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EVERYONE IS REPLACABLE? THE VALUE OF GOOD FACULTY

     Everyone is replaceable. That's the truth. We gently remind our dancers of this during their training so they realize that without professionalism, dedication, a good attitude, hard work and consistent practice there is always someone with equal or greater talent waiting in the wings. The same goes for any industry really, even our dance faculty.

    When studio owners however, assemble their dream team of teachers, the union can make magic. The possibilities for student growth and studio success become endless. Creativity soars and everyone is on the same page regarding the artistic and educational mission. Establishing this kind of dynamic however, takes time and effort. As studio owner being diligent is key on the selection process to ensure a teacher is the "right fit," for your business and your students. Is their vision aligned with yours? Are they experienced and knowledgeable? Are they committed? Are they passionate and eager to learn themselves? Does their artistic integrity blend with other faculty? Does their unique teaching style provide variety for students? Does their disposition bring a good vibe into the studio?......


 

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KEY TIPS FOR JAZZING UP JAZZ CLASS!

When lesson planning for any class, there are vast avenues a teacher can take to teach the genre effectively. Jazz itself, in nature, is one of those idioms where teaching the technique correctly should also be compounded with other important ‘lessons within those lessons’ to create a well-rounded dancer and performer. With influences from many other dance areas, there are endless things to teach your students when building vernacular and jazz movement profile.

Like any other class we teach however, we can get into the habit of teaching the same thing, the same way, all-year through. Below are three simple tips you can incorporate when designing your jazz classes which will spice things up, keep your dancers alert and on their toes and demonstrate there is much to the genre to be discovered and explored! It will also help you keep things varied, interesting and stylistically motivated when creating!......

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PROMOTING HEALTHY COMPETITION AMONGST DANCERS

This is not always a negative thing if done in a healthy mindset with tons of positive support behind it. Now, the balance to this is to ALWAYs reaffirm and remind students that no dancer should obsessively compare themselves to another because it’s like apples and oranges. No two are alike and each always possesses something that the other doesn’t. That’s the beauty in learning and being inspired from one another. What should be their focus is taking control over their own technique, their own training and cultivating what those unique qualities are; which is going to make them succeed. This is what should drive them and push them to the next level.........

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WHY DO YOU DANCE?

Why do you dance? It’s a simple enough question with an infinite amount of answers; unique to the individual being asked the question. Think about how many times you’ve been asked that question throughout your life. Go on. Give it a good think. Do you remember how you have answered? Has your answer remained the same? Has it changed over the course of your life? Has it been affected by an event or situation currently occurring in your life? Has it had more than one answer? Have you had no answer; where you couldn’t quite put it into words and encapsulate what it means to dance and to be a dancer? Has you answer been affected by where you were at a specific point in your career? Has it been affected by your age? Your experiences? Hindsight? Physical or emotional factors? Current events? Teachers? Mentors?

We all have different reasons for why we dance. We each got to the point we are at in our career because of those reasons. Yet, with every unique answer there is a common thread which embodies a passion, “a calling,” that in many ways highlights how we didn’t necessarily choose dance, dance chose us.

Now, think about your students......

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THE IMPORTANCE OF PERFORMING IN CLASS

Let's be honest. We all have students who, in class, execute movement with ability, are focused enough to demonstrate they are retaining information and seem to comprehend the lessons being taught. They move well, show promising physical agility, travel across the floor deftly, pick up choreography, take correction (and even sometimes apply it,) show progress from week to week and dance center combinations with ease..... So what's the issue, right? Well, what happens when that exact student is about as interesting to watch in class as watching paint dry? Imagine all of the above occurring week in and week out with no expression, no emotion and no sense of connecting to anything other than regurgitating the steps presented in front of them. Imagine your rehearsals running the same way. Numbers are clean enough, everyone knows their blocking, entrances and exits, partnering and transitions, but the emotional connection is void. How is a teacher supposed to trust that the performance element is being given the same consideration?

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MANAGING & RESPECTING YOUR FACULTY'S ARTISTIC CHOICES

The work your faculty puts out on the stage is a direct reflection to your name and reputation. The concept, music, choreography, costuming and overall appearance is to be considered with great weight and compromise. Deciding "what kind of studio you are," in terms of the material you present and how you'd like your business to be perceived, calls for a direct correlation to the faculty you hire and their understanding of your mission as well.........

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TIPS FOR IGNITING A SUCCESSFUL 2016 DANCE SEASON!

With the summer of 2016 coming to a rapid close, now is the perfect time for dance teachers and studio owners to rev up for the upcoming new season. From personal experience, the fall always seems to be the time of year when my energy and creativity is at its peak and I can't wait to get back into the studio to see what the new semester has in store! There are so many things we as teachers and studio directors can do to ignite that enthusiasm amongst our dancers to get them off on the right foot; from Day #1. Success and progress is most easily achieved when students can take note of teachers' transparent preparedness, eagerness to be in the studio teaching, creativity and commitment to ensure the progress of each individual dancer. This often times has a contagious effect on the whole environment and sets a wonderful tone running throughout the studio!..........

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REWARD VS. ENTITLEMENT IN DANCE TRAINING

Whether you have the most advanced students or those that are beginner, there is something to be said for instilling the concept that hard work reaps rewards. In a time when many children are rewarded just for showing up, it's a difficult and tricky concept to instill; but an important one. This is why establishing this mindset from the beginning and setting the precedent that this is how you operate is crucial from the jump. So how do we do it?..........

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WHEN IS THE RIGHT TIME TO ADVANCE DANCE STUDENTS?

It's always a balancing act when, as studio director, you must decide on the advancement of a dancer. They are many factors to consider in this decision. Unfortunately at times, the pressure of a parent and the risk of losing their business [if their child isn't advanced,] can become an internal struggle between sticking to your guns and losing much needed business. I have seen many studio owners in my travels approach this from two different ways......

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DTW LIVE COFERENCE & EXPO 2016 WRAP UP! NOW WHAT?!

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DTW LIVE KICKOFF! LET THE 2016 CONFERENCE & EXPO COMMENCE!

We're baaaaackk!! The time is finally here everyone! We are so thrilled to kick off the 2016 Dance Teacher Web LIVE Conference & Expo at the Red Rock Resort in Las Vegas! This year, we're back on the west coast and the energy is already buzzing with excitement! From attendees to faculty to Expo presenters and staff, everyone is amped up for the next few days which are filled with over 90 classes to choose from! The All-Star Faculty Lineup includes the likes of Leslie Scott,Dolly Kelepecz, Simone DePaolo, Aja DePaolo, Jason Marquette, Matthew Powell, Aaron Turner, our Directors Angela and Steve Sirico and me, Jessica Rizzo-Stafford, as well as many other greats in the business! The common factor here is that everyone is thrilled to share knowledge and learn from one anther; teachers and students alike. This is the time to refuel, re-energize, get inspired and fill up our arsenal of ideas for the upcoming season. This is YOUR conference, so be sure to take advantage of the amazing business seminars we have lined up for you too and discover new ideas on increasing marketing revenue, keeping your dancing injury free, costuming your dancers and extreme customer service ideas!...............

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VEGAS BABY! FINAL COUNTDOWN TO THE DTW CONFERENCE & EXPO 2016!

It's that time gain folks! Not only are we stoked to present our new website, but we are also so pumped to be back LIVE on the west coast in Las Vegas! With a week to go, we are in our final countdown to our annual Dance Teacher Web Conference & Expo, at the fabulous Redrock Resort & Casino! Join us August 1st-4th for what is sure to be the most knowledge, dance and info packed conference of the season!!

We are so excited to back at our home venue and can’t wait to bring you what is sure to be our best year yet! From a vast array of movement classes, business classes and endless events, there is something for every teacher and studio owner from around the world! With our talented, multi-faceted and eclectic faculty, there is no end to the professional development and inspiration you will acquire and bring back to your own students and studios! Led by our very own Angela D’Valda Sirico and Steve Sirico, we are certain this year’s conference and expo will be the one to beat!

To give you a glimpse into what you can expect, we chatted with co-director Steve Sirico about this year’s goodies!.........

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TEACHING HABITS...WHEN TO LET DANCERS FIGURE IT OUT FOR THEMSELVES

Very often as teachers, we get to a point in our educating that we are so subconsciously determined to ensure a dancer's comprehension that we ourselves forget it is up to them to do the learning. There have been times in my own teaching where I notice my habits creeping in that make me stop and wonder; "Is this approach to teaching really helping my students or am I inadvertently spoon-feeding and giving them all the answers?"............. Read More

RECITAL REMINDERS FOR PROFESSIONAL APPEARANCE!

Hi dance teachers & directors! As we are in the thick of recital season with just a few more weeks to go, I just wanted to share a couple of last minute reminders that can transcend your year-end shows from "nice, little dances" to "professional caliber performances!" It's easy to let things slip by whether it be with the younger dancers and baby classes or maybe even with the recreational students, but applying expectations to all will definitely produce a recital where everyone presents themselves as unified, neat and streamlined. Consequently, those lasting impressions will be a direct correlation to your studio name and how the community perceives the professionalism of your business! Remember it all comes down to the details which make the difference; whether you are a full-on training facility or recreational studio.......

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QUICK & EFFECTIVE STRENGTHENING EXERCISE FOR ARABESQUE & GRAND BATTEMENT

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