When Winston Churchill was asked to cut the arts funding in favor of the war's expenses, he simply replied, "then what are we fighting for?"
If you are a dancer or an artist, it is very typical that random people or even your very close friends ask you what is your actual job.
People are used to recognizing that businessmen, lawyers, doctors, engineers, or teachers are the people that have real, sustainable, and highly recognized jobs. But actually, why is being an artist not considered as a real job?
Being an artist in the 21st century is simply unique. We are living in a world that is more interested in money, huge businesses, and politics, looking for the best or worst ways to be leaders. The arts are not that appreciated as it was centuries before.
"But how much do you earn? That is a no-money career."
The truth is that for us the artists, money is the last concern. Of course, we want to be able to earn a living for what we do; however, in the end, we are doing it because it makes us happy and it is meaningful to share what we love with others.
If you want an answer to your questions regarding ballet dancers, well, yes! Dancers do get paid in a ballet company and are able to pay the bills. Just as any other artist, our career is real.