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Value for money - thoughts after CBA audition

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My daughter was in the first group and is quite bendy so was warming up in all sorts of positions. She just loves it all and I would never ask her to do anything even at the age of 8 she just gets on with it until I say no more! She did the Royal ballet ja audition on the Friday. Its was interesting to here that she found the CBA harder but loved it just as much. She was over the moon a girl she was paired up with on the Friday was also in the CBA group Sunday. Not that we will, but if we got offered both I'm not sure I could decide which to go for for her. x

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Hi nicass and thank you for posting such kind words! My dd wasn't put off at all,in fact I don't think she noticed anything unusual. It was me looking around while she was doing her audition ;) Your dd and her friends were brilliant and I'm actually glad I noticed how good they were as it made me think about our dance school which I now see doesn't push kid enough, if at all. I'd love to know what dance school you represent if that's OK?

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Hi nicass and thank you for posting such kind words! My dd wasn't put off at all,in fact I don't think she noticed anything unusual. It was me looking around while she was doing her audition ;) Your dd and her friends were brilliant and I'm actually glad I noticed how good they were as it made me think about our dance school which I now see doesn't push kid enough, if at all. I'd love to know what dance school you represent if that's OK?

Can I just remind everyone that the forum is completely public, i.e. readable by anyone on the internet, member or not. As such we have a rule against identifying other people's children (and we advise people to think before identifying their own child). If nicass prefers not to answer, that's fine - although he/she may be happy to reply about the dance school by Private Message. :-)

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Hi all, we also attended the Tring audition my little girls were limbering before they did the class because we were aware that their flexibility is taken into consideration (it was written in the letter) .. Of course it doesn't mean they will be offered a place but when asked to do splits etc it would be naive not to have warmed up.. I know how diaunting is if your child attends something like this on their own but because a few girls are chatting excitedly doesn't mean they're loud etc.. The small group of children we were with thoroughly enjoyed the audition and were wowed by the beautiful studios ( you should see where they train) & the teachers.. Sometimes attending things like this is an eye opener but usually you learn from these things & it does make you realise that there are better schools out there etc, this happened to us a few years back.. It's always good to move your child If you feel your child is not reaching their full potential, after all it is about progression but most importantly enjoyment. It would be a wonderful opportunity to receive a place but I know for mine it's a long shot as there were so many children in each group. Apparently we will be informed by letter by 6th June the outcome so a long wait indeed .. Best of luck to all the children who took part ????

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There isn't enough room in the Tring waiting area for every child called to audition to stretch into the splits prior to class! It just takes a few groups to stake a claim to the floor and it's standing room only!!

No one should worry about stretching or preparing if they don't won't to or don't know how. All the children will be thoroughly warmed up properly before any assessment of flexibility begins. If your child has a warm up ritual that helps them relax and focus you should use it, great! Don't be intimidated by kids just sitting around chatting in the splits. It's a very pressurised environment and everyone will cope differently.

 

Let them sit, eat, stare, read, chit chat, cuddle, tweak bits of themselves, dash to the loo (again) ostentatiously flap then dramatically drape a Royal Ballet sweatshirt onto the back of their chair (BEHOLD!) or whatever it takes just to get through the tension and self conscious awkwardness!

 

All I want to emphasise is what goes on in that waiting room on audition day bears little resemblance to actually attending the CBA.

 

Good luck to everyone and I hope those letters are sent out earlier than the 6th June - I'm sure we only had to wait three or four days max?

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IMHO no child should be over-stretching or doing splits before class, anywhere. At Central Associates (and Tring CBA if I remember rightly), the students never did splits in class until after a thorough warmup in the form of a complete barre session. One of my personal bugbears is seeing children sitting in splits or over stretching prior to class or in audition waiting rooms.

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I love those cryptic warm ups where you've got no idea what that dancer is doing or why they are doing it they are just completely in their zone, unaware, working on some very specific physical or interior personal issues, maybe wearing just the one leg warmer, bit of a mantra going on. Quite like it when you're watching and they lull you into a false sense of security by doing something very repetitive and small for ages and then all of a sudden that leg goes up WOW!

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This thread has worried me slightly. My dd (age 7) has associate auditions for both RBS and Elmhurst coming up and she isn't particularly flexible. She can do front splits on both legs, but not box yet and has quite tight hamstrings which we are trying to work on. She does have wonderful musicality and great performance though (as well as very long legs!) which is why it was suggested that she audition for these schemes. I am not sure she has a chance though if they take flexibility into account and everyone else in the room will be more bendy than she is. I don't want her to feel intimidated and start doubting herself, as she has always loved her ballet and at the moment is really excited about the auditions!

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My daughter was also at Tring on Sunday, wearing red as well :) and mostly warmed up her mouth by sitting chatting to her friends :)

 

Everyone does what works for them and the trick is to tune out and be yourself. Some children will be in the splits and some won't - all part of being young and still growing/ developing :)

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This thread has worried me slightly. My dd (age 7) has associate auditions for both RBS and Elmhurst coming up and she isn't particularly flexible. She can do front splits on both legs, but not box yet and has quite tight hamstrings which we are trying to work on. She does have wonderful musicality and great performance though (as well as very long legs!) which is why it was suggested that she audition for these schemes. I am not sure she has a chance though if they take flexibility into account and everyone else in the room will be more bendy than she is. I don't want her to feel intimidated and start doubting herself, as she has always loved her ballet and at the moment is really excited about the auditions!

Don't let it worry you, or your dd, Balletmummy. :-) At age 7, all associate panels are looking for *potential* to be trained in their own system. "Bendy" can be aesthetically pleasing but too much flexibility can have the downside of less strength. Just be aware that whichever audition you go to, now and in future, there will always be someone doing splits/oversplits etc in the waiting room. Your best bet - and your dd's - is to try to ignore waiting room shenanigans. Just tell her to go and have fun, do her best, and enjoy the class. :-)

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Never fear Balletmummy28! Flexibility can be improved! They will never judge children of that age purely on flexibility for associates, much more on potential. Musicality and a passion/love for dance are however essential! .

Your DD is very young and to have both splits by 7 is a great achievement. Best of luck to her and enjoy the process.

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My DD was in group 5 on Sunday and appeared to be the only one not stretching! She said she was already warmed up as I "made her walk all the way from the train station!" Lol ☺️

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I agree, there is nothing wrong with doing a warm up in your own way. We got there and there were loads of kids warming up hence my dd and her friends (in the red!) did some general warm ups. They probably felt a bit intimidated and werent really sure what warm ups to do . Before my daughter did the splits - i know people have their own opinions of whether it should form part of a warm up - she had done the leg warm ups for them. There is no right or wrong just what works for your child. If a child feels warmed up and more flexible doing it that way so be it. She did plenty of chatting and drinking (although was too nervous to eat) and as some have said, what you see in the waiting room bears no resemblance on what happens in the audition room. It is what it is. 

 

We were scanning the room looking at the different auditionees but at the end of the day, none of us know what goes on inside the actual room.

 

The main thing I took from it was not to worry what others were doing and that my dd LOVED the whole experience and came out with such a huge smile. That to me was everything. :)

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p.s. I have read on forums that Tring are sometimes quite quick to get their responses out. 6th June, I think I'll have chewed my fingers right down  :o ha ha!

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Ultimately, we have no influence over what anyone else does in an audition, job interview or whatever and can only focus on doing our best  - but that's a tough concept for little ones to get into their heads and it's hard not to be influenced by what other people are doing. I know my DD used to get psyched out by other people, but now at the ripe old age of 18 she is pretty good at doing her own thing and not taking much notice of other people.

She's always been taught that warming up and stretching are two different things, and her own warm up ritual doesn't include any stretching at all. My sons' coaches in the sports that they do all say the same thing too, so I assume there is some credibility in that argument. It makes sense to me anyway.

I think that all we can do as parents is to encourage our children to try their best and to enjoy themselves. they can do no more than that, and nor can we.

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Ultimately, we have no influence over what anyone else does in an audition, job interview or whatever and can only focus on doing our best - but that's a tough concept for little ones to get into their heads and it's hard not to be influenced by what other people are doing. I know my DD used to get psyched out by other people, but now at the ripe old age of 18 she is pretty good at doing her own thing and not taking much notice of other people.

She's always been taught that warming up and stretching are two different things, and her own warm up ritual doesn't include any stretching at all. My sons' coaches in the sports that they do all say the same thing too, so I assume there is some credibility in that argument. It makes sense to me anyway.

I think that all we can do as parents is to encourage our children to try their best and to enjoy themselves. they can do no more than that, and nor can we.

Completely agree. Warm up and stretches are 2 completely different things. Static stretching should never be done before class only dynamic stretches that warm the body up. My ds just puts on him head phones, turns his back to the room and does his own personal warm up and he has been brain washed by me never to static stretch before class. When I was a dance student everyone just sat around in splits before class - now we know much more thanks to the cross over with sports training. Unfortunately, some dance teachers haven't caught up and aren't telling their students that the new improved thinking is better for injury prevention and strength building.

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My DD was in group 5 on Sunday and appeared to be the only one not stretching! She said she was already warmed up as I "made her walk all the way from the train station!" Lol ☺️

 

That's quite a long walk Cygnet!!  :)

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I think if children want to warm up or stretch that is their business and they shouldn't be criticised for it by adults. If a child chooses to relax and take it all in, that too is that child's business and nobody else's. Students prepare for auditions in lots of different ways and unless the school ask for no stretching, then the students are entitled to prepare, nothing wrong with that.

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Never fear Balletmummy28! Flexibility can be improved! They will never judge children of that age purely on flexibility for associates, much more on potential. Musicality and a passion/love for dance are however essential! .

Your DD is very young and to have both splits by 7 is a great achievement. Best of luck to her and enjoy the process.

I couldn't do the splits until I was 10.

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