Career Development Plan - Ballet Schools and Summer Intensives

Career Development Plan - Ballet Schools and Summer Intensives






Hi, I am 12 years old (turning 13 in less than 2 months) passionate about ballet and am aiming to become a professional ballet dancer! I am looking for good summer intensives this year as well as residential ballet schools. I have only had a little less than 1 year of continuos ballet training. I am considered tall for my age (5"4' - 5"5'), but am thin except that I have breasts that are a bit large. As there aren't really any good summer intensives (and as far as I know, only one summer intensive/camp) where I live, I won't mind going out of my country - I'm open to anywhere as long as it's a good SI and it isn't in Antarctica! I'd like somewhere where I'd get a good taste of the professional ballet world, but I'm not required to do pointe. (I'm aware I'd most likely have to do pointe after this year.) I'd also like recommendations of good residential schools. Thank you!

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Reply by Odette
To: - Career Development Plan - Ballet Schools and Summer Intensives

Hello,
Thanks for your message, it's great to hear from you. I am enlightened by your passion for ballet and mature determination at such a young age. I would love to help you out.

Mainly, I can suggest ballet schools and summer intensives within the UK because that's where I'm most familiar with. However, I know there are many other good places in Europe and America too.

Most residential ballet schools hold a summer intensive, because it's a good way to bring in young dancers and also spot any potential students for the school. It gives the chance for dancers to experience something more professional too if they are wanting to take ballet more seriously.

In the UK, there is the Royal Ballet School, Elmhurst School for Dance and Northern Ballet. These places all have an associated ballet company as well as summer intensives for younger dancers. There is also a school in each of these places to train you into a professional dancer. Another good place is English National Ballet, which has a ballet school but you can't join until you reach ages 16+.

Let me know if this is helpful for you. You can also look at my ballet companies page which gives a list of professional ballet companies around the world, then also further information on any ballet schools that are associated with that company.

Best wishes,
Odette





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Thank you; I still have a few questions
by:

Thank you so much for replying! Something I'd like to know is what kind of dancers are in these schools, so I know which school suits me best and would be easier for me to get in. I'd also like to know how much they look for potential versus technique at my age (13 in a month and a half and in Year 9 next year). I noticed that in many schools, I have to have a photo on pointe for their SI and/or full-time program; or bring pointe shoes. So I'm assuming that there's more of a demand of technique when students audition for Year 9. (For Elmhurst there is an application form for Years 9 - 11; and for RBS SI students who will be 13 need to have a photo on pointe.) This is a concern for me as I have less than a year of continuos ballet training consisting of just twice a week classes; there was also a long time period when it was just once a week.)

Reply to Career Development Plan - Ballet Schools and Summer Intensives
by: Odette

It's my pleasure I'm glad to help you. It's always best to give yourself plenty of options when auditioning for ballet schools, because it is often hard to know exactly what they are looking for.

Mainly, the Royal Ballet School like to take very classical ballet dancers with a good facility to train. Similar to all the schools, they will be looking at your potential, but also your current strength and level you are at to fit in with your year group.

At Elmhurst, the students study other styles too like jazz, so although they will see your potential in ballet, you also have the chance to have classes in a more range of dance styles. I would say requirements are most high at the Royal Ballet, where ballet dancers from all over the world are aspiring and competing to be at. However, it doesn't mean the other schools won't give you as good training because they all have top teachers in an environment to develop you into a professional.

I would take a look at the main website for each of the schools you are interested in to get a feel of each place. You can research yourself and get an idea of which school suits you the most as a dancer.

It is most crucial to get as regular classes as possible from now and find yourself a good place of training to help you improve. You can take a few private lessons with your teacher to get you in preparation if you decide to audition for ballet schools and intensives.

I know it is hard if you feel you haven't had as much training, but you are still very young and there is still time to increase your abilities if you are in the right place.

Best wishes,
Odette

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