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minidancem0m

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Reply with quote  #1 
Hi everyone! My seven year old really wants to audition for the Moscow Ballet Nutcracker. She's wanted to for years and is finally old enough this year. I'm basically wondering what to expect at auditions. I'm sure she'd be a snowflake if she got in, but what are the auditions like for her age? Do they tell you when you're there if you made it or not? Any advice or anything I should prepare her for? Anything I should know about doing the Nutcracker with them in general? I've thought about not letting her do it because she has a hefty dance schedule this year but she REALLY wants to and I know that if she gets it, the practices will only be once a week for a month or two and I'm sure it would be a fun experience for her.
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ballerinamom13

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Reply with quote  #2 
My dd was a Snowflake when she was 7.  She loved it.  It's been so long, I really don't remember specifics about the audition.  The dancers were very nice to her and the rehearsal schedule was really not much.  It was fun for me to see her on state with professionals at that age.  I say why not?  I wouldn't have my child do it if she was older.  Too many better options out there, but at 7, sure!

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heidi459

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I don't know if the OP is still hanging around looking for answers to this question but in case she is.... one of dd's ballet studios is partnering w/Moscow this year here in Boston.  Auditions were this past Saturday & while dd chose not to do it, I've heard a bit about how it went down.  Seems they split the kids up according to what roles they might be considered for (based on age & height), had them learn bits of choreo, & then observed them doing it.  Everyone knew by the end of the audition if they'd made it in or not.  There was a brief choreo session for those selected immediately after the audition.  And then a lengthy one on Sunday & a short one on Monday.  They will then come into the studio every Saturday until the performance in early December for rehearsals.   

Also, just as an aside... I found it interesting that much of what I'd read here, there & everywhere did not hold true.  The height requirement (many have insisted you cannot be more than 5'2"), the simplistic choreography for all dancers regardless of role, and the ridiculous ticket prices.  The performance in Boston will be held at a lovely professional theatre downtown & tickets, I now understand, start at $28.  Dancers up to 5'6" were, in fact, selected for this performance. And the choreography for the older dancers, for this performance anyway, is being tweaked (as in made more difficult) to match the abilities of those who were chosen. Now, of course, I suspect that the latter is due to what I have dubbed the "Russian connection"..... the Russian ADs of dd's studio having trained in Russia & performed professionally w/the Bolshoi & Kirov before defecting to the US.  Who knows.. they may know the Moscow people personally.  But it's just another (great) illustration of how one experience is not necessarily going to be representative of all.

I'm really hoping we'll be able to see it.  If I do, I'll be sure to report back.
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joriebelle

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Reply with quote  #4 
Cheapest tickets here are $51 and they go all the way up to $306.  That is great that it seems to be a positive experience by you, Heidi.  We have 2 friends that are doing it and were given the Spanish duet so that it is good too.  DD decided against it; for some of the reasons given but also she wants to really work hard for YAGP this year without any outside distractions.  Maybe next year!  I'd love to hear your report if you end up seeing it.
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heidi459

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Quote:
Originally Posted by joriebelle
Cheapest tickets here are $51 and they go all the way up to $306.  That is great that it seems to be a positive experience by you, Heidi.  We have 2 friends that are doing it and were given the Spanish duet so that it is good too.  DD decided against it; for some of the reasons given but also she wants to really work hard for YAGP this year without any outside distractions.  Maybe next year!  I'd love to hear your report if you end up seeing it.


Oh.. dd didn't do it so I'm not rating it as positive or negative.  Just relaying how it appears to have gone down here.

And I was surprised at the ticket prices because when I'd been looking into it a few months ago (when we were deciding if dd should do it) the ticket prices were listed as starting at $85.  Don't know why, or when, the change.
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minidancem0m

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Reply with quote  #6 
Quote:
Originally Posted by heidi459
I don't know if the OP is still hanging around looking for answers to this question but in case she is.... one of dd's ballet studios is partnering w/Moscow this year here in Boston.  Auditions were this past Saturday & while dd chose not to do it, I've heard a bit about how it went down.  Seems they split the kids up according to what roles they might be considered for (based on age & height), had them learn bits of choreo, & then observed them doing it.  Everyone knew by the end of the audition if they'd made it in or not.  There was a brief choreo session for those selected immediately after the audition.  And then a lengthy one on Sunday & a short one on Monday.  They will then come into the studio every Saturday until the performance in early December for rehearsals.   

Also, just as an aside... I found it interesting that much of what I'd read here, there & everywhere did not hold true.  The height requirement (many have insisted you cannot be more than 5'2"), the simplistic choreography for all dancers regardless of role, and the ridiculous ticket prices.  The performance in Boston will be held at a lovely professional theatre downtown & tickets, I now understand, start at $28.  Dancers up to 5'6" were, in fact, selected for this performance. And the choreography for the older dancers, for this performance anyway, is being tweaked (as in made more difficult) to match the abilities of those who were chosen. Now, of course, I suspect that the latter is due to what I have dubbed the "Russian connection"..... the Russian ADs of dd's studio having trained in Russia & performed professionally w/the Bolshoi & Kirov before defecting to the US.  Who knows.. they may know the Moscow people personally.  But it's just another (great) illustration of how one experience is not necessarily going to be representative of all.

I'm really hoping we'll be able to see it.  If I do, I'll be sure to report back.


I was definitely still looking for info! Thank you so much for posting! It helped! 
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Leela

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Reply with quote  #7 
Heidi, I was one of the posters who had said that the tickets where high for location and quality and that the participation of local students was simple and minimal (having gone to see a show a few years ago).  I looked to see what the ticket prices were for this year's performance and found that they aren't even coming to Buffalo this year, but are going to Rochester instead with a better venue and cheaper ticket prices.  The school they are partnering with is not a ballet school, but more of a younger rec program school.

I don't know who they partnered with while in Buffalo, dd was too young for me to be aware of what was available when we went and I wasn't thinking about ballet schools at the time.  Now though, I know there are few ballet schools in the city and they put on their own Nutcracker or winter performance and the same with Rochester. I think the experience can vary greatly with the location and host school. I know your school's show will be a great show!

Edited to add that I know it doesn't have to be hosted by a ballet school. That wasn't what I was trying to imply. Sorry if that came across badly. 
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heidi459

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Reply with quote  #8 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leela
Heidi, I was one of the posters who had said that the tickets where high for location and quality and that the participation of local students was simple and minimal (having gone to see a show a few years ago).  I looked to see what the ticket prices were for this year's performance and found that they aren't even coming to Buffalo this year, but are going to Rochester instead with a better venue and cheaper ticket prices.  The school they are partnering with is not a ballet school, but more of a younger rec program school.

I don't know who they partnered with while in Buffalo, dd was too young for me to be aware of what was available when we went and I wasn't thinking about ballet schools at the time.  Now though, I know there are few ballet schools in the city and they put on their own Nutcracker or winter performance and the same with Rochester. I think the experience can vary greatly with the location and host school. I know your school's show will be a great show!

Edited to add that I know it doesn't have to be hosted by a ballet school. That wasn't what I was trying to imply. Sorry if that came across badly. 


Just to clarify.. I wasn't thinking of anyone in particular here.  I don't even remember who said what.  And much of what was said was said by others (off DM) as well.  I completely agree that the experience will vary from location to location which is exactly why I thought it worth sharing what's going on here this year.  Just to offer a counterbalance to what others have experienced and therefore may assume is true everywhere else as well [smile]
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tendumom

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Reply with quote  #9 
Thanks for the update! Happy to hear they are changing up the choreography for the location! Our local school that partners with this company is, in my opinion, one of the last desirable schools in the area. It is the one a week ballet with a 30 min pointe class type place, dramatically different from the Boston area school!
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gingercrew

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Reply with quote  #10 
My son is going to be a mouse in the Chattanooga Tn production this year. This is our first year doing it. I am happy with it so far. Yes, you have to buy tickets and they are going to probably try to sell my pictures and shirts and stuff but I feel like its still a cool thing to at least do once. Since he gets to put it on his resume and he gets stage experience and he can see what a real ballet backstage is like. Our more serious local ballet schools do a Nutcracker production yearly but you usually need to be a student to get picked and I believe the rehearsal schedule is more intense. 

For us he auditioned on Friday and it was short like an hour and a half and they told him he got it right then. Then he rehearses every Sunday from now till the performance and you can only miss one or they kick you out. I think they take Thanksgiving weekend off. 

The tickets were between 50 to 70 on the website and discounted to 30 a piece if you bought them through the studio. The shirt they try to sell you but is optional is 30. There is a 50 dollar fee when you make it. 

I felt it was reasonable. 
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joriebelle

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Reply with quote  #11 
Thanks for the info, Ginger.  Hope your son has fun this year!
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gingercrew

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Reply with quote  #12 
I am starting to get nervous about my son's costume with Moscow Ballet Nutcracker. So far they only have info about what the girls are to wear for mice. But no info on boys. I asked multiple times and the director asked Moscow Ballet multiple times and they won't answer her. I am worried he won't have a costume or we won't have the items to wear he needs or God Forbid they not even have a boy costume for mice. I am not sure what to do. He has been rehearsing it now for almost two months
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meatball77

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Reply with quote  #13 
The mouse costume is probably unisex.  Unless it has a dress I can't imagine that a mouse costume could be girly.
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PasDeChatMom

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Reply with quote  #14 
What are the requirements for the girls? Like Meatball77 said, it is probably unisex. 

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minidancem0m

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Reply with quote  #15 
They wear a short sleeve, black leotard and black tights with black ballet shoes under the costume which is unisex. They don't get the costume until the day of. I know a boy who was a mouse and he had to wear a leotard and tights as well. 
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gingercrew

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Reply with quote  #16 
what Mindi said is right. They say "Girls are to wear black leotard and black tights and have hair in a french twist and black ballet shoes but it says "Girls" so we are not sure if that will apply to my son. Also we need to know if they want his hair slicked back with no bangs or what as well since he can't do a french twist. I am fine putting him in a black leo but the Director keeps saying "No boys don't do leos" so I am not sure what we are supposed to do and I have no answer. I am probably going to tell her just to order him a black leo anyway just in case because I don't want him having nothing to wear. My husband is adamant my son not wear a tutu on stage and a few years ago I know they had scarf type tutu skirts. 

So some kind of comfirmation from Moscow Ballet would be nice but she says they never get back to her
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ggsmith

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Reply with quote  #17 
Men and boys do wear leotards in ballet. Boys have the option of a dance shirt or leotard at dd's school. Some boys leotards have a built-in dance belt. For a young boy that's probably not necessary and a standard children's leotard should be fine.
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heidi459

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Reply with quote  #18 
Quote:
Originally Posted by gingercrew
what Mindi said is right. They say "Girls are to wear black leotard and black tights and have hair in a french twist and black ballet shoes but it says "Girls" so we are not sure if that will apply to my son. Also we need to know if they want his hair slicked back with no bangs or what as well since he can't do a french twist. I am fine putting him in a black leo but the Director keeps saying "No boys don't do leos" so I am not sure what we are supposed to do and I have no answer. I am probably going to tell her just to order him a black leo anyway just in case because I don't want him having nothing to wear. My husband is adamant my son not wear a tutu on stage and a few years ago I know they had scarf type tutu skirts. 

So some kind of comfirmation from Moscow Ballet would be nice but she says they never get back to her


Just thinking it through... if they have said the girls are to wear a black leotard and black tights it stands to reason that that will be the base and there will be something they will wear over that.  So for a boy it should really be no different and black tights and a black fitted shirt should work just as well.  His hair?  Well I think we can assume they don't expect a boy to wear a french twist [wink] so I wouldn't worry too much about the details. Maybe just bring gel or whatever to slick back his hair if necessary when you go to the dress rehearsal and if you don't need it, no worries.

As far as what the particular costume entails.... the reality is that dancers and their parents don't have any input on that.  So if you end up not loving the costume they bring on the day of the performance you are, unfortunately, just out of luck.
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Angel2228

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Reply with quote  #19 
Quote:
Originally Posted by heidi459


Just thinking it through... if they have said the girls are to wear a black leotard and black tights it stands to reason that that will be the base and there will be something they will wear over that.  So for a boy it should really be no different and black tights and a black fitted shirt should work just as well.  His hair?  Well I think we can assume they don't expect a boy to wear a french twist [wink] so I wouldn't worry too much about the details. Maybe just bring gel or whatever to slick back his hair if necessary when you go to the dress rehearsal and if you don't need it, no worries.

As far as what the particular costume entails.... the reality is that dancers and their parents don't have any input on that.  So if you end up not loving the costume they bring on the day of the performance you are, unfortunately, just out of luck.

Yes, I was thinking the same thing.
Try not to overthink, they won't let him go onstage naked.
Just be alert and prepared just in case the info comes quick. But pretty much give up control a bit and just have fun, it's the Nutcracker <3
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gingercrew

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Reply with quote  #20 
well the director is refusing to order him a leo when she orders them for the girls because she says that is not what he is wearing. So I am at a loss. 
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heidi459

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Reply with quote  #21 
Quote:
Originally Posted by gingercrew
well the director is refusing to order him a leo when she orders them for the girls because she says that is not what he is wearing. So I am at a loss. 


Hmmmm  And why is the director ordering leos for the girls?  Why aren't they just going to the store and buying what is necessary?  And why would she insist that your son is not wearing a leo when she's come right out and said she doesn't know what he's wearing?

I don't blame you for being frustrated given the way this is being handled but, still? I think you're stressing out over nothing.  The costume itself is Moscow's department and they will bring it with them on the day of the rehearsal.  The base.. which it appears is what you're talking about (tights/maybe leo/maybe fitted shirt for your boy)... that's something that can probably be picked up on a moment's notice at any one of a number of local dance stores.  Deep breaths.  Deep breaths.


eta:  here's a link to a little blurb that has a photo of the mouse costume from 2014 http://nataliamaephotography.com/?p=432

and a video from 2014 but these mice look like adults

     

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gingercrew

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Reply with quote  #22 
She said all the girls have to wear the exact same leo and tights so she is ordering them all together. This is just not how I function. I am not a wait till the last minute person to have things prepared. 
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heidi459

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Reply with quote  #23 
Quote:
Originally Posted by gingercrew
She said all the girls have to wear the exact same leo and tights so she is ordering them all together. This is just not how I function. I am not a wait till the last minute person to have things prepared. 


Then I would suggest you buy your own leo and black tights and fitted black tee.... so you can be prepared for anything... return what you don't need when it's all said and done with.... and be done with it.  (eta:  and I understand that you've been led to believe that they all need to be the same but no one will be able to tell if there are slight variations under the costume so so as long as it's black... I'd say you're good).
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joriebelle

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Reply with quote  #24 
I am new to Moscow Ballet Nutcracker but we were told, like Heidi said, that they bring all of the costumes with them.  That's why during the auditions they get measurements of each child.  Gingercrew, I know you're having some anxiety about this but don't worry, these people have done hundreds of these shows and I'm sure they have it all under control.  If you're stressed just do what Heidi said and buy your own stuff just in case.
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my2miracles

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Reply with quote  #25 
Quote:
Originally Posted by gingercrew
She said all the girls have to wear the exact same leo and tights so she is ordering them all together. This is just not how I function. I am not a wait till the last minute person to have things prepared. 


I wouldn't function well that way either.  I get that they provide the costume but since the girls are required to supplement the costume with items of their own, it seems likely to me that boys would be expected to as well.  

I don't have a boy in dance so I don't know how easy it is to just run to any dance store and get boy items.  The 2 dance stores that we frequent don't display boys clothing - they may have things in the back.  I don't know.  And we live in a major metro area.  Now I'm curious because I honestly never thought about it.
 
Can you contact the folks directly and avoid the director?  (maybe I'm reading this wrong but it sound like your studio director not the ballet director) I'm not sure how this works since my dd has never done it but it seems like you should be able to go directly to them if you aren't getting the answers you need.
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