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Everything posted by Moneypenny

  1. I can fully appreciate your frustration. All those people who judge and sneer at cruise ship contracts need to get off their high horses! It is incredibly difficult to land a cruise contract, the auditions are intense and the competition is fierce! Some of the auditions my dd went to whittled candidates down over three days ... and guess what? most of the initial cuts were done after Ballet sequences! If anyone is lucky enough to get a cruise contract with one of the big cruise lines it is a fabulous opportunity, the pay is great, the perks are great and the lifestyle is great. My own dd trained as a classical ballet dancer, gained a few ballet accolades along the way during her training and spent a year in a ballet company before going off on a cruise contract last year. She has never been happier, healthier and fitter and I will be thrilled if she carries on! So much snobbery amongst ballet parents, it is truly maddening!
  2. I heard an interview on Radio 4 with someone senior at Northern Ballet a few months ago, can’t remember his name, but was basically saying that they can’t find ballet dancers in the uk ... to say I was incredulous is an understatement. I have absolutely no issue with global movement/competition and indeed, my own dd would not be dancing overseas without it, it is healthy. It was the suggestion that they struggle to attract the talent in the UK which I found just astounding. I just think that in the main they don’t really want UK trained dancers. Year after year many graduates from our ballet schools are struggling to find employment full stop, let alone employment in the UK.
  3. And the pay, benefits and lifestyle can be incredible with some cruise lines. The competition for cruise jobs is just as fierce though as some companies are auditioning all over the world all year round!
  4. There is a huge amount of movement at the end of year 11, some choose to follow completely different paths and some will have multiple upper school offers. Many will be waitlisted after finals and as decisions start to be made and places accepted and turned down, further offers will be made. As said above, the year group numbers can vary a lot at Elmhurst.
  5. At the end of the day, there is only so much support that a school can give and their influence is limited, it is the student who has to do their research, apply to the companies and chase the tiny possibility of a job all over Europe and the World. Until your child goes out there and experiences company auditions you have no idea just how brutal they can be, just how disheartening it can be and just how few ballet jobs there actually are. There are indeed many auditions, but you often have no idea whether there are actually any jobs going. At cattle call auditions hundreds turn up and at invited auditions you can be lucky to get past 10 minutes of barre ... which is pretty tough when you’ve paid hundreds of ponds for flights, hotels, train fares etc. It makes me shudder just thinking back on it all. The auditioning goes on for months and months, competition is fierce and whilst some will walk into jobs, rejection is very much the norm. Plan B’s and C’s are definitely a good idea ... as sadly I do not believe there is a company out there for everyone, there are simply too few jobs and many incredibly talented dancers out there.
  6. Pity the day “Dance Moms” ever appeared on our screens! I just don’t understand the mentality of teachers and parents who think all this extreme stuff is clever. It bears absolutely no relation to how students will be taught in a good vocational school and is irrelevant for a professional career, not to mention highly damaging to growing young bodies. Perhaps young impressionable children need role models to look up to and aspire to, maybe young professional dancers who have rejected the extreme, the dangerous and the downright stupid to train sensibly and look after their bodies, to become strong healthy dancers. I am no ballet afficianado but I have seen plenty of professional performances ... I see skill, amazing technical ability, strength and beautiful movement ... and I’ll bet none of that is achieved by extreme over stretching et al!
  7. You put it brilliantly, spot on. It’s definitely about building the specific body you need. Having watched my own dd’s long rehab back from injury I am totally convinced that it is the right supplemental fitness and strength training which equips and protects the whole body. The levels of fitness and strength required when dancing professionally obviously vary greatly and some jobs require awesome levels of strength and fitness!
  8. My dd is a professional dancer and does a combination of running, weights, squats, pull ups, dead lifts etc etc, etc, but everything she does was under proper direction from a performance & enhancement coach. She started about three years ago post injury as part of her rehab and the results have been transformational. It is all now part of her daily routine, but she only does certain things on certain days, not everything every day.
  9. Tip of the iceberg! Young women are destroying their bodies and risking their future health to conform to an aesthetic which is seemingly still coveted by many company directors. And there are so many talented young women who are so desperate to get work in the ballet industry that enable this kind of behaviour to continue. There is great training out there and many great dance jobs where artists are treated well at auditions, with respect in work and paid well, but there is also a flip side and this is what parents and dancers need to be mindful of, watch out for and not get sucked into.
  10. Sadly, the ballet profession is pretty toxic in some areas and the more I hear, the less I am surprised.
  11. This is so well deserved and any student who has the opportunity to work with Nico is very fortunate. I also cannot speak highly enough of his injury rehabilitation work.
  12. They are totally out of touch and have absolutely no idea just how tough it is to get any kind of contract. Easily 200+ turn up at the open auditions and can be put through their paces for 2/3 days, being cut all the time until about 20-30 are left, and still no guarantee of an offer. And the standard of the dancers is incredibly high. Cruise contracts can be incredibly well paid, no living expenses, no food expenses, lots of ship privileges for dancers and the opportunity to travel the world.
  13. I appreciate it can be difficult to find someone to work with, but I would be cautious of any online coaching for post injury rehabilitation, unless the person has done a thorough face to face assessment of your dd and has full knowledge of the injury. Even better if the coach works in partnership with the physio, so that any ongoing treatment and rehab work complement each other.
  14. Ps. You can expect to pay anything from around £200-£350, depending on the photographer
  15. gbdancestars do some really nice stuff. My dd did some work with this guy a while back and had had some professional shots done by him. I think he is based in Sheffield. If you search gbdancestars on insta you can see a lot of his work.
  16. Having seen my own dd go through an ankle injury and subsequent rehab in her graduate year, I am a massive advocate for getting the rehab right before even putting a pair of ballet shoes back on. My dd spent the best part of 6 months “in rehab” following a very detailed schedule, which allowed her injury to heal properly and ensuring she was so much stronger and fitter when she did return to dance. My dd was very fortunate though that she was at vocational school and worked with the most amazing coach. I guess what I am trying to say is that I believe the right rehab is crucial to preparing the whole body before even contemplating a return to dance.
  17. If your sister is at vocational school, does she not have private medical insurance? Foot injuries are indeed complex, my dd had one which took her out for most of her grad year, but it did resolve with lots and lots of the right rehab and lots of time and a gradual return to ballet. By the time she saw a foot & ankle specialist, she was well on the road to recovery, but a bone scan and spect ct scan were very useful and showed that the injury was resolving. Proper diagnosis, treatment and rehab are crucial for dancers.
  18. Arucaria, enjoy your summer, maybe focus on some non ballet stuff, by all means do some exercise, swimming is good, rest, have a good time. Start your upper school training with a rested body and maybe just try to find some back to school classes towards the end of the holiday. Please don’t feel that you will be somehow “behind”, that you’re missing out and that your technique will go backwards if you don’t keep up training through the whole summer. Upper school training is pretty intense and days are long, so start with a rested body and mind. As much as ballet may be your passion, look at the summer as an opportunity rather than being long and difficult. I speak as a parent who was on this journey with a dd for many years. All the very best for when you start upper school. x
  19. There’s also an interview 45 mins in.
  20. Not sure if this link will work. https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m0005ffr
  21. Sadielou, I absolutely agree with everything you have said. This is the real truth of the ballet world for most and the experiences you describe are typical. I will quote an experience ... flights, two nights in a hotel, a nearly 5 hour wait just to get in the studio, because there are around 400 women auditioning, get in the studio and cut after 15 mins. These highly trained individuals are treated appallingly.
  22. This does indeed make sad reading. What is even more sad is that most of those graduating from ballet schools will really really struggle to get jobs, that is the truth of it. The job search is expensive and brutal, candidates are treated like cattle at some auditions and toxic is a word I would use to describe some elements of the industry. It is most certainly not for the faint hearted.
  23. Same here, 60 odd pairs all went to the tip, only kept 1st pair.
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