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SophiaPD

Novice Member
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Posts: 9
Reply with quote  #1 
Hello!  Great to find this forum because I'm a bit lost.  [smile]

I have a very basic question about age groups.  It looks like most competitions say your age is as of January 1 -- but of what year?  So if there is a competition that has events from October 2017-March 2018, and the dance season is August 2017 - May 2018, how old is my late August 2011 daughter and for how long is she that age?  Bizarre question, really.

Also, how common is it for dancers to do a competition alone or with a few friends from dance class independent from the studio?  My first-grader is on a pre-competitive team that will have one competition with one group number with about 20 girls, and I thought it would be nice to try something smaller.

Finally (for now), how do you determine how many awards are given at each age level?  For example, Applause shows places 1-5 for some categories and as few as 1-2 for others (like duo and trio).  Thunderstruck sometimes shows 7 places or 10.  Is there a set number or does everyone who completes place?  Thanks for any guidance you can offer.
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prancer

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Posts: 955
Reply with quote  #2 
Hi SophiaPD,

Whatever age your dancer actually is on January 1 (mid season) is your dance age for that season.  So in your example you daughter born in August 2011 will be 6 years old for this 2017-2018 dance season.  She will be 7 years old for the 2018-2019 season.

Given that your daughter is already on a team with a competition number, you would not also compete independently.  Perhaps you can mention to your studio that you would be interested in a small group number if possible, but independent status means that you are not dancing for a competition studio.

As for placements, different comps have different rules.  A typical approach is to give awards to the top 50% of numbers if there are fewer entries in a category than typical placements (often a top 10). Varying numbers of entries per division are likely why you are seeing varying numbers of awards. Also notice that most comps have different levels for dancers - something like novice, intermediate, and advanced - with awards for each level, each age group, and each group size.  

Given that you are already at a studio, most of these questions should be easy for the studio directors.  Hope you enjoy the season.
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nyklane

Silver Member
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Posts: 90
Reply with quote  #3 
Hi there - I also agree with Prancer above.  Talk to your studio owner about perhaps another number or smaller size group.  They can give you advice or guidance on what could be possible.  Studios are vastly different - but sometimes they need to know that you are willing to foot the time, effort, costs of additional dances.  Some parents at that age are just trying it out.  Some kids at that age may not be ready for a smaller group.  Your studio owner should work with you - but definitely express interest!  In our studio you really have to "ask" if you'd like to do more.

As for "independent" I also agree with prancer - you are dancing with this studio - but that doesn't "necessarily" preclude you from attending additional or different competitions.  For example, our studio typically doesn't go to Nuvo in our area but my DD was interested in going.  We talked to our studio owner, and she was totally fine for us to attend with the studio name by ourselves.  We are going to nationals this year - also by ourselves - and she's helping us prep and clean routines. 

So for us, communication with the studio owner, letting them know what you might be interested in, can open up other opportunities or give guidance on what to do next.  Now I will mention my DD is only 7 - and when she was first interested 5-6 my studio owner told us she needed to work more on technique before she would consider her for competition.  Mainly because we did not have a "group" at that age yet - and DD wasn't ready for a solo.  It was REALLY hard to hear for my DD.  She was devastated - however she worked her butt off for a year and the next year she did get her solo (this is our first year).


Lastly - awards.  Phew.  Well.  They are ALL different.  They do change and there is no guarantee.  My daughter is young - so these categories don't have a lot of groups competing in it.  So if there are only 10 groups - sometimes they only give out 1st place.  OR maybe top 3.  Totally depends.  Everyone gets adjudicated - so there at least is that measure.  Awards are subjective - and sometimes that is hard for both the dancer and the parents.  I have a completely different view now that I have been through a season.  I agree with most of the advice here given about awards - I try to focus my daughter on the adjudicated score -and how we keep moving that score up higher and higher.. really competing against ourselves.  I say try..  it's not easy!
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SophiaPD

Novice Member
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Posts: 9
Reply with quote  #4 
Just wanted to express thanks to you both for the helpful advice.  [smile]
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