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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Year round programs with "brick and mortar" schools.

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To be clear: Here is the parameter for the listing of schools on this thread:


Is there a comprehensive list anywhere on this site for year-round programs that have an actual "brick and mortar" school associated with it.

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There are some training academies that have partnerships with brick and mortar schools, at least at the lower high school level-- Boston, Pittsburgh, and Miami are 3 ballet programs that quickly come to mind. They have housing for the kids, and these kids can attend the local school, have early dismissal, and do ballet in the afternoon. (At Miami, the local school--Miami Beach High School--is literally across the street from the studios).


The problem with all 3 is that it no longer works once the student reaches the highest level of the academy (Boston "Trainee", Miami "Pre-Professional 2", Pittsburgh "Graduate"). Those levels require full-day training and professional-track kids often reach those levels around age 16 or 17 when they still have a year or two of school remaining.

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I agree with slhogan's assessment of the drawbacks of the "relationship with brick and mortar school" scenarios instead of academics baked into the program. Charlotte Ballet is another that has a relationship with the local arts magnet high school. It looks good on paper but not so good in reality. The dancers take morning class at the studio (and are given arts/performance high school credit) then need to go to the academic school for classes after noon. Unfortunately, this time that they need to be in academic classes is the same time that the school uses to rehearse advanced roles so these students aren't eligible for casting. If the student can schedule every other day with online academics and remain in the building for some rehearsals they are sometimes cast but it's still not ideal as they still have to find the time to do their online requirements. In the five or so years that I paid attention to the comings and goings of the program, only one local student ever took advantage of this program. All the other local families chose to homeschool over using the local arts magnet. There was one year (maybe four years ago) that one local and three out of town students participated in the program but since then it has only been one or two - more commonly just one student.


Edited to add... just saw the new thread. This comment might be better served on that post.

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NGB - Next Generation Ballet in Tampa Florida has a partnership with a Brick and Mortar school whereby the trainees attend a private high school from 8:50-12:00 (half day). At 12:00 a security guard from the high school transports the dancers via golf cart (yes it is florida) to the Patel Conservatory right across the Hillsborough River (literally just about 6 blocks). The school is a very rigorous college prep school which allows for options if a dancer is college bound and provides high school credit for being a dancer. The dance program is also very rigorous so in many ways offers the "best of both worlds". The only thing missing at NGB is housing.


I also know that Nutmeg and UNCSA offers brick and mortar school options as they are more like boarding school.


The only program that seems to have a true partnership with a brick and mortar high school that works with the dance program is at SAB - but that is only available to those that are asked to stay.


I know there are a number of programs that have brick and mortar options (i.e. MCB and Boston, CPYB), but they don't seem to always work with the dancers schedule if they are trainees.

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Jambo - regarding your observation that some brick and mortar options (e.g.....CPYB) don't always work with the dancers schedule.... our son is enrolled in the local brick and mortar school at CPYB and they have been very accomodating of our son's dance schedule. Like NGB, they end at noon or 1pm and they are respectful of rehearsals, etc. For instance, they had rehearsal last Friday and the dancers had to miss the day and the school was fine with it. When we visited the high school, they seemed very respectful and almost honored to have the CPYB students there (probably has more to do with the $$ that the State provides them but I'd rather think they were being accomodating :-)


At any rate - I get the sense that CPYB is also happy with the arrangement with the local high school - it's a very symbiotic relationship - and only 2 blocks away. Our son is very happy at both the high school and the dance school. It's not ideal because, like NGB, you are on your own for housing - but we have by-passed the whole potential "host family fit" issues by renting a house and hiring our own houseparent who cooks and oversees our son and another dancer. Definitely more time and energy for me with oversight...but our son is happy and thriving - so I feel it's worth it. Our son's scholarship covers everything but food so that's a big perk. I do wish that we had spent more time checking out NGB because the good things I've heard about Philip Neal. We were at the end of the school tours and I was weary. I'd much visit FL than PA in the winter!

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  • 3 weeks later...

Please look at Maine Central Institute and Bossov Ballet Theatre in Pittsfield Maine. I have watched this school grow and change over the past twelve years since we moved to the program. Until 2013 Bossov Ballet Theatre was a separate entity residing on the MCI campus. They have since become fully merged with Maine Central Institute having full ownership and management of the ballet program. Please go to MCI's website. They offer a full high school experience. That said the dancers will probably not be able to attend every football game or give 100% to ballet and be on the field hockey team, but for those whom ballet is less important that is an option. They simple won't progress as well in ballet. Music ensemble rehearsals are usually scheduled after the ballet afternoon classes. A string program is not available but they do have an award winning jazz program. The Drama program is also award winning and utilizes dancers occasionally. Classes range from general education, college preparatory, and Honors/AP. Depending on a students abilities,goals, and work ethic they can attend any college they wish. This year and last year's valedictorians were both dancers. Last year's opted to defer Princeton to dance for Louisville Ballet. This year's valedictorian, as a Junior, was awarded a scholarship to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, but instead will be attending University of Utah with a double major in Dance and Pre-Med. I've asked many mom's to post on ballet talk, but they are reluctant.

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  • 2 months later...

In regards to Royal Winnipeg Ballet


The students in Grade 6-8 go to a public school and get a full day academics before ballet after school, there schedule is modified only to miss gym.


The students in Grades 9-12 dance in the morning and go to a highly regarded academic private school. They are given credits for their dance work.


The school has a strict policy of dancers keeping up their academics in order to dance.


Dance classes are held in the studios that are used by the company and are accessible to the residence. The studios are also adjacent to the Theatre.

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  • 2 years later...

Hello All - we are researching preprofessional schools with extended training hours that can include brick and mortar high school academic components.  We are aware of the conservatories (Nutmeg, Walnut Hill,  UNCSA, etc) that provide in-class academics, but I'm curious as to any other preprofessional schools/studios/programs out there that we should be looking into. For example, I believe some states (not ours, unfortunately!) have half-day public high schools where kids can pursue individual interests (arts, sports, etc) in the afternoons. We are flexible as to locations within the U.S.  Can anyone point us to any programs that might fit the bill? Thanks so much! 

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My son really loved the Harid Conservatory in Florida.  Hopefully you have that one on your list of schools to explore!  It's a fully accredited boarding school that grants a high school diploma in addition to providing excellent ballet training.  I loved the way the dance and academics were integrated and complemented each other-- for example, the report card and high school transcript include not only the dance classes but also dance-related electives taught at Harid such as nutrition, music theory, music history, dance history, etc.   

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There have been threads on this exact topic in recent years.  You might try a search for mortar.  I'm sure we were using that term in the discussion. 

Edited to add, Wow! Either I was really tired earlier and thought this was a brand new thread or we have been magically transported to one of the threads I mentioned.  I am going to assume it was moderator magic.

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Thank you so much slhogan, labrador and mln for your responses!  After mln responded I did search for "mortar" which brought me to the prior thread, and I'm grateful that a moderator has now located my question in the correct spot. If anyone has recent input or research to add to this thread, I would still appreciate any suggestions regarding excellent training situations that can include half-day or part-time brick or mortar academic options.  I *believe* some public school districts in the U.S. offer options for this, but I'm not aware of specifics - and my state does not have good options, unfortunately.  DD is wanting to focus much more on training next year while still avoiding online or homeschool if at all possible (because of the type of learner she is). We do not need a boarding option because a family member would relocate with her.  Thanks again!  

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Plano Texas district offers half day for students who are enrolled in pre-professional programs. Our studio has a day program which has a few students utilizing that option. 

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A couple years ago I remember hearing that Miami  Pre-pro students went half day at the local public school.

I also think DD knew someone who went to The School of Pennsylvania Ballet and attended the Friends Select School in Philadelphia but this was a few years ago and I believe comes with a high tuition.

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