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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Can you please evaluate this schedule?


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Yes, I meant each week. Sorry.


Thanks for the reply, Victoria. Our girls are dancing 6 days per week. They are only doing ballet 4 days per week, however. The middle school girls only have it three days per week (other dance forms the other three days). However, this is a ballet school, not a competition school. Would the lack of hours still be a contributing factor if they were doing other kinds of dance (Jazz, Modern and Character) on the other two days? I am concerned that we need to be doing ballet each of those 5 - 6 days per week.


I understand they aren't beginners at Harid. Beginning in my phrase was referring to the fact that these were the hours of the first year residents. Sorry for the confusion.


Could the plateau have anything to do with having only a male instructor for advanced female ballerinas?

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Victoria Leigh

The other forms are important, but they need to be in addition to daily ballet and pointe, not instead of.


While it's fine for male teachers to teach female dancers, and female teachers to teach male dancers, I do think it's really best if they have a mixture, especially in the later years of training, and in terms of a female for pointe classes and a male for pas de deux classes.

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Mel Johnson

But ballet TECHNIQUE classes are unisex. Both male and female teachers teach them with equal success. Or lack of it.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi my dd is 15 and wants to dance professionally (ballet). I disagree with her teacher regarding extra ballet classes at other studios, I would like an evaluation of this years schedule. I think she needs more open ballet classes, her teacher thinks more is not the answer because she needs to apply herself to what she has. (She does not pick up what is taught quickly.) Here is the schedule that her small studio has to offer as well as solo practices for festivals.

Mon. Jazz 1hr 15min. / Lyrical 1/2 hr

Tues. Pointe & Variations 1 hr / Syllabus 1 &1/2 hrs

Wed. free

Thurs. Syllabus 1 & 1/2 hrs

Fri. Modern 1hr 15min. / Open ballet class 1 & 1/2 hrs



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Victoria Leigh

Hello Danie, welcome to Ballet Talk for Dancers. :sweating:


I'm sorry, but I really don't like that schedule at all. She only has 3 ballet classes a week, and if she has the pointe/variations BEFORE the technique class on one day, which it looks like the way you wrote it, that is absurd. Also her ballet is all syllabus and pointe only once. If she has any potential for a professional career, (and she should be evaluated by someone other than her own teacher), then she needs to get to a different school altogether, not just add classes. Has she been away to any summer intensive programs yet? If so, did you receive any evaluation from the teachers of the program or programs?


Pre-professional dancers on track for a career need at least 5, and preferably 6, technique classes per week, and at her age they should also have pointe almost every day. One modern and/or jazz class in addition to the ballet classes is fine, lyrical totally not needed. She needs 6 days a week of dance, with most of it being technique and pointe.

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I have a question-My daughter just turned 13 and has been to 2 well known summer intensives. She wishes to dance professionally somewhere...anywhere...Her schedule is 6 days a week-12 hours which include about 1/2 hour of pointe daily. She also takes lower level classes (about 2-3 hours additionally to work on proper muscle memory)-My question is she is not enrolled in jazz or modern because she rather focus on refining and stregnthening ballet technique...Is it in your opinion, important to take modern or jazz and dropping elective ballet classes...

A bit off the topic-How do you know when it is appropriate to consider boarding school for a student such as this-She is academically gifted and currently we are trying to keep some kind of balance. Would we be doing her a disservice to keep her at home through highschool and then hope she can train as a trainee or scholarship student at a well known ballet school/company?

Thanks for any input-

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Victoria Leigh

At some point in time, during the next few years, she should add a bit of modern, and jazz if she likes. Not critical at the moment. However, with a daily technique and pointe, if she wanted to do one of the electives instead of the lower level class, that would be fine too.


As for boarding school, IMO the only reason for one to go away from home before graduation from high school would be if the training at home is not of the quality that can take her to the professional level.

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The school has a good reputation for placing graduates in trainee or scholarhip positions with houston-pbt-orlando-ncdt

We'll keep her focused on ballet at least this year and evaluate modern/jazz next-

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Thank you Victoria

I totally agree with you but her teacher thinks more classes will just make it harder for her to focus on what she already has. She is a great teacher but does not offer enough for senior dancers. My dd has gone away to a few summer schools and has had great feedback on her potential but they do find that she does not pick up what is taught quickly.

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Victoria Leigh

Danie, that is most likely because she does only syllabus classes. They are totally repetitive and they do not learn to pick up new material well when they only have those kinds of classes.

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Others in her class do not seem to have a problem though. I would like her to do some open ballet classes at a a larger dance school but her teacher is totally against it and I am worried that if she waits another year when she will be graduating from her studio it may be to late. Do you think my dd would be harming her chance at a professional career if she just does this schedule plus solo practices for festivals? her studio is very good and graduates have gone on to preprofessional programs at other schools.

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Victoria Leigh

Danie, yes I do think it will hurt her chances if she does not get to a much better school very soon. By this age, or absolutely by 16, anyone working towards a career in ballet needs to be in a professional school, with a schedule like I mentioned above. I do not agree with her teacher at all, unless the reason she says that is because the teaching is not good at the other school. But it would be best for you to find that out for yourself. And I would start investigating residency schools right now, as the SI auditions start in January, and if she is going to have to go away next year, it would be a good idea to attend the SI program connected to the residency school. Check out our forum on those schools.

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Victoria Leigh

You're welcome :toot: Just a side note...it's not necessary to quote the last post before yours. If you go down below boxes where you are hitting "Reply, you will find Fast Reply or Add Reply. Those buttons will not put the last post into your post.

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  • 2 weeks later...

My 14 year old dd has picked up a lot of extra classes this year. She's dancing for about 2 hours in the morning and then her regular evening classes every day, plus weekends. She has one full day off and one morning off dance each week. She seems really worn out. I'm told that her body will soon adjust to the schedule, becoming stronger and more able to handle the amount of hours she's dancing. Is that typical? How long would it normally take her to adjust to such a schedule?

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