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Television: Breaking Pointe on the CW-Season 2


Momof3darlings

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I was very surprised to see BW2 (basically 18 year olds) partying with the company members. I assume this was for the sake of cameras.

 

 

I doubt it was for the sake of the camera. Like it or not 1000s of kids this age do. Think about college. I think that it is fairly typical for people in this age bracket.

 

I wasn't surprised they were drinking-- that's common for young adults. What surprised me was that BWII and company members were hanging out socially. I sort of assumed second company was in its own social circle and wouldn't be invited to party/drink/carouse with the regular company. It made me wonder if it was artificially staged; that is, the director saw that Ronnie and Silver were planning a party and convinced them to invite BWII to attend for the sake of the cameras. I could be totally wrong.

 

On another note, the character Zach drove me crazy and I was tempted to turn off the TV just to avoid his hysteria. I mentioned this to my son (at BW summer intensive right now). He said he had met Zach and had been in some of the same classes with him this summer and did not find him to be that bad. Flamboyantly gay, yes, but no where close to the level seen on the episode. My son just figured he was hamming it up for the cameras.

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backstagemom

Reality show participants generally get to see the show before it airs. There is a strong possibility that the behaviors and comments of the dancers have played a distinct role in off camera private conversations, ultimatums, and future opportunities.

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I also wondered about the BWII kids partying with company dancers - including principals, which made me believe the party was staged - and which makes me even more irritated with the producers. Yes, college kids across the country party (I know I did my fair share in my day) but colleges are also trying to curb the behavior and they certainly don't promote the partying that does occur. And it's one thing for kids to go from frat house to frat house during Row Week and quite another for kids to attend a party where they are obviously drunk and then proceed to get in cars and drive home still drunk. As parents, we want to make sure our children are safe when they leave our nests, and glorifying and accepting illegal activity makes me uneasy about letting mine fly away.

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A few comments. :)

 

One is that the main positive point about this episode for me was the conversation I had with my teen about the drinking and partying. It opened up a dialogue about what she might do and think in this sort of situation. I pointed out that she is likely to attend parties in the near future not too different than what was portrayed. She is aware that some of her friend/acquaintances already do.

 

As others here have said, the scene was far too "Jersey Shore" for my taste. Would much rather see more studio time!

 

Second, as the ballet world is quite small, my dd has an acquaintance on the show that she is also Facebook friends with. The acquaintance was very disappointed with the editing, yet aware that what was shown did happen. Yet another nice dialogue in our home on reality TV and editing.

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learningdance

Agreed Mamatomary. ... .

 

I think it's stupid of these kids and really any adult professional to create permanent products of themselves getting drunk. I have certainly had too much to drink in my day and thankfully there are no videos of it. I would probably be so humiliated.

 

To be fair there was no footage showing obviously drunk people getting into cars. I can't assume that those who were drunk were driving. Maybe the producers could have been more explicit, by having a person say, "Oh, well. . .I 'd love to but I have to drive you people home."

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I think most people understand all reality TV is edited and not always to show characters in their best lights. However, I am sure all the dancers were well aware of this before they started filming. Also you can't edit in bad behavior if it was never displayed in the first place!

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I agree with MelissaGA that this was a wonderful opportunity to have a conversation with DD about partying and drinking. She has been invited to numerous such parties, gone to some but not all, and witnessed a wide variety of behaviors by dancers. Mostly she was a designated driver for a group, which others respected. For all we know, that was true at the BW party as well, but the cameras didn't show the people who weren't drinking.

 

The one thing she found unrealistic was the whole idea that principal dancers and second company dancers would be partying together. That is completely outside her experience with a different city and company.

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I wonder if it's partly becuase the company is so small. There are 6 principals and and 12 soloists. Maybe 30-40 dancers total? It's not hard to imagine that the higher ranking dancers would want to interact with the corp. I would think at a company like ABT with a huge corps and so many principals and soloists that there is more of a heierarchy becuase there are more people to be with at your level.

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backstagemom

I think most people understand all reality TV is edited and not always to show characters in their best lights. However, I am sure all the dancers were well aware of this before they started filming. Also you can't edit in bad behavior if it was never displayed in the first place!

LIKE

 

Some of the behavior puts the dancers and BW in a negative light. I can't see how that helps their reputation. They've done what they've done and now it is what it is. I suspect their will be consequences in one form or another.

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Momof3darlings

I'm going to stand on a bit of a different side of things. I hope that all of the dancers understand that because they are now on TV and able to be seen by more than the YAGP followers watching their dancing, that they have become role models and should be cautious as such. However, I stop short of saying they should be living their lives so that our dancing children can look at them as role models. I also stop short of saying that the underage teen has a responsibility to others for her behavior. Underage teens should not drink. It's the law. However, let's be real. They do and in some families, it is even common within the home via wine with dinner.

 

So, the company is the one that has responsibility of stating contractually that it's members are not to provide alcohol to the underage dancers at company sponsored events. But it is not their responsibility to police if they drink or not at events where there is alcohol. Or also not their responsibility to have alcohol free parties because an underage teen company member may attend. They are not the parents of these dancers and should not have the responsibility of "watching their cups" so to speak. That is the charge of the individual dancer. If they are old enough to have a "job" then they are old enough to make their own decisions or should be.

 

I think of DDs first living situation where she rented a room in an older dancer's apartment. The older dancer was of legal drinking age and DD was not. It would have been unfair to ask the older dancer to have no alcohol around at all or never invite friends over and serve alcohol. Really? Is that what we're expecting? However, it also would have been unfair to host an evening in and not invite DD. So it was DD's charge to make her own decisions.

 

Like everyone else, I was taken aback that the production company chose to show the belly shots and the slurred speech. But, at the end of the day, they are young people. With one in a company and one in college now, young people are simply young people. Yes, colleges attempt to do something. Attempt! In both companies DD has been in, it was addressed. But the actual responsibility lies on the individual. So possibly, having this discussion with budding professionals is important. Just like having the discussion that if mom and dad or grandma and grandad can't see the photos or filmage, then likely you shouldn't be engaging in it.

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As "bad" as it all looks, it's so very tame in comparison to what was happening in most ballet large American companies in the 60s, 70s, and 80s according to the autobiographies and biographies I've read. There was rampant drug use and constant missed rehearsals etc. I'm certainly not advocating going back to that, but I'm suggesting that those former dancers are at AD positions now, and may be not likely to end someone's career because they got drunk once at someone's house party.

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I think we must be careful not to put these dancers on a pedestal or give them so much weight to carry . . . . . They are young adults and they behave like young adults. Some more responsible than others; some less mature than others. Honestly, when our kids are surrounded by no one besides other dancers, do not participate in typical 'growing up' rituals such as dating, prom, Friday night parties, summer camp escapades, etc., there are areas in which they may be immature. Eventually, the kids all go through these stages---some earlier while home with parents to answer to and others later while on a job with either no one to answer to or a boss who isn't amused.

 

Yes, our dancers can be quite mature for their age in some respects, more mature in some areas than their non-dancing peers, but also they can be rather immature in other respects.

 

The 18-20 years olds in Ballet West II are trying to find their way as young adults. They have more freedom than they've had previously and they are trying to figure it all out. Being the moral role model for the next generation of young dancers is asking an awful lot of them.

 

Don't these cameras follow them around all the time? When are they 'off-duty' and out of the public's eye? I wouldn't sign up for that gig, but they did----again, that could be a matter of not realizing just what they were signing up for because of their young age and having lived in a ballet bubble for years on end. But that doesn't mean we should pick them apart as individuals or expect them to conform to our personal moral or parenting preferences.

 

Not saying I agree with their behaviours, but then again, . . . .I'm not their mom and they aren't my kids. But even so, at 18 -20 years old, living away from home, there is only so much control I've had over my kids and their party choices. Just sayin'. :blush:

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contracorners

Much of the show's drama is centered on who will get the coveted roles in Ballet West's performance of Cinderella, but hasn't this performance already taken place (in February 2013)? A simple Google search will reveal who danced what roles in that performance. Am I missing something here?

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