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Changes to RBS audition process 2021-22


MissEmily
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The Royal Ballet School have just announced “exciting changes” to their audition process. I can see that the dates have been brought earlier than they were this year, but it just looks like they’re reverting to the pre-Covid system of in person prelims. Am I missing something?  

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Yes there is now prelims, semi finals and finals for year 7 girls. The prospect of now achieving finals seems even smaller than it was. Not to mention the cost if you’re successful at prelims and semis. 
 

It now feels much more daunting than it already did. 

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43 minutes ago, Whiteduvet said:

Is entry into US a realistic goal? Or is exclusively competition winners and ex-WL? 


There are usually a handful of newbies, often from overseas, but it does seem to be getting harder for an ‘outsider’ to gain a place.  It does vary year on year though, so always worth trying I suppose. 

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I think it varies each year too but I do believe there are at least 3 UK students (that I can think of) joining the upper school this year that did not train at WL (and not all were at a lower school of any kind), so anything’s possible! :) 

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I went to see the Upper School summer performance for the year 1 students at the Linbury this year. I do mot normally go to this but I was curious to know how many of the students, especially the girls, were from the UK? There seemed to be alot coming in from dance competitions abroad? I think maybe around 13 or 14 ladies in that year.

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@ThecatsmotherNormally very few girls, but it does depend on the year group. This year, in first year, there were two British girls from White Lodge and one who came into Upper School from a “normal” school. I believe the rest are all from abroad. It does seem a great shame that the RBS doesn’t work in the same way as the other great ballet schools who only get rid of their students if there’s a serious problem and aim to nurture the talent they chose. It sends a questionable message about how much they value their own training! That said, there is no doubt that bringing in students from abroad broadens the British students’ horizons and has led to our stages being graced by the likes of Marianela, Mayara and Fumi to name just a few remarkable artists.

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This year there are 7 girls from year 11 WL going into upper school in September-4 from the original Year 7.This was from a year group of 16. This is a big increase of WLodgers Into upper school from recent years.There is a good chance of getting into upper school if you have not completed WL. 

Edited by Balletmummy18
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3 hours ago, Balletmummy18 said:

This year there are 7 girls from year 11 WL going into upper school in September-4 from the original Year 7.This was from a year group of 16. This is a big increase of WLodgers Into upper school from recent years.There is a good chance of getting into upper school if you have not completed WL. 

 

I hope I'm wrong but the cynic in me suggests this might be a consequence of Covid and people not as wanting to travel abroad so much....

 

(not to take away from the, i'm sure, brilliant WL students)

Edited by BellaF
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image.thumb.png.1a3433d5abd72718980f290b07d0b148.png
 

This was the YAGP 2021 scholarship winners offered places at RBS at the Japan finals. There were six year round places given out at this competition alone. Congratulations to the winners 🥳 Who said that RBS wasn’t attending YAGP anymore ? 🤔

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Just to share…..

Dd attended Paris YAGP twice and New York finals and took more classes in front of the RBS director than at any British audition. At one scholarship class the director of YAGP pointed out dd to the RBS AD and he said loudly that he didn’t like her feet 🤣 That was the most feedback we were ever going to get !! She was offered RBS summer school from that class. Dd declined and attended a US intensive instead 😃 

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This is interesting. When you look at places like SAB, Paris Opera School etc, there is a consistency of training style imbedded from an early age through years of work and learning the company rep. What happens to this when students drop in for the final year of US or indeed at 16? There is clearly room for improvement in the British training as it used to be the case their were almost full year groups of British students at RBS Upper School. Having said that the dance world is always attracted to ‘ new shiny objects’.

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Also worth considering is the number of students from UK vocational schools who keep their place at RBS US for all three years and graduate at the end of the course.  I’m not talking about those who sadly sustain injuries or those who choose to leave, but those who are assessed out before final year.  I hope things have improved in this regard but I think it’s an important question to ask if offered a place. 

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41 minutes ago, Anna C said:

Also worth considering is the number of students from UK vocational schools who keep their place at RBS US for all three years and graduate at the end of the course.  I’m not talking about those who sadly sustain injuries or those who choose to leave, but those who are assessed out before final year.  I hope things have improved in this regard but I think it’s an important question to ask if offered a place. 

That was my fear with RBS US. I had heard of students not progressing to the graduate year 😢 I then met two who danced with my son in the US and could see no reason why they hadn’t been able to graduate. 

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On 14/07/2021 at 14:26, cotes du rhone ! said:

image.thumb.png.1a3433d5abd72718980f290b07d0b148.png
 

This was the YAGP 2021 scholarship winners offered places at RBS at the Japan finals. There were six year round places given out at this competition alone. Congratulations to the winners 🥳 Who said that RBS wasn’t attending YAGP anymore ? 🤔

So am I reading this correctly? That up to 6 precious RBS upper school places (1 year?or 2? Or 3) offered from one competition alone????

this is NOT fair as no way is this an audition opportunity available to all (even fewer than usual in these covid travel restricted times too I’d imagine) 

I’d be interested to know how this sits with the huge subsidies/bequests/tax deductible corporate charitable gifts/gift aided donations etc where much of this giving is with the Sim of supporting BRITISH ballet training....surely Witt the hope/expectations of nurturing home grown talent?? Thoughts peeps....

Edited by Peanut68
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It would be nice to see a greater attention given to home grown talent, of course, and ensuring that lower school training is in line with what is required to gain upper school places. As you say, with so much funding involved, it should be imperative, but also from the point of view of the eleven year olds that forsake so much in order to place their training in the hands of the AD.

 

However, the employability of the upper school students is massively boosted by the international renown of the school. The prizes given at international competitions and the overseas scouting for talent to ensure that the very best are being offered places is an essential part of being known as a world class training centre.

 

It is incredibly tough, especially when we are parents of vocational dancers, to look at the numbers of lower school children that don’t make it into the upper school. But I can understand why the system is what it is. For the students that make it to the end of upper school, it pretty much guarantees them an illustrious career. But this is because the school is known for being one of the best in the world, not just in the country.

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I am not condoning the practice of RBS in making offers to competition winners but remember that they don’t all accept and are not eligible for the government funded places.  There are places funded by private donors.

 

I do agree that training in the UK needs to match the standard of those received overseas however it is often a very different system in terms of academic and dance training and some competition winners are not always technically the best dancers, or so DD tells me.

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But how people claim to have trained there when they enter already at international competition level (which to my eyes is surely close to professional? They dance professional repertoire anyway for the competition..)? Or how can the school claim credit for them? Surely the school which got them to competition level is the actual trainer?

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I think I saw somewhere a WL letter of offer from this year and it looks like they’ve changed the system there too. Guaranteed training for first 3 years so I guess it won’t be as stressful as it used to be with the threat of being assessed out constantly hanging over the students’ heads. I wonder what will happen after those 3 years if this new system will impact on the number of WL graduates being offered a place at RBS upper.

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2 hours ago, SissonneDoublee said:

It would be nice to see a greater attention given to home grown talent, of course, and ensuring that lower school training is in line with what is required to gain upper school places. As you say, with so much funding involved, it should be imperative, but also from the point of view of the eleven year olds that forsake so much in order to place their training in the hands of the AD.

 

However, the employability of the upper school students is massively boosted by the international renown of the school. The prizes given at international competitions and the overseas scouting for talent to ensure that the very best are being offered places is an essential part of being known as a world class training centre.

 

It is incredibly tough, especially when we are parents of vocational dancers, to look at the numbers of lower school children that don’t make it into the upper school. But I can understand why the system is what it is. For the students that make it to the end of upper school, it pretty much guarantees them an illustrious career. But this is because the school is known for being one of the best in the world, not just in the country.

..... but other internationally renowned schools who are also considered the best in the world don’t have to cherry pick ( Vaganova: POB)in such numbers.... neither do their ADS disparage publicly the value of international competitions and then recruit from them....no I don’t understand the British system (& speak from experience having had a dd just go through WL)and nope it doesn’t have to be like this ....

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Did I imagine it, or is the Upper School going to become a degree course?  I think I read this somewhere recently.  In that case it could be one of the reasons why three years are guaranteed.  As far as overseas students are concerned, many establishments (not connected to dance) such as boarding schools, colleges and degree courses rely heavily on fees from students coming from abroad to balance the books.

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