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There Is No Failure, Only Feedback!


Studio Owner Article


Improve Staff and Customer Communication

There are no real secrets to success it is the end result of working very hard, having excellent preparation and being willing to learn from all failures. It is not pleasant to fail in any venture but if you can step beyond it and realize that you are capable of moving forward despite having failed then you will find yourself on the road to success. When Steve and I were performing with our adagio act we would continually rehearse on the lifts in our act or work on new combinations of lifts and sometimes things would go wrong and we would say to each other, "That was amazing!" "What happened?" It was exciting to know that out of something going wrong a more beautiful and exciting lift had been created! Once you understand that there really is no failure and you are willing and able to adapt until you get it right, the sky is the limit!

Owning and operating a dance studio is quite a complex business because in order to be successful you have to be willing to take calculated risks, be true to yourself and your passion and be willing to surround yourself with the best quality people in your faculty and staff that you can find. You also have two clients and it is important to please both. Every year that you are in business there will be success stories and others that you would rather forget about but the key is not to dwell on those moments but simply to understand that they helped you to see the light and shown you ways that you can strengthen and improve your business.

As dancers we fail over and over again! How many times must a dancer fall out of their pirouette before they learn how to hold their bodies correctly so that it can rotate successfully? How often does a dancer throw themselves into a turn or leap and fails miserably by falling into a heap on the ground? I always applaud my dancers when they are willing to go for it, to try something that they are afraid of not being able to do, to be willing to feel uncomfortable because I know those are the dancers that are going to be successful.

So much emphasis is put on our students at school to pass examinations and so little on experiencing the mode of learning and learning from. We have a wonderful opportunity to let our students know that although we all like to have high grades and do well in school and dance and life it is also okay to fail as long as we are willing to learn from it. Just as in competitions there is a panel of judges who give their opinion, it is only feedback and whether your dancers get the highest award or just wish they had, it is an opportunity for them to listen to the feedback and be grateful for the lesson they can learn from it. We all know it is not about winning but it certainly does beat losing! You, your staff and faculty and your students can all benefit from failing from time to time, sure it can hurt but it forces us to push forward past boundaries that didn't need to be there in the first place. It leads us to a place of healthy growth, a win- win situation for all!


Angela D'Valda Sirico

Angela D'Valda Sirico

Originally from England, Angela spent her early years in Hong Kong where she studied with Carol Bateman. She continued her training at Arts Educational Trust in England. After moving to New York City she continued her studies with Martha Graham and Matt Mattox. She appeared with the Matt Mattox Company and toured with the first Disney On Parade working with Disney and N.B.C. Contracted to the Teatro National of Buenos Aires she performed for one year and spent an additional year as a featured soloist at the Teatro Maipo, Argentina. Travelling to Madrid, Spain she worked for Spanish television in a weekly variety show Tarde Para Todos and from there decided to form her own Dance Company. With the Company she choreographed and performed throughout Spain in theatres, and on television. Angela met her husband Steve while working together on a television special The Valerie Peters Show filmed in Tampa, Florida. In 1979 they formed the Adagio act DValda & Sirico appearing in theatres, clubs and on television shows such as David Letterman, Star Search and the Jerry Lewis Telethon. In 1982 they were contracted to Europe and appeared in a variety of shows in Spain, Portugal, Sweden, Finland, Switzerland and Italy before going to London, England where they appeared as Guest Artists for Wayne Sleep (formerly of the Royal Ballet) in his show Dash at the Dominium Theatre. Angela and Steve have owned and directed their dance studio in Fairfield, CT. for the past twenty two years and in 2005 added music and vocal classes to their curriculum. Angela served as chairperson for the tri state panel of the Royal Academy of Dancing and is Co-author of a Partner syllabus currently used for teacher training by Dance Educators of America. She continues to adjudicate and teach for major dance organizations and choreographs for theatre, television and conventions and was commissioned by Boston Ballet 11 to choreograph the highly acclaimed Brother Can You Spare A Dime? DValda & Sirico are currently in production choreographing the opening to the National Speakers Association convention on Broadway at the Marriott Marquis for August of 2008. Angela is co-owner of Dance Teacher Web designed as an online resource for teachers worldwide.

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