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Ballet Talk for Dancers
GretchenStar

Television: Breaking Pointe on the CW-Season 1

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Mobadt

On the variety of leotards and outfits in class, my younger DD said out of the blue 'Hey, when you are older, you get to wear whatever leotards you want? Cool!' :grinning:

I like the show - I know it's contrived to an extent, but I am happy to have a show like this at least available to watch. It is a good glimpse into some of the realities of this profession, and opens the dialogue for my family to discuss it. Critical for my older DD who is close to the age of going out there. So I feel like it's good for her especially to see what she may have to encounter very soon.

I do think it's nice to be able to have this to watch - I don't think there are many shows that can actually give us some legitimate insight into our own career world. Most of the shows that have come along about 'glamorous' careers (ie tv news for example) have done the same thing or much worse and I enjoyed watching even them to spot all the non-truths about my profession. But there were also some very accurate portrayals of behaviors and circumstances that may have glamorized the television profession, and gave me lots to relate to. I suspect professional dancers will have lots to talk about when it comes to the show. They can relate to the truisms and laugh at the parodies. I mean there are so many other shows about many professions - lawyers, doctors, etc. I wonder how they all feel about their shows portraying their professions not so accurately? Those are 'dramas' and not billed as documentaries. I don't think it's much different for any of these professionals - or perhaps a little harder to watch because it's so over dramatized! In any event, it brings to the forefront what a difficult but rewarding profession dancing is, and in a documentary style that has some actual reality. And you can tell they all love what they do. For me, it's great to have the opportunity to glimpse at some of what it's like for the hopefuls. You don't often get that.

And what does everyone think of Rex's family. 5 kids - all dancing and either in great dance schools or employed??? Or were both girls actually employed with SFB? What in the world are the odds?!?!?! :jawdrop:

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julisha

I know whole families of doctors, lawyers and ministers, but that's because it's the family business and has been for generations. I've never seen a whole family of ballet dancers (although I don't think the parents are dancers). That's pretty amazing. Parents must be so proud. Mobadt, I think the girls are training at SFB: the other brother is with the company.

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bettyboo

I thought it was amazing that Rex and Ronald's sibilings were all dancers. It reminded me so much of the "Five Browns", the 5 sibling Julliard trained concert pianists, whom I believe are from Utah!!! I'm not sure but I believe one sister is a trainee and the other may be in the SFB school! What ever the case may be, their parents seemed extremely proud and down to earth people. :clapping:

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LaFilleSylphide

I feel like in prepro schools, one encounters the entire family of dancers all the time. There was this beautiful family of dancers I knew once - all girls, all dancers (to a certain extent) including the mother! The odd thing was that there was no pressure from the parents for the daughters to pursue ballet, but they all just naturally gravitated towards it. Some of the girls are still professional dancers, some of them have had children and are tutu makers or dance photographers. Very cool. The sisters in that show were students at SFB's school. The oldest brother was dancing for the company. It's a shame the other brothers in the show aren't at SFB... like the Fairchild duo at NYCB. Families in ballet must be strangely difficult though when it comes to competing for roles.

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swanchat

DD and I just watched this together. I actually liked this episode more than the first one. I think they are focusing a bit much on the relationship between Katie and her young man and I admire her bravery to let the vulnerable state that she is in be filmed and aired. As far as the relationships thing: dd said "smart boy" when he decided to stay at BW. She knows the difficulties in having ballet boyfriends, especially early in a dancer's career. The career comes first and yes, that does give her and the young men who might be of interest pause before fully committing to any serious relationship. This aspect of tending to a ballet career is why dancers can feel lonely. It does help to remember that at their ages (19-22) college kids are also trying out relationships and may make similar decisions based on careers so it's not unique... just hard.

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daisychain

I've watched both episodes -- the first one with DD aged 10, and the second one with my husband while DD was at a sleepover. DH and I both appreciated having a glimpse into the realities of professional ballet life: the potential loneliness when away from family; the difficulity of making friends with people who are your competition; the awkwardness of continuing to work for a company for several months after being denied a contract; but, above all, the need for truly loving to dance. I can really see that having talent alone, without passion, would make the challenges of the career even more difficult to navigate.

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Momof3darlings

We have a couple of those families with multiple working dancers here on the forum. I'm always amazed at that simply because mine are all so different even though they all danced, they all have very different dance interests. But they are also very different about every little thing. :wub:

 

Like some others, I enjoyed the 2nd show more than the first but enjoyed both. I agree with Mobadt, it's a glimpse that we would not see otherwise and even if some appears contrived, some is also pretty spot on.

 

In terms of the leotards, there are very few instances where dancers can show their personality in their ballet wear, so leotards on professionals do become one of those ways. But, remember, they also have a way to write off some of the cost of those leos also. :innocent: There are always Eleve' gift certificates in the Christmas stocking and the Easter Basket at our house for DD!. They have replaced the ones I could get at lower prices when I worked at the dancewear store.

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GretchenStar

 

And what does everyone think of Rex's family. 5 kids - all dancing and either in great dance schools or employed??? Or were both girls actually employed with SFB? What in the world are the odds?!?!?! :jawdrop:

 

I think the two sisters are studying at the SFB school (the older brother is in the company). Still an amazing dancing family, nonetheless.

 

I thought it was a bit silly for Ronald to even consider rejecting the Ballet West offer and following Katie to Ballet Idaho (or as she repeatedly put it "the Idaho ballet company"). He didn't audition there (presumably) and unless he is going to after the fact, was he just going to take classes there while Katie is an apprentice in the company? It would be one thing if he had offers from both places and had to decide if he was going to go w/ Katie to a new company or stay put without her, but it wasn't.

 

Same thing with Ronnie - I'm guessing he hasn't auditioned anywhere else recently. Do dancers (of his ranking) get unsolicited offers from other companies? I imagine it's bad form to try recruiting dancers from other companies. It's a bit of a gamble to reject BW's offer, assuming you'll get another offer from somewhere else. I'm not surprised his sister encouraged him to stay - jobs (dancing and non-dancing) are hard to come by these days!

 

Katie was right about one thing, though - dancers are very territorial about their barre spots! :)

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ceecee

I am not sure that Katie is with Idaho Ballet. A search of her name brought up this link which indicates that she has accepted a soloist contract with Boise State Ballet. So maybe she auditioned for Idaho Ballet and others, and ended up accepting this contract?

 

http://www.dancenter.../Spotlight.html

 

Don't know for sure though... Could they be the same organization?

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pointeprovider

ceecee, when I watched the show, it showed her entering a building called the Esther Simplot Center for Dance, or something like that. I seem to recall that that is the home of Ballet Idaho, and I thought I caught a glimpse of Ballet Idaho's A.D., Mr. Peter Anastos, when she auditioned. But, it's possible that she auditioned at multiple companies and that the TV show only chose to feature one for our viewing. So, she could very well have taken a different offer.

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ceecee

It must be Idaho Ballet. When I tried to search Boise State Ballet, all I could come up with was Boise State University and Idaho Ballet, so I guess there is an affiliation. Maybe it's something like Ballet West's affiliation with the University of Utah.

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ToThePointe

What is cool to me is that I have brief associations with the Tiltons. The father is a commercial real estate broker that worked with me to find my first studio site. The three brothers, when their home studio would close for vacation, would drop into my studio for classes. It's nice to see where they have gone in life.

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LaFilleSylphide

Ballet West's affiliation with University of Utah... they use each other's studios and dorms sometimes? Their students cross pollinate classes... that's about it. Haha! It's a fakeumentary, people... I feel like watching it you can tell it's not really reality. My friend who appeared at the audition in Episode 2 would never give mean looks like that to someone she didn't know or reject someone sharing a barre with her, yet somehow they editted her glaring at Katie.

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ceecee

They operate a summer intensive together...

http://www.balletwest.org/sites/default/files/images/BWA-UofU-Resident-Handbook-2012.pdf

 

This cooperation is refreshing for me to see. I also live in a city where a ballet company grew out of a college program and the ballet company has all but rejected the college.

 

When I watched episode 2, I did not get the impression that anyone was being mean to Katie about barre spots. My impression was that she had arrived a bit later than most of the dancers & there just wasn't much space left. Of course no dancer who had arrived early would give up their own spot for one who had arrived later. She found a spot & it all turned out well for her :)

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mmm

I had the same thoughts as Gretchenstar, were these guys going to just waltz into some other Company and get jobs? Probably not in the real world but this was filmed over months and months and condensed into 6 hours of air time.

 

Katie was auditioning for Ballet Idaho for the 2012/2013 season which hasn't begun yet. She was in Ballet West II for the 2011/2012 season which just ended. Her bio is still on the Ballet West website.

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