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Central school of ballet


Pointytoes22
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They are a ballet school, but I must say, I feel that their contemporary is stronger than their ballet, but that's probably due to the students who get places there (and I think they have some good contemporary teachers!)

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My daughter has just started there and up to now it is definately a ballet school. I have heard that the contemporary is very strong though, which is brilliant if that is the path that in the end is chosen. A lot of choreographers seem to be looking for more and more out of their dancers these days so I am really pleased that my daughter is getting the opportunity to learn both styles. The ballet training that my daughter has recieved so far is excellent and is at the moment very technical based, ironing out any bad habits. If you are unsure try and take the opportunity to attend one of their open days.

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JulieW-Do they choose students who are strong (or potentially strong) in contemporary? Is a contemporary class part of audition process? Does this mean they prefer a more athletic body type?

 

Certainily doesn't come across from web-site. Pointy22 teacher - I stand corrected.
Edited by tutoo2much
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No - I suppose I mean that it's mainly that the "strongest" ballet students will have probably gone to one of the other ballet schools (I'm not saying all - don't jump down my throat - there are excellent ballet dancers at Central too!), so there do tend to be dancers whose strengths lie in other dance styles too.

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Hi Pointytoes22, just browsing the website myself as it has been sometime, and I came across 2011 graduate list, this may give some indication where their graduates are getting jobs.

 

 

 

Graduate Success

 

The likelihood of your success as a Central graduate is considerably enhanced by the track record of our alumni. We will help you to choose and follow a professional career that best suits your individual talents and strengths.

Central graduates can be seen performing in dance companies around the world, and they will attribute much of their success to the unique training provided at Central School of Ballet.

The School's 2011 graduates now have contracts with the following companies:

  • Zoe Arshamian - Ballet Ireland
  • Lika Berkun - Israeli Ballet
  • Lisha Chin - Singapore Ballet (apprentice)
  • Nicole Craddock - Scottish Ballet
  • Katie Deacon - Ballet Ireland
  • Toni-MIchelle Dent - Northern Ballet (apprentice)
  • Jordi Arnau Rubio - Peter Schaufuss
  • Jamie Bradley - Disneyland Tokyo
  • Luke Divall - Ballet Boyz
  • Dominic Harrison - Scottish Ballet
  • Leon Moran - Matthew Bourne's Nutcracker
  • Alexander Nuttall - Ballet Cymru
  • David Pallant - Ballet Gratz
  • Joseph Poulton - Ballet Black (apprentice)
  • James Pullum - Commercial work
  • William Simmons - Estonia National Ballet

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DS is in Yr2 at Central. He has commented to me before that the boys in the year above him are possibly stronger in Contempory and the boys in his year are possibly stronger in Classical Ballet. So could vary from year to year.

 

They have 6 lessons a week for Classical Ballet (Monday to Saturday), 3 lessons a week for Contemporary, 2 lessons a week for Pas de Deux plus see below for other types of lessons covered. Day starts for DS at 8.45am but has to be warmed up before lessons start so trys to be there by 7.45am and finishes during the week between 4.30pm-5.30pm or later. Plus any AS/A levels studied are worked in around all the dance lessons. DS seems to survive OK. :)

 

  • Choreography
  • Spanish Dance
  • Pilates
  • Jazz Dance
  • Drama
  • Dalcroze Eurythmics
  • Singing
  • Contextual Studies

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Although the Contemporary is very strong at Central, going on Ballet Central's performances over the last few years and their graduate employment record, I still think people apply there for the ballet training first and foremost.

 

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My DS also in Yr 2 at Central. He moved from Rambert to Central because he wanted more advanced ballet. However, he was very pleased to find contemporary excellent too. Our impression is that ballet is the focus at Central but their aim is to make every student the best dancer they can be in their area of strength. His interest is in contemporary but knows he needs to have a solid foundation in ballet. In his year to my fairly inexperienced eye they look like ballet dancers.

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When my dd auditioned for Central both first and final auditons were a ballet class and ballet related exercises, I really dont think she did any contemporary dance during the audition. So from this I would assume that Central are looking for a classical shape with strong classical ability. I was really upset at the time when my dd turned down her place at Central and chose laines instead believing that Central was more contemporary based. I personally wanted her to go to Central, as I thought it was a more classical ballet school first with some contemp added to it. As it was along came the Bolshoi, fate stepped in and off she went.

I urge you to speak to the school itself who will in turn tell you first hand what the school is all about. Please, please dont think I am being rude to any comments above, I just feel that Heather was mislead in her judgments by listening to other peoples views, when in actual fact had she gone straight to the horses mouth she would have been armed with the full facts about the school. I made the same mistakes myself when looking at YDA, after looking at comments about the school several years ago on this old forum, I based my judgments on that and turned my nose up at the school, looking back I made a huge mistake.

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The reason DS decided against Central was he didn't want the debt he would have on graduation nothing to do with the standard of ballet at the school. OK for us to be in debt but we can cope with it. Being London not sure we could have afforded it even with the loans.

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A couple of good good classical contracts this year - Max with BRB and Jacob with Ballet Black - but sadly not as good as in previous years. But it had been a tough year for getting jobs, so hopefully some more will get them in the future.

 

I liked the school when we visited - I felt they were working well to help the students become the best dancers they could be. I was just a little disappointed at the ballet in the Ballet Central show this year. But every year is different.

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Pointytoes if you can afford it, I would let your daughter audition for as many ballet schools as possible, simply because it is so hard to get into these schools. My daughter funnily enough did not want to persue a career in contemporary, so did not audition for schools such as Rambert etc. As it turns out she does three lessons a week doing contemporary and actually quite likes it. At Central she does ballet, par de deux, point and repertoir, so you see lots of classical training. Ballet is everyday and I think they teach the Vaganova style?

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  • Just found this list on Central's website under Graduate success 2012.
  • Chris Aguis Darmanin - Phoenix Dance Theatre (apprentice)
  • Carlos Ibanez De Le Cadiniere - Cape Town City Ballet
  • Max Maslen - Birmingham Royal Ballet
  • Yukiko Matsumoto - K Ballet, Tokyo (apprentice)
  • Lucy Monaghan - Moulin Rouge, Paris
  • Kyle Murray - Scottish Ballet, The Nutcracker production
  • Anton Rosenberg - Bern Ballet, Switzerland (apprentice)
  • Sumire Takimoto - K Ballet, Tokyo (apprentice)
  • Ellie Waite - Phantom of the Opera, worldwide tour
  • Jacob Wye - Ballet Black (apprentice)
  • Carmen Vazquez Marfil - Phoenix Dance Theatre (apprentice)

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That's funny - I've never seen a classical piece by her only Contemporary. The apprentices the company takes come via the London Contemporary Dance School's MA programme (and I believe Phoenix's are too)

 

 

Choreography

Cathy Marston has been choreographing professionally since 1995. She has worked with many ensembles in the classical and contemporary dance fields as well as in opera and theatre.

Marston has two strands of choreographic interest: The first is in ‘story-telling’ through her own classical-contemporary dance language. Many of her works are inspired by works of literature and biographies. The second approach is more thematically and musically based; she refers sometimes to these shorter dance works as ‘dance poems’ rather than ‘stories’.

Marston is often collaborative in her work with composers, designers and also the dancers; she insists that movement comes from a clear intention and works to develop this clarity of connection between mind and movement with the performers.

Her work has been performed by professional companies in the UK, Switzerland, Finland, Austria, Germany, USA, Cuba and China. She has also contributed four solos for the ‘contemporary variations’ for the prestigious Prix de Lausanne competition.

For a full list of works please see the yearly catalogue links.

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