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Picturesinthefirelight

Stepping off the rollercoaster for a while

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Has anyone got any experience of a child at vocational school deciding not to audition for Upper School? How was the adjustment back to normal academic school & how can they keep up the level of dance needed to audition at 18 whilst doing A levels?

 

i think it's going to be hard to adjust going from daily/twice daily ballet class plus other classes to just 2/3 local ballet classes & maybe a jazz & tap class per week. 

 

 

 

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It's certainly possible - your local dance school should be able to offer your DD plenty of classes and depending on what type of course she wants to audition for at 18, the type of class might not be so crucial. Also don't forget associate schemes, additional programmes etc can be great to supplement after school classes. Don't forget that vocationally trained students are used to working long hours so while it'll be hard, I'm sure your DD would rise to the challenge!

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Just referring to the A'Levels for the moment, it's worth remembering that schools will often suggest that 4/5 hours of independent study is undertaken each week per subject studied.

 

Our two non-DDs both studied at least this much, in some cases a fair bit more, and were both keen not to take any unnecessary time off school for fear of missing important information that could be difficult to cover later.

 

Obviously when approaching mock exams/real exams, considerably more time will probably be given to revising too. Just worth bearing in mind when planning dance lessons, as school days can be long and hard when studying A'Levels.  If you need to get specific grades to enable more future career choices, then this can be extra pressure to deal with, but probably looking forward to dance lessons in the evenings/weekends, would help them deal with it.

 

 

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Just wondering if it would be worth posting the following, because it would give an indication of what a typical 'going on to dance college at 18' dancer at a good quality local school would do at that age.

 

The normal point for students to leave DD's non-vocational dance school if going on to dance college is at 18. They go on to places like LSC, Laine's, Birds, Performers - so decent all round 18+ colleges. Pure ballet is rare, they are generally all-rounders, but most get into most places they apply to, so are at a decent standard. DD is mostly in the same classes as those leaving this year, so just to give an indication of what they would be doing:

 

In a normal week:

3x ballet classes, each of 1-1.25 hours, + 45 mins pointe class.

1.5 hours of performing groups

1 hour of MT

1 hour of Tap

1 hour of Urban / Body conditioning

1 hour of singing, plus a 30 minute private singing lesson.

30 minute 1:1 private dancelesson

 

Plus a 45 minute -1 hour coaching class for any exams being taken that term

 

They all do 3 academic A-levels at decent local schools, and IME tend to get very good grades, so can balance dance at a suitable level to dance at 18+ and a-level; studies with that type of time commitment. There would be various performances and competitions etc that would build up the hours at different points in the year, but as far as I know in recent years none have done associate-type schemes in ballet.

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Pictures, are you anywhere near one of the CAT centres?  I know most of them are for Contemporary Dance, other than Leeds being the only ballet scheme, but they still have to do a measure of ballet within the course.  I only know a bit about my local one in Swindon who offer both the Contemporary scheme and the Urban one.  The auditions for the Contemporary scheme are coming up and is for children aged 11 to 18 although, in our experience, it's only boys that get in at 11.  But that wouldn't be an issue for your daughter.  They do 5 hours class every Saturday which includes an hour at least of ballet plus another additional ballet class during the week. 

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London Studio Centre associates are geared to get students into vocational school at 18. Teach mix of ballet, jazz, contemporary and musical theatre. They must be auditioning some time in memory from memory so you would need to contact quickly, think minimum age is 14 but worth checking. DD has loved, almost all the students do get offers as taught by their regular staff.

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DD has a friend who left vocational school last summer. She is at boarding school for 6th form, ne which has a good level of sport  plus joined a high level dance group ( I don't want to say more to protect her ) She found the transition much easier than expected, probably because it was the right thing

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Pictures - I think your dd did BBO at home?

Mr N from your current school does the BBO jazz scholars north at Centre Pointe - only monthly though.

Have you thought about KS Dance? Maybe too far for weekdays but weekends?

 

The Cecchetti northern associates is there (KS Dance)monthly which is ballet plus another rotating genre. It's never on at same time as BBO as some teachers overlap. Your dd will know several of the guest teachers there.

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She did RAD before at a small but good school, however I reckon about 80% of local dance schools are BBO. She started off with BBO when very little but moved due to location/timetables. 

 

Yes I have thought about KS, even vaguely thought about applying for 6th form college in that area but would need to check train timetables etc. 

 

What makes it a bit difficult is that the options she really wants to audition for (Abbots Bromley, Arts Ed 6th Form or Tring MT) are not financially possible.  

 

 

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3 hours ago, dancefanatic said:

Pictures, are you anywhere near one of the CAT centres?  I know most of them are for Contemporary Dance, other than Leeds being the only ballet scheme, but they still have to do a measure of ballet within the course.  I only know a bit about my local one in Swindon who offer both the Contemporary scheme and the Urban one.  The auditions for the Contemporary scheme are coming up and is for children aged 11 to 18 although, in our experience, it's only boys that get in at 11.  But that wouldn't be an issue for your daughter.  They do 5 hours class every Saturday which includes an hour at least of ballet plus another additional ballet class during the week. 

 

Our nearest is Birmingham but you have to be under 16 to join the scheme although it goes up to 18 for those already enrolled. 

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Could she apply to the CAT scheme at 16, Pictures? They may be willing to allow application later than usual in the circumstances if she explains the situation and asks to be allowed to audition?

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Perhaps her vocational school teachers have information on available schemes/teachers? The dance world is small so they may even have personal links that could assist in planning a dance timetable for her sixth form years?

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I think you daughter is being really sensible. I know lots of girls that get into top dance schools at 18 some with limited experience  on two ballet classes and tap and modern and musical theatre class per week, I am sure your daughter already has learnt enough already whilst at vocational school .  I think if she just keeps up her ballet and other styles of dance she will be fine and you may find she get more opportunities to perform in her local area.  I don't believe you have to be doing ten hours plus a week unless going down the ballet route.  My dd has attended her local dance school and does advance one ( 1 1/2 hours class ) and grade seven ballet (45 mins) tap grade 6 (1/2) lyrical (1 hour) performance classes (2hours).  Always achieved distinction in all exams and auditioned this year for two top schools which she got places and scholarships and now has decided to do her A Levels and apply again at 18.  She said she thinks if she can get in a dance school now she will be able to in two years times.  She auditioned at year 10 and offered a place and scholarship at s top school which she again declined and said she made the right choice. She has had a great time at her local school and is predicated A s in all her subjects whilst she has had a great time performing in festivals and making her mark on dance in  her local area.  I have always said if she wants to make it has a dancer it's got to be for her and not for anyone else, she is hungry for it and realistic she will only ever get s job on a cruise ship or  in musical theatre.  It's all down to having the look they want at these auditions and girls change so much upto to being 18 so as long has they keep fit and healthy and concentrate on technique and performance I wouldn't worry too much about it.  It's a roller coaster we all feel we should be on but not necessarily.  Good luck to your dd she will get were she is supposed to be xx

 

 

 

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Hi Pictures

As you know we declined dds dada for a lesser well known course and in the long run has been the best decision we could have made for her.

It is a hard when they are all caught up in auditioning and chatter of where each other will be going or staying .

There are lots of different associate classes around ,here are just a few that I know of beside the usual ballet ones

Urdang run a youth Academy you can attend twice a month or once a month

Tap Attak

Laine 

SLP in Leeds

Phoenix dance( Contempory )  in Leeds used to run one 

Also there are lots of master classes in all genres  of dance .

 

 

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On 5/4/2017 at 19:32, Picturesinthefirelight said:

She did RAD before at a small but good school, however I reckon about 80% of local dance schools are BBO. She started off with BBO when very little but moved due to location/timetables. 

 

Yes I have thought about KS, even vaguely thought about applying for 6th form college in that area but would need to check train timetables etc. 

 

What makes it a bit difficult is that the options she really wants to audition for (Abbots Bromley, Arts Ed 6th Form or Tring MT) are not financially possible.  

 

 

Abbotts Bromley can offer very generous bursaries

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I guess it depends if they like you enough. Worth a try I guess. She likes the look of there as they also offer the academic subjects she's interested in but she'd have to board (ive looked up train & bus timetables & they just don't work!)

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Do you have anything to lose by applying for a bursary? Must be worth a go? Singing bursaries?

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On 05/05/2017 at 19:51, Picturesinthefirelight said:

I guess it depends if they like you enough. Worth a try I guess. She likes the look of there as they also offer the academic subjects she's interested in but she'd have to board (ive looked up train & bus timetables & they just don't work!)

I was very impressed when I went to have a look. I also know of a few very talented you d dancers who have left there to go onto top 16+ schools. I don't know as much about the 6th form apart from the fact that there are lots of opportunities for study/choir/ballet/MT and the school staff are very welcoming. 

 

She could catch the bus from my house ;)

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