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Ballet Talk for Dancers

pre professional training in a small town setting?


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Unfortunately you would have to live pretty far out to get a rural setting for Silver Spring, MD. Though you could live in Silver Spring itself, which has a small-town feel in some places. But it's definitely in the middle of some heavy traffic issues. Great school, though. Same for Marietta. I actually grew up in the area and it has grown tremendously. But you could look north of the city and see what you might find, perhaps around the lake (North Cobb and maybe Bartow Counties.)


Winchester would definitely be more rural - beautiful mountain area near the West Virginia border but still a drivable distance to DC. It's increasingly becoming a bedroom community as people have tried to escape the high housing prices closer into the city. But there's lots of rural areas left, especially between Round Hill, VA and Winchester itself. It's a really pretty small town. Lots of Civil War history.


Of all the places listed it may be VSA that can provide the best "true" rural setting - at least in the Washington, DC area. It is in a very small town that is quite beautiful. They have worked on really cleaning up the area, including the area where the school is located, down by the river. We were last there two years ago and it was looking great. Fairly historic city - some Civil War battles were fought there - but also access to decent shopping since it's not too terribly far from Virginia Tech. But think strip malls - the mall itself isn't too great! They have a minor league baseball team. We were there for 4th of July and their celebration, held at the baseball stadium, was very small-town and nostalgic-like. Not sure about the economy, though, and how easy it would be to find a job outside of retail.


There is also a woman who operates a studio in Charlottesville - which also has a beautiful rural setting. Her name is Sally Hart. She danced with Joffrey and both of her daughters grew up to be ballerinas. I can't remember the name of her school and actually haven't been able to visit it. But she was my son's teacher for a year or two and absolutely by far the best teacher he has EVER had. She was kind, caring, nurturing, and new how to bring out the best in him. Her ability to explain the mechanics behind moves was uncanny. Not sure what her studio schedule is like - it most likely will depend on the demand she has in the area. But it's worth checking out if you are looking for a beautiful place to live!

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Regarding Sally Hart - is this her studio? Albemarle Ballet Theatre in Crozet, VA www.aballet.org (gotta love Google!)

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Yes. I've found her on google before - just didn't have access yesterday. And couldn't remember the name of the town, just that it was near Charlottesville. It's a beautiful area to live if you can find a job!

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North Carolina Dance Theatre is in beautiful Charlotte, North Carolina. It is a pre-professional school associated with the North Carolina Dance Theatre company. Charlotte is a desirable town as it is 2 hours from the NC mountains and about 3-4 hours from the beaches. While Charlotte is not a tiny town, it is a comfortable and manageable bigger city. It is surrounded by small towns as well. We live in one and commute into Charlotte for our daughter's ballet training.

Edited by teencounselor
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