By Issue -quick review

Tips for Modern & Contemporary Teachers | Stretch, Strengthen, and Share Weight

by Amber Perkins Today’s modern and contemporary choreography for students includes more and more partnering, so it’s important to designate class time to teaching its foundations. Try these exercises I developed to teach safe weight sharing and to strengthen the core. Blind back-to-back lengthen and balance. Begin with two dancers sitting back to back on…

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A Camp With Character

Girls, boys—and dads—ease into ballet through Nutcracker camps by Michelle Wurtz Whether it’s The Nutcracker or your own version of a holiday showcase, a full seasonal production in a theater requires long-term student commitment, parental support, and funds. What if you don’t have some or all of these resources, but still want to involve students…

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Media Hub | Tap Heat

Tap Heat directed by Dean Hargrove An award-winning short film, Tap Heat uses dance as dialogue. A young man raised on urban funk has a hard time communicating with peers who do a different style of tap dancing. When his style is rejected, even considered illegal, the Tap Squad is called to straighten him out.…

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Ask Rhee Gold | Asking for a raise

Advice for dance teachers Dear Rhee, I teach more than 20 hours a week. I love the kids, and my own children, who also dance, are with me at the studio. My dance life feels right. After our recital, I received a call from a studio owner whose business is located about 15 minutes away…

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FYI | Teacher Training Focuses on Ballet Technique

What’s up in the dance community After nearly 20 years of running the Virginia-based Ashburn Academy of Dance, Anne Marie Kimmell and Katie Beliveau determined that ballet is a hard sell for today’s kids. So based on ballet teacher training they received at the University of Utah, the pair created and trademarked The Ballet Method,…

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EditorSpeak | Are My Kids Safe at Your Studio?

When I sign up my beloved children for classes of any kind, I expect qualified instructors and a reasonable regard for safety. I don’t think that makes me an entitled helicopter parent. It’s my job to see that my kids make it to adulthood. (And I will fight tigers with my bare hands to make…

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Wearing It Well | Clients Are Sold on Seasonal Show Rental Program

by Heather Turbeville What’s better than a holiday show with Sugar Plum fairies, penguins, and peppermint patties? A holiday show that doesn’t require students to buy all of those costumes. All 200 students at Dance With Miss Lindsay in Palm Springs, California, rent costumes that range from T-shirts and leggings to platter tutus with sequined…

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Tips for Tap Teachers | Pre-Tap for Preschoolers

by Thelma Goldberg Many studio owners offer tap dance to preschoolers. But as someone who has spent a lifetime studying the art of tap, I’d like to suggest an alternative: offer your students ages 3 to 5 a curriculum of pre-tap—in ballet shoes. With planning and good marketing, your preschool program will flourish and students…

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Creative Casting

Schools attract publicity and create community by filling Nutcracker non-dancing roles with local celebrities by Jeanne Palmer-Fornarola More than 125 years after it premiered, versions of The Nutcracker are performed throughout the holiday season in regional theaters and high school auditoriums, professional venues like Lincoln Center and bare-bones in-studio settings. With so many Nuts to…

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Media Hub | Dance With Miss Kim

Dance With Miss Kim This instructional DVD by Kim Black, a teacher at Burlington [NC] Dance Center, 2018 Discount Dance Supply Teacher of the Year, and frequent Dance Studio Life contributor, takes children on an imaginary journey through movement and dance. Young dancers can pretend along with Miss Kim and become part of her stories…

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Ask Rhee Gold | Keeping your recital short and sweet

Advice for dance teachers Dear Rhee, I just finished my 27th recital and should be thrilled, but I know my clients were upset. The show was almost four hours long. It’s time for a change, but I need some advice about how others do it. As it is now, my show consists of all the…

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On My Mind | The end of an era

Words from the publisher This July marks 14 years since we launched Dance Studio Life magazine. Skeptics told me that a print magazine for dance teachers wouldn’t fly, but my gut told me to go for it. Dance education is one of the greatest professions in the world, and I knew that with a magazine…

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FYI | Pillow Unearths Dance Treasures

What’s up in the dance community Jacob’s Pillow has always been a source of dance wisdom and inspiration, and this summer is no exception, thanks to an archival exhibit of sumptuous costumes, art, and images at Williams College Museum of Art, Williamstown, Massachusetts, timed to coincide with the Pillow’s annual dance festival in Becket. Dance…

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Taking Care of Business | Five Steps to Managing Marketing

by Teri Mangiaratti “Marketing” can be a loaded word—and it means different things to different people. I believe studio marketing should happen year round and take different forms: social media ad campaigns, flyers, postcards, direct email, referral programs, press releases, cross-marketing, community events, and student-retention special events. So let’s make a marketing plan. Last season,…

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Collective Wisdom | Classroom Connection: Choreography Assistants

Ideas & advice from teachers Between dances for recital and competition, dance teachers often choreograph 20 or more pieces in a year—a number that can be overwhelming. It’s often a challenge to find the inspiration you need to create unique pieces. After a while, you feel that all your dances look the same. When I’m…

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Teacher Tune-Up | Create

by Sandi Duncan create (verb): to cause to come into existence; bring into being; make; originate; esp., to make or design (something requiring art, skill, invention, etc.)—Webster’s New World College Dictionary I had the pleasure of witnessing some phenomenal choreography at the American Dance Awards competition in Massachusetts this spring. The inspiring pieces ranged from high-energy…

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A Nutcracker to Call Your Own

When it comes to creative inspiration, there’s no place like home by Casey C. Davenport Ballet has its fair share of repertory that transports us to a land far, far away in a time many years before our own. A sparkling example is The Nutcracker, which debuted at the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, Russia,…

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Media Hub | Tallulah’s Nutcracker

Tallulah’s Nutcracker by Marilyn Singer; illustrated by Alexandra Boiger It’s Christmastime, and Tallulah finally gets what she’s been wishing for—a part in a real ballet, a professional production of The Nutcracker. She’s only a mouse, but she works as hard as if she were the Sugar Plum Fairy. On the night of the show, everything…

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July 2018 | Holiday Shows + Choreography

Holiday Shows + Choreography July 2018 | Volume 23 | Issue 5 | Buy a copy After the chaotic rehearsals and costume complications, bad weather cancellations and panicked moments, sour moods (your studio parents), and sore feet (your own), the curtain rises on your holiday show. Oh, joy! Contrary children turn into angels—literally—and past struggles…

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Ask Rhee Gold | Focus on the positive

Advice for dance teachers Dear Rhee, I am in my seventh season of studio ownership, but the past couple of years have not been easy. The business has grown so much that the studio has moved into larger spaces twice. My faculty is up to 21, with 6 office employees. All that is good, but…

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Ask Rhee Gold | Staying in the know

Advice for dance teachers Dear Rhee, After 26 years of owning my studio, I have stepped back from being at the studio every day. I enjoy doing my daily office work in my home office where I am not distracted by all the goings-on when the studio is in full swing. Yet I’m starting to…

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Media Hub | Aerial Dance: A Guide to Dance With Rope and Harness

Aerial Dance: A Guide to Dance With Rope and Harness by Jenefer Davies This introductory book for the beginning aerialist covers rigging, equipment, and advice on optimal conditioning. A step-by-step guide to technique includes anatomical references, space and time considerations, and elements of force when working with and against gravity. A companion website hosts example…

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Media Hub | Synchronous Objects

Synchronous Objects This site (synchronousobjects.osu.edu) examines choreographer William Forsythe’s One Flat Thing, reproduced using a plethora of data and tools. Visitors can view the dance from different angles, elect whether or not to see visual indications of dancers’ cues and responses, choose the accompanying music and commentary, and much more. An essay by Forsythe provides…

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