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  1. To look at it from another angle. Some of the NBS 1st yr pupils will be taking their Inter Modern this week. My DD who is 16 will be the only one taking Adv1. Which goes some way to show that the top grades are really designed for the older teens who are physically and mentally mature enough to do those grades justice.
  2. My DD went to Moveit last year with 15 other senior pupils from her dance school. I think she was shell shocked by it all. Being very more classical than MT it didn’t tick all her boxes. However three fellow pupils were scouted within a couple of the regular classes. Two offered places on a monthly intensive tap course. One pupil after being scouted was offered a fully funded place at one of the well known MT studios. Fast forward 12months and the same girl was back at Moveit promiting the studios at their stand. Crazy but fun tiring times. Whikst we celebrated their success my bank account took a battering. 🤨
  3. My DD didn’t attend her first SS until she turned 14. Just chilled out and relaxed over the holidays but still remained active. She never auditioned for any CATS or Associate schemes. Just attended her regular dance school and took part in as many lessons available. Mix and matching her training between ISTD/RAD Ballet & Greek. Our geographical location was also a hinderance. But never prevented her from reaching her vocational school goal at 16. Each child and their family needs are too varied to give one definitive answer that is the correct path to follow. Just do what’s best for you and your family. 🙆‍♀️🥰
  4. Thank you. Just trying to source soft blocks. Grishkos aren’t a good fit even though she wears Grishko pointes. 🙆‍♀️
  5. Thank you. We have discovered since her arrival in Sept that Manchester is rather sparse (not existent) when it comes to Danceware shops. Which was rather surprising. Buying replacement shoes that require actual fitting is going to be more of a challenge than we thought/hoped. 🤨
  6. Thank you. Warrington is great as she can catch the train from the Oxford Rd station which is closer than Piccadilly. I will pass this on and my DD can google for exact directions. 🙆‍♀️
  7. Hi all. My DD is looking for a ballet shop that would be easy to get to from Manchester Piccadilly using either the tram or train, on a Saturday. She desperately needs new soft blocks and would like to try different brands preferably at a one stop shop. Any suggestions with opening times gratefully received. Thank you. 🙆‍♀️
  8. Best of luck. Just remember (I sure you do) that it’s not just MT that audition at places like Pineapple or The Danceworks. A friend of my youngest DD just got through to the final 12 for Lion King (hasnt graduated college as yet so just has her RAD/ISTD exams) the audition process is gruelling but the reward is well worth it. Good Luck to your son. You could say. ‘Just go to the auditions to assess your level before embarking on a future college place’ with fingers crossed behind your back that your reversed psychology works and he is successful without openingly pushing him. Because of course us mums don’t ‘push’ we just ‘encourage’. Lol. 😉🤩
  9. Hi. I’m not too sure on courses but if your son has continued his dancing from his younger years has he considered going straight to some open auditions? A friends DD went to one at Pineapple when she was 18ish. Offered a contract with a cruise company. No pro singing experience at all. Just came from a local dance school. Didn’t go to any dance college. Been working for the same company for the past 7yrs+ moving her way up through the ranks to solo performer incl singing, showing her worth through sheer determination and proving her hard work ethic . Not saying it’s necessarily the best route but she had nothing to lose at the time and with your sons impressive cv it may be a good way to judge his level before incurring the additional cost of one year course. There’s no rule that says to work in the industry you have to hold a Diploma/Degree. Follow ‘The Stage’ for more details. Good Luck.
  10. Just when you think you’ve conquered the right shade of tights for an upcoming ballet exam all good planning can go out the window. My darling DD last summer had an incredible tan. (Study leave) unfortunately her bikini leg line was different to her leotard leg line. It looked like she had white underwear showing! A complete faux pas in the world of exams 😂😂
  11. Please don’t overthink your results. Some potential pupils at vocational schools may not have taken any ballet exams or other boards. The schools whilst asking for past results they look at your ability and potential at the audition. After all how do they know that those with a Distiction were one point inside that band and the pupil standing next to them was just one point below within the other band grading. Dont let it put put you off. Put it behind you. Move on and focus on the future. Use the exam as a learning curve. As you’ve mentioned your Pointe shoes were an issue. Now you know what to look for (or not) in a Pointe Shoe. Good Luck and keep going. 🙆‍♀️
  12. Northern Ballet School (NBS) run a summer school on a first come first served basis with no fixed closing date so there may well be places left. They then group the pupils in their level/grade ability. The SS is more general, whilst offering ballet classes is more Jazz focused for the week. Whilst not directly residential the school does offer accommodation nearby with supervision if required at an additional cost. Great way to be around other like minded pupils and to generally assess whereabouts you are for ability. ENBS offer an audition one day workshop in October half term and then again the following January. My DD had attended the previous SS and went back in the Oct even though she couldn’t apply to ENBS full time (costs) felt the day was very educational and the skills learnt were transferable whilst also gaining more confidence going forward into the audition season. Its a challenge in its self as no two schools are alike for comparison and not all suit all pupils. You will just have to research then attend as many open days/workshops etc to work out which one suits you best. Will pupils take RAD/ISTD exams? Genres on offer? Classical only/Jazz Focus or MT? A levels? Is this important to you? Funding? Classical costs are budget busting whilst MT is more closely linked to Uni fees for many as they offer BA(Hons) rather than Dip level 6. Thus requiring the pupil to be 18 and having already attained A levels. London Studio Centre (LSC) as an example. They also offer a classical course as well as Jazz. Accommodation, boarding or independent living? Location? Graduation employment? Whilst also considering your choice of career path? Where do you see your self as a dancer/performer? Swan Lake, West End Musical or somewhere inbetween? And that’s just for starters. I thought I was going crazy as a parent when I started looking more deeply into Upper Schools for my DD. Good Luck. 🙆‍♀️🤩
  13. Back in December I posted a comment about the NBS ballet production, whilst congratulating the cast I made mention of the young lady that played a guest part in the show. On stage throughout A truly outstanding performance . The most amazing news was posted today. A friend took this young lady to a Mid Associate audition in Manchester. RBS have just written back and invited the young lady to the Finals 2 for a full time place at WL. Making reference in the letter that they appreciate that she ‘may not have considered a full time place’. As she hadn’t even selected the box!! Amazing things do happen to amazing people. Keep going folks you just never know who it will happen to next. 🤩🙆‍♀️
  14. I wish you and your son all the best. The benefits of dancing is well documented for pupils with SEN. With many becoming highly skilled in their genre where SEN holds no boundaries. Unfortunately I don’t think the message has quite got through to so many in authority. Supporting your son to audition could be very rewarding. With the explanation and understanding in place beforehand about possible outcomes. Then the next step (excuse the pun) and outcome of the audition. The experience could be very beneficial. Pushing him outside his usual comfort zone. Skills could be learnt from being more independent, decision making and interacting with peers as well as being away from his usual social circles. Along with the right support and understanding from the audition panel I would say, as long as the old bank account can support the cost, go for it. Enjoy the day not just your son but for you as well. Treat it as a great day out. Amazing what can happen without heightened expectations. Just listening to the Minister for Education this morning supporting Music and Sport without even mentioning Performing Arts as a whole was so demoralising this morning. Just wish there was a spokesperson that could become an advocate for the Arts (dance & drama) that would be able to have high level discussions with the Ministers and to ensure the Arts get support and recognition from the base level right through to professional level and even beyond. The endorphins that are released through dancing can be the best medicine but many only recognise sport as the be all and end all for everyone’s health and fitness. Silver Swans is a prime example. I wish both you and your son all the best. 🙆🏻‍♂️❤️
  15. Congratulations on your new found status. I have always been the other end. At 5ft7 I was always at the back for ballet classes/performances as a teenager. Found my niche in MT as teachers/choreographers liked the longer legs in the taller girls! No hiding for me! Something I had got used to. Took a while to get used to though. The industry may have changed over the years. I always remaining seated in family photographs as well. Coming from a family of 5ft2/5ft4. Now trying to get my children to sit and for me to stand in photos, as my boys are both nudging 6ft. Height can be such a fickle thing that can mess with our heads if you let it. 😉. Embrace your height for whatever Mother Nature gave you and work with it (have confidence both mentally and physically because if you don’t, it will show) there is an opportunity out there for talented dancers, some might have a longer search than others but it will all be worth it 🙆‍♀️
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