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Leapfrog

Questions about dancing hours per week

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Hope to get some good advice!  I am trying to decide what is best for DS, going into year 7 in Sept. He has places at a few different associate courses, but none are every week, and on the weeks he does not have an associate day he will  have 2 or 3  hours of ballet lessons. ( he also does Jazz 1 hour and street 1 hour). This has been the case this year, and as a Year 6 I felt it was enough.  Do any of you have experience of helping a very keen child who is not going to vocational school at present and the standards they need to be competitive at auditions? Thank you in advance!

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Hi Leapfrog, it would help everyone if we knew your location. Then people can suggest useful schemes/teachers accessible to you. Plenty in London but no help if you are in Scotland😉

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A widely accepted general rule is three ballet classes per week with own school (on different days), plus Associates and other genres in addition to this.  If the school he is at now cannot provide that amount of basic training then you may need to look elsewhere.

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Which associate schemes does/will he attend in year 7?  Are you hoping for a vocational place in lower school ?  Are you looking primarily at ballet or is DS more of an all rounder?

 

 

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He does other styles at his local school as well as ballet but wants to concentrate on ballet for associates.  He has a place at ballet boost which is great and auditioned for central.  If he gets a central place some weekends will be very hectic for him with travelling and dancing so trying to find out how many hours others are doing and how they are finding it!

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Thank you Pas de Quatre, that does seem reasonable, I wish the associate schemes ran each week of term instead of every other week!

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Isn’t Central every Saturday still?  My dd used to do Central every Saturday and Tring CBA every other Sunday.  It worked well when it came to juggling academics and dance.

 

One thing to note is that quality is equally as (if not more so) important as quantity when it comes to local training.   You could have 6 hours a week with an amazing local teacher who has a great record for getting students into full-time upper schools and that would be better (IMO) than 12 or 20 hours with an average teacher. 

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Thank you Anna C, sounds like doing 2 worked well for you!  Will wait and see if he gets a Central Place. 

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13 minutes ago, Leapfrog said:

Thank you Anna C, sounds like doing 2 worked well for you!  Will wait and see if he gets a Central Place. 

 

Yes, it would have been a struggle had Tring CBA been every Sunday as dancing all weekend, every weekend in term time can be exhausting if juggling lots of homework and music lessons.  It was a really good combination of Associates for dd.

 

Best of luck for Central. 👍

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Hi, if it helps, we’ve heard several times during talks with CAT schemes, their benchmark is number of hours more or less equivalent to their age so 11hrs a week at age 11, 13 at age 13 etc

 

totally agree with Anna C about quality over quantity :)

 

 

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If your DC can not easily access more hours but feels they are not doing enough....I would recommend seeing a dance physio and getting a series of daily or regular exercises to work on at home or through other activities/sports.  This can really help with strength and flexibility.   

It is also a great way to have measurements of progress and to set tangible goals.

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It’s really about quality training, my dc was doing approx 8 hours week and has been successful at gaining a place at upper school for this year.

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On 11/06/2019 at 09:25, Jen51 said:

It’s really about quality training, my dc was doing approx 8 hours week and has been successful at gaining a place at upper school for this year.

 

Completely agree with this. I know that Claudia Dean's take was that the *maximum* number of hours per week should not exceed the DC's age. So I would not be worrying that your DS should be doing 10-11 hours every week!

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On 09/06/2019 at 19:23, Leapfrog said:

Thank you Pas de Quatre, that does seem reasonable, I wish the associate schemes ran each week of term instead of every other week!

If you are in Cambridgeshire my dd does Cambridge ballet associates every Thursday. She also does Central associates every Saturday 

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On 15/06/2019 at 06:27, Leapfrog said:

Thank you all for your advice,  lots of decisions to make! 

Thinking outside the box ever so slightly but still within the Arts. Have you considered acting classes? An alternative form but still important part of ballet training. I appreciate it’s not ballet which you may have been asking  but still very important and can be overlooked.  The skills in acting are an integral part to ballet as well as the knowledge of stage craft. It’s surprising how some pupils are beautiful technicians in the art of ballet but over the years can lack the skills and stage presence as so much time is spent in a studio and therefore can lack the stage confidence. 

 

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44 minutes ago, balletbean said:

Thinking outside the box ever so slightly but still within the Arts. Have you considered acting classes? An alternative form but still important part of ballet training. I appreciate it’s not ballet which you may have been asking  but still very important and can be overlooked.  The skills in acting are an integral part to ballet as well as the knowledge of stage craft. It’s surprising how some pupils are beautiful technicians in the art of ballet but over the years can lack the skills and stage presence as so much time is spent in a studio and therefore can lack the stage confidence. 

 

Thank you Balletbean, you are so right! I am looking into Musical Theatre options locally too that we can fit around the ballet classes.

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2 minutes ago, Leapfrog said:

Thank you Balletbean, you are so right! I am looking into Musical Theatre options locally too that we can fit around the ballet classes.

Lovely. MT is great but if your son is considering a classical route (still early days) you may wish to explore other acting schools. Having experienced both sides they do vary quite dramatically. Pure acting are more likely to cover the traditional scripts. Obviously these scripts cross over very nicely with ballet as well as GCSE Eng Lit. Every little helps 😉. (Ps keeps their school teachers happy). 😂

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