Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

4,149 Excellent

Recent Profile Visitors

2,345 profile views
  1. Gosh Sunrise, I am not surprised your DD was upset. I do some sports coaching and I was taught very early on in my coach training that a child's (or indeed an adult's) confidence, and thus performance, can be badly affected if they feel the coach values them less than other participants. Using the names of only some of the children creates a division and will boost the confidence of some whilst damaging the self belief of others, even if that was not the intent. Obviously a teacher in an audition class cannot learn everyone's names, so they should use no-one's. Every dancer has a number on, which makes it easy to treat everyone the same. I know it is difficult to challenge behaviour in such circumstances but I really hope someone feels able to give some feedback. The teacher may be unaware of their own behaviour and how it affects the children, but if this kind of thing is taught on basic sports coaching courses I would really expect an expert teacher to know better. I hope it hasn't upset your DD too much and that she ends up in the school that is best for her.
  2. I would just urge a little caution when making the assumption that you can always take up a more academic career later in life. I had always thought that until I started looking a little more carefully at things when my DD was making her decisions. Of course there is no reason in theory why a dancer cannot take up a totally different career path later, but there is potentially one big practical reason why it could be difficult - money. I had realised that if you have "used up" your student finance one one degree you wouldn't get a second lot for another degree, but until I started looking more carefully I didn't realise the same would apply after a level 6 diploma. When I thought about it, yes, it does make sense that of you have had a DaDA then you have had your share of the education money pot, but I had always assumed that if you self funded a Trinity Diploma you would be able to get student finance for an unrelated degree in the future. However, thanks to the wisdom of some experienced people here I learned that that isn't necessarily so. It seems crazy to me. If you are funded for your Diploma you can self fund a subsequent degree, but if you self fund the diploma there is no guarantee of funding for a later degree. That seems totally unfair to me, but apparently it is the case. This may or may not be relevant to you, and of course the funding arrangements for education in general could change totally before you get to that stage, but I think it is worth knowing about in advance.
  3. Hi Mrsmac and welcome to the forum. I would see getting on the waiting list for the RBS summer school as a very positive thing. There are huge numbers of applicants from all around the world and the majority will receive a straight " no". There will be quite a lot on the waiting list it is true and it is always hard to say if a place will come up as I believe the way it works is that they replace "like for like". So if a 15 year old boy drops out they will look for another one, rather than offering a place to a 16 year old girl if you see what I mean? So to get a place you need someone the same sex and around the same age to decline. But they have obviously seen very positive things in your DD. Plenty of talented dancers apply every year that they are eligible and never make it as far as the waiting list. So whilst obviously it is disappointing to your DD that she didn't get offered a place, I think she can be reassured that she is very much along the right lines to have been put on the waiting list. My daughter is an adult now and I am a bit out of the loop regarding summer schools so I can't recommend anywhere specific. They all have their pros and cons really, but most of the well known schemes will provide a good experience. Obviously there are some exceptions, but I think that if a young dancer has a positive attitude and works hard then they will get something out of more or less any reputable summer school. As has already been mentioned, you might be better off looking in Scotland for the dates that you mention. In England, the majority of schools don't start their summer holidays until mid July so not many summer schools will be available until then. But the Scottish school holidays start towards the end of June, so the summer schools start earlier. As Valentina has already mentioned there are lots of beautiful places in Scotland so if you combine with a family holiday you will find plenty to do. That said, Yorkshire is also beautiful and full of interesting tourist attractions. Just don't expect the weather anywhere in the UK to be as fabulous as Cyprus in July! And particularly if you opt to go to Scotland be sure to pack insect repellent. You won't catch anything nasty from Scottish midgies but they can give you horrid itchy bites. I hope you find somewhere suitable and enjoy your stay in the UK. Tell your DD not too worry too much. There will almost certainly be other dancers doing their first summer school wherever she goes, most will have at least some international students and everyone speaks the wonderful international language that is ballet.
  4. It's lovely to hear how much your daughter is enjoying her dancing and that that you are now able to send her to regular classes. You are obviously a very loving mum who wants the very best for her daughter. 10 is definitely not to late - in fact there are some very well known dancers who were late starters - but there are undeniable challenges to starting late. She will be technically behind her peers, and whilst the fact that she has been teaching herself does demonstrate that she has real drive and passion for dance, which is a very positive thing, there is a very real possibility that she has taught herself some things which are not quite right and need to be unlearned. She sounds to be doing several different styles of dance, some of which have rather different techniques. A 10 year old who has been dancing since they were 3 or 4 and has a good grasp of basic technique might manage a range of different genres quite comfortably, but given that your daughter has only been having lessons for 9 months or so, I think that number and range of classes sounds quite a lot. I don't want to sound too negative, or to dampen her (and your) enthusiasm, but I do wonder if there is a risk of her trying to run before she can walk? It is natural to want to do a lot when she has had to wait for the opportunity, but sometimes less is more. I would second Valentina's suggestion that you consider cutting back on some of the other classes and focus on ballet to start with. Whatever shape her dancing life eventually takes, it needs solid foundations. Ballet is that foundation, providing a platform for most other dance genres. A building based on shaky foundations may be ok til it reaches a certain height but then it can be built no further or it will fall - dancing is much the same. Time spent on the fundamentals of ballet is never wasted and will enable her to progress into a stronger dancer in due course. Just be a little wary of doing too much too soon.
  5. For what its worth I would call the Wear Moi Galate a camisole leotard. And a very nice one at that. Remember that the panel are looking at YOU, not your leotard. Yes, ok, if they have asked for black camisole you would be daft to go wearing a neon pink tank leotard, but little details like a tiny flower or the width of your straps are not worth worrying about. Wear the one that you are most comfortable in and you feel you will perform best in. Goos luck, and enjoy the experience.
  6. It is probably worth mentioning that ECG screening for these kind of disorders is a very specialist thing. I am a doctor who looks at ECGs on an almost daily basis and I wouldn't be able to do it, nor in fact would my adult cardiology colleagues. The doctors that read the ECGs for CRY are paediatric cardiologists from a unit with a specialist interest in these issues. They are expert in looking for the relevant changes, and also the management and wider implications if anything concerning is found. If you want your child screened I would strongly recommend this route rather than going to your GP or even a general cardiologist. It is free, though donations, both to CRY and the individual charities who fundraise for individual screening sessions, are of course very welcome. The only problem is that it is a very popular service and the sessions fill up extremely quickly. If you are interested, the best thing to do is to get on the e-mailing list via the CRY website and when you receive a notification of a screening in your area, book as soon as possible as they often fill within hours. It took me several months of trying to get a slot for my son, and we had to travel over 100 miles, but it was well worth it in my opinion.
  7. We've always used Audacity too. I am not remotely technically minded but even I could manage simple editing and DD has used it for more complex stuff very successfully.
  8. There are a lot of options to look at for post 18 training so it can seem a bit overwhelming. I would start by deciding whether it is definitely an MT course that she wants to do (given that you say that singing is a weakness) or a dance course. The acting element of an MT course might not be really necessary for the type of career path you describe. I know quite a few dancers who have been successful in gaining work on cruise ships etc as either "dancers" or "dancers who sing" having taken diploma or degree courses in dance rather than MT. A broad dance education with some singing might serve her better. Then I would look at the financial aspects. There is no point in her setting her heart on a course that then proves to be financially out of the question, so I would look at the funding options fairly early on. If she opts for a degree course obviously there is student finance, but just be aware that the maximum loan available for degrees at private institutions may be significantly less than the fees. For example, when my DD was offered a place at London Studio Centre a few years ago, the fees were something like £10500 per annum but only £6000 of loan was available each year. If she opts for a diploma there are no loans but she may be eligible for a DaDA and many colleges offer bursaries or scholarships. Living expenses are another consideration of course and it is probably worth researching the relative costs of living in different areas. A lot of the best known colleges are in London or the South East of course - Laine, Bird, Urdang, LSC, Performers to name but a few. All these are excellent colleges but there are good options in other parts of the country too, and living costs can be significantly less. For example, despite its name, Northern Ballet School in Manchester has a strong jazz strand and a good record for graduate employment in the type of work your daughter is interested in. I know a number of young dancers who have done well after attending SLP college in Leeds, and another under rated northern option is Preston College's professional dancers course. This course also includes ISTD teaching qualifications, and many of the graduates do go straight into teaching, but I have heard of others being successful with performing careers too. In your shoes I would have a good look at Preston as it sounds like it may tick a lot of the boxes for your DD. If you can get to Move It before she starts applying, that is a good opportunity to get information on a lot of colleges in one go, and you may be able to cross off some places without having to go there, or get particularly positive vibes about others. I can't remember when it is as it is quite a while since I was in your position but I am sure someone else will know! Best of luck to you and your daughter.
  9. It is many, many years since I posted on NAPM but if I recall rightly I ended up using my work email address to register as they wouldn't accept "disposable" addresses like yahoo or hotmail which was all I had otherwise. So if you have a work email maybe try that ( assuming it isn't going to get you in trouble at work of course!) Alternatively, you could try asking your MT question here. You won't get the same volume of replies its true, but there are quite a lot of regulars here whose children have gone down the MT or more general dance route who might be able to help.
  10. Thank you to the moderators and everyone involved in this forum. Its such a great place. I had decided to bow out earlier in the year as my DD is now an adult but I missed the forum too much and I can't resist sneaking back from time to time! I wish everyone a very happy Christmas. 🎅
  11. It is also worth remembering that correlation and causation are not the same thing. Even if the children who also attend the other establishment do consistently achieve high marks it is not necessarily because of going there. It could equally be that the most able children are being "cherry picked" by the other place, or there could be some other independent variable that is resulting in the difference. But whatever it is, it is probably best not to dwell on it. As long as your niece is doing the best she can and is having fun, that is all that really matters at this stage. And at 6 years old, the fun is absolutely the most important thing of all. Theodore Roosevelt's famous quote is not universally true in my opinion, but for 6 year old dancers I think it is - comparison is the thief of joy in situations like this.
  12. It is the same as say, county sports teams I suppose. There is no reason why a boy trying out for the County team my son plays for couldn't be selected for the first time at U16 level. Everyone has to try out at the beginning of each season. But in fact the majority of the squad have been there since U12 days, because they are the strongest players. Some have left because they lost interest or didn't develop as expected and some new ones have joined because they have improved a lot, come later to the sport or developed a deeper interest. But quite a lot are the "old guard." They get selected year on year because they perform well at the try outs and the dual aims of the County squad are to develop players for the future of the sport, and to perform as well as possible as a team in competition now. I accept there probably is some degree of bias, quite possibly unconscious, on the part of the coaches doing the selection. If two boys were very close technically and boy A is known to be reliable, accepting of corrections and a great team player whereas boy B is a totally unknown quantity I suspect boy A would be selected. Not 100% fair, and it could be argued that they should take a gamble on the new guy who might be even better, but human nature being what it is I imagine the "known" would be preferred. Then there is the confidence thing. I've noticed that my son plays much better when he is with friends, on a pitch he knows, doing something where he knows the format, knows the opposition etc. The players who have done County trials multiple times before do have a bit of a swagger of self confidence of them, so are more likely to play well and catch the eye of the selectors. I don't think anyone would really expect the selectors to pick anything other than what they believe to be the squad that has the best chance of good results and contains the players with the highest likelihood of progressing in the sport. Imagine saying to the top goalscorer "Well, yes, you were the best at the trials, you've won us multiple matches in the past and we think you have Olympic potential, but this year, just go back to your club. You've been picked for the last 3 years and we think it is time to give someone else a chance". It wouldn't happen would it? I think you can extrapolate much of the same thoughts to selection for youth ballets, associates etc. Each scheme wants the dancers who will put on the best performance and the ones that they feel have the highest chance of success in an outrageously competitive profession. The more experienced, as well as having the ability are also likely to have a proven track record and confidence that gives them a little bit extra at audition. There is always a far higher number of applicants than places and many, probably most, of those who apply will be competent and could benefit. Not being chosen doesn't mean a dancer is not good. But like the sports selectors, the audition panel will pick who they feel shows most potential on the day for the roles they have on offer. It isn't absolutely fair, or infallible - I don't think any subjective selection process can be. I would also think that having a cohort of children who "know the ropes" as well as being a high standard really helps the company. As I understand it (no personal experience) LCB audition everyone every year so the playing field is as level as it can be. But dancers who ticked all the boxes in the past are likely to tick them all again. I understand where you are coming from and I agree, ot can be frustrating to see what seems to be the same children getting picked for everything, but I can also see the company's point of view. There are lots of stories on here of yesses coming after long runs of nos though, so it is not always the case. (Sorry, that ended up longer than planned!)
  13. I've no experience of this particular production as it is relatively new, but my DD did EYB multiple times when she was younger. Each production was excellent so I am sure your DD will have a fabulous time. It is hard work, but very enjoyable and there is always a lot to learn. In my experience, there are no "bad" parts in EYB. Yes, some children do get featured a bit more, with small group dances or solos, but everyone gets a good amount of time on stage, and even in the biggest groups I noticed that the choreography is done in such a way that every dancer is seen. My DD didn't always get the parts she had hoped for but she thoroughly enjoyed what she was given and learned new things every time, so I would say it is best not to think too much about specific parts. In my experience, those who go in with a positive attitude and embrace the opportunities that their part gives them have a great time and learn a lot. I think my DD got at least as much out of the daily ballet class as she did from learning and performing her part for the production in fact - she loved the whole experience. If she wasn't too old now I am sure she would be back like a shot. I have to confess to feeling a bit envious of those must starting out. Enjoy!
  14. Sorry to hear this news @Fiz I can empathise as even though I am not a dancer I have had to more or less abandon my hobby this year due to a fracture that is resolutely refusing to heal properly. I'm waiting for surgery and hoping for a miracle too. Breaking bones when you are past the first flush of youth really stinks. Let's hope we both get our miracles. And @Viv I hope that you find another studio that works better for you - sounds like you're being treated very badly. I am sorry the owner doesn't value you as she should, as you sound like a real asset to the studio.
  15. I know these are not the sort of character shoes the OP is looking for, but just in case it is helpful to anyone else I thought I would mention that Bloch Kickline shoes are nearly vegan. The soles and uppers are fully synthetic but apparently Bloch cannot guarantee that the glue is. There seem to be more vegan ballet shoes, both flat and pointe, than there were even a few years ago so I am sure it is only a matter of time before manufacturers catch on to the fact that people want other styles too. It isn't that long ago that my vegan friend had to get her DD's ballet shoes imported specially imported but now they seem to be fairly mainstream.
  • Create New...