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Ballet Talk for Dancers
Mei

San Diego Ballet Salary?

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Mei

I am currently a college freshman working towards a BFA in ballet. While researching for information about future possible companies to join, I found something that said that the average salary for a dancer at San Diego Ballet to receive $60150. Can anyone confirm or deny this fact? I personally find it a little unreliable but at the same time would love it if it was true. Thanks for reading!

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nutmeg

There are 3 ballet companies in SD: San Diego Ballet, City Ballet of San Diego and California Ballet (confusing, I know). San Diego Ballet is the smallest with the smallest budget. Last time I checked, their entire budget was around $400,000, and they indicated they spent approximately 28% of that on dancers’ salaries. So, no, I don’t believe that figure is correct. (Unless they only pay one dancer a salary!)

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ToThePointe

Given the cost of living here in San Diego county, you're unlikely to make a livable wage at any of the companies here. If you want to dance, prepare to need a second income.

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ToThePointe

Nutmeg.... I believe City Ballet to be the smallest.

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learningdance

nutmeg, Just a question for my own research. . . I have been trying to find annual budgets for ballet companies.  Where do you get your numbers? Dance USA?

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Blanche

learningdance, Dance USA seems to have the most easily accessible information. The budgets are about 4-5 years old, but the list at least gives a ballpark figure.

Mei, a company the size of Houston Ballet (with a budget of 25-30 million dollars) pays its entry level corps dancers around $60,000. So a company with over 20 dancers listed (as SD Ballet has) with a budget of under 1 million dollars would not be able to pay its dancers that sort of salary.

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nutmeg

I believe San Diego Ballet And City Ballet of San Diego have similar-sized corps, but City Ballet has a much bigger budget. (More than double SD Ballet). I agree Dance USA has the most easily accessible information, but non-profits are required to make their tax returns available to the public, so if you are interested in one particular company, you can look up their tax returns and learn all sorts of information (where their budget comes from, how much is spent on salaries...) I think (but it’s been awhile so I can’t remember ) that I went through Guide Star which is a web site that allows you to investigate non-profits before donating money.   And, yes, Blanche, that was exactly my point!

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