Gez Xavier Mansfield via Unsplash

Ask Amy: Where to Stand at the Barre in My First Company Class?

I just scored a second company contract and will be taking daily class with the main company starting in the fall. I'm excited, but worried about knowing where to stand at barre. How can I figure that out without taking other dancers' places? —Carolyn

Dancers tend to be weirdly territorial, especially when it comes to where they stand at the barre. This can be tricky to navigate when you're new and in the junior ranks. You could wait until everyone has taken their places, but I think the easiest way is to politely ask a company member where a good place to stand would be. They'll understand where you're coming from (we've all been in your shoes), and will hopefully point you in the right direction. It's a new season, after all, and they know new dancers are coming in. (Keep in mind that some company members will probably waltz in at the last minute.)

Luckily, it doesn't take too long to figure out who stands where. Over the course of the first few weeks, people will settle into their "regular" places. Please don't fret too much over this—you may be in the second company, but you deserve a spot at the barre along with everyone else.

Latest Posts

Laurent Liotardo (post-production by Nik Pate), Courtesy ENB

Catch English National Ballet’s Rising Stars in the Emerging Dancer Competition Livestream

The coronavirus pandemic may have postponed English National Ballet's annual Emerging Dancer competition last spring, but the show must go on—digitally! You can still watch ENB's best and brightest talent during the competition's livestream, taking place on September 22 at 7:20 pm BST (that's 2:20 pm ET). Now in its 11th year, the competition for the Emerging Dancer Award will be broadcast live from the company's East London production studio for the first time. Tickets are available for $6.99 per device and will remain available to view on demand until September 29.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
From left: Alaina Broyles, Courtesy Werner; Courtesy Underwood

Gaynor Minden's Latest Dancer Lineup Features a Body-Positivity Activist and Its First Guy

Pointe shoe brand Gaynor Minden recently welcomed 32 young dancers to its coveted roster of Gaynor Girls. But this year, the company included two applicants who push the boundaries of what it means to dance on pointe. While both Mason Simon Underwood and Colleen Werner are longtime GM wearers, they stand out from the rest of this year's group: Underwood is the first ever Gaynor Guy, and Werner is a body-positivity activist.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Dylan Giles, Courtesy Festival Ballet Providence

Festival Ballet Providence's New Leap Year Program Gives Dancers Facing a Gap Year a Place to Grow

A new training program at Festival Ballet Providence called Leap Year is welcoming pre-professional and professional dancers who don't have a studio or company to dance for this season.

The endeavor is the brainchild of Kathleen Breen Combes, FBP's executive and artistic director. "I kept getting these emails of dancers saying they just need a place to train this year," says Combes. "I thought, What if we could provide a space for dancers to get stronger, experiment and try new things in a nonjudgmental and no-pressure environment?"

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks