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Nothing here either.

 

Must ask though; what were your opinions on the school? In all honesty, I wasn't too keen on the school. Automatically felt overwhelmed by a negative atmosphere, and all the students (in my personal opinion) seemed very tall, lean and long legs, which I am not. Don't think I would fit in well! I find it rather odd though that I felt like that, especially as it is one of the top 4.

 

I suppose you have to be careful whilst picking schools, not just on their reputation, but whether they are right for you. After all, 3 years training is an awfully long time if you don't enjoy the school.

 

LB x

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We felt exactly the same when we auditioned 2 years ago. Couldn't quite explain why but felt it wasn't for us. There was a boy in my DS year who went there and is now back at his previous school.

 

They do produce some excellent dancers though

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I agree! Their dancers always end up in some sort of company, and it is always excellent to have that link with the company. If I'm honest, I feel that the building may have put me off also, as it is a little run down, I think I have been a little biased and compared it with the likes of Elmhurst. I have friends there that love every minute of it, in particular one boy, who is in his second year, and played the Nutcracker Prince with the company over Christmas. Good for some, and not for others, hmm. I think it's finding your school with this sixth form mission, or what it seems like!

 

LB x

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Ahh, I will do, and you too! I can imagine she is happy at Tring, it truly is a beautiful school. :) keeping my fingers crossed for when the letters come out from there too! And thank you, trying to keep positive, and remember there are hundreds of girls out there who will get a 'no' and a small amout who will get a 'yes' - not as bad getting a no, if you don't feel alone!

 

Oh, and nothing here today.

 

LB x

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I had reservations about the school when we were there 3 years ago, however, I warmed to it when we went for the final audition when they had a really good open day and made us very welcome (the food was lovely!!). The premises and facilities aren't great, but the standard of dancing was very high (which I expected) and their connections with the company are good.

 

However, when my son had the choice between Elmhurst and ENBS we chose Elmhurst for the following reasons:

  • Desmond Kelly!
  • Better facilities
  • Wonderful physio
  • Connections to BRB
  • More British students (well, just more students - although very small year of boys which has meant wonderful, almost 121 teaching at times)
  • Bigger school generally
  • Living in a boarding house for the first year
  • An acting AD in place at ENBS at the time - and I worried that a new one wouldn't like him (not a silly worry as it turned out I feel)
  • Son already at Elmhurst so he knew it well and was very happy there

What nearly swayed us to choose ENBS:

  • Would've been closer to home
  • Son would've preferred living in London
  • Connections to ENB
  • Standard of students was very high

We have known both students who have been very happy there, and those who have been very unhappy and left for a variety of reasons. You just have to go with what feels right for you (if you've got a choice of offers of course ;) )

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Julie that's interesting. I prefer Elmhurst as well for lots of reasons, some similar to yours, but there is almost a feeling of having to choose ENBS over Elm because it is regarded as the no.2 to RBS and Elm as the no.3 - certainly for girls anyway - so it's almost pandering to other people's perceptions rather than your own observations (same goes for RBS by the way).

 

I know you should stick to your guns and go with what feels right but it's hard when recently I heard a ballet company AD say that the first thing he looks for in a potential dancer is where they trained!!!

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This struck a chord with me as we, for year 7, were in the fortunate position of having a choice of schools offering an MDS. We chose the more prestigious school, despite a gut instinct we should have chosen another.

 

We lived to regret the decision every day for the next three years. My DS is now at a different school altogether, and although it may be regarded as less prestigious, he has never been happier, and his dancing has never been better. He feels he gets the attention that he needs and the style of teaching certainly seems to suit him. They are also a very nice bunch of students to be around and so he is not dealing with social issues that tended to get in the way of any dancing progress he may have made.

 

So although I absolutely take your point about the CV needing to look good I would suggest a well trained, happy and confident dancer may well shine more than an unhappy, poorly motivated student from a more prestigious school.

 

As with all things, your mileage may vary .....

 

meadowblythe

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I think its true that where a dancer has trained is VERY important to Artistic Directors - and English National Ballet School has a good rate of graduates getting jobs in companies, but Elmhurst isn't so far behind that their graduates don't get a look in so it isn't neccessarily a bad choice to 'go with your gut'. At the end of the day you have to be at least reasonably happy and comfortable in your environment to do your best work. We were lucky never to have this difficult choice to make :)

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I can't say that I've ever considered Elmhurst to be "behind" ENBS in the list of schools - especially more recently with Desmond at the helm. Although the ENBS students seem to stand more chance of getting into ENB, they don't have many students who go into RB or BRB - they tend to be the ones from Elmhurst and RBS. Aside from that the graduates seem to get contracts at very similar companies. Sadly for Elmhurst, some people seem to think it's more important for the students to be in London, and forget that they have some outstanding teachers and very close links with BRB.

 

We certainly had to consider that our initial reaction was that the name of ENBS seemed to carry more weight, but since finding out more about graduate destinations, I'm not so sure - perhaps my son would've stood more chance of getting into ENB, but I think that would've been the only advantage IMHO.

 

I think Elmhurst have sometimes kept students on who perhaps are not destined to be classical dancers, so maybe the list of contracts don't look so impressive in some years, but like Central, the students are encouraged to be the best dancers they can be for the genre that suits them.

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I just wanted to apologise that my choice of words may have suggested that I thought Elmhurst was 'inferior' to English National Ballet School. That certainly isn't the case.

 

I think that you make a good point that when considering graduate employment destinations that some schools have an intake which is more purely classical. Some schools achieve this by filling with overseas students. I believe that one should be looking at

Does the school get some students into classical jobs

Does the school get some students into 'top' classical jobs

And very importantly - do those who don't get classical jobs get jobs which utilise their training in some way if they want it (eg in another form of dance)

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Best wishes to those waiting for letters from ENBS. I read this discussion with interest, though although my DD's are at vocational school it will be a few years before we will be looking at sixth form places.

 

While we all may like to imagine our children have a choice over which school they go to, the vast majority a). dont get offered any place at all, B). a few in the country are offered a place at one school and for a very small minority c) have more than one offer. it is good to discuss the merits of one school over another, but for most it wont make any difference.

 

Ribbons and Glowlight are your dancing children waiting for ENBS letters, or do they currently attend a vocational school at sixth form?

 

NL

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Nana Lily - my dd has already graduated from Northern Ballet School. It seems no time at all since we were in your position doing the rounds of sixth for auditions, and it was a very stressful time. You are quite right that there is very little point in stressing about how you would choose between different schools until you are in that position. We certainly weren't and very few of my dd's friends were actually in the position of having to make a choice. I am a great believer that things happen for a reason and so was quite happy that there was no decision to me made!

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