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Everything posted by Nama

  1. It does need to be transparent. It’s not right. And just because that’s the tradition - and people accept it and work the system - doesn’t make it acceptable. Nor should it continue and not should people be paying into a corrupt system and the government shouldn’t be funding it either. Time for change is here and transparency will make it happen.
  2. Firstly even the RAD prohibits a teacher assessing their own students as blatant conflict of interest. All schools in academic schools prohibit staff coaching for cash their own students. Even at ballet comps there would be outrage if a competitor was a student of the judge. The point is not you taking advantage of a bias system where others can’t. It’s the system that needs to be recognised as biased and able to be distorted- by money - needs to changed. It’s ok to practice hard and get your kid every facility you can - they can be the best possible dancer. But the “who you know “ Aspect dist
  3. I think my point is that the instance of conflict of interest in ballet world is in the example where - for example - your child auditions for a spot at upper school. They get 1 class to show their capabilities. They could be in a class against another student who was coached by the AD privately. A student who had attended a us summer school and had a series of private lessons by the AD or a student who is connected to a teacher or panel member either via family or past teaching. Would you feel that it was a level playing field for your child. Another example is - would you be comfortable if
  4. I believe that people promoting their ballet summer schools or extra programs around the ballet world all know that the attraction for students - especially the ones wanting to progress to a career in ballet - need to offer not only fabulous teachers but a showcase type aspect to influential directors and sponsors. This is especially true to RBS and other top schools. Why is it then people go to Prix or YAGP etc to name the top comps. For showcasing as well as scholarships. It is naive to believe in this ballet world that exists today that a student can get a top spot at an upper school withou
  5. Isn’t there a conflict of interest here when applying for a position at RBS. Is Mr Powney excusing himself as a AD when deciding on the placement of these kids in White Lodge or Upper School. I was under the assumption that RBS staff couldn’t coach individual students who then gained a place at RBS. If it was an RBS course then there wouldn’t be an issue. It seems blurred lines here - a course offered by a company so close to an RBS staff member in RBS buildings but not by RBS staff and I assume run for profit. Not for the benefit of RBS. This looks a difficult position for the AD and conflict
  6. Agree. Often there is a carry forward from past experiences of the teachers. I think that given the experience of my daughter and what has been said to me - the RAD or the schools inspectorate needs to step in. They need to oversea a training and registration system that teaches the teachers what is the acceptable communication and mental health protection strategies that are required in a modern system. In an instance we saw the teacher was suspended after a confrontation with a student - disgracefully in a parent viewing day. The Mum called him out about humiliation to her student in an open
  7. The school should have counselling as part of the staff. And if that’s all full they usually have a connection with an outside counselling service. If should be viewed as any other medical service like physio or go. I know that it’s supposed to be kept separate but unsure that rule is kept. Anyway I know my daughter sought counselling and waited in the line as all appointments always booked. However I insisted and she got a few sessions and got more as the counsellor realised she needed help. Maybe ask for a confidential talk with the medical staff
  8. My daughter had mental health issues after a very difficult graduate year at a uk prestigious ballet school. She needed considerable mental health treatment from psychiatric doctors and therapy. This treatment at the school and associated company required a lot of rebuilding of her confidence and belief in a future. She’s not the only one - and she’s a very confident and articulate young woman. But even she was shattered. This was despite my constant requests for help ( in person and email) for her from the school AD He and teachers made the assumption that he believed she was ok as she appea
  9. I agree. Also the state of the way schools and companies are run - people feel that it is detrimental to show any failings of faults. As pointed out in the article it is often thrown back at you if you show any vulnerability. The girls are constantly told they are all replaceable - so they hide their anxieties and mental health concerns. This starts in schools and is carried to professional careers. The issue of mental health is a serious problem in ballet as an industry. Needs to be brought into the modern workplace and the language and behaviour of artistic directors and teachers needs to be
  10. Agree again - I’ve seen Australian situation and UK. Also my daughter had first hand experience of a favoured student being very slow to pick up choreography in a newly choreographed ballet with a very famous uk choreographer. It got so bad that the practice run was stopped and the persons difficulties pointed out - the comment was despite how great you look your useless to the company if you can’t do the dance with the rest of the corps. Despite being known for slow pick up of choreography and being constantly replaced by other dancers this person is now in the job and employed. Crazy ballet
  11. Totally agree. We’ve all experienced it. In auditions kids get cut and sent out after the first exercise on the barre. That is certainly a size issue. Also the size maximum listed on coy audition criteria. That’s ok - we all know what they want. But be honest - don’t waste people’s money and time and the damage done to the candidates confidence who are rejected and don’t know why. The kids watch the candidates and know who is a better dancer. They see the technical faults and know that size is a key factor. Many of the students in my daughters graduate class were constantly injured and unwell.
  12. Yes. The medical info and help is readily available and everyone knows. But - the industry is at fault. Look at the winners of prix etc. Skin and bone for the winners. My daughter and I have seen girls for years eating just nuts. Carrots and orange juice for a main meal. And that includes in the boarding houses. Girls with bone density degradation at 19. No periods for years. Hair falling out and excess hair fuzz growing on arms and back. All the signs of eating disorders. And teachers in class that praise weight loss. They must think that the dancer is not healthy. The measuring for costumes
  13. I agree. I’ve seen students so thin they don’t even fit the child’s size leotards. They are skin and bone. Praised by the teachers for beautiful line but over be t feet and sway back legs. No muscle or tone - just like a very skinny child not a young woman. The downside is numerous examples in those classes at the top level are starving for that shape and over exercising. Many cases of told to sit out and watch until a few kilos return - but as soon as teacher leaves - excessive training again. And the message it sends to the class is loose weight to that level and you will be praised. The o
  14. As a tip for ballet audition videos - there are loads on YouTube and you can see they tend to follow a pattern. Ideally practice beforehand loads and get the teacher or coach to help. Especially with the angle and fine tuning. I’ve been told loads of time that they tend to scan through so a good strong start is always a good idea.
  15. From the experience of my dd it is also a question of the level of pastoral care provided by the schools attached housing set up as well. The whole concept of pastoral care across the school needs attention. The idea a school can say we have done enough for the students - or that they had more attention than any other etc - fails to recognise that all students have different pastoral and mental health issues at different times. The system needs to be flexible and accommodating. A duty of care is a human issue and a moral one too. The schools inspectorate needs to look further and question more
  16. I think that there needs to be a good look at the various schools complaints policies and practices. Speaking from experience it’s very daunting to initiate a complaint and to follow through to a conclusion is very draining for parents and students. The fact that parents and students struggle to be heard and know that the experience will be combative. There needs to be an independent body outside of school governors and staff that parents can appeal to outside of getting lawyers and challenging the school. Independence is the key. 1 supposed independent person on a school initiated panel ( as
  17. My daughter was at a uk ballet school and has since graduated and quit ballet. The idea of resilience and being “ stoic “ despite the situation around the student and whatever issues they are dealing with was always called “ professionalism” and it was expected of the students at the school. They are told to make it in the industry you need to exhibit professionalism. Also the feeling that troublemakers or complaints would be held against the student. Especially if parents complain and seek clarification of the treatment experienced by the student. Also the weighing of students was regular a
  18. Totally agree with comments made by Goldenlily17 about RBS. The situation with casting has become very unpleasant with the majority of the kids. Large number of parent complaints and kids openly complaining to stafff. These are not the young kids either that don't comprehend the "industry practice " these are young adults that have been at the school for a number of years and have contact with external professionals who agree the treatment of the students is not in line with their industry experience. And yes I do have a dd at RBS - so I know directly what I have seen and heard.
  19. As a mum of a DC who went through the WL SS from a young age to WL full time and now RBS US student. I can say that things appear to have changed over the years. Increasingly it seems SS is offered as incentives at competitions internationally and the focus is shifting to international competition dancers. The chances of getting into the SS appear tougher today if these other places are prioritised over the online applications.
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