Mariana's Dancing Studio of Ipswich Massachusetts

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(978) 948-2416
info@marianasdancing.com

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

Below are some FAQs regarding our Competition Dance Team. If you have additional questions, please contact Mariana's Dancing Studio and we'll be happy to help.

 

HOW ARE THE COMPETITION DANCERS SELECTED?

There are different ways to join:

  • By audition at the beginning of the year. In some cases, a competitor may be added after the year has started, as long as she/he meets the criteria.
  • By personal invitation
  • By completing the pre-competition class. This class is held annually during the spring session and is open to anyone who wants to explore the opportunity of competing. The following fall, those students are automatically invited to compete.
  • By Instructor invitation. Some dancers are unaware of their talent and skills. If a teacher notices that someone in a recreational class is particularly talented, that student may be approached and asked to consider competing.
 
CAN ANYONE TRY OUT?
Yes, anyone can try out.
 
HOW MANY CLASSES DO COMPETITION TEAM MEMBERS NEED TO TAKE?

COMPETITION TEAM
Competition Students need to take a minimum of five (5) classes per week:

  1. Ballet
  2. Competition Choreography
  3. Technique, Jumps and Turns
  4. One Recreational Dance Class such as Jazz, Lyrical/Contemporary or Musical Theatre (but excluding Acro or Pointe which are considered separate).
  5. Acrobatics & Tumbling class for their corresponding level.

Many competition students take more than the 5 minimum classes as they realize that to become a good competitor one needs lots of practice and experience.

MINI COMPETITION TEAM
The exception to this rule in the Mini Competition Team (ages 5 -7). These dancers are required to take the following classes each week:

  1. Ballet
  2. Competition Choreography
  3. Technique
  4. Jumps and turns
  5. Acro 1 and
  6. A recreational class

Many times competitors realize the importance of deep training and so they add on classes to the minimum requirements for optimal training and performance level.

 
WHAT ARE THE COSTS INVOLVED?
  1. TUITION: Competition training classes tuition
  2. COSTUMES: for competition we require every student to purchase a costume for each number they are in. These costumes are beautiful and tailored to your student's body. The cost varies anywhere from $100 - $150.
  3. ENTRY FEES: Every competition charges a competition entry fee for each number a dancer is in. Most dance teams do 2 routines per competition, plus a production number (a large group routine involving all students). As a rule of thumb, the larger the group the less expensive the fee. This means solos are the most expensive entries. Group entry rates vary from between $45- $60 per student; Solo entries vary from between $100 - $120; Duets vary from between $60- $70 per student; It all depends on the competition company.
 
HOW IS IT DETERMINED WHICH TEAM A DANCER JOINS?
The instructors decide what team, level, and category a dancer will compete in. There are different skill level categories and age categories, too.
 
WHAT IS INVOLVED IN ENTERING A SOLO?
  • They must be part of a team
  • They must take private dance classes during the year.
  • They must have the Instructor's approval.
  • They must pay for their costume and their solo entry fees.
 
CAN THE DANCER PICK THEIR OWN SONG FOR THEIR SOLO/DUET/TRIO?
Students can suggest song choices for their performance and discuss their preferences with the Instructor and Director. The instructors will guide the student with their expertise in the field and consider the student's desires to the best song choice possible that will showcase the dancer in his/her best light.
 
WHEN IS COMPETITION SEASON?

Competition Season starts as early as the end of February and typically runs until May for Regional Competitions. We do our best to NOT compete during April Vacation. National Competitions take place in the early Summer - end of June, beginning of July.

 
WHEN DO I GET A COMPETITION SCHEDULE?

Probably the most asked question!

You can find out the weekends that we will be competing as early as August, published on our website on our Announcements page. This will give you those weekends you would need to be available to compete.

The official detailed schedule (with specific times and dates) is not available until much later. Oftentimes, it's released just a few days prior to the competition weekend. Sometimes dancers compete only on a Saturday. Sometimes on Sunday.. sometimes Friday night. And if your dancer is in a lot of teams and routines .. it may be all three!

What is important is that you block that entire weekend off. You should also realize that you need to allow space for competing, even when you will not find out until later what exact date and time your dancer will be on.

This may seem stressful, but we have been doing it now for 5 years, and it all works out in the end!

 
DO THE DANCERS HAVE SPECIAL REHEARSALS?

Yes. Typically on the Thursday or Friday before Competition weekend all team members come for one special practice(just once before each Competition).

Sometimes an extra rehearsal is needed and added before competition weekend, on a different time than the regular class time.

 
HOW MANY COMPETITIONS DO YOU ENTER?

Mariana's Dancing Studio enters between 3 and 5 competitions a year.

The size of the competitions may vary. Some are very big, some are smaller. And yes, if you commit to compete you need to commit to all competitions we are participating in.

A total of three (3) competitions are the required ones for all Team members. The other (1 or 2 depending on the year) are optional for duets and solos mostly.

 
MY CHILD WANTS TO COMPETE WITH A SOLO/DUET, BUT NOT WITH A TEAM. IS THAT POSSIBLE?
It is possible, however the tuition rate for private training is higher, due to the fact that the student would not be taking the same classes as the competitive teams. Please consult with the Director about solo entries independent from teams. Not every solo entry request will be granted; decisions are based on a number of factors.
 
DO I NEED TO BE PRESENT AT EVERY COMPETITION?
No. Even though it is wonderful for parents, friends and family to witness competitions, you do not need to be present, as long as you make driving arrangements and inform the Studio Director that your child will not come with an adult. Our Staff watches out for the competitors.
 
WHAT KIND OF COMMITMENT IS EXPECTED FOR TEAM MEMBERS?

All Competition Team Members need to commit to the following requirements:

  1. Be enrolled for the full year, for all 3 sessions
  2. Commit exclusively to Mariana's Dancing Studio.
  3. Take a minimum of 5 classes, three of which are Ballet, Technique Jumps and Turns, Competition Choreography, Conditioning and Turns and one Recreational Class.
  4. Be available for competition weekends.
  5. Be available for rehearsal day the Thursday or Friday before competition if need be to run or do an extra practice.
  6. If the Studio is doing a "Production Number" which is a big dance routine which involves ALL competitors, then the competitor has to be available for those practices.
 
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF BEING A DANCE COMPETITOR?

There are so many!

  • Your child will learn advanced skills, which will make them a very strong dancer.
  • They will be exposed to the highest level of training in the program.
  • For those looking at the future in dance, having competed as a child is an excellent background for any dance-related degree.

On a personal level, these are some (but not all) of the benefits of competing:

  • Making strong friendships, bonding, becoming close to others forming relationships which provide a sense of belonging.
  • Dancers who compete do not have time to get into trouble! They are too busy dancing!
  • Learning dedication, sportsmanship, leadership and discipline.
  • Working together towards a common goal.
  • Becoming a strong performer, therefore increasing self-confidence and self-assurance.
  • Becoming Physically fit and strong: our training results in dancers who are naturally flexible, healthy, strong and have good endurance.

There are many more benefits to competing. We encourage you to consult with the Studio Owner or Teacher if this is of your interest, and talk to dancers who are competing already! You will find out how exciting it is!

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