Level 5, as well as KAB-again with partial scholarship. She is in the highest level currently available at her school. Any thoughts/advice about what we should be thinking about, working towards, etc, would be greatly appreciated. :)

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Congratulations Koala Lou on the successes of your daughter and the support you have given her thus far in the journey. It sounds, so far so good! The only questionable aspect of your daughter's schedule is that she is in the highest level in her school at age 13. Does this mean that she has reached the highest technical level of achievement the school is able to provide? She has 5 more years of difficult and intense training ahead of her. Is there room to expand her schedule to include other dance activities such as character dance, modern/contemporary, variations, repetoire and additional pointe work? Will the program of study increase on an annual basis or will she work on the same material from now until she leaves home hopefully with a job in the professional world of ballet? Not only is it important that the hours of study increase as she grows, there is more to be achieved and studied.


Age 13 is considered an intermediate age of study, physically and emotionally. What is the plan of action over the next 5 years in terms of curricuulum and physical development. While there is no crystal ball, your school director might be the one with the answers to these questions. Arrange a friendly chat about DD's future. Begin doing research by looking at the curricuulum and schedules offered at various ballet programs throughout the world. You need information to help your daughter further along the path!

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Thank you vrsfanatic for your feedback. I am receiving my ballet parent education here on BT4D! I have been 'lurking' for a long time, trying to glean as much information as possible. :)

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  • 1 month later...

Hi. I am a parent of a 15 year old dd. My DDs schedule is:

M: 1.5 tech and 1 pointe

T: 1.5 tech and 1 pointe plus rep rehearsals (1.5 hours usually)

W: 1.25 tech and .75 pointe

T: 1.5 contemporary or tech and 1 pointe, 1.5 jazz

F: 1.5 tech and 1 pointe plus rep rehearsals (2 hours)

S: 1.5 Graham and rehearsals for company (6 hours)

Edited by zoetinydancer
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Victoria Leigh

Welcome zoetinydancer! It appears that you and your daughter are both dancers, and that is great!


Her schedule is basically good, but I would have to question the Thursday, as I simply do not understand it, and the Saturday, with modern and rehearsals. If they are doing ballet rehearsals they need a ballet class prior to the rehearsals. Those two days are just a bit confusing.

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Thank you for the warm welcome!

To clarify her schedule.


The thursday is a contemporary ballet class. They do a classical ballet barre and a few combinations in center. Then they go into more contemporary movements such as Forsythe or improvisation.


On Saturday, all of the rehearsals after the modern class are modern pieces such as Martha Graham's Steps in the Street. All ballet rep rehearsals are on Tuesdays and Fridays after the technique classes.


Sorry for the confusion!

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Victoria Leigh

Okay, that sounds fine then. :)

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  • 1 month later...

My 13yo DD does her dancing at an RAD school. Her current schedule is:


M - 5-6:15 Intermediate Foundation

6:15-7:15 Grade 7


T - Homework Day!


W - 5-6:15 Intermediate Foundation

6:15-7:15 Jazz

7:15-7:45 Private ballet lesson


T - 5-6:30 Intermediate Foundation

6:30-7 Pointe


F - 6:45-8 Contemporary


S - 9:30-10:30 Grade 7

10:30-11 Limbering

11:15-12:15 Lyrical

1-2:45 Performance Group


This seems to be managable for her - she is still achieving good grades at school, but I wondered if it is a good program for a girl her age and also is it a problem at all that the ballet classes are basically all syllabus classes and she is not taking any open classes in classical?

Edited by ebany
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Victoria Leigh

Ebany, I will be honest with you and say that, in my opinion, all syllabus classes are not the best thing. I also do not like classes at her level that are under 90 minutes. I see only one half hour of pointe in the whole schedule, and that is another problem. I know that in your country the shorter classes, and the syllabus classes, are very normal, so my opinion may differ from teachers who are familiar and comfortable working within that system, but I could not be. Sorry. :(

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Thank you Victoria, I very much appreciate your honest opinion. As you say, this kind of timetabling is fairly standard here, but at least I can look at what's happening in other schools in our area and maybe there will be more options for open classes and increased pointe work elsewhere.

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  • 4 months later...

Hi - DD (14) is switching schools. I'm not convinced that we have found the right place.


This fall her new schedule would be:

Mon, Wed, Fri: tech 1.5 and pointe .75

Sat ; tech 1.5, then pas for one hour.


It's not a ton of hours so she will drop into a one hour stretch class on most Thursdays at another studio. She could also take (1.5 hour) contemporary at a really good studio on Tues & Thurs instead of a stretch class. WIth the exception of SI's she has never taken contemporary, but she was thinking that it might be fun.


If she does pick this school, we were told that she would most likely move up to the next level in Jan. If she moves up she would be in the highest level (although she would be 15 by then) and the schedule would be:

M, W : tech 1.5

T, Thur, Fri; tech 1.5 and pointe/variations 1 hour

Sat: tech 1.5 and pas 1 hour.


I get the impression that in the highest levels, they sometimes take additional classes in a lower level.



There is another school option I have heard good things about, but that school hasn't started yet, so DD has been unable to take a trial/placement/audition class.

Her schedule there would be:

Tues - 2 hours

Wed, Thur, Fri, Sat - 2.5 hours

This seems to be all tech, but obviously there must pointe work and variations within those class times.


DD would prefer school #1 but that's only cause she has tried it and liked the teachers, and hasn't tried school #2 yet. My worry is that there are not enough hours at school #1 for her, and maybe she shouldn't be in the highest level at 15....

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Victoria Leigh

Is there time for her to check out the new one before committing to the first one?

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