In dance class and rehearsal, a dancer may feel criticized. This is such a natural emotion since every one wants to do their best, be their best, be liked by the teacher, and not “called out ” in front of their friends. This is such a hard thing for a teacher to balance.
Perhaps a bit of insight from our world might help…
Standing in front of a group of young children, preteens, or teenagers can be quite daunting. We try to be everything for every child at all times. Understandably, we hope, this is virtually impossible! Our general approach is to try to get to every student in every class with some technical or artistic suggestions, or what is commonly called a correction. Occasionally we hear we are not giving Susie enough corrections, or that Betty feels criticized. What is a ballet teacher to do? The answer: The best we can.
Dancers can worry if they do not get corrections, although sometimes we see that a dancer is busy working on a correction already given, and does not need another one at that time. Other times we see that a dancer is having a difficult time either mentally or physically applying a correction, and we do not want to frustrate them. Sometimes we see that a dancer is in an exciting growth period and the more corrections we give, the more that dancer will soak it in. The bottom line is that every dancer should always listen to everyone’s corrections and remind themselves to double check their own work, as well as try to apply a new idea or concept that is being presented.
Please understand and explain to your dancer that it is not our intention to criticize. We are dedicated to training dancers and care about each and everyone of them as people first. The dancing is secondary. If they are feeling badly about themselves or what they are experiencing in class, please help them to take a deep breath, and if there is any confusion regarding a teachers approach, encourage them to go directly to that teacher and ask.
We at BVI are here for our students and want to give them the best of what we have to offer.