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ABT Jackie Onassis School

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I believe that one dancer, 16 years old, from that program last year, has just received a contract with Boston Ballet Company (not BB2). She is a beautiful dancer, had trained at Nutmeg, then on to Harid, then back to Nutmeg before being accepted into the ABT school. I think she was on full scholarship there, well-deserved.

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An ex dancer does not a good teacher make.

It is an art to be a good teacher, and it cannot be acquired.

I would choose a ballet school on the basis of their faculty.

There are many great dancers but not many great teachers.

I would visit the school, observe the classes and then decide where to go.

Also, just becasue ABT has the name it does not mean it is a good school.

Find a caring, nurturing school where the graduates are able to find jobs inthe ballet world because of their training. Checkout the schools websites. Who are their alumni, where do they dance, etc.


Never choose a school because of a name. otherwise, you will miss out on some of the best.


In my part of the woods, the Nutmeg Conservatory for the Arts has a great rep. Check it out.

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Hi Kiko, Welcome to Ballet Talk for Dancers! :thumbsup: I see you're in CT and are familiar with Nutmeg. It's a program near and dear to my heart since my daughter spent so many years there.


I hope you'll become an active poster here. It's always great to hear from people with current knowledge of various ballet schools.


Just a note about posting. If you post by clicking on the " reply button, it will quote the entire text of the previous post. That gobbles up bandwith, something we moderators guard greedily. :):wink: To avoid that, click on a lower button that says Add Reply or one that says Fast Reply.


Hope to hear more from you.

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I am also a student at the JKO School at ABT. I feel very strongly that our teachers are very qualified to be teaching. I have learned more from them since September and feel like a stronger dancer than I have at any other school. They know, from experience, what corrections need to be made because they have felt what we are feeling. They know what its like to be frustrated in class and what helps to make a dancer dance their best. There are two dancers in the Studio Company who are both alumni of the school. Also, many of the dancers in our class have been given contracts for next year at Houston Ballet, Washington Ballet, and Boston Ballet. It is a very good school that has a very prominent future.

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I also dance at the JKO school at ABT, and I have to say that it is a small, nurturing program in a very professional context. I think it's best for dancers who are able to work hard independently and with discipline- as is necessary for a career in ballet. If you do your research, you'll find that the faculty is great, and it consists of teachers who are not just reknowned for their dancing but also for their teaching skills. I've improved so much from this program and the teachers' approach to teaching. I personally didn't choose ABT for the name, and I don't know anyone who has...and on the topic of Connecticut schools look into the Ballet School of Stamford too, thats where I was before ABT and I loved it...

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Yea, BSS is one of the best schools for ballet in Fairfield County. Their students dance in Balanchine's Nutcracker staged by Darla Hoover for Stamford Center for the Arts, and its a great experience. Also in Fairfield County, Ballet Etudes in Norwalk is a great school, with a former ABT member on the faculty and guest artists coming in to choreograph.

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Thanks LaraSC on you breakdown of the schedule, and all you dancers at ABT school it is good to hear you are growing and getting better as dancers. I hope ABT receive's more funding for their school to grow.

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To the students at the ABT school, I would be curious to know how your classmates (or perhaps you) auditioned for Houston, Boston and Washington? Did the ADs come to your school, see you in a production, did you attend their SI or did you go to an open audition? Did the faculty at the ABT school make some introductory phone calls?


There is a lively discussion going on in the Careers forum regarding the process of auditioning and obtaining a pro contract and I am sure that many here would be interested to hear about how this occurred for those you know. Congrats to all who have received contracts. Are these for apprenticeships or corp positions?

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All those who recieved contracts went to open auditions. The contract for Houston Ballet is an apprenticeship and the ones for Washington Ballet and Boston Ballet are for their secondary companies (Washington Ballet II and Boston Ballet II). From what I know, there were no introductory phone calls made by the staff but I'm not 100% positive.

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The number of classes is different, but here's a quote from the May 1, 1978, issue of TIME magazine (with Gelsey Kirkland on the cover):


"The highly-rated A.B.T. school, where the parents of an aspiring dancer may pay $700 a year for nine hours of classes a week...."


Of course that was 1978 dollars...

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Remember this is New York City - see my recent post on PK's thread about the costs of tuitions... It is very important to understand that there are vast differences in the costs of things in different parts of the United States. NYC is prime realestate and extremely expensive. Schools attached to financially solvent companies with solid histories of endowments and good fundraising and long established facilities are in a different ballpark...as are the smaller "ballet studios" down the street or around the corner - even in NYC.


I live in Westchester County just northeast of Manhattan and I'm guessing that the majority of you who aren't familiar with the cost of living around this area would be shocked and stunned to hear what the cost of housing and its related taxes are around here...it's really quite sickening... :wink:


My point is that unless people take "location" and other things into consideration it is difficult to really make valid comparisons. Not using this as an excuse for charges - just a bit of background info. to take into consideration when comparing and contrasting any program anywhere.

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