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Boarding Programme

Marilyn Rowe House, at 262 The Avenue, Parkville, is a home away from home for students of The Australian Ballet School aged between 13 and 18 who have come from all across Australia and overseas. It is located on a block of 2,025 sqm, hosting a two-storey house with a purposeful single wing attached at the rear. The location is ideal, with both tram and train within minutes. Parklands across the road provide plenty of opportunity for recreation, and several hospitals are close by.

Marilyn Rowe House is named after the School’s former Director, Marilyn Rowe AM OBE. Marilyn Rowe was one of the first students accepted into The Australian Ballet School’s initial two year course, the first Prima Ballerina produced by the School and the first graduate to become its Director (1999-2014).

Marilyn Rowe House, the purpose built boarding facility of the School, was secured by significant philanthropic support and meticulously planned, over many years, to provide a modern boarding programme to match the School’s world class vocational dance training.

“The School has created a nurturing environment where students have the opportunity to live in a community with other dancers, have access to fully-trained staff and professional school carers and full access to the Health and Well-being team. We also encourage them to learn to support each other as dance students, while teaching them life skills that will serve them well in their careers as professional dancers.”
Benita Bowles, Head of Boarding

“I lived at home with my mum, dad and little brother in a more regional location, so moving into the city has been really exciting. Marilyn Rowe House is very comfortable, and it’s like living in a home away from home. The food’s great, and the other students and carers are wonderful. It’s like I have a bunch of new big brothers and sisters, which is great because I’m the youngest in the house and they have all made me feel right at home.”
Level 4 Student, NSW

“I’m surrounded by like-minded friends, and we already feel like one big family. We laugh, play games, stretch, eat and support each other through everything. I can’t begin to explain how lucky I am, as without this I may have had to return to Brisbane." 
Level 5 Student, Queensland


The Boarding Programme reflects the vision, culture, and character of the School; being informed by the School’s extensive history, energized by creativity, artistic expression and passion. Unique programmes and exciting approaches to pastoral and residential care devoted to nurturing the whole person — mind, body, and spirit — will foster distinctive signature experiences that support the growth of young dancers into mature, professional performers. The experience of an enriched environment with opportunities for self-discovery, leadership and success, affords students every chance of emerging as individuals capable of making valuable contributions to society.



Levels 4 and 5

Must be accommodated at Marilyn Rowe House unless accommodated with, and fully supervised by, a parent/legal custodian or a suitable relative as approved by the School


Level 6

May apply to be accommodated at Marilyn Rowe House (subject to availability)


Levels 7 & 8

May apply to be accommodated at Marilyn Rowe House (subject to availability)


Levels 5 to 8

Must be accommodated at Marilyn Rowe House unless accommodated with, and fully supervised by, a parent/legal custodian or a blood-relative (as per the International Student Visa requirements) *

Tours and Short-Stay Opportunities
The School invites applications from existing Level 3 ITP students and Invitee students (aged 12.5+ years) to spend time in Marilyn Rowe House during their time in Melbourne for personal visits or Intensive Training Sessions (subject to availability). Airport pick-up service provided by the School, whereby a staff member meets/delivers the student at the airport gate is also available. International visiting students are also able to reside at Marilyn Rowe House during their visit, again subject to availability. Full-time students living in Melbourne with their parents are welcome to arrange a boarding experience as a short-stay boarder. Likewise, if a parent in Melbourne is required to relocate temporarily interstate, arrangements can be made for the student to be a short-stay boarder. Please contact the School regarding costs as these will vary due to the length of stay and whether airport pick-up service is required.


World’s Best Practice

  • Developed in consultation with top Ballet and Academic schools world wide
  • Member of the Australian Boarding Schools Association (ABSA)
  • Professional Head of Boarding and Boarding Staff
  • Ongoing Professional Development of staff undertaken with ABSA


  • 24 Hour Supervision
  • CCTV Security Cameras
  • REACH Boarding School System
  • Includes student tracking and leave management


  • Academic and Tutor Support
  • Health and Welfare Support
  • Nurturing Environment
  • Organised Group Activities


  • Commercial Kitchen
  • Student Kitchen
  • Dining Room
  • Recreation Lounge
  • Study Lounge
  • Quite Reading Room
  • Student Laundry for Personal Clothing
  • Secure Front and Rear Garden


    • Male and Female Segregated Sections
    • Female Only Shared Rooms
    • Male Only Shared Rooms
    • Bedding Provided and Professionally Laundered


      • All meals provided
      • Self-Serve Breakfast
      • Lunch in the Dancers Deli at The Australian Ballet Centre
      • Communal Dinners and snacks prepared by Chef-in-Residence
      • Separate Student Kitchen provided for student use


        2019 COST - A$19,300


        This premier facility at any one time is capable of housing up-to 32 students and associated support staff. Led by the Head of Boarding, Marilyn Rowe House, enables students at the School to experience the highest levels of pastoral care, whilst living in a community based on the needs of dancers.

        The students within Marilyn Rowe House come from all facets of the School population ranging from Level 4 to Level 8 students. This broad spectrum, allows the younger students to develop positive role models within Marilyn Rowe House. Life in the House is based around a series of routines and a set of expectations known as DANCER.

        DANCER expects all students within Marilyn Rowe House, to show the highest qualities in the following areas:

        • Decorum
        • Appearance
        • Nurturing
        • Communication
        • Empathy
        • Responsibility

          The purpose of these routines and expectations is to allow students living away from home to experience a ‘family’ environment where their needs are looked after whilst providing numerous opportunities for personal growth and development.