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Ballet Talk for Dancers (BT4D) Will Close at the End of April 2023

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Ballet Talk for Dancers (BT4D) announced today that the board will close at the end of April 2023.  Here is a link to the announcement:


BT4D was a subforum of Ballet Talk/Ballet Alert until it became its own standalone board in the 00's, and it was administered by Victoria Leigh until 2020.  It has been nutured and grown by a dedicated group of Moderators.

It is truly the end of an era.

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The internet continues to shift, and conversations move from place to place (I entered this world through Usenet, which makes me a dinosaur of sorts!).  But I am sorry to realize that the momentum seems to have left BT4D -- it was a great community and served a real purpose for its citizens.

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Sorry to see it go.  Google told me it had a forum for discussing management issues, apparently including marketing, and I continue to feel that arts marketing in general and marketing of our favorite art form in particular continues to be wrong-headed and ineffectual.  How was it being discussed?  What were the issues? 

I was never able to register and read the forum - though Google revealed some forum names, their spider (the name of the kind of computer continually crawling the Web, to assemble a search engine's data base, as far as I know) was kept out of the content, and maybe considering the youth of the some of the dancers in some of the forums (whether as contributors or subjects, I obviously don't know) tighter security on BT4D than on BA! was justified.

Years ago the man sitting on my right muttered, during the first "wrong" applause, "That didn't look hard," and I said, "Did you expect it to look hard?"  "Yes," he said, "they told us it was hard."  "They're so good, they make it look easy," I said.  "Oh!" he exclaimed.  Evidently, he'd been to some introductory event and had his attention misdirected.  Looking for signs of difficulty, he thought he hadn't got it.  That's what I mean by wrong-headed preparation.     

Only two nights ago, I was greeted by a Ballet Chicago board member on our way into the performance in the Harris Theater.  In a moment, he identified himself and, having recognized me, said he wanted to know how I got interested, how did I happen to be there.  Exactly the subject I wanted to discuss.  (I later identified his daughter in the program.)   I look forward to re-connecting, but without BT4D as a place to learn from and to "mix" with like-minded people it looks like rare chance encounters are mainly what's left.

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There is a new site, started by a former member of BT4D who wanted to keep the spirit alive.  Sadly, the previous content is lost but there does seem to be a rejuvenated energy on the new site.  It's only been a few weeks but there are quite a number of new discussions.  It is predominantly parents seeking and sharing guidance on their young dancer's journey, dance teachers / administrators, and some young dancers themselves.    

I have a membership here on Ballet Alert, though this might be my first post, but long time lurker and enjoy these discussions immensely.  I was a member on BT4D since my daughters started attending summer intensives over a dozen years ago and I now have two professional dancers.  I would enjoy a lively discussion about audience engagement and company marketing.  One of my daughters is dancing with a small company in a growing Midwest city.  It has been enjoyable to watch how they engage with the community and grow their audience.  

I don't know what the "rules" for joining are but would welcome some discussions over there (or here) if you are so inclined.    


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We announced the creation of the new site here:


The "Ballet Talk for Dancers/Ballet Pursuit" item on our menu below the logo links to this page.

Ballet Pursuit is the appropriate site to discuss ballet training -- ie, the doers -- and we encourage everyone who wants to join the discussion to head over to Ballet Pursuit.

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