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Ballet Talk for Dancers
bobbypinfinder

Financial cutbacks, shortened seasons, auditions cancelled

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Momof3darlings

Here is the link to Sacramento Ballet's directors outlining their cutbacks and why. It sounds like a good plan to keep the company running and weather the storm. Since they are performing in house, I wish that had been addressed in the articles out there a bit more. There are several online articles out there that reference cancelling the season, I am happy to hear that cancelling is not really the correct word to use.

 

Sacramento Ballet article link

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Momof3darlings

Thank you very much for posting this, the number outlined in the article is actually down from what had been making it's way around as rumors. While it is still tough to lose any dancers there is a glimmer of thankfulness that the number was not quite as high. I hope that all of these dancer/apprentices are able to find work for next year. It is tough out there!

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mirabray

Unfortunately a statement like this leaves too much open to interpretation.

 

"Ugarriza wrote in an e-mail to The Miami Herald that the MCB board is considering further cuts."

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MJ

In addition, more companies are using taped music instead of a live orchestra. Stagehands, Crew, and Musicians typically account for 60-80% of performance costs.

 

Union professionals ride out bad times by going on unemployment, it is harder for pro dancers to survive on unemployment and the additional costs for paid training are a hindrance.

 

One of my teachers is recommending professional track dancers head to Europe and other areas where Ballet dancers are civil servants.

 

Best of luck!

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Pasdetrois

Where in Europe are dancers civil servants? I have never heard that one before. Financially Europe is in the same mess we are so I'm not sure heading across the pond is a plus.

 

A very obvious worry here is that with all these experienced dancers being let go, they will be joining those who were already planning on auditioning in an amazingly shrunken market. My common sense tells me it's the kids straight out of school/training programs who are likely to suffer in auditions. II companies and apprenticeships may give companies cheaper dancers and if these are the majority of jobs available any AD is going to take the best and most experienced dancers he can find. Even these spots may be appealing to former corp members who want to keep dancing? Is this logical or am I overly pessimistic?

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Santos

I think the term 'civil servant' in this case means: 'supported by the government'. In most European countries part of the tax money, paid by the "civil servants" is applied to art and since ballet is an art form, every tax payer pays in a way for ballet companies as well. Hope this helps.

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Swanilda

I'd be surprised at an older corps dancer being offered a second company or apprentice place before a new person. That's just not usually how it works. The dancer would probably be insulted and ADs usually want their second companies/apprentices to be young and untested and be able to mold better into the style he wants. I think it will be harder on the older, more experienced dancers, to be honest. I think most dancers who have been fully paid would rather take class and keep auditioning and work at another job for a season than go back to "working" unpaid. I personally can't imagine doing the same job I'm doing now for no money :( Maybe I'm in the minority.

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Momof3darlings

I don't that's what anyone meant. I think they meant for funding, if a dancer from a larger company then came to a smaller one an AD might cut several apprentice/trainee positions to be able to then pay the dancer their worth. (well worth is the wrong word) But in other words, if a corp dancer from say SFB, decided that they might like to be a lead dancer at a smaller company now after being corp for 5 years and now cut. Many ADs of smaller companies, happy to have them might rearrange the lower ranks to make room for said dancer.

 

That happens all the time.

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Balletmom

I'm always thankful that this board prides itself on supplying factual information and and avoiding rumors. These are difficullt times, and rumors and hearsay only add to the fear. Best wishes to all those organizations as they weather the storm! Hopefully, we can each do our own part by continuing to attend performances and contributing in whatever way we are able.

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TutuMaker

Then there are different managing styles....

 

Ballet West furloughs office staff for one week, not any dancers!

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mom2

I drove a young friend to a company audition yesterday. It was a fairly small class (around 20), and the audition was much shorter than had been anticipated as a results. I guess it's understandable that we'll see the economic factors influencing dancer's choices in travel and so forth as a result. Of course I don't know with any certainty that this was the driving force behind the low numbers yesterday, but I did find it to be a curious coincidence.

 

 

m2

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cowgrrl
In addition, more companies are using taped music instead of a live orchestra. Stagehands, Crew, and Musicians typically account for 60-80% of performance costs.

 

Texas Ballet Theater has come under fire for deciding to use recorded music for this season, which has been difficult for them financially.

 

Story here

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dancemaven

From the Texas Ballet Theatre article:

 

By using recordings instead of professional musicians, the Texas Ballet Theater is cheating its patrons out of a legitimate ballet experience. Patrons’ tickets reflect the price of a live orchestra, and they should get what they’ve paid for."

 

Uhm, no, apparently if the cost of a live orchestra were in the ticket, the ticket prices would be more than the Ballet company feels the market will bear. If the orchestra wants to retain that gig for themselves, they need to work with the ballet company, which obviously means some changes on their part.

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