Forum: Ballet / Ballet Intensives

The Ultimate Summer Intensive Survival Guide
By Bunheadwithtutus
On Fri May 31, 2013 08:22 PM

Summer Intensives can be hard, your first time or not. I wish that my summer intensive, I had more knowledge but I didn't. So here is the ultimate summer intensive survival guide. I know that it's EXTREMELY long but, it will help you like crazy So here it goes, the guide from packing all the way to your final day

P.s it is REALLY unorganized

First, we start with packing.... Now if your a day student ( someone who doesn't board there or drives to and from the summer intensive) this "little" list is anything that you could possibly need to bring:

A dance bag
At LEAST three water bottles
Granola Bars
Fruits and vegetables (or your favorite healthy snake)
Ballet flats
Pointe shoes
Needle and thread ( a MUST)
Character shoes
Character skirt
Bobby pins,clips,hairnets,hair ties (you never know when you will need the, or a friend will need them)
Mints (especially if you are partnering)
Toe pads!
Toe tape
Skirts or shorts
Leg Warner's and other warm ups
A small mirror
Extra tights
(If you think anything is missing, please comment down below and let me know so I can change it

Now, im not going to give a packing list because there is so many other threads and it really is based on preference....

Soooo, now that that is out of the way, here is what to expect..

Every SI has a different curiculum, repertoire, and form of dance. Some may teach Ruasian which may be a completely different form than what your use to. So research the curiculum, repertoire and form of dance so you will be prepared. Also look up different steps and arm and foot positions if the type of dance is different from what you know because, each form as different positions and different terminology.

Every summer intensive will be "intense" in one way or another. Be prepared to be VERY sore and VERY tiered. The average dancer (like you and me) dance about three times a week for about 1-3 hours (I'm everyday for 3) so when you go to a summer intensive and are dancing everyday for at LEAST 6 hrs, things start to become. Ore difficult thst usual. A simple single piroutte may become the hardest thing in the world due to your soreness and tiredness. So remember throught your SI, to push yourself as hard as you can WITHOUT injuring yourself.

SI are a great learning experience for you in multiple ways. Besides the learning technique and new steps factor, you will learn your strengths and weaknesses in comparisons to others. For me, I always thought that I was a good turner and a ok jumper but my first SI made me realize that I was a terrible turner in comparison to the other girls but the best jumper out of my whole class! You will learn where you stand in the "ballet pyramid". Are you on the top (being the best in your class), on the bottom( being the worst in the class) or somewhere in the middle? Also, by meeting new teachers and befriending them, you will make connections and someone to reference to in your future career. Finally, the friends that you make will last forever in your memories and your hearts (and your pictures). Making friends is more important than being the bestin your class and being EXTREMELY serious all the time, to truly enjoy yourself, you must make as many friends that you can (including you pas de deux ).

Boarding tips, while in the room

Remember to ALWAYS keep your room clean and try not to break anything because you will have to pay for it Try to remember a little clip on reading light if you want to read at night. If your roommate wants to turn the lights off, they can because you will have a book light. If there is a shower in your room, work out who showers first or in the moring and who showers at night (which would be my choice) Also, determine who can use the bathroom first in the morning to get ready ( so who will wake up first). Finally, be respectful to your roommate and treat them the way you would like to be treated.

Micalanious Tips:
-Always be yourself because the treachery and students look for someone who is real, not someone who is putting on an act
-Respect the teachers and everyone around you
-if at first you don't succeed, try try again
-don't try to show off, try your best and do what is asked, if they tell you to do a double poroutte but you can do a quad, DO A DOUBLE! Unless they say you can do two or more!
-don't overdo anything because you CAN hurt yourself!
-EAT FOOD!! Even if some girls are only eating pea sized amounts, if you a used to eating huge meals, keep eating them! Don't make your body suffer and lack the nutrition that it needs just to fit in with what the other girls are eating! Be proud of how much eat (this applies to HEALTHY food, don't eat a plate of junk food)
-work hard, I can't stress this enough on how important it is that you work hard and not get to caught up in making friends, this is yes a friend making experience but also a learning experience!

Cleaning up and saying goodbye

So your SI is over and its time to cleanup your room, make sure that you have your check list of EVERYTHING that you brought (IN DETAIL) and as you pack, check everything off. Make sure you triple check theat you have EVERYTHING. Because nothing is worse than leaving something behind.

Saying goodbye to your new friends and teachers can be hard. Make sure that you got as much contact info as you can for your friends and take HUNDRREDS of pics with people

But ALWAYS remember HAVE FUN!!!

2 Replies to The Ultimate Summer Intensive Survival Guide

re: The Ultimate Summer Intensive Survival Guide
By yancync
On Tue Jun 04, 2013 06:36 AM
Thanks for this list and your tips - I am printing this out for DD who will be a day student this year rather than a boarder.
re: The Ultimate Summer Intensive Survival Guide
By FLM76
On Thu Jul 15, 2021 11:23 PM
Found this information really interesting. Thank you for posting it. Website


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