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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Dancer type?


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I am just wondering what is the best way to figure out what type of dancer (style, body type, focus, etc) different schools and compnanies look for? For today, I am specifically wondering about ENB but I'd like to know how it is best to learn this going forward.

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I've not heard that ENBS has a 'type' that's any different to other similar schools, but if you'd like to see the students in action, this is a link to their recent 'A Day in the Life Of' live streaming video.


I found it extremely interesting, but you do need to forgive the somewhat amateur production value!


My own layperson's view of the company is that it is perhaps slightly less regimented in body types for its corps than, say, RB, although still very classical. There are lots of images and video on the web of the company that you can look at to get an idea.

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Thanks Mulberry. What I'd really like to know is how I learn about the preferences of different schools and companies. I frequently hear references indicating an understanding that certain dancers fit what is preferred by different companies. For example, Kirov and Bolshoi prefer shorter girls vs Joffrey and SFB being more suitable to girls who might be a bit taller. How does one figure this all out? It would be nice to have an understanding of where my dd would best suited to in terms of body type, strengths, weaknesses, style, preference, etc.

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Budding_ballet, there is no way to know these things because they change so quickly. Directors change, dancers change, the height of male dancers changes, and that matters to the height of female dancers. There is simply no way to codify this.

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In our experience, schools - even those associated with companies known for specific "tastes" tend to be somewhat more relaxed about those preferences at summer & school auditions than at the associated company auditions. Even so, one thing that is generally a good determining factor is knowing who the scholarship students are at a particular school. The dancers generally figure this out over the course of the SI, and after a few years of attending SIs and developing a network of dancer friends & talking amongst themselves... they get a pretty good idea, based on who ends up where, of what these preferences are.

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I think what I was thinking was that encouraging you to look at the students and dancers currently at the school or company is probably the best you can do at a distance. The best way of doing that is lots of trawling the Internet or visiting performances if you can. And as Ms Leigh says, nothing is set in stone so it really will only be a flavour of how it is currently.

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