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Houston Ballet Academy

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Can anyone tell me if there have been any changes at Houston Ballet Academy since Stanton Welch became AD? Will there be any changes in the style, intensity, or size, etc of the program? It may be too soon to be asking, but I was curious if any one had any opinions.

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I have some friends there. I don't know about teaching changes, but I *do* know that they are changing levels around.


Level One is being made more intensive - it's more selective for audition, as well. They're putting it into the main school division, not the children's section.


Also, Level Six has gotten renamed Intermediate. Don't know what they're doing there ....


The uniform has changed too. It used to be roughly:


Creative movement / preballet : Socks, black leotard, pink ballet shoes


Ballet I-IV - Black camisole, pink tights, pink ballet shoes. Talk to instructor before entering IV about pointe shoes


Ballets V-VII - Royal blue tank leotard, tights, flats & pointes.


Guys in black tights, white shirts all around, I think.



Now it's :




Girls: Black sleeveless, scooped-neck leotard, pink tights and pink ballet shoes. Girls moving into Level 4 must speak with their instructor before purchasing pointe shoes.


Boys: White form fitting crew neck t-shirt, black bike shorts, white socks, black ballet shoes

Official Bike Shorts: Motionwear - Style #7105 - Color # 201 (black)




Women: Royal Blue camisole leotard, pink tights and pink ballet and pointe shoes

Official Leotard: Motionwear - Style # 2518 (Royal Blue) Princess Seam Camisole Cut, Tencel fabric


Men: White leotard, black footed tights, black ballet shoes

Official Leotard: Baltogs - Style # 3807 (White)




Women: Sapphire camisole leotard, pink tights and pink ballet and pointe shoes

Official Leotard: Motionwear - Style # 2518 (Sapphire) Princess Seam Camisole Cut, Tencel fabric


Men: White leotard, black footed tights, black ballet shoes

Official Leotard: Baltogs - Style # 3807 (White)


Additional Class Attire:


Modern: Black or pink footless tights

Jazz: Jazz shoes

Character: Girls – Character shoes and character skirts & Boys – Jazz shoes



So ... a lot more specific.


Also, the girls I know were telling me that Stanton Welsh is changing their end of year performance - he's trying to get more of the students involved in the company's ballets, and also working on stage prescence. It used to be V-VIII who did the end of the year, I think, now 2-8 are doing something.


They're also increasing number of weeks that parents can observe their kids.


Sorry ... I don't know anything else. That's just what I've been told, although I ended up getting the exact new dress code from HB's website.



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Thank you Marenetha. :grinning: I was wondering what kinds of changes Mr. Welsh was going to be making. I wasn't looking for anything negative. Just figured that every new AD would want to make their own mark.

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  • 1 year later...

Hi Katherine,

My daughter absolutely loves being at Houston year-round. It's really challenging, lots of dance, excellent training, great people -- honestly, it couldn't be better.

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There is a dorm which is a townhouse for 6 girls and 6 boys with a chaperone living downstairs. Many of the other students share apartments together in close proximity to the academy.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Everyone (even those who attend the SI) must audition in a separate class, if they are interested in the year-round program. One audition is held during the SI, so that those who are there for the program can audition, if they are interested. There is also another audition right at the end of the SI (this summer it was on the Saturday following the Friday night SI performance), which is more generally attended by local students.

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Hi Dancergirl,

Yes, it was exactly as Balletbooster explained.

I believe the audition is actually thought of as for a spot in Houston Ballet II (Level 8). Several students were invited to become a member of HBII and others were asked to attend HBA in level 7/8, 7 or 6. Most of the positions were offered to 7 and 8 level students attending the summer intensive, however there were a few from level 6. Level 7/8 students take morning class with HBII and afternoon class with level 7. There are also a few students designated as 8/7 who are in HBII but asked to attend level 7 classes when possible.

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Current HBA year-round students who do NOT attend the HBA SI must attend one of these auditions as well, in order to be re-evaluated for continuation at the school. This goes for students in ALL levels, not just those in HBII. :yes:

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I asked my daughter about this, basically she explained that all of the year round students either do correspondence high school or they are already high school graduates. The classes are held from 9AM to 6:30PM on the average, so it really isn't possible to go to a traditional high school.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Actually - I do believe that there are some choices of local high schools for year rounders who are not in HBII or 7/8. Those students can attend a regular high school with a modified schedule letting them out earlier in the day to attend the afternoon classes at HBA. However, HBII dancers have classes in the morning making it impossible to attend high school. Happyfeet is right - those students have either graduated already or do on-line courses.

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  • Noodles changed the title to Houston Ballet Academy

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