My 7-year-old daughter takes ballet class every Wednesday evening. She’s been taking it for four years, and really likes it. I actually like it to—to see her leaping and skipping and dancing in her little purple leotard, it warms a daddy’s heart.
That said, youth ballet is a scam.
My daughter has been enrolled in two different studios, and both places try and take you for everything you’ve got. The classes themselves are insanely expensive—but, hey, I can sorta live with that. What gets me, and the wife, are the year-end recitals. These events take place in a school auditorium, and serve as the culmination of the class completion. All girls are required to wear a special outfit, generally costing anywhere between $50 and $150. Then, all attendees are required to purchased tickets. Last year, the tickets cost about $20 a pop—parents must pay, siblings must pay, everyone has to pay. In other words, the wife, son and I forked over $60 additional to watch our kid dance in a recital we already paid for (in overpriced lessons).
It’s maddening—but she loves to dance.