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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Is this too much dance?


Julie2763

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Hello all, I am new here and I love your forum. So much good info here, I could read for hours! Anyway, I have a soon to be 12 year old son (in two days) and a 10 year old daughter who dance. My daughter seems to be a more recreational dancer (loves it but doesn't ask for more). My son, on the other hand will probably end up wanting some kind of dance career. He always wants more, more, more dance and this year he has a full plate. He is a straight A student. But all he does is goes to school, goes to the studio, and goes to bed. He does get time on the weekends to have fun and he does socialize with all the girls in the studio between classes, etc.

 

But this is his schedule, and I want to find out what you guys think about it. He is pretty much busy dancing from 3:30-9 M,T,W & TH and assists some ballet classes on Friday (4 hours).

 

This is what classes he takes in a week:

 

Contemporary Lyrical - 1 hour

Strength & Flexibility - 1 hour

Dancer's Pilates - 1 hour

Ballet - 6 hours

Jazz - 3 1/2 hours (which 2 hours is straight abdominal work)

Hip Hop - 1 hour

Leaps & Turns - 1 hour

Tap - 1 hour

Company rehearsals - 5 hours

 

I know it probably seems crazy to some (even me), but he loves it. Sometimes we have to eliminate classes throughout the week if he has lots of homework. Is this too much? Is it harmful to his body?

 

Thanks in advance for your advice. I am sorry this was so long.

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Hello Julie, welcome to Ballet Talk for Dancers. :thumbsup:

 

It's hard to say whether it is too much or not, since every child is different. It is a lot, I will say that. The 6 hours of ballet is good. I am assuming that is 90 minute classes 4 days a week? The strength and flexibility and Pilates are good. All of the other dance forms are optional, I would think, and should depend on how much he enjoys them. I would base that, along with his ability to maintain his school work, his social life, and his health and energy, and if it works for him, then I would think there is not a problem. If he gets too tired, or school work suffers, then it might be time to think about eliminating something, depending on his main interest. If it is ballet, then the other dance forms are optional, especially the hip hop, lyrical, and tap. Modern dance and jazz are good. However, if he is more interested in performing, and really shows more interest in theatrical dance over classical dance, then the extra classes could all be important.

 

There are a lot of rehearsal hours. What are they working on in those hours? Is it Nutcracker, or repertoire, or routines for competitions?

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Thanks for your help Victoria. The ballet is 2 hours 3 times a week. The rehearsals are for competitions. He is in 2 solos, 2 duets, 1 trio and 6 groups. They average about 1/2 hour per week for each. I just cringe when I look at his schedule, but I hate to take something away from him because he is so happy, doing so well in school. He does get tired and has occasional melt downs, but all in all, he does good. I guess we will just play it day by day and see how it goes.

 

Thanks again - I really appreciate your imput.

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Julie, just something to think about, in case he does become serious about ballet, you will need to think about a pre-professional school and not a competition school. He seems to be getting more ballet than at most competition schools, but the focus in those schools is generally on the rehearsals, routines, and the events, rather than the training. Perhaps this one is different, and that would be great, but if it is not, then it is unlikely that they provide the quality and quantity of ballet needed as he gets a bit older. However, in the meantime he is getting a lot of performing experience, and that is good.

 

[by the way, if you go down to FastReply or AddReply, instead of " Reply, then the whole last post will not be included in your post. :thumbsup:]

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Oh, thank you for the "fast reply" tip. The ballet teacher that teaches him is not involved in the competitive part of the dance company at all. We don't do any ballet at competitions. From what I can tell, she is a very skilled ballet instructor. I definately know what you mean though, because our Jazz teacher is definately aimed at competition teaching. Thanks again for your advice.

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