Frequently Asked Questions | School Life

We have put together some FAQs you might find useful to learn more about the School. Of course, since March 2020 we have had to make many adaptions to the way we work. To find out more about how we are continuing to train during the pandemic please see COVID-19 Update 

We regularly receive questions from prospective applicants via our Social Media and email inbox. So, we’ve compiled some frequently asked questions to help you find the answers your looking for quickly and easily.

If you’re a prospective Postgraduate student, and have a question, email postgrad@rambertschool.org.uk

Find questions about the Stage 1 Digital Audition process here.

Find Questions specific to COVID-19 here.

A typical day begins at 9am and ends around 5pm. Students often stay in School after classes finish to access studio space for independent work or rehearsals. The studios are open until 8pm for this purpose. All students have ballet technique and contemporary technique classes every day. Ballet will include pointe work for students on pointe plus pas de deux in Year 1 & Year 2. Students not on pointe still attend classes and will receive additional coaching. All students learn a ballet solo which forms part of the assessment process, and in Year 2 and Year 3 they additionally learn a contemporary solo. In addition to technique classes, students have weekly improvisation /gaga and conditioning and Year 1 students are taught choreography. The contemporary technique covers a range of techniques including Graham, Cunningham and release plus additional current contemporary dance techniques.

The academic part of the course is called critical studies and is taught via a weekly lecture.

Year 2 & Year 3 students have a ‘Fresh Friday’ weekly workshops delivered by an external choreographer /dance maker /practitioner. This gives students an opportunity to experience many different dance styles. 

Most students live close by and can walk or cycle to School. We advise that you live close by as the day starts early and can end late. 

Rambert School is not a residential school. 

Most of our students live in house/flat shares that are arranged between the students. Once you have accepted an offer of a place at the School you will be added to a closed Facebook group. This is where students start speaking with each other about accommodation needs. Students also advertise spare rooms here and the School add details of accommodation that becomes available. 

Students who are under 18 years sometimes choose a homestay option. However, it is up to you if you choose this or flat sharing with other students. 

Areas closest to the School are Isleworth & some of Whitton, Richmond, St Margarets, Twickenham, Teddington (all close to the School but slightly more expensive than Isleworth & Whitton)

Most students pay on average a monthly rent of around £500-£550 per calendar month. You should budget for approximately £40 per month for utility bills. Rental prices vary dependant on location. Properties closer to central Richmond/Twickenham or St Margarets may be more expensive. 

The admissions team are here to help. Find out more: Accommodation Rambert School

Continuous assessment counts for the largest part of your mark, this reflects a student’s individual progress and arises from what staff observe over the semester from each class. Students are also assessed on solo performances and each semester there will be an assessment class for both ballet and contemporary technique which takes place in School. Assessment classes are marked by a panel of faculty staff. 

Class sizes vary depending on the lesson. Some classes will work with all year group students and others will be split into smaller groups. Workshops work well with bigger groups and having the whole year group together provides a wonderful energy, whilst classes that focus on technique benefit from smaller groups. 

We are a small School with a warm and nurturing atmosphere, and we aim to build a strong relationship with our students throughout their journey with us. We have a small student support team who offer pastoral care in the first instance, but we also have a team of external counsellors and nutrition advisers who we externally refer students to as required. 

There is a dedicated student support team. Everyone is assessed on arrival at the School for dyslexia and other learning differences. Students from the UK who are assessed as needing additional support will be encouraged and supported to apply for DSA (Disabled Students Allowance). This is a “pot” of money that finances 1:1 dyslexia support funded by Student Finance. It also can often finance the purchase of equipment, like a laptop if you do not have one, and software to support you and sometimes recording devices, to enable you to record class. The cost of this support does not get added to your student loan. 

If you are an overseas student, the School will support the cost of 1:1 dyslexia support sessions.

There are critical studies classes each week to support and enhance students’ learning in the studio.

Topics covered include reflective practice, dance science, dance psychology, somatics and dance history. This area also promotes key transferable skills, preparing students for professional careers as dancers and well into the future.    

There are essays as part of your course work and by the end of the third-year students are equipped to carry out their own research project with either an 8,000 word dissertation or a practical presentation. 

We are looking to integrate written and practical work more and more. As a dancer, it is important to contextualise your dancing and reflect which is why we think it is important to combine the two. 

The range of techniques taught build through the course. The course has been designed to grow and build upon techniques and progress. The first year is about the fundamentals. We begin with traditional contemporary techniques and approaches such as Graham and Cunningham classes. Limon technique is also taught, plus release work and different types of floor work in class. 

We also teach repertory by Cohan, Alston, Bruce and other seminal choreographers. In the second and third year the focus changes to include more current techniques/work and progresses through to audition and performance techniques.

This varies from term to term and year group to year group. Solo performances/assessments can be en pointe but not in the first term in first year. You will make the decision together with your ballet teacher.

There are two performances during the year which are dedicated to student choreography called Paltform. Students are encouraged to choreograph work for other students in different years to their own. What you learn from each other is just as important as what our teachers teach in class. Platform is performed publicly and in 2020 we hosted both performances successfully online. There is no selection for the student Platform performances: any piece which is made and finished will be in the programme. Usually, we stage 30-40 short works in each Platform.

Many of the teaching faculty are practicing artists, bringing their experience and opportunities to students of the School. Guest teachers and choreographers regularly work with students broadening their experience, providing networking opportunities and preparing them for the profession.

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