Ask Rhee Gold

Ask Rhee Gold: The hows and whys of class placement

Advice for dance teachers | The hows and whys of class placement Dear Rhee, I am frustrated by parents who question everything I do, especially the decisions I make relating to class placement, who is on the competition team, and who still needs to work before making the team. These parents watch what I do…

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Ask Rhee Gold: Choreographer Contracts

Advice for dance teachers | Choreographer Contracts Dear Rhee, Off and on for many years, our studio has brought in master teachers to create choreography for our competitive students. This year a choreographer set a fantastic routine on a large group of our older students. The total expense for this was more than $4,000, including…

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Ask Rhee Gold | The Importance of the Recital

Advice for dance teachers | The Importance of the Recital Dear Rhee, At the end of last season, I had parents who were upset because they thought the recital experience was too much trouble. One parent actually sent me an email to say her child would not be returning unless I decided to drop the…

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Ask Rhee Gold: Changing Your Faculty’s Perspective on Competition

Advice for dance teachers | Changing Your Faculty’s Perspective on Competition Dear Rhee, Although I enjoy the competition experience and I know that my students learn and grow through the process, some of my faculty members believe that preparing students for competition is the most important aspect of teaching. How would you suggest that I…

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Ask Rhee Gold: Ending Class on a Positive Note

Advice for dance teachers | Ending Class on a Positive Note Dear Rhee, As a studio owner, I believe that my faculty needs to remember that our students should feel a sense of accomplishment by the time they leave dance class. It isn’t about hollow compliments or accolades, but about ending class on a positive…

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July 2017 | Ask Rhee Gold | Retaining Recital Choreography

Advice for dance teachers | Retaining Recital Choreography Dear Rhee, What are your strategies to help students retain recital choreography? This year was especially hard, which resulted in a lot of stress for my students and me. I know I must be missing some tricks of the trade. Any expertise is appreciated. —Mikala Hi Mikala,…

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July 2017 | Ask Rhee Gold | Competition Programs

Advice for dance teachers | Competition Programs Dear Rhee, At what age do you believe a child should begin a competition program? We’ve always started at 10; now parents are asking me if I will accept kids as young as 6. I don’t know if the children and their parents are prepared for the amount…

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July 2017 | Ask Rhee Gold | Special-Needs Students

Advice for dance teachers | Special-Needs Students Dear Rhee, This season I introduced a dance class for children with special needs. I taught the class, but with my limited experience it was a huge growth experience for the kids and me. By the end of the season I was thrilled with what we all accomplished.…

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October 2015 | On My Mind

I’m noticing a lack of creativity in choreography lately—or maybe it’s people’s inability to think for themselves. At a respected ballet company’s performance, on the competition stage, and on TV, choreographers are creating contemporary work that’s strikingly similar. Yes, the level of technical mastery among dancers is diverse, but there’s a disturbing sameness to the mood, expression, and movement—which typically convey ideas about suffering and tragedy. This dark subject matter combined with moody lighting and zero humor add up to a sad observation: today’s dance productions may be depressing audiences instead of entertaining them.

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