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Audition procedures


Happymum
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I have two DC planing to audition to vocational schools in the near future. I thought that now is a very good time to ask you to describe the whole procedure. I was supriced reading the posts about auditions, I didn't know that there is a maths test in Elmhurst and some other tests at Tring before finals. An interviEw at WL? I'd love to know what happens when and in what order in all 4 schools. I thought that if I ask in few months time you won't remember that well :-).

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Thank you JA Dad. And I didnt want it to be a problem for anybody. So maybe not a novel :-) just basic info what's happening during first audition and what during finals. I think that its not the same in each of these 4 schools ( Year 7) Thanks a lot

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I auditioned for tring and hammond ,Tring i cant comment as i was going in for year 10 entry so i might be slightly different for years 7 but for hammond its mixed so there was year 7 up to yar 10 entry in the same audition. Once arrived we got tken off to the dance studios where w got ready for the ballet class. Our parents stayed behind and had a talk from the prinicpal.While in our ballet class he parents got a tour of the school. The ballet class was really basic as it was catering for all levels then they did a bit of fleixbility where we had to sit in spilts etc After that was a basic movement class which was quite similar to jazz. We then did our dance solos. Next we had lunch Followed by  vocal warm up and then sing your solo song if you dont prepare anything then they just get you t sing over the rainbow or happy birthday. During the solo singing e got taken to see the ysiotherapist nd told us what we need to be careful of etc. fter was just the test non verbal reasoning for year 7/8/9 and english for year 10. The we got a tour of the boardng ouse if we wanted one. There arent any finals at hammond.Hope that helps

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Just to add there are funding finals at Hammond but for year 7 and 8. They usually do a more detailed ballet class and flexibility, a movement/jazz class and a musical theatre workshop. After lunch they had academic classes.

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DD2 was offered a year 7 place at Tring last year. We arrived and were given a talk by the head of Dance, the head of studies and the headmaster. Then the kids were taken away and prepared themselves. They had time to warm up even though few did. They were given a number and some explanation about the class. They went in the room and waited for the jury. They did a short ballet class about one hour with barre work and centre. They got changed for the jazz class. They learned a variation and did it by groups of 3 or 4 for the jury while the others watched... Then they did some stretching exercises with the jazz teacher still on front of the jury.

They gave their music to the teacher, got changed again and did their solos in the numerical number while the others watched. They got dressed in whichever they needed for the extra they were allowed to do. They waited for a long time talking to each others...

Then, they were called for their extra thing. My DD played a piece on her harp in front of the jury. And that's it....

She got a letter less than a week after offering her a year 7 place in the Dance Course which we had to turn down for lack of funding... No physio assessment for DD nor academic test. We only had to produce her marks from her old school.

I can't help you with funding audition as we live abroad and thus our DDs can't apply for MDS...

 

DD1 auditioned and was offered a year 9 place for the Musical Course. If you want some info, I can ask her what she had to do...

 

Hope it helps!

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Elmhurst preliminary auditions consist of a basic ballet class in one of the studios in front of quite a large panel - class last approx 1 hr 15 mins and parents get to watch the last 10 mins or so. During the class, parents have a brief talk from Miss Ward the principal and a quick tour of the main building. Final auditions are a whole day affair. The children are split into groups and rotate between another ballet class, this time in the school's theatre, their individual physio assessments and their academic tests. At some point in the day,parents can return to the school and join their children in a tour of the boarding facilities.  

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Thank you very much! It would be lovely to hear from somebody about WL as well.

 

Dancergirl24- so physio was just to tell you how to be careful etc? I thought that physio assessment is for the panel - to let them know about any problems, weaknesses so they may decide not to offer you a place.

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At her physio assessment my dd was told that she had tight hamstrings (never been commented on previously by a range of teachers). However, she was offered a MDS place so even if something is commented on, it doesn't mean you won't get in. Good luck to you DC! Life at voc school has some down sides and some challenges that we had not considered, but dd loves the dance and the academics.

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Happymum - Its was for both of us really. When we went inot the physio assesment he took our name etc and then got us to stand facing to him, then touch our toes and then walk in a straight line up the corridoor. We then laid on tthe bed where we did some leg exercises. He of course wrote stuff down. But after he basically told us what we need to work on be carfeul so one girl he told her she rolls her ankles slightly when she walks and mine is that my left leg is weaker than my right so when im training i need to work twice as hard on my left than right. He would of written any problems down which would go to their final decision of chosing people but It was also for us so we were ale to know where we need to improve and watch on. So a bit of both really. I think it would only cause you a problem if they said your muscles are unfit for full time dance training them obviously for the childs saftey they couldnt offer you a place.

Edited by dancergirl24
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The RBS audition processes is quite similar to that of Elmhurst's as described by angela_s.

 

First auditions are held at the 4 main associate centres around the country, (London, Birmingham, Bristol & Manchester), and consist of an hour long class in front of a panel of 3 or 4. Parents don't get a look in though, although you do get a brief talk by whoever is in charge for the day.


White Lodge finals are held on two separate days and on each day the auditionees are split into 2 separate groups.
One day is set aside for Year 7 Girls numbering approx. 30 to 40 who were split by age on our occasion.

The other day contains one group of Year 7 Boys numbering 20 to 30 and a second group of Girls and Boys auditioning for years 8,9 &10. The format of both days are much the same….

 

The day starts at approx. 9:00am and the children are taken off to start their activities almost immediately. Depending on which group they’re in, the order of their schedule will vary but it will consist of…

  • A One and a half hour Ballet Class in front of a panel of 8 or 9.
  • Physio assessment including measurements, stretches & general poking and prodding etc.
  • Informal chat, (this is the “Interview”) where our DD was asked about family, her current school & favourite subjects, living away from home etc.
  • Writing task. Nothing too academic, they are just asked to write something about their family or a favourite book for example.
  • Tour of the school.
  • Lunch, (they take a packed lunch).

We were categorically told that the interview and writing task were in no way part of the selection process and were just a way of gathering information and having some reference points for those that do eventually start at the school.

The physio assessment, however, is very much a part of the audition as I understand it.
 

As for you as a parent, once the children have been taken away, you have a very informative and re-assuring talk with some senior members of staff and the pastoral team where topics such as term times, the school day, weekend logistics, student wellbeing & school policies are described. On both occasions that we’ve attended there were also a lot of questions from the floor and you can learn a lot.

You’re then taken on a tour of the school before being left to your own devices. We’ve tended to disappear off into Richmond or Sheen for a bite to eat and nervous chat at this point.

 

You can then return to the school in the afternoon in time for the candidates being released at around 4:00pm. There are occasionally call-backs at the end of the day where the panel may want a second look at some of the children. This causes much speculation but as has been discussed on this forum, is best not to be read into.)

 

Additionally, throughout the day there are members of the PTA at school, raising funds via the selling of RBS merchandise and more importantly making themselves available to answer questions on parenting a White Lodgian.

 

The difference at Elmhurst was that there was no interview and this year there was no written task. (last year there was an IQ type aptitude test. I don’t know if they’ve dropped this now or it is just a Year 7 thing ?)

 

All in all, we have found finals at both White Lodge and Elmhurst to be great days out which our DD has thoroughly enjoyed and both parent and child have always come away excited and with an extremely positive view of both schools.

 

 

(OK, not quite a novel then, so if I've missed anything or you have any further queries, keep posting.)

 

Edited by JA_Dad
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