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Phx115

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Reply with quote  #1 
As someone that hates to pay full price for anything, this just rubs me wrong. I'm curious if other studios do this. Keep in mind, this is year 3 at the studio, and costume payments were paid in November/December, so I'm tacitly accepting this. Also, a ton of money for comp fees, 3rd quarter tuition, and now SI deposit(s) is all coming due within the same few weeks' time, so I'm in that "What am I EXACTLY paying for?" time of the year.

Recital costumes are always $100 per costume. Each costume has its own order form. On each form it states that included in the costume cost is a fee toward recital expenses (theatre rental, teachers' time, etc.). Do you get charged a recital fee? Keep in mind that competition routines are also performed at the recital, and the same order forms are used for those costumes (I'd say 95% of our comp costumes come from the same costume companies that the studio gets the recital costumes). Although the quality is no better, we are usually charged a bit more for those comp costumes.

I guess ONE of the problems I have with this is that between class routines and comp routines I'm paying this "recital fee" 10 times vs the Ballet 1 dancer that is in one recital dance. I'm just not seeing the justification for that. Maybe you can explain it in a way that makes it more palatable?

Teachers' time? - Umm, isn't it assumed that teaching at a DANCE studio will require attendance at the dress rehearsal and recital, and is part of the job description? Why isn't my $1350 per quarter tuition going toward their time to be at the recital?

Like I said, this is the time of year I question EVERYTHING.

ETA: For the record I've never been a fan of recitals. I'd much prefer a classroom demonstration of what skills they've learned over the year.






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Noel

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Reply with quote  #2 
Yes, we paid a fee in addition to costumes, however it was a one time fee. One recital fee per dancer, which made sense to me. Cover the rental of the venue and staff time prepping the venue. I'd be chapped if I was charged a recital fee per routine/ class as well. Costume fees for different costumes, sure, but recital fees that stack would bug me too. 
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balletbus

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Reply with quote  #3 
We pay an annual performance fee, HOWEVER, our ballet only studio keeps a large costume wardrobe, so we don't purchase costumes, so I find this a huge savings.

When we were at a competition studio years ago, we did not pay a recital fee, just costumes.
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Rebelina

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Reply with quote  #4 
We do not have recital fees other than the costume fees. They hold our recitals at a local performing arts center so they do charge for tickets to watch the recitals. The only time we pay a participation fee is for our annual Nutcracker.
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tendumom

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Reply with quote  #5 
Yes, we paid a recital fee. It was nominal, in the $25-50 range at one studio. That one did not include any costumes, but it was a ballet studio so costumes were minimal- a skirt or tutu added to a leotard they already owned. Most years, I only had to buy them for non ballet classes.

At her second studio, I think we did pay a fee which covered everything. Costumes were owned by the studio.
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jule425

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Reply with quote  #6 
We pay a separate recital fee. Since most of the competition kids are in the solo/duet/trio show, we pay $20 extra. We do not have tickets for the recital. So for my 2 kids to dance in the recital, we pay a quite a bit even though we have no family to come watch. I think it's a catch 22 for studio owners. You have transplants like my family that have children in lots of dances, but only my husband watching. On the other hand, you have 3 year old little Natalie's parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins there to watch her 2 minutes of precious dancing. We pay equal for the main shows, but I have kids in 10 dances vs their 1. Personally, I'd love to see a lower recital fee with tickets. As I said there is no perfect way for studio owners to fund the recital. 

Costume fees are separate.
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peachygreen98

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Reply with quote  #7 
We pay a recital fee and tickets are separate.  It is outside the fee for costumes.  The recital fee is a flat fee for dancers so if you are in 1 dance or 10 you pay the same fee.  There is a family fee so if you have more than one kid in recital you are not paying the same fee for each.  
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melissa745

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Reply with quote  #8 
At the comp studio we do not pay a recital fee.

At the ballet studio, we pay a $25 fee, but we don’t have to buy a costume.
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lovemykids

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Reply with quote  #9 
We do not pay a recital fee. Just purchase the costumes and then we need to buy tickets for the show. I guess they cover the theater rental and additional teachers hours with the ticket money
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gandalf

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Reply with quote  #10 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phx115
Teachers' time? - Umm, isn't it assumed that teaching at a DANCE studio will require attendance at the dress rehearsal and recital, and is part of the job description?


If your boss came to you and said, "Umm, we pay you 40 hours a week M-F, so we just assume that you will travel 300 miles this weekend, pay for a hotel & meals, and attend this trade-show convention. Is that OK with you?"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phx115
Why isn't my $1350 per quarter tuition going toward their time to be at the recital?


Would it make you feel better if they charged $1500 per quarter, and lowered the recital-related costs?
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TinyDancerNJMom

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Reply with quote  #11 
Yes, we pay a recital fee per family, then we pay per costume, our recital fee includes one costume and two tickets to the show, if we need more than two tickets, we pay for those separately when we choose our seats and get the tickets. That's only for the spring ballet/recital.  When we do nutcracker we use company costumes and just pay the nutcracker fee per family which is a little less than the recital fee, and no costume fees since we don't keep them.

I see it both ways, if my kid is only in pre-ballet and on the stage for 3 mins total, I pay the same recital fee as someone who has three kids performing 15 roles total.  So in that way it seems like the latter is getting a better deal.  BUT she also has to pay for 15 different costumes so I would say that far outweighs the other.  If your kid is in the recital more, she is getting more of the teacher's time so I guess it makes sense that you pay more.  It seems to be the norm that studios pad their actual cost for costumes as a way to make money for the school, your school is being very upfront about it which seems cool in my book.  I still balk at all the fees we pay for dance because the only dance experience I have is the 6 years DD9 has been at this one studio, but whenever I ask around, our fees seem to stack up to less than the average in the area.

I love that our studio does recitals and ballets and includes all the dancers at the school.  All my friends were jealous that I got to see them on stage performing those first few years when their schools only did in class demonstrations.  We have a parent observation week and I like that too but being squished in the corner of the studio and watching barre and warm up and other stuff like that is informative and cool but gets old and is nothing like seeing them shine on stage.  Even if we were a competition studio and I got to see their dances in that venue too, I would still look forward to them just performing for their friends and family just for the joy of performance.
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heidi459

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Reply with quote  #12 

Quote:
Originally Posted by gandalf


If your boss came to you and said, "Umm, we pay you 40 hours a week M-F, so we just assume that you will travel 300 miles this weekend, pay for a hotel & meals, and attend this trade-show convention. Is that OK with you?"

Would it make you feel better if they charged $1500 per quarter, and lowered the recital-related costs?


This has been covered (w/you directly, in fact) many times over the yrs & so, w/all due respect, it just starts to feel like trolling. When you want people to explain the same line of reasoning every. single. time.  Successful business "owner" mentality vs. employee mentality.  And, as a customer, wanting to feel like you're not getting hosed.  That's basically all it boils down to.     

eta:  serious question though... do you honestly believe that *every* fee charged by an SO *must* be reasonable & justified simply because the SO thinks it is?  If so, do you believe that to be true of *all* fees charged by *all* businesses?  And if yes to the former but no to the latter, what makes SOs different than other business owners? 

Not trying to be snarky but you've been digging your heels in on this topic for yrs. I'm just trying to get a better feeling for why that may be. 

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Phx115

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Reply with quote  #13 
I don't have a problem with a recital fee. I just don't see the justification of paying the fee nine times over.

Food for thought as we start the annual evaluation of whether the studio is meeting daughter's needs, and if their high-priced costs are manageable.


ETA: Recital tickets aren't included in that "recital fee," which is a good thing because we'd still lose money on that one. Only my husband and DD's two grandparents come to the recital. :p


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2dornot2d

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Reply with quote  #14 
Past 2 studios we paid $75 per dancer recital fee.

Studio #1: no tickets to purchase. Everyone comes and goes. Venue was a theater where touring broadway musicals perform, but old old building. People save seats and leave during the show. At least we could bring many friends of my DDs for free.

Studio #2: Similar venue, newer & better location. Broadway musicals, and dance companies (like nutcracker & Shaping Sound) perform there. We have to buy our own ticket ($15-35) on their website. When my 2 DDs were in 3 different shows, I had to buy at least 1 ticket for each show. Then hubby and I took turns.

Way back studio when my DD15 was a rec dancer: cheap costume, at high school auditorium. We had to buy tickets ($15 I think) at a church parking lot, wait in line at a specific time. No other fees.
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TinyDancerNJMom

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Reply with quote  #15 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phx115
I don't have a problem with a recital fee. I just don't see the justification of paying the fee nine times over. Food for thought as we start the annual evaluation of whether the studio is meeting daughter's needs, and if their high-priced costs are manageable. ETA: We have to pay each recital ticket, too.


That was part of my point, if your kid is in 9 dances, aren't you getting 9 times the work and time of the teachers and staff as those whose kids are only in 1 number? Seems fair you pay more than they do.
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meatball77

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Reply with quote  #16 
I think we pay about $150 per dancer and it comes with six tickets.  We're a small studio and theater rental is expensive.
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heidi459

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Reply with quote  #17 

It 's certainly easy to see why it can be hard to swallow paying big money for something others get for a much more reasonable price.  And while it may feel better to just assume that it all comes out in the wash... that at the end of the day we're all paying essentially the same.... that is not true at all.  And having experienced the ins & outs of more than a handful of studios over all these yrs, & all in the same general area, I can say that w/confidence.  We've paid no recital fees... we've paid recital fees. We've had expensive tickets.... we've had inexpensive tickets.  We've had expensive costumes... we've had inexpensive costumes.  We've experienced performances in everything from MS/HS auditoriums to university black box theaters to professional theaters.  We've had this fee here, that fee there, this fee here, that fee there.  And the bigger fees didn't always mean bigger, brighter, shinier, more special results.  Believe me, it does not all come out in the wash.

That said, I'm loving dd's program now.  Yearly tuition.  Period.  Costumes made by the owner...  simple, beautiful tutus w/lovely leos that she sometimes embellishes.  Hand made hair pieces.  All at no extra charge.  No specific class wear... "wear what makes you feel good".  Three performances (more like showcases) held every 2 mos in the studio.  All free to the parents & the community at large.  Not a single fee to be had, ever.  We're even going to a festival in the spring that will require travel & such for the owners yet... no extra charge for the dancers whatsoever.  Because they see it as part of the overall picture instead of some extra 'favor' they need to be reimbursed for.  And sure, I agree that it's a very unique program,  smaller than small, & can't be compared to a typical large studio.  Not even fair to compare it to a more typical small studio.  But it does illustrate how studio owners do make their own choices.  And  given that, why there's absolutely nothing wrong w/expressing a bit of frustration when the truth hits you in the face.                

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heidi459

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Reply with quote  #18 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TinyDancerNJMom


That was part of my point, if your kid is in 9 dances, aren't you getting 9 times the work and time of the teachers and staff as those whose kids are only in 1 number? Seems fair you pay more than they do.

This is obviously going to depend on how the studio does things but at all the studios my dd attended this would not be the case.  Because the teachers were not working at the recital.  They "may" have been in the audience watching, only to come out for a final bow, but their work was done wks ago when classes ended.  Parent volunteers monitored the kids backstage, helping them w/costumes, shuffling them to & from the wings.  And the backstage staff,  those who handled props and such?  they were there doing their thing all day.  They had nothing to do with the kids.

eta: the only exception to that might be the teachers of the littlest ones who were often crouched down in the front of the stage to lead the kids.  But those kids were only in one recital piece anyway.     

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Phx115

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Reply with quote  #19 
Quote:
Originally Posted by heidi459

 

This is obviously going to depend on how the studio does things but at all the studios my dd attended this would not be the case.  Because the teachers were not working at the recital.  They "may" have been in the audience watching, only to come out for a final bow, but their work was done wks ago when classes ended.  Parent volunteers monitored the kids backstage, helping them w/costumes, shuffling them to & from the wings.  And the backstage staff,  those who handled props and such?  they were there doing their thing all day.  They had nothing to do with the kids.

eta: the only exception to that might be the teachers of the littlest ones who were often crouched down in the front of the stage to lead the kids.  But those kids were only in one recital piece anyway.     



This. My daughter's DTs show up for the 30 minutes all of their classes' routines are run at the dress rehearsal, and at the recital they come out for the bow. I think they text each other, drive up before the bows, and leave. The studio does a noon performance and a 6pm performance, and the bows are only after the first show. The parent volunteers do all of the work. It is not like a competition where the DTs are running dances, etc. for hours on end. 

I do try to see it in the light that my kid has more dances, but in my heart I know the high school facilities cost the same for one dance or 60 dances. The rental period is the same regardless of the number of dancers. I guess I would prefer they just charge a flat recital fee for each dancer. If they mark up costumes, well ... then if I have a problem with those costs, I just do not allow her to register for as many classes, comp routines, etc.

ETA: I do appreciate everyone's perspective. [smile]

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peachygreen98

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Reply with quote  #20 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TinyDancerNJMom


That was part of my point, if your kid is in 9 dances, aren't you getting 9 times the work and time of the teachers and staff as those whose kids are only in 1 number? Seems fair you pay more than they do.


The way I see it, is that they work of those 9 dances is done in the choreography and class fees for those 9 dances not in paying for the venue.  My daughter doesn't take up the space of 9 girls in the backstage area. Nor are there 9x's the # of people sitting in the venue to watch her.  (hypothetically because I don't have 9 dances).  

The recital fees in my opinion are to pay for the facility and the staff that has to man the facility, clean the facility etc.  It also covers the use of props, sets, stage lights, and other incidentals.  The ticket fees offset this charge but depending on where you live will not cover the entire charge.  

 

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LilMama

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Reply with quote  #21 
We’re at studio number 3 and I’ve never paid for recital. Only rental fees for stage rehearsal before comp as they don’t sell tickets at the show so we have to chip in to cover the expense.
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elastigal

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Reply with quote  #22 
No recital fee here either. Costumes are catalog and usually no more than $85. They charge for tickets which is $25/ticket and that covers the theatre rental and teacher's time. For our comp showcase, each dancer pays a portion of the rehearsal rate for the theatre where the showcase is held, this year it was $40, as we get it on a rehearsal rate the number of people who can attend is limited to 2 per dancer. 
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FantabulouslyCherry

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Reply with quote  #23 
We have a recital fee. Usually $70 and it go towards helping with venue rental and includes the price of 2 tickets.
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dncemom01

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Reply with quote  #24 
Our recital fee is $60 and we do not have tickets unless you want the first 10 rows of the theater then they are $5 each. Each recital costume is $80 and company costumes vary. My dd16 has 4 company costumes and 10 recital costumes.
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gandalf

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Reply with quote  #25 
Quote:
Originally Posted by heidi459
eta:  serious question though... do you honestly believe that *every* fee charged by an SO *must* be reasonable & justified simply because the SO thinks it is?  If so, do you believe that to be true of *all* fees charged by *all* businesses?  And if yes to the former but no to the latter, what makes SOs different than other business owners

Not trying to be snarky but you've been digging your heels in on this topic for yrs. I'm just trying to get a better feeling for why that may be. 


If you cannot answer the question above (in bold) yourself, than you and I are just miles apart on what we expect from a Dance Studio.

Cann you not seee the differeence between a Insurance Salesman, a Fast Food joing and Dance Studio?

One of them terains my DD for roughly 20 hours a week. They care for her, they feed her (emotionally), they look after her well being. My DD is not just a check-book walking in the front door. We've had Holidat dinners at the SO's house. We break bread together. She's called DH when she had Car problems. She's driven my DD home when I had car problems

For this an a 1000 other reasons our SO is vastly different than every other business I encounter. No, Heidi, I am not trolling you. I don't know if this bridge between us can every be closed.  I should just steal a line from my DH and say:  "I said Good-Day Sir" and pop my monocle back in, and walk away.  #Sad

[4f84ab77e17f64fdd6427568a983b87ae15219f4293903f993605408ec91761e] 

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