Last blog before the big show!

We just finished up our last day of stage rehearsals!  The kids have been doing a great job and we are so very proud!

As many of you know, we are not a school that drills our recital dances all year long.  We usually begin working on recital dances mid-January.  We feel that skills and technique with time for exploration of concepts are more important than memorizing one or two dances all year.  We also believe that the process and the journey are just as important as the final product.  After all, the time spent in the studio is much longer than the few minutes spent onstage.  We are so proud of the dances and the progress that they have made this year!  We have seen so many milestones happen in class!  And getting up onstage is no small thing!  

For parents of our younger dancers, we would like to remind you again that all of this "stage stuff" can be so exciting for one dancer and overwhelming to another.  No matter what happens just the fact that they got up there and tried should be something to celebrate!

I found a little write up online by Jana Chapeton of the "Small Fry Dance Club"  about different types of preschool performers that I would like to share. 

The Performer:

Performers seem ready to take the stage when they arrive at the theater.  They are excited to be there and seem to know what to expect.  In many cases, these are the kids who have done shows more than once.  Performers will come out with big smiles on their faces and a confident stride.  They will give a wave to the crowd and take their place in their lines.  The performer will follow along with the teacher onstage and do most, if not all the movement.  Within the performer group, there are always a few dancers that won't be shy at all!  They will yell hello to their parents from the stage, come up with their own dance, and generally try to steal the show.  The funny part is, we can't always predict which kids will be that comfortable on stage.  

The Observer:

Sometimes a child will get onstage, take their spot, and just watch.  It's not uncommon especially for first time performers to do this.  Some will sit and stare at everyone else dancing before joining.  Others decide they will just watch the entire thing.  If this happens to your dancer, know that it is okay!  At young ages, just getting onstage is half the battle!  They are in a new setting, with lots of new faces, lights, and sounds.  It takes guts to be onstage in front of a crowd, remind them how proud you are that they got out there.

The Anxious Dancer:

As we stated above, being on stage in front of a crowd takes guts!  Being on stage for the first time can be overwhelming!  Your dancer may have last second butterflies and refuse to get onstage with the rest of the group.  Your dancer may get onstage, and start crying.  In these cases, our staff will try to comfort the dancer, get them on stage, and maybe just hold their hand throughout the performance.  Again, if this does happen, just be supportive, and let them know how proud you are that they tried to get onstage.  They can always try again.

No matter what our dancer's age, learning through performance is a big part of dance training.  Performance opportunities cannot only help prepare some students for a possible career in dance, they also contribute to a child's success in non-dance activities.  The performing experience helps build self-esteem and self-confidence and can result in better in-school presentations, improved social skills, and strong interview skills for future college or job opportunities.  

We look forward to amazing shows and a fun day filled with family and friends and beautiful dancing.  Once you walk through the theater doors, do not stress…whatever will happen onstage will happen!  Just enjoy the day and make some memories!  We thank you for allowing all of us to be a part of your child's dance education.  It has been our pleasure to work with them all year.

Ms. Jen

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