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School of American Ballet

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You can discuss this with SAB to see if she can attend starting week 2 or 3 of the SI, granted she is accepted. I honestly don't think they would approve of this, but it doesn't hurt to ask. Talk with your DD's school to see if she can get assignments early so she can submit them earlier, or even perhaps submit them online when she's in NY.  

It is rare to get into SAB's older levels without taking the summer intensive. This information was stated on the SAB website itself:


"As soon as Summer Course classes commence, SAB’s faculty begin to closely assess summer students’ potential for year-round training at SAB.  A small percentage of Summer Course students are invited to stay for the Winter Term.  The majority of the School’s intermediate and advanced Winter Term students are recruited through the Summer Course.  While SAB holds an annual fall audition for the Winter Term, priority for scholarships and on-site housing is given to students who have been invited to the Winter Term through the Summer Course. 

We strongly encourage any student interested in future enrollment in the Winter Term to apply to Summer Course.  Many students attend more than one Summer Course before receiving an invitation to the Winter Term."

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SAB has a new young dancer summer program. I asked an SAB mom if she would let her child audition for it, and she said no because even older “SAB students don’t attend SAB summer intensives.” She mentioned that the SIs were a way for the school to scout international talent for the year-round program, which I know is true to an extent.

But is it true that SAB students typically do summers elsewhere, and if so, where? Do students from other 3-letter schools also attend other schools for the summer ?

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It is my understanding that at most pre-pro training programs the dancers spend their summers dancing elsewhere. It appears to be the standard.


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Not sure if it is only encouraged at SAB, but several high level, pre-pro schools (Harid comes to mind) not only encourage but actually require their students to go elsewhere for the summer.

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Different schools have different philosophies.  CPYB, Ellison, JKO, and several others do not allow their students to go elsewhere.  They want their students to have continuity of training and they also like the outsiders who come for the summer to see what the year round program produces (an advertisement of sorts). 

SAB, Harid, Rock, and others require their students to go elsewhere for two reasons, I think.  a) they want their students to get jobs and be exposed to companies (although I am really not sure if SIs do much for job prospects);  and b ) they use the summer for recruiting and fill spots with potential year rounders.  I don't think that either Harid or SAB are only looking for international prospects since I believe that most of those programs are US citizens. At SAB kids who have been injured can stay for the summer to build back up. 

It does seem as though there is this kind of "exchange program."  DD did Boston last year and there were a ton of SAB kids there.  I don't know if that is true of the other more Balanchine inspired companies.

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Thanks for clarifying and sharing this info! I know a lot of younger SAB dancers attend MYB, but I was puzzled as to why parents would keep their kids there if SAB now has their own summer youth program. I didn’t think other local summer programs would compare. 

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It is true that many SAB dancers attend the Boston SDP.  But in my DD's experience from various SI's and having many friends at SAB, some also go to PNB and Miami.  The slightly younger ones (maybe 12-14) often attend CPYB.   

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As to why younger SAB students would go somewhere besides the new SAB program - the New York program is only one week.   I would guess that SAB wants to use this week to bring in other students and give them a SAB "experience"  not just give their year-round students one more week of classes. 

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You may be right. The NY program is also very early (last week of June) so, for continuing students, it may not feel like a summer program at all. 

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SAB students do not go there in the summer (except perhaps in unusual circumstances). If a parent told you that, it wasn't meant as a comment on the the quality of the summer training, it is just information. 

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5uptown, I know their training is top notch, so I was confused about this policy. I assumed they wanted their students to continue receiving their style of excellent training. After that conversation, I became curious as to whether year-round students are expected to attend SIs at all, and if so, where they are expected to train, especially in Balanchine technique.

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