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Ballet Talk for Dancers

2008-2011 Tell us about your Graduating Class: Pre-pros

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Replying to the question about the Joffrey Chicago post, above: DD is now 18, but she is one of the younger ones, although at least 3 of the trainees last year were still in their senior years of high school and did well at company auditions, without getting more specific. There were a handful of 19-year-olds, some 20, some 21, and maybe a 22-year-old. The majority, if I had to guess, were about 19-20, or a year or 2 out of high school. Is this what you wanted to know? I also think that the boys were of similar ages, maybe on the younger end, but I know less about them.

Also, "graduating" from the Joffrey trainee program is not really the focus of it. Any dancer who successfully completes 2 years in that program does receive a special certificate and is said to have "graduated", but the instructors made it clear that the goal is to place the trainees in apprenticeships/second companies/companies or some alternative of the trainee's choosing, if they so desire (university, etc.), and that seemed to take precedence over "graduating" from Joffrey. Thus, many first-year trainees will go on to positions, rather than returning to Joffrey to graduate.

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  • 10 months later...

Maple Conservatory of Dance (Graduating Seniors Only) - 3

Some students do leave prior to "graduating" and are not listed.


1 Female Dancer - American Ballet Theatre - Company Apprentice (Also accepted to The Juilliard School w/scholarship)

1 Female Dancer - Univ of Utah, Ballet Program

1 Female Dancer - UC Irvine, Division of Dance

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  • 3 months later...

At Walnut Hill, the dancers go on to do numerous different things after they graduate. All students are assigned a college counselor the second semester of their Junior year. The counselors specialize in the arts and assist with college applications, auditions, DVDs, etc. Most of the dancers will choose to apply for a variety of options - audition for companies, apply to conservatories or colleges with strong dance programs, or apply to strictly academic universities.


The school has consistently placed students at Juilliard, Indiana University, Butler, Fordham, Boston Conservatory, and Mercyhurst. Students who have chosen to join companies include Joffrey Ballet, Houston Ballet, Kansas City Ballet, Ballet Hispanico, Complexions, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Nashville Ballet, Alberta Ballet, Richmond Ballet, Orlando Ballet, and The Forsythe Company to name a few. Because Walnut Hill has very strong academics as well, dancers have placed at some of the top colleges and universities including Smith College, Carnegie Mellon, NYU, USC, Barnard, Northeastern University, BU, and even Princeton early decision to study in medicine, law, business, political science, among others.


At Walnut Hill the faculty understand that all of the students have different paths and help guide the students toward whatever future works best for them. No matter what, all of the dancers have many options. Colleges and companies know what they get with a Walnut Hill Student.

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In terms of Walnut Hill, Amanda. We'd love to know at what level the students are currently entering companies. One can consistently place students in a company, but that could be as a Trainee/Apprentice, corp, etc. And simply saying


Joffrey Ballet, Houston Ballet, Kansas City Ballet, Ballet Hispanico, Complexions, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Nashville Ballet, Alberta Ballet, Richmond Ballet, Orlando Ballet, and The Forsythe Company


doesn't really tell us alot in today's times. We hope you'll come back and give a bit more information about the exact placement.

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