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How to deal with not being able to afford it?


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How do you deal with not being able to afford as many classes as you would like to take. My planned schedule was 5 days of dance a week, 13 hours all together. But I've recently had some financial things going on, including having to pay a lot of unexpected taxes and now my budget for classes is limited. I'm crushed, I was so hoping to get to as many classes as possible this year and now I'm facing having lots of boring evenings instead of dance class. And it will limit my improvements so much :) :) :crying: :crying: :crying:

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How much contact do you have with the admins of the school? You could talk to them about how you sincerely want to take more classes, at the moment can't afford it, and see if there's something they need done in your field of expertise (accounts payable, receivables, newsletter creation, marketing, fundraising, cleaning mirrors, fixing a barre, what have you...). It doesn't hurt to ask, and while they may or may not be able to work something out, at least you explored that option.


One of the adults at my school definitely exchanged her yoga teaching skills and chinese dance skills by teaching a guest course for the advanced girls in exchange for more class cards. :)

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There are other ways you can keep fit and flexible for the reduced number of classes you are able to take. What about the New York City Ballet workout tapes/DVDs? Or a good set of Pilates tapes/DVDs? Or running, jogging, swimming or walking ie keeping up the aerobic exercise so you are able to make the most of what classes you can do.


Good luck -- it's a real nuisance (to say the least) when Real Life intrudes on ballet, isn't it?

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The NYCB dvds aren't available in Europe, unfortunately! I can't go to the studio and ask about things to do in exchange, I'm fairly new to the studio and don't know the people very well yet.


Swimming and running are options, I don't particularly like them but it's better then nothing.

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Marjolein, the NYCB workout DVDs are available at least on the German amazon-site. :)


Oh, and I _think_ you can approach your ballet school directors anyway, even if you ARE fairly new. At least, ask your teacher first what she/he thinks about the idea.

(that is what some of my students have done with me; usually it turns out that they do not really want to do other work in exchange for classes, though. :o )



Good luck!



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I have the 1st NYCB DVD - when it came out several years ago it was heavily advertised in UK dance press, so you ought to be able to find it somewhere.

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In my opinion lack of resources, whether it is time or money is what makes an “adult” dancer. That’s just reality. We all accept it and just go on. I know when people grow up in a serious ballet training program, requiring like 13 hours a week of class, they become semi-addicted to simply going to class. That kind of discipline is necessary if one has professional aspirations, but it isn’t necessary to enjoy class and to continue to develop, what I believe are the primary aims of an adult dance student.


My suggestion is think long term. Go to the classes you go to and work on just simply enjoying the moments you are in class as well as on specific aspects of technique. Most adult dancers I know would consider you lucky because you have the time available to train. They lack the time, which makes the money pretty much irrelevant. By all means do some classes at home, even if it’s only a barre. Keep physically active in ways you enjoy doing. Try developing knowledge and skill in other arts—visual, music, acting. Believe it or not they will help your dancing. Spend some time doing some improvisational dance. Just put on some music and move. All of these things will make you better.


I’ve been dancing 17 years, all as an adult, and have always had a budget for dance. I’ve been lucky in that when I was working, I worked at home, and used my noon hour to both exercise and practice. With but one year’s exception, I have never taken more than three classes a week. I’m retired now, so time is no longer a problem. I still keep my budget and since the beginning of the year I’ve even dropped to only two classes a week, which is puts me below budget.

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My studio has a special rate for unlimited classes. Once a family reaches a total of 3 hours per week, they don't have to pay for any additional hours. I take 5.5 hours of ballet per week, but I only pay for the first three hours. This summer I took 10-12 hours of dance per week and, again, only paid for 3 hours. Perhaps there is a studio in your area with a similar policy.

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The studio has that too, but the rate for 3 or more classes is too high for me at the moment.


I'm in prepro musical theatre training which I am not willing to give up, as well as the advanced jazz classes I take at very reputable school (and professional musical theatre producer). I take ballet not only for my love of ballet, but also for working on my technique which will help me in musical theatre. I'm auditioning for an MA in musical theatre in England this winter and I want to be as well prepared as possible.


The schedule I can afford would be:


Tuesday: 1,5h technique

Thursday: 2,5h jazz

Friday: 1,5h technique

Saturday: 3h jazz (No, I can't switch this for ballet, it's in my MT program.)


What I was planning to take extra was pointe, technique and pas on Wednesday and pas on Friday.

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I did find it, in the right format, but also rediculously expensive.



Ebay might be an option?

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Marjolein, most DVD-players allow themselves to be "changed" with a few buttons pushed. Generally, if you look online for "how to change the format on DVD-players" you should find answers. (we did that to ours years ago... but I have forgotten how! :thumbsup: )

Or, ask a 14 year old boy; they usually know these things, and they are fearless. :)


Otherwise, Garyecht's and others' suggestions are good. :D


I would still approach the teacher and ask, anyway, what she/he would suggest in your situation, and if they know of any (perhaps "silent") policy in the school allowing students to "swap" skills /work for classes.



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Not being a big fan of the NYCB workouts, I thought I would offer up another DVD option. I use the Element:Ballet Conditioning workout frequently. It gives me the best ballet workout at home that I have ever found (and thanks to my local library, I have done a ton of ballet and ballet-style workouts). It is relatively inexpensive on ebay(hopefully you can find it in the format you need) and provides a great 60 minute workout that really focuses on toning and strengthening. When I have a break from classes, I always do this workout (though, make sure you try it when you don't have class for a day or two- it makes you pretty sore :P).

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Also, why not just pull out a chair and use it as a barre for yourself? There are also other ballet videos (I don't like the NYCB workout myself). Amazon.com has a few available "instant"--you watch them on your computer. I don't know if you can get that in Europe. Also check out youtube.

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