Competitions

Students are selected and invited to represent the studio in local and regional competitions as troupe members each year. Participation is optional and members are selected. 

Competition furthers technical abilities as well as performance skills, while creating strong bonds of friendships between dancers and developing a sense of achievement in young performers.

What are 'Competitions'?

To the families and students who think they are interested in competitive dancing,

This letter is important to discuss in your home. This letter will help you through competition selection…

Now you are becoming older dancers some students will be asked to compete at competitions. Dance competitions are sometimes called eisteddfods and are competitions where dancers perform on stage as soloists, duos, trios and troupes. They perform dances that have been choreographed by their teachers at BDC in private coaching sessions called private lessons.

Competition selection is considered very thoroughly by the BDC staff throughout the whole year and invitations are circulated by email for solos, duos, trios and troupes.

We usually wait until you are in Grade 2 ballet class or older to begin this sort of training but some exceptions have been made.

We look at all of our classical ballet students and decide according to the following criteria;

improvement, how hard you work in class lessons, response to correction, attitude to your classmates, attitude to your teachers, sportsmanship, attendance, grooming, punctuality, application and focus, how quickly you learn your work, how you perform on stage and practice done at home (which is very obvious to us when you return for your next lesson).

Because the whole family will be representing our studio to the wider community we must also consider the readiness of the parents/siblings to be exposed to the competitive environment. Some of the things that we consider include your student’s grooming and their punctuality as well as their discipline and focus. We also look at the family’s involvement and emotional readiness. When you go travelling to eisteddfods often BDC teachers will not be present so the parent is responsible for the make-up, registration, booking in the music, getting the student onstage, etc.

Soloists are expected to be available for troupe rehearsals. Troupes are an extra cost and time commitment.

Competitions require extreme dedication and commitment from the whole family involved. The lessons are $35 a half hour and at least a half hour is required every week/fortnight of the term. The dancer is required to rehearse 1.5 hours at home for every .5 hour of one-on-one time in a solo lesson. They must remember all of their choreography without exception. The eisteddfods are held all over the state (and interstate if they want to travel that far) so entries, travel, accommodation and grooming is the responsibility of the parent or guardian. Costuming is another cost to consider.

Often your teachers will organise your costume and a hire fee will need to be paid. We prefer this method because it allows us to create every aspect of the performance – music, choreography, costume, hair, make-up. The result is a cohesive performance.

The competitions usually occur in the school holidays so they will cut into your family holiday time.

Eisteddfods are not for everybody. Some people will be invited and others may not be ready. Often I may invite someone to compete and they will decline. More often I have more students who would like to participate than I have time to accommodate. We have many aspects to consider including studio availability and financial ability as well as all of the criteria I have mentioned above.

Some families become very competitive when invitations are circulated. Some students/parents might not understand why they haven’t been selected. The answer is that they are not ready yet for the commitment. I am always happy to discuss this.
So my advice…

If you have been invited to competitive coaching;

  • Feel proud and enjoy your achievement!
  • You are already wondering who else has been given an invitation. STOP. The only progress you should be concerned about is your own!
  • Think very carefully before you give me your decision! Are you able to commit?
  • Competitions mean successes and disappointments, are you able to deal with both?
  • Keep working hard always in class. This invitation is for this year only and all invitations are reassessed as the year progresses.
  • Be responsible and considerate about telling your friends. It is not a secret but remember that not everyone will be able to participate. Take a moment to consider how you might feel if you were not getting to do competition coaching…

    If you have not been invited;

  • You are wonderful and we know you are doing your best!
  • you are already wondering who has been given an invitation. STOP. The only progress you should be concerned about is your own!
  • Remember that your teachers are always looking for the right mix of grooming, punctuality, memory, dedication, preparedness and maturity to select a student for competitions. It could be your chance next year!
  • Keep getting to class on time in uniform and ready to work to your best potential.
  • If we have invitations declined, we will have positions to fill.
  • Just because you have not been selected one year, it does not mean you won’t be selected the next year.
  • Just because you have not been selected for solos/duos/trios, it does not mean you won’t be selected for troupes.
  • Just because a student hasn’t been selected it doesn’t mean they are not doing well or working hard. It might just mean they are not mature enough to cope with the competition environment, it might just be because they haven’t been doing ballet for long enough!
  • I might just not know that you are interested…perhaps you should write me a letter! I always value your interest and if you are studying ballet and are interested in being a competitive performer then you can let me know.
  • When you find out that one of your friends has been invited to compete this year you should congratulate them and give them your support. It is an exciting time for students who have been selected and I believe peers should be encouraging and supportive of their friends. The student has been selected for their contribution to our whole community and we should all be proud of their achievement thus far.
  • For the parents, if you are having a particularly difficult time with this letter please give me a call. I understand that families will discuss this amongst themselves… If you have any confusion I would prefer that you speak to me personally. 

 

Uniform: Girls

HAIR MUST BE IN A COMPETITION STANDARD BUN

Energetiks Cobalt leotard CL11/AL11 RRP $40.95,

Matching cross over,

Matching ribbon combe for hair RRP $9.95,

Shoes: Pink split sole leather ballet shoes RRP$49.95 with ribbons $4.50

Theatrical pink convertible seamless tights,

Older students may wear nude underwear & body stockings with nude elastic straps.

BDC embroidered Jumper or vest*

*BDC embroidered uniform & Beginner Ballet skirts can only be purchased from Ballarat Dance Centre

Uniform: Boys

HAIR MUST BE IN A COMPETITION STANDARD BUN

Energetiks CAT31 Boys Rib Singlet

Black bike shorts CT04 $19.95

Boys must wear a dance support RRP $35.95

Shoes: White canvas ballet shoes with white elastic RRP $34.95. 

BDC embroidered Jumper or vest*

*BDC embroidered uniform & Beginner Ballet skirts can only be purchased from Ballarat Dance Centre