by Vadim Garbuzov / World Youth Ten-Dance 2005 Finalist; Austrian Latin, Standard and Ten-Dance Youth Champion 2005; Youth Canadian Latin, Standard Champion 2003, 2004
The educational system of dancesport differs from other dance styles. If one wants to become a ballet dancer or modern dancer one goes to the academy of the given dance style and gets a 3-4 years dance education which is relatively cheap and attains a degree as a professional dancer. At least in Europe to pay for a good dance academy is not big money because many are financed by the government.
Dancesport on the other hand is based solely on private lessons and training camps with the dancer working his way to the top with results of the competitions. Usually the dancer with the most chances to make it to the top starts dancing at the age 8 to 12, gets his lessons paid by the parents until he’s 18, and then comes the difference. The parents pay for the further career or one earns the money for dance himself which is quite difficult (dancesport), attends the academy by either taking the student loan in North America or going for the government budget in Europe (ballet, modern, musicals).
Dancesport is probably not such a developed institution as ballet since the system is not sufficient to my view. How is it possible to take regular lessons that are minimum 60 Euros per hour, travel to other countries for competitions and have constantly new costumes that are thousands of Euros worth when one is 18 years old? A part time min wage job will surely not do if there are no sponsors and parents with money.
The no so many who are in such circumstances where they can earn money with teaching are very lucky. If the country does not allow amateur teaching, it is completely unlogical from many amateurs point of view and a dead end for the dancer because in Europe it is difficult to find teaching possibilities even if it is allowed because of the high level competition and pro-am being not yet developed.
There is also a percentage of dancers who are studying somewhere for a completely different profession from dancing and dancing from their parents’ money to be able in the future to earn enough to to do what they love. Isn’t that a shame? Wouldn’t it be better if they could go into some dancesport academy where they would take some student loan and learn all that is necessary for the dancesport profession until the level of being able to earn the money on their own afterwards? Because such an institution is absent many have to do things that are not contributing to their main goal and the whole system of dancesport is not benefiting because there is not a possibility for everyone to commit completely to what they are doing. This is why many dancesport competitors think that the other dance styles have a better developed system than dancesport in terms of university education.