We've all heard a story here and there about dance academy drama. There are the crazy stage moms or the teachers that show too much favoritism...How about the diva that has to be the center of attention or the studio owner that just only focuses on making money? No matter what, when you put multiple performer types all together, things can easily get too political. Some dance academes are worse than others though. Here are a few tricks to avoid the dance academy drama:
1. Ask if the dance academy focuses on competitions or not. Do they have multiple trophies all around the studio?
2. Check how expensive their recital fees are and how much hype surrounds it. Click here for a good example of a recital that is not blown out of proportion.
3. See what their reputation is by chatting with some other moms about what they've heard.
4. Get an overall vibe of the dance academy. Is it about creating a positive environment where dancers feel welcome to learn or does it feel cliquey?
5. Does the dance academy require you to purchase their custom dance clothes or is the dress code too strict? Here is an example of a flexible dress code policy.
6. See if they offer a trial class or maybe a drop-in fee before you spend a bunch of money.
7. How does the front desk staff treat you? Are they warm and inviting or does it seem like they don't have time to answer your questions?
8. Observe how the teacher interacts with their dancers. Are they focusing on their class as a whole or a select group?
9. How involved are the other dancers' parents? Does it seem healthy or overbearing?
10. How are attitudes dealt with or behavioral issues? Do you agree or disagree?
Of course, no matter what we get involved in, conflict is part of our daily lives. The important thing to remember is that we cannot control the people around us, but can always remove ourselves from negative environments. If a dance academy is doing its job right, the true spirit of dance should always come through. Support, encouragement, and positivity are all great aspects of the dance world that can do wonders for anyone. Always do your research to ensure that your dancer is in the best environment possible while obviously having FUN!