Jump to content
Ballet Talk for Dancers to close ×
Ballet Talk for Dancers

Advanced/professional open classes or structured full-time type progra


Recommended Posts

I'm running out of time. What I figured out in last season's audition rounds was that I'm seriously short on technique - much to my shock!


I've been attending a very conservative school where there's nothing more important than placement. So, thinking that I dance fairly neatly, I auditioned for some minor classical companies. I mean, I'm only auditioning for the corp so the importance of cleaness should far surpass virtuosity, right?


Then, I get to auditions, and I'm the ONLY one who does single turns at the barre and doubles in the center. Everyone else just goes mad with their turns - at least 3 in every combination. There's even problem problem with my fifth position! I seem to be the only female who does NOT do a tight toe-to-heel fifth even though I know that I have better turnout than a lot of other candidates and that my extension a la second is actually to the side.


I only made past the first cut in two auditions, one AD told me that there is potential but I'm not company-ready and even asked if I trained in England? (where did he get that from? there is no mention of UK anywhere on my resume and I don't even sound british!)


So now I'm panicking really badly, because I'm already 23. I took 3 years off due to an accident before coming back to training. I've finally made up my mind to to leave my old school after my June performance (next week), and am going to NYC to acquire those 6-turns, 130 degrees arabesque and get those forced tight fifth happening even if it means destroying my knees (at my current school, every time I attempt to force a tight fifth, I get lectured on "we want you to be able to walk when you are 80").


Here is my most important question: Given my specific situation, would I be better off enrolling in a full-time structured program or just take 3~4 Advanced/Professional level open classes a day (e.g. at the STEPs).


Another thing I've heard about is that doing variations helps with technique because you are repeatedly doing the same steps over and over. Is it wise to spend money to get a coach in NYC and work on variations or would I be better off spending the extra $$$ on extra class, pilates, etc?


Oh the third problem is: I haven't done much pas de deux, but I don't feel PDD is my training priority right now, because PDD is not often done in auditions. Can I afford to leave it until I get a job? There's not much partnering tricks used in corp so I can pick it up later right?


Really appreciate your advice.

Edited by blahbber
Link to comment
  • Administrators

Hello blahbber, welcome to Ballet Talk for Dancers :)


I moved your post to Adult Ballet Students, since you are just past the age limit on YD.


If you can get into a structured program, I think that would be best, but you may not be able to do that. If you do take open classes, I would certainly not recommend 3 or 4 classes a day. :lol: Two would be okay, but beyond that it's too much stress on the same muscles, tendons, joints and ligaments, and asking for injury.


At this point in your life, I would also seek serious advice from some professional teachers in the city, in terms of what is best for you and also their opinion of your potential. Your lack of training, and especially the 3 year layoff, may have kept you back too far. You need to know if the facility and the ability are there before committing all of the time and money it will take to live and study in the city.

Link to comment

They probably asked if you trained in England because that rigid squareness and emphasis on absolute textbook placement over virtuosity is rather...English in style.


I would say that it sounds like you're an adult and an advanced dancer, so you know your body and you know ballet. Maybe it would be a good idea for you to break out of your mold a little bit and take those open classes, and sort of blend your very proper form with the things they are looking for in companies. You will be able to say what is too much for your body in those classes. Can you get into a structured program but maybe just take one or two open classes per week just for a little something different?


I agree with VL that three or four is a lot of classes in a day, especially if you took 3 years off.

Link to comment
even if it means destroying my knees (at my current school, every time I attempt to force a tight fifth, I get lectured on "we want you to be able to walk when you are 80").


I would seriously re-think that. I'm on the downward slide to 32 and had your mentality. I ripped the medial meniscus in my left knee in 1997 (surgery, not fixable so it was removed, now I'm set up for early onset arthritis in that knee) and the lateral meniscus in my right knee in October 2006. I did and still do need surgery to fix that (although at this point it would probably be removed too and all the crepitice sucked out) as well as have a lateral release done to keep that kneecap from being jerked out of place and looking at the world on the outside of my knee (ok, not really, but it gets pretty far over there sometimes).


I learned much too late that it's better to do what your body is able to do and not what your mind WANTS your body to do.



Link to comment

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...