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 Post subject: late starter looking for a chance!
PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2004 8:14 am 
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Joined: Sun May 30, 2004 11:01 pm
Posts: 23
Location: Ireland
hi,
i started ballet at the age of 15 last september, I stopped in January but I am taking it back up.
I would really love to be a professional ballet career but I fear that it is too late.
I was just wondering if I take 5 classes a week and 1 modern dance class would I still be able to make it?

The school which I will be doing ballet seems like a really good one.
I am now 16 and will be in R.A.D grade 4.


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 Post subject: Re: late starter looking for a chance!
PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2004 8:40 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 24, 1999 11:01 pm
Posts: 19975
Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Hi Megan and welcome to CriticalDance.

A couple of years ago, we consulted with a long-standing dance administrator in the UK who was also the AD of a small company. She came up with this advice:

- dance is a very competitive career option at any age

- the chances of professional employment, in ballet especially, reduce if you're starting from your mid/late teens onwards, particularly for girls

- having an excellent teacher and great determination are essential for success

- without knowing your personal circumstances and abilities it is impossible for us or anyone else on the Internet to assess whether you will be one of the few to succeed.

- do consult regularly with a teacher, whose knowledge you trust, about the job market for dancers as well as your own progress and prospects.

In Ireland and the UK, there are few ballet opportunities outside of the leading companies and most will be joining those companies aged 18, after many years of advanced training.

I will leave it to our European teachers to comment on your joining an RAD level 4 class after 5 months of ballet, if I have understood correctly.

Enjoy your dancing and see what happens, without closing off other education/job opportunities.

<small>[ 31 May 2004, 10:47 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: late starter looking for a chance!
PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2004 8:46 am 
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Joined: Sun May 30, 2004 11:01 pm
Posts: 23
Location: Ireland
Would it be possible tough for me to have a career? even if I worked really hard?


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 Post subject: Re: late starter looking for a chance!
PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2004 8:50 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 24, 1999 11:01 pm
Posts: 19975
Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Megan, you are clearly a great lover of ballet which does you credit. However, nobody here or on any other website can advise you about your prospects as a professional dancer without having seen you dance. The people to ask are your teachers. Have you auditioned for the new school you will attend?


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 Post subject: Re: late starter looking for a chance!
PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2004 8:56 am 
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Joined: Sun May 30, 2004 11:01 pm
Posts: 23
Location: Ireland
i am living in Ireland so there isn't many professional schools like in America.
I had a meeting with the princpal of this school and she just gave me a lot of information and a form to sign and she told me to ring her if i wanted to start.
she won't audition me she will let me join her school without one.
But it does seem like a good school it is connected with the Irish National Youth Ballet.


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 Post subject: Re: late starter looking for a chance!
PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2004 9:26 am 
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Joined: Sat Oct 23, 1999 11:01 pm
Posts: 1057
Location: SF CA
Hi Megan, I would advise you to just start taking classes and see how you go. Your teachers will be able to answer your questions once they see you . So much more than just hard work goes into becoming a dancer.

I went to the website for the Irish National Youth Ballet and it seems like a fun company to strive to be a part of.

Have fun
:)


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 Post subject: Re: late starter looking for a chance!
PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2004 9:48 am 
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Joined: Sun May 30, 2004 11:01 pm
Posts: 23
Location: Ireland
Thanks for your advice.


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 Post subject: Re: late starter looking for a chance!
PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2004 12:55 am 
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Joined: Tue Sep 05, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 3129
Location: Guildford, Surrey, UK
Hi Megan,

From what you are saying it sounds like the school you are going to is a recreational one i.e you take classes part time, after school and weekends etc. These type of schools will not require you to audition, they will be happy to accept wnyone who wants to learn to dance. it is normally professional schools which offer training to talented dancers who want to become professionals that will require potential students to audition.

As Stuart says it is an extremely hard profession to succeed in. Obviously having commitment, ambition and determination help but no dancer will succeed without the necessary talent, technical ability and artistic flair. As Stuart also says we cannot tell over the internet if you have this so you really do need to speak to your teachers for an honest opinion.

There is nothing wrong with having such an ambition but with any difficult career it is important to temper this with realism too, and also to realise that if a professional career is maybe not possible that dance can still be, and is for very many people a life enhancing activity. There are also many other careers to be found in dance - not just performing.

My advice to anyone of your age is to have other strings to their bow too. Even successful dancers have sometimes needed to turn to another profession as they develop.

Good Luck

<small>[ 01 June 2004, 02:56 AM: Message edited by: Joanne ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: late starter looking for a chance!
PostPosted: Wed Jun 02, 2004 8:27 am 
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Joined: Thu May 27, 2004 11:01 pm
Posts: 2
Location: Ireland
Hi!

Could you tell me more about these other kinds of career in dance? I mean, in which other areas of dancing can you focus?
If you are not able to become a professional dancer in which way can you develope your attitude? let's suppose you don't want to be just a hobbie because you adore it.
As a non dancer (yet) i've got a very short vision of the dancing world so if you could just give a general idea of the posibilities in the dancing world (not only ballet)i would be thankful.
I apologise because of my english, i'm spanish and i'm doing my best to be understood :p


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 Post subject: Re: late starter looking for a chance!
PostPosted: Wed Jun 02, 2004 6:45 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 12, 2000 11:01 pm
Posts: 654
Location: Seattle, WA. USA
Hi, Ginger and welcome to Criticaldance, and to ballet! I'm really happy you've found something that you like and challenges you. That's great! As earlier posters have said, whether or not you are able to have a professional (paid) performing career in dance depends on a lot of factors. Some of these include natural talent, hard work, having good teaching and training, and connecting with mentors and coaches who can perhaps guide you. Sometimes, it's luck too that can play a part. For example, maybe dancer X gets a part (in comparision with peers) just because they fit the costume or have the right "look" or are of a type a director or choreographer may be looking for.

While 15 is a little unusual for a female to begin, it's not impossible. Evelyn Hart of the Royal Winnipeg Ballet in Canada began at 14, and it's inspirational to see how far she has gone.

The most important thing to do is to get into classes and get the best training available to you. The right career path for you will formulate over time, whether it be in dance or in other, related or non-related fields.

Other possible careers in dance could be, if not performing professionally in a ballet company, could be dancing with a good, regional company, dancing in another form of dance such a Modern or Musical Theatre (like Broadway shows). If teaching and passing along your love of dance to the next generation may appeal to you, the RAD and other organizations offer teaching training and certification programs.

Best wishes for happy dancing,

_________________
Dean Speer
ballet@u.washington.edu


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 Post subject: Re: late starter looking for a chance!
PostPosted: Wed Jun 02, 2004 11:38 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 30, 2004 11:01 pm
Posts: 23
Location: Ireland
Thanks guys for all your help.
I will take as many classes as I can in september!


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