Jump to content

RBS Junior Associate Auditions 2021


PurplePirouette

Recommended Posts

I feel like we need our annual thread for those who are thinking of auditioning to be a Junior Associate with the Royal Ballet School. Applications for 2021 have opened today with the following details on the website:

 

-Applicants are to film their child dancing along to three videos between 10-15 minutes long each.


-Also required are the photographs in six dance positions that they normally request, with the addition of a headshot too this year.

 

-Taken from the website: “This year, all applicants will need to submit a video for their preliminary audition. If we are able, we may ask certain students to an in-person second round. However, should circumstances prevent this, we will make decisions based on the first audition, as usual.”

 

- Applications are £55 and the closing date is 11am on Tuesday 23rd March 2021.

 

Good luck to all those thinking of applying x


 

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 798
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Good luck to everyone applying this year!

 

Interesting that they're not bothered about about children rehearsing beforehand, in contrast to 2020 auditions where they were very strict about not viewing ahead of filiming.

 

So glad RBS have taken the decision already to conduct via video even if just preliminaries to avoid the looooooong process of last year. Everything crossed for you all 😊

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The website says that dancers shouldn't practice beforehand:

 

Please do not practice the Junior Associates video audition parts before filming. 

 

I am surprised though that they have just published it on their website for anyone to view, rather than sending a specific link by email like they did last year. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It’s the same video as last time though isn’t it :( so huge cost, photos, no actual audition experience and more exhausting videos to record! Was really looking forward to trying again this year with my 8 year old but both of us feel pretty despondent at the video experience again!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for starting the thread! 
 

Can’t actually believe we are back at this stage already but my second child is now keen to apply to JA’s... It’s a rollercoaster for sure and I’ve just noticed, as you say, that it’s a video entry this time around - that’s new to us but I can imagine it’s a thought doing it all again if you already had to film for last year. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

18 minutes ago, Millicent said:

The website says that dancers shouldn't practice beforehand:

 

Please do not practice the Junior Associates video audition parts before filming. 

 

I am surprised though that they have just published it on their website for anyone to view, rather than sending a specific link by email like they did last year. 

 

I wonder how that will that will work in practice... even if dancers don't rehearse the videos beforehand I can imagine teachers watching them and 'training' towards them in some cases which is quite different. I suppose though teachers who regularly have children audition for the programme already have a good idea of what will be asked. 

 

8 minutes ago, Exhausteddancemum said:

It’s the same video as last time though isn’t it :( so huge cost, photos, no actual audition experience and more exhausting videos to record! Was really looking forward to trying again this year with my 8 year old but both of us feel pretty despondent at the video experience again!

 

Yes exactly the same! Lots and lots of stories of people who successfully audition after a no so keep that in mind. And also that there were less places than usual last year.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

As a teacher, I have been so deeply disappointed by the RBS JA’s response  to Covid that I am suggesting my pupils apply to different associate programmes this year. It is so frustrating for last year’s auditionees that these videos have been publicly shared, and I find it shockingly unprofessional that such a world-renowned organisation is simply reusing last year’s videos this year! The instructions clearly say that students may not watch the videos in advance or practise but now that anyone in the world can see them, how likely is it that that will happen?! I stuck to this rule to the letter with my pupil last year, when of course she would have performed better if she’d known what was coming. Also, I could not recommend to my pupils’ families spending £55 on a second-hand audition video and no feedback.
 

Other departments of the RBS have done an amazing job of adapting to Covid; the online summer programme was second-to-none, for

example. I don’t know why the JA programme seems to be floundering so badly.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

13 hours ago, Millicent said:

The website says that dancers shouldn't practice beforehand:

 

Please do not practice the Junior Associates video audition parts before filming. 

 

I am surprised though that they have just published it on their website for anyone to view, rather than sending a specific link by email like they did last year. 

It’s all over YouTube too! 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sorry if I’m misunderstanding but presumably there was a risk last year that some children would practise before hand anyway? Even if the videos were emailed out rather than made publicly available? I doubt it matters anyway as they know what they’re looking for... 

 

I certainly won’t show it to DS beforehand - not least because I know if I did there’s a big chance he’d look like he knew what was coming next! 
 

I can imagine what will be in it as we’ve been through the audition process before and I know now that he will do well with some aspects of it but not others - and that’s not going change either way. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I wonder how much watching the videos before would actually help? The exercises are VERY basic, if not just standing in positions/stretches. I suppose the improv section could be rehearsed but even then it would be clear if a dancer was not responding to the music for the first time.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just now, Waverley said:

Sorry if I’m misunderstanding but presumably there was a risk last year that some children would practise before hand anyway? Even if the videos were emailed out rather than made publicly available? I doubt it matters anyway as they know what they’re looking for... 

 

 

 

Yes videos could have been viewed before and I remember some people on here convinced that lots had (and got places). I certainly know of a few dancers who followed the rules and were successful so wonder how much of a difference it makes. Agree RBS are looking for potential rather than a polished performance.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

33 minutes ago, MissEmily said:

As a teacher, I have been so deeply disappointed by the RBS JA’s response  to Covid that I am suggesting my pupils apply to different associate programmes this year. It is so frustrating for last year’s auditionees that these videos have been publicly shared, and I find it shockingly unprofessional that such a world-renowned organisation is simply reusing last year’s videos this year! The instructions clearly say that students may not watch the videos in advance or practise but now that anyone in the world can see them, how likely is it that that will happen?! I stuck to this rule to the letter with my pupil last year, when of course she would have performed better if she’d known what was coming. Also, I could not recommend to my pupils’ families spending £55 on a second-hand audition video and no feedback.
 

Other departments of the RBS have done an amazing job of adapting to Covid; the online summer programme was second-to-none, for

example. I don’t know why the JA programme seems to be floundering so badly.

It’s pretty much the standard audition that they run in live auditions too so I’m not sure what you expect them to do - lots of people will be reapplying so already know the video format; you can’t expect them to change their audition process completely surely ?  I’m sure people would moan if they did that too.
 

I don’t think they have had any choice with their Associate Programmes - the centres that they use dictate when and how the can use the facilities and numbers in the groups have had to be changed.  My experience of other Associate Schemes is exactly the same over the last 6 months - the groups have been split; the classes have been shortened etc. Even so my DC have still loved their Associate classes, whether that be for the few live sessions that they managed or for the online provision.

It would be a shame to discourage your students based on this ongoing rubbish situation (which is out of everybody’s hands) given that if they were offered a place, they would have a wonderful time.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks - I didn’t follow the thread last year but did feel sorry for those missing out on the various audition ‘experiences’. Now I find we’re in the same situation when I had previously (naively) assumed things would be back to something closer to normal for 2021 entry. 
 

For what it’s worth to anyone else keen to apply, we’ve been pretty impressed by the RBS response to Covid from a current JA perspective - lots of communication, zoom classes working very well (with the pianist still, which is lovely), teacher really engaged and approachable, a helpful feedback call (as usual) and a fun workshop for all JA’s at Christmas time, with two more coming up soon. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

@TwoDancersthat’s wonderful to hear that your children have enjoyed their associate classes. 
 

I do think they could have made a fresh audition video for this year and reduced the audition fee or, even better, held Zoom auditions as other programmes have done. If my pupils are desperate to apply, then I will, of course, support them, but many families look to me for advice and I cannot in good faith recommend the process as it is at the moment. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, MissEmily said:

@TwoDancersthat’s wonderful to hear that your children have enjoyed their associate classes. 
 

I do think they could have made a fresh audition video for this year and reduced the audition fee or, even better, held Zoom auditions as other programmes have done. If my pupils are desperate to apply, then I will, of course, support them, but many families look to me for advice and I cannot in good faith recommend the process as it is at the moment. 

We have heard of lots of bad experiences with zoom auditions - you are completely reliant on zoom working on the day and your internet not playing up - so much stress and worry involved in that situation if something goes wrong. At least with a video you can film it when you feel happy and comfortable.

There is no easy  answer to any of this, but blaming the Associate providers seems a bit harsh in my opinion given that they are doing a great job and still providing a great experience for the children in these scary, sad times. 
My children quite enjoyed making their videos and like looking back on what they did.
I do agree the cost is high for auditioning, especially if there isn’t clarity about how many spaces are available, but I’m guessing the panel still spend the same amount of time assessing as they would in person????? 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree with @BellaF, the content and requirements within the video auditions were so basic, there’s little that can be ‘learned’. Wether you do it once or ten times, there’s little that could be improved upon, with a view to earning a more positive outcome. I’m convinced the video content (like the live auditions) was to mostly allow the student to demonstrate the specific physical requirements this particular programme look for, and it’s maybe doubtful that they could be taught. If anything, it might lose the spontaneity and look more like a routine than an audition. 
 

Before covid (and video auditions) dance teachers knew very well the content of a JA live auditions and could prepare their students accordingly, and I’m sure many dance teachers will know the content of the video too. As mentioned, those who applied last year with be doing it again, so it could be argued it would be unfair for 2nd time applicants to have a head start on 1st time applicants.
 

I do have a feeling photos play an important part, and even if you’re applying a second time, there will presumably be improvement in photos submitted this time round to almost 12 months ago.

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would second that @TwoDancers Zoom auditions for young children especially are really tricky. One scheme last year had the children learn the barre exercises with their back to the barre then turn to face the barre with their back to the camera, in a normal audition the children would have people around them not necessarily to copy but there is a sense of reassurance when you see you are doing the same as the others around you. Similarly with things sideways to the barre, generally the teacher moves around the room so they can be seen by all students. 

I do think video auditions are the best possible option for young children. The Ballet Boost videos last year were an absolute joy to help my students prepare and had been well thought out to take into consideration any space issues students might encounter. The Royal videos are no different and while I appreciate it is frustrating that they are reusing the same video, it is fit for purpose and covers everything the panel need to be able to see, generally the content is very very very basic. I would say reviewing applicants in this way takes up considerably more man hours, normal auditions see around 30 children at a time and I have a sneaking suspicion they start whittling it down as soon as the children come into the room, which I suspect is what they will do with audition video 1.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

20 hours ago, Millicent said:

The website says that dancers shouldn't practice beforehand:

 

Please do not practice the Junior Associates video audition parts before filming. 

 

 

I suspect this is to discourage ambitious parents from over-rehearsing their children which would be of little benefit and might result in a jaded performance in the video.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Can I ask whether you would use the same photos and videos as you submitted last year?  Our teacher is shielding and she took our pictures for us last year but not the video - I did that myself (with the guinea pigs chuntering in the background!). 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 minutes ago, Twinkletoes22 said:

Can I ask whether you would use the same photos and videos as you submitted last year?  Our teacher is shielding and she took our pictures for us last year but not the video - I did that myself (with the guinea pigs chuntering in the background!). 

Definitely retake photos and videos. I know they always ask for up to date photos for summer and spring intensives. Also your child will have improved and grown during the last year. Good luck 🤞🏻 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 minutes ago, Twinkletoes22 said:

Can I ask whether you would use the same photos and videos as you submitted last year?  Our teacher is shielding and she took our pictures for us last year but not the video - I did that myself (with the guinea pigs chuntering in the background!). 

 

Do you think your DC has improved in the period since the videos/photos were taken? Did they get SWL?

 

I think I'd be tempted to redo if it isn't too much of a hassle.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

39 minutes ago, BellaF said:

 

Do you think your DC has improved in the period since the videos/photos were taken? Did they get SWL?

 

I think I'd be tempted to redo if it isn't too much of a hassle.

To be honest, I think she’s gone backwards since the lockdown because all her lessons are on zoom and she’s had very little studio classes - probably the same as everyone else. But I’ll do them again. I was interested in what everyone else was considering doing. Thank you! X

Link to comment
Share on other sites

22 minutes ago, Twinkletoes22 said:

To be honest, I think she’s gone backwards since the lockdown because all her lessons are on zoom and she’s had very little studio classes - probably the same as everyone else. But I’ll do them again. I was interested in what everyone else was considering doing. Thank you! X

I suppose you could always do them again and send to her teacher who could decide which was better, even from isolation.

 

Good luck with it all! 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, Twinkletoes22 said:

To be honest, I think she’s gone backwards since the lockdown because all her lessons are on zoom and she’s had very little studio classes - probably the same as everyone else. But I’ll do them again. I was interested in what everyone else was considering doing. Thank you! X

Maybe your local teacher can join you on zoom whilst you take the photos, and direct your DS whilst you take the photo?  I imagine they'll be extremely important in the initial review of applicants.  Even for Summer Intensives, they select on photos alone, which goes to show how impactful they might be in the decision making.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

19 hours ago, Dd_dance said:

Definitely retake photos and videos. I know they always ask for up to date photos for summer and spring intensives. Also your child will have improved and grown during the last year. Good luck 🤞🏻 

This is scary - DS got into Spring Intensive (although not likely to take place) - have also entered him for Summer Intensive but as entries were only a few moths apart and the Spring Intensives were successful - I used them again. Was this a mistake?

 

Sorry, know this is not about JA's - was following with interest.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 minutes ago, balletboy8 said:

This is scary - DS got into Spring Intensive (although not likely to take place) - have also entered him for Summer Intensive but as entries were only a few moths apart and the Spring Intensives were successful - I used them again. Was this a mistake?

 

Sorry, know this is not about JA's - was following with interest.

JA applicants would have submitted photos in February/March 2020, so if people used the same ones again this year, those photos would be a year old. Which is surely too much time between photos as there’s been a year of physical development. I’m sure a set of photos from a couple of months ago is less of a problem than a year ago. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hello,

 

First timers here 👋

I am a little confused. Could someone advise me? It mentions filming the videos from beginning to end as if the children are doing a class. It also mentions that videos should be no more than 20 minutes. The 3 videos together are longer than 20 mins so which part do I edit out? Do I just cut out the parts where they teach the exercises? 
 

Also the W position. Does anyone know what this is supposed to show? I have never seen it before and am intrigued. 
 

 

Edited by Pinkandwhite
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Last year I filmed separately, from the start to end of the video (pretty sure the panel skip to the bits they're interested in). If I recall correctly, there were distinct areas to upload each to but don't hold me to that. 

 

Not sure on the W position - assumed it was something to do with range of hip rotation but sure someone better informed will be along to advise!

 

Good luck!

Edited by BellaF
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would agree that there is no need to redo photos taken a few months ago but a year is a long time in terms of a child's body development. My DD did her JA photos in Jan 19 and by the time we fimed the audition in August her legs were massively longer, in proportion to her body, than in Jan. 

 

We didn't view or practice the videos beforehand and my DD was so very determined that she did not want to "cheat" that she got really cross with me when I played the beginning of the video for 10 secs just before filming to check that the volume was high enough! She was lucky enough to get into London JAs and has the satisfaction of knowing that she played by the rules. 

 

One thing I am confused about is why they want photos and videos? At a JA insight day they said that the photos are not used as part of the selection process but just to identify the dancer, which makes more sense when there is a live audition with lots of children in the studio at once. Not sure how they can maintain this stance when they are auditioning by video. I can only imagine that they are used e.g. if they are choosing between two dancers and want to see their photos side by side. 

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...