Our scholarships have been awarded to 72 dancers. 50 of them are currently pursuing their career transition trainings.
Meet our scholarship holders who have completed their individual career plans.
Entrepreneur, multimedia specialist, graphic designer, dancer. He graduated from the Bashkir Choreographic College named after Rudolf Nureyev in Ufa. He worked in eight theatres in total, three of them were based in Poland (in Szczecin, Gdańsk, Bydgoszcz). He likes to recall, with a lot of sentiment, the main part in Konik Garbusek (The Humpbacked Horse) that he performed at the beginning of his dance career.
I feel totally fulfilled as a dancer. Currently, I work as an entrepreneur, multimedia specialist and broadcast engineer and graphic designer. In my work, I approach each of the events and tasks in an artistic way: I treat it as a unique project – a coherent and multilayered performance. I am capable of creating, by myself, a whole new image of a given space through creative use of led screens and graphic design. I cooperate with sound and light engineers, with whom I co-create the setting and manage the technical side of concerts and different commercial and artistic events. I can make visuals for a live concert, change a logo into a 3-D form, create an animation film out of a photo stock. I know what the audience of large commercial events needs and due to my versatile competences and abilities, I can guarantee complex service. Although I have been present in the market for a rather short time, I can proudly say that I already have regular customers. The quality of service that I represent is already an established and respected brand.
I began thinking about changing my professional career after I have turned 30. At that time, dancers were still formally entitled to receive early retirement, and
I was fully aware that in my forties I will not be able to continue dancing full-time. At the same time, I didn’t want to depend only on the early retirement pension.
My current occupation and specialisation are the result of a concrete process that I went through. Initially, I focused on becoming a sound engineer. I worked as a freelancer in different venues, where I was responsible for the sound system and its operation – I did a lot of concerts and different kinds of events. This experience made me realise that the sound-system and the sound-operation market is saturated.
The more I worked, the more I learned about myself and about the specificity of the market, and this knowledge, in turn, made me modify my plans. I focused more on developing my graphic skills and decided to make it my priority.
My main goal, when I entered the Career Transition Programme for Dancers, was to become an expert in a certain area. I knew a lot about myself and about the market; for example – I knew exactly what kind of equipment I need to develop my new career path. Two factors helped me most in the career transition programme – my wife, who was there, when I was making the crucial decisions and choices, and the Programme’s career counsellor. In my opinion, if you are going through such a radical change in your life, support and assistance play a crucial role and I was lucky to have one. If you are wondering whether the choices you are making are good or bad and if the goals you are setting for yourself are reasonable, that is the moment when you need that somebody to support you and give you advice.
Within the Career Transition Programme I knew that I was under the supervision of the career transition expert, and I really appreciated that. In hindsight, I think that a dancer should start his career transition at the age of 25, so that after 30, he/she can take up another job. I wish I had gone through the transition earlier. Dancing is beautiful, but life is not just about ballet, there is so much more to do and experience. The world is much bigger, and I think we donʼt always see it, we are a little bit closed in the world of dance, so we donʼt develop in different directions. But the things one can do outside the world of dance are amazing and very interesting things.
When I think about myself today, I think that going through the career transition brought about a big change in me as a person. I feel more mature.
Iʼve always wanted to set up a private business and to be fully responsible for myself. Thanks to the career transition Programme I managed to improve my financial status. I feel that Iʼm holding my life in my hands. Today, I have much more courage to think about spending time with my family as well as securing it.
I think that to make a change in your professional life, first of all, you have to be brave. You also have to be willing to face the change and to be hardworking.
A pinch of self-confidence will also help. I think that dancers are afraid of losing their jobs and a steady income. Perhaps sometimes, they also think that they canʼt do much. Maybe they are afraid of taking responsibility for themselves and thus avoid the change. In my opinion, the sooner they dare to start the career transition, the sooner they will find themselves in a new profession. If I were to say something to young dancers, Iʼd say: “Donʼt be afraid and think wider. And donʼt forget that to make the change, you have to expand your skills and broaden your knowledge. Find yourself a hobby, because it will help you develop your skills. And be proactive.”