I Was Fired. Why?

August 28, 2017

After working till exhaustion apprenticing at my dance school’s company plus taking regular student classes,
I (and a few others) received an email from the school director dismissing us without any explanation. I’ve tried to schedule a meeting with her but haven’t received a reply. Does this mean I’m not talented and should quit ballet?

—Devastated Dancer, Brooklyn, NY

I’m sorry that you’ve been left in limbo. Everyone deserves an explanation when they’re let go. Otherwise, it’s easy to jump to conclusions or blame yourself. The director simply may need to give other students a chance to apprentice. She might also have a policy about not meeting with dancers who are dismissed, given her workload. Still, her behavior shows little empathy. But this doesn’t mean you lack talent and need to quit ballet. My advice is to find another school where the faculty cares about its dancers’ feelings.

Send your questions to Dr. Linda Hamilton at
[email protected].