Re: We need more black pros. Posted by anymouse 10/6/2010 7:31:00 AM
"Do you mean to say that the vast majority of teaching professionals began dancing before adulthood? While I do not doubt that many insrtuctors and coaches have done so, I don't believe that their numbers would constitute an "overwhelming" majority - or a majority at all - of professionals working in the US today."
The overwhelming majority of the skilled professionals were trained from childhood, yes. There's no widespread habit of training adults to comparable levels of capability or practical expertise, so on the job trainees are generally used only for lessons that are "more about business than about dancing". The rare exceptions are driven individuals who have gone and sought their own training at personal expense.
Wearing the hat of a teacher too early in a dancer's development tends to limit their opportunity for growth. To earn a living, they need to be in a small market that isn't saturated with more capable teachers. But to build a practical foundation in their own dancing they need to be in the opposite - an environment packed with more skilled peers and well supplied with inexpensive instruction at all levels of advancement.