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Maddie000

Split sole or full sole ballet shoes for exams?

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Hi.

My daughter is taking her grade 5 ballet exam soon and we are not sure whether to go for satin full sole or satin split sole ballet shoes.. I have been told that some examiners are not fans of split soles - is this true? Any advice on shoes would be greatly appreciated.? Many thanks.

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Hello Maddie000 and welcome to the forum. ☺️

 

Is it an RAD exam?  What does your daughter’s teacher suggest, and what shoes does your daughter usually wear?  

 

Some old school Examiners *may* prefer full soles but they aren’t allowed to penalise candidates unless the examining board actually specifies shoe type (for example soft blocks for Intermediate and above).  Depending on what the teacher says, I would suggest your daughter wears whatever she wears for class (clean and tidy but not brand new).   

 

Edited to add:  Looking at the RAD exam specification, split soles are permitted for Grades 1-3 and 4-5:  https://www.royalacademyofdance.org/documents/exam-docs/20181009Specifications2018_EN.pdf#page31 

 

Page 31 says “Pink/Flesh coloured soft ballet shoes (canvas, leather or satin) with matching elastic or ribbon.  Split soles are permitted.” 

 

Obviously if your daughter is taking a different exam syllabus then the teacher should consult the board’s specification.

 

Hope that helps! 

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My DD’s teacher is an RAD examiner and she is more interested in the work presented rather than the colour of leotard or style of shoe, intermediate upwards being the exception as soft blocks are an essential requirement at that level 

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Thank you so much for your replies.  She is taking ISTD Grade 5.

 

In class she wears a mixture of full sole and split sole.  She prefers split sole as they make her feet look better but a friend at a different dance school was advised to go with full sole as some examiners prefer that.

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1 hour ago, Maddie000 said:

Thank you so much for your replies.  She is taking ISTD Grade 5.

 

In class she wears a mixture of full sole and split sole.  She prefers split sole as they make her feet look better but a friend at a different dance school was advised to go with full sole as some examiners prefer that.

 

Does the teacher have a preference?

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Sometimes, teachers prefer students taking the exam together to wear the same outfit and shoes for aesthetic reasons.

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To be honest even before the RAD allowed split soles some of my students wore them and no examiner ever commented on that to me! I am sure they are not allowed to mark down on something like that - if on the other hand your daughter doesn't stretch her feet to the maximum that she is capable of, well that's a different story!    I really can't see the harm for your daughter to use them if her feet look better in satin split soles.  Basically though it comes down to what her teacher prefers!

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