High Five: Making August Productive
July 28, 2011

It’s August It’s hot. Your dancers are tired—and so are you. You’re back from Nationals, and though you’d love some time off, it’s never too soon to start planning for the fall competition season. Here’s how five studio owners make this month productive.


“After Nationals, we transition right into the summer intensive and take time to reorganize all the levels and groups, taking into account any new students. Additional
private lessons are given to students who need time to adjust to the expectations of the studio, so as not to overwhelm them when classes start up in the fall. My teachers and I focus on building the weaker groups and challenging our stronger students to improve even further.”

—Kelly Burke, Westchester Dance Academy


“The main thing on my mind at the start of the comp season is choreography. By the time I select my dancers for the upcoming season, I want to make sure I have ideas and concepts for new pieces that will challenge them artistically and technically.”

—Lizzie Mackenzie, Extensions Dance Company


“The first thing we do after Nationals is clean our studio. After a busy season it’s usually a mess. We touch up the paint and give the carpet a good cleaning. We sort through props, throw away those we don’t need and plan our costumes for the new year. After seeing some great routines, costumes and concepts at Nationals, the teachers meet and discuss ideas. We also hold training classes and exams for all our assistant helpers, and we have a big picnic for all the team members, so that everyone can meet the newbies.”

—Anne Kramer, Dance Etc.


“It’s OK to take a vacation after Nationals. I spend a week without thinking about dance. Just one week, and then it’s back to work.”

—Kandee Allen, Dance Impressions


“When the new year begins, I focus on group placement, watching for dancers who have solo potential, and evaluate the dynamics and chemistry of the dancers. Our first competition of the year is early—in November—and we make sure we have 18–20 routines ready to compete then. An early date on the calendar energizes the dancers quickly and helps build the new team.”

—Phyllis Balagna,
Steppin’ Out—The Studio



Photo courtesy of Westchester Dance Academy

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