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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Are your parents supportive of your dancing?


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That happens to me all the time. I once got so irritated with it all that I just fired back, "Yeah, it's hard to understand if you've never had enough talent or skill to go after something."


Hahahaha!!!!!! I'm so glad I read that before taking a sip of coffee!! Brilliant. :D

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Ironically, I agree with everything Ms. Clara said, I was just playing the Devil's advocate. I have delayed college (hopefully indefinitely, as it's really not something I'm interested in) in order to pursue my dreams. The thing is that I'm incredibly lucky to have the parents I do...willing to do anything for me if they can manage it. Money has often kept me from the training I should have had in my earlier years, though, so sometimes emotional support isn't enough...it's great to have parents who want you to follow your dreams but if there is no financial back up then it's very hard to make it happen. Which is basically what I was getting at...following your dreams is a great thing, but if there is no money in sight, it will be very very hard to sustain your dreams without the money to fund them. As long as there is a financial situation in place to ensure the steady pursuit of your dreams, then by all means, forge ahead.


I also agree that a college degree in no way equals a job, especially not these days. And I never liked the prospect of coming out of college, still under 25...and have 100,000s of dollars in debt already. I think there is positive and negative in any path you choose, so might as well follow your heart.

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I'm in a funny situation.


Though my parents do not have the money for either, they adamantly encourage me to pursue both college and a dance career, and in their opinion, ideally both at once. In a way it's nice to know they are so confident in my abilities, but I think I'll burn into the ground doing intense school and dance for at least another four years.


My personal opinion is that sometimes supportive parents get in the way of kids having to fight for something they love. And that struggle makes the success so much sweeter.

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I respectfully disagree. I think supportive parents (not pushy, supportive) are only a blessing. There is plenty of struggle in dance and plenty of people to butt heads with without having to fight your family, too.

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  • 10 months later...

Blaise -- I just came across this topic, as I haven't been here in awhile, and I had responded to you about a year ago! So, out of curiosity -- what did you end up doing? Are you still at your job, or are you following your dreams???


I am currently in the process of moving to NYC. I went there in 7th grade for the first time, and the minute I stepped into the streets of Manhattan I said, "I'm living here someday." Sure, I will be joining the masses of "aspiring such-and-such" people waitressing and bartending, but who cares! This goes out to anyone in the struggle of you vs. your parents : in the end, it is YOUR life. And it is absolutely up to you what you want to do with it. I say GO FOR IT! Of course you will need some sort of income if you are auditioning for jobs, but hey, if you can pay your rent and eat, bravo. My one friend waitressed in a NYC restaurant a couple times a week and said she made more doing that than she does at her accounting firm in Manhattan.


Not to say don't go to college -- as long as you continue your dance studies for those 4 years, it is a great time to grow up as a person and be ready to face the tough competition of the dance world/ real life issues. But if you are incredibly talented and want to be a ballerina, then go on auditions and see what happens!


I went to college for four years and had some of the best times of my life, and thus I have no regrets. I find myself getting a little nervous that time is against me, but I'm that go-getter type that gives myself one option and one option only: to make it. (Not ballet, but Broadway/ commercial jobs). My parents aren't really with me 100%, which used to bother me. When I was a senior in high school, my dad MADE me get a job and basically forced me to quit. He said "you can take the open classes 2 days a week." That was a huge downfall in my dance plans; going from dancing 6 days a week at an intense level to that? There was literally no way I could have afforded the tuition, though, and basically they said they were done funding my dance.


I knew by the time college graduation rolled around I wanted to pursue dance. With years of training and a whole bachelor's degree behind me, I felt ready. So, I auditioned for an internship at BDC in NYC, and got in. I called my dad, and he offered the less than enthusiastic reply: "Ummm... and how exactly are you going to pay for that?" I pleaded and cried and begged for a loan and thought of every option for quick money to take part in this wonderful opportunity. But, to no avail. My parents declined, and I didn't get to go. To say I was bummed would be a crazy understatement. But, I've come to terms with the lack of their support, and honestly the desire to prove them wrong is a huge motivator to me.


So good luck, everyone, and convince your parents that your dreams, however "little" money they may bolster, are absolutely important to follow. When you're 40, it will be too late. XOXO!

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My parents are very supportive of me doing ballet as a recreation, but not very much as a career. They tell me again and again, that there is no "future" after my prime years... I understand that they are protective of me and do not want me to be in such a competitive field with very little benifit (like insurance). I guess they are right about many ballerinas rely on their husbands and parents, but I also feel that dancing is what I really want to do.

So, now, college and dancing... Hopefully things will work out...

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I am 22 and am in a similar struggle.


It's really helpful to read that many of you are going through the same thing.

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My parents are very supportive of my dancing as a hobby, and I'm fine with this because I have no intention of trying to take it further than that (although I do love ballet, I don't have the body type, or when it comes right down to it, the talent to ever make a career of it). Actually, my dad has often suggested that I study dance at university instead of what I'm planning to do (double degree in English and singing), and often it's me telling him that there's no future in it for me instead of the other way round!

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  • 1 month later...

Being a good salesperson of yourself and your services is a life skill that everyone has to learn, no matter what career they choose.

Even if you don't become a professional dancer, you can still become a teacher, director, open a dance supplies store, design dancewear, become a dance therapist.. the list of jobs available to people with dance training is really endless.


You don't just have to be a professional company dancer.

Keep your options and your mind open.


As for my parents, well... they're just glad I picked something....


Mom does her best to support me but I'm learning that she may not always know what's best for my dance career, so I can't leave her to do my homework, and have to consider myself responsible to make sure I find the right school/company/job ect.

For me I guess it' more just an issue of staying on top of my game, and not letting other people make all my big decisions for me.

I wish you luck and hope that you find a job that you enjoy working in!

Edited by Ginniathezinnia
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  • 2 months later...

My mom has been my support system ever since I took my first step into a dance studio. It has been with her guidance in my freak-out moments that has kept me on my toes! Thanks mom! :wub:

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AW!!!! That brought tears to my eyes!! :) and I'm not your mom!

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