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Vocational ballet Swiss schools offer training for a life on the stage

At the beginning of 2009 a professional qualification for stage dancers was introduced in Switzerland. It's something that's been attracting international students to the country, and to this ballet school in Basel. (SRF,

The three-year "Federal Certificate of Proficiency" for stage dancers is offered in Switzerland at the Zurich Dance Academy, where it was first introduced; in Geneva at the Centre de Formation Professionnelle Arts Appliqués; and at Ballettschule Theater in Basel.

The certification is aimed at offering young dancers comprehensive professional dance training after completing their compulsory schooling. 

Besides providing official recognition of their training, the certificate is geared toward preparing them for the psychological and physical challenges of a career as a dancer. In addition, it enables the dancers to access further education programmes both in Switzerland and abroad. 

Due to the enormous workload with which they are faced, during the training stage dancers learn how to deal with their own body, their diet and manage the risk of injuries.

Certification is also a valuable precursor for dancers to specialise or decide how to take a change of direction in their professional life, particularly at a later stage when they can no longer work strictly as a dancer.

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