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Competition Team Information


The Inspired Arts Company's award winning competition team is an encouraging and INSPIRING environment to take your dancing to the next level! Interested in joining our competition team? Check out our competitive team handbook below to see if our program would be the right fit for you! Looking to sign up for auditions? Visit our "Company Audition" page to register for auditions! 

Competitive Team Handbook

A competitive dance team is designed for the serious dancer who is highly motivated in the performing arts. Those selected for company will need to possess the following:

  • Be self-motivated and able to self-evaluate

  • Have solid technical and performance skills

  • Strong desire to grow and develop as a dancer 

  • Have a sense of humor, bright smile, and positive attitude

  • Have respect for the team, staff, and parents

  • Show support for the studio, teachers, and fellow dancers. 


The Competition Experience: 

It is important to understand that the “competition” aspect of being a member of a Competitive Dance Team should be considered a “performance” opportunity. Competition results are strictly a subjective opinion, and each dancer’s growth should not be completely gauged by their scores or achievements at competitions. It is important to keep competition experiences positive, and most importantly, be proud of the growth and development that takes place within your dancer. It is not the size of the trophy or the color of the medal that matters; it is the recognition of the growth within themselves as human beings and dancers. Team members are not in competition with each other. Students are encouraged to strive to improve themselves and to work to their full capacity. Each dancer is uniquely different, each with their own strengths and their own weaknesses and each brings their own talent to the team as a whole. Competition is an opportunity to learn more about yourself as a performer, get feedback from professionals in the field, and connect with others in the industry. It is also an opportunity to grow closer with your teammates and form everlasting memories.  



Attendance is mandatory for all dance classes. The studio tries its best to be flexible and accommodating with conflicts due to school and/or important family activities. However, by becoming a member of a team, you have agreed that this is a priority in your schedule. Missed classes for any reason other than illness must be approved in advance. Student absences will be recorded. If more than 3 unexcused absences have occurred, it is possible the dancer may not be able to compete in the competition OR they may  be required to take some private lessons at a cost to catch up. Any time an absence occurs, students are responsible to learn what was missed before the next class, either with a private lesson, from a friend, or from videos. 

Students must arrive on time for class or earlier. Missing the first part of class causes the students to become behind on stretching and warming up, which can lead to injuries. If a student arrives later than 5 minutes past the start of class, that student will be required to sit and observe class to protect from injury. Any time a competition student sits out of dance, they will be required to take notes. More than 3 tardies may result in additional classes assigned by the competition teachers to make up for the lost time. Also, frequent tardies and absences may result in students to drop their solos, duets, or trios. Being a part of the competition team is a team effort and attendance is very important to the other dancers and the success of the team as a whole. Dance teachers do understand that they are dealing with busy children and socially active teens with many school demands; being a well-rounded individual is important, however, when it comes to participation on a competitive team, new skills are  constantly being taught…students must be present!

Activities Outside of Dance: 

We love that our students are active and driven individuals, it is usually what draws them to being members of the competition team to begin with. However, we have found recently that dancers are overcommitting to more than one activity and it is negatively impacting their participation on the competition team. When kids are over involved in multiple activities, it leads to burn out and stress, and they start to not be able to fully commit their energy to any activity because they are exhausted. We have also found that it negatively impacts attendance which then affects the team as a whole. For this reason, dancers on the competition team will not be permitted to participate in any outside activities if it affects attendance in any of their technique classes and/or competition rehearsals. We of course cannot control what dancers choose to do with their free time so if it does not affect attendance, there are no issues with them participating. If a dancer wants to continue doing multiple activities, they can always dance without committing to being a part of the competition team or choose to just compete a solo (attendance is required for all technique classes.)  We have observed that students need a recharge time and overcommitting could have a negative impact on their mental and physical health. 

Commitment for the Whole Family:

Committing to a competitive dance team is not just a commitment for the dancer but also a commitment for the whole family. Parents should be just as dedicated to the success of the team as dancers. Being a part of the team requires a certain level of flexibility. While we do our best to make sure that families have plenty of notice on any schedule changes sometimes things pop up that are beyond our control. On occasion, there may need to be additional rehearsals scheduled to help ensure that dancers are well prepared for the stage. Regular attendance from ALL team members helps to cut down on the need for these. 

Dress Code: 

Following a Dress Code in the dance studio is important for many reasons. We want to set your children up for success and following a dress code helps accomplish that! A dress code helps to eliminate distractions in the classroom, allows dancers to move properly, increases focus, improves confidence, and creates cohesiveness. If they look the part, they will act the part! 

All competition dancers are expected to show up to both classes and rehearsals in proper attire. Students will get one warning the first time they show up to class out of dress code. If they show up to class out of dress code on any other occasions, they will be asked to sit and take notes. For girls, we expect a solid colored leotard, pink or tan tights depending on the class, proper shoes, and hair neatly secured back into a bun or ponytail. Girls may also wear jazz shorts or pants except for in ballet. For boys, we expect black jazz pants or shorts and a solid colored, fitted t-shirt with proper dance shoes at all times. 


Required Classes:

Each dancer is required to take a certain set of classes based on the team they are placed on.

Team Ignite

  • 1 Ballet 

  • 1 Jazz

  • 1 Tap

  • Intermediate Company Class 

  • Elective (not mandatory)

Team Transform

  • 1 Ballet

  • 1 Jazz

  • 1 Tap

  • Intermediate Company Class 

  • Elective (not mandatory)

Team Evolve

  • 1 Ballet

  • 1 Jazz

  • 1 Tap 

  • Advanced Company Class 

  • Elective (Choose at least 1)


Team Empower

  • 1 Ballet 

  • 1 Jazz

  • 1 Tap

  • Advanced Company Class

  • Elective (Choose at least 1)


Team Dynamic

  • 1 Ballet 

  • 1 Jazz

  • 1 Tap

  • Advanced Company Class 

  • Elective (Choose at least 1)


Tap Team

  • 1 Jazz

  • 1 Tap


Hip Hop Team

  • 1 Jazz

  • 1 Hip Hop Foundations


  • Students only performing a solo must take Tap, Jazz, and Ballet. 

  • If only performing a Tap or Hip Hop solo, dancers are only required to follow the required classes for hip hop team or tap team.

  • Must also take the class style of their selected solo. For example: If you have a Hip-Hop solo you must take a Hip-Hop class. 

  • Soloists will be required to attend a half hour rehearsal once a week with other soloists and duo/trios  to regularly rehearse. This rehearsal will be $5 a month per solo. 


  • Must take Tap, Jazz, and Ballet as well as the style that you are competing in. 

  • Duos and Trios will be required to attend a half hour rehearsal once a week with other soloists and duo/trios to regularly rehearse. This rehearsal will be $5 a month per duo/trio.

Summer Classes: 

The students work so hard during the year to better improve flexibility, strength, etc… A lot can be lost during summer months. Dancers will be required to attend summer classes and those classes will be determined closer to the summer time. We like to offer different opportunities to dancers and it is impossible to know what opportunities will be available this far ahead of time. When summer classes are announced, we will let you know what is required for each age group. 

For Summer 2023, Competition team members competing in the 2023/2024 competition season will be required to complete 9 hours of summer dance. More is always encouraged but is not required. Visit our summer class page to see our offerings and register for classes! 




For competitive students who plan to compete during the 2023-2024 season – The MANDATORY choreography intensive weeks are scheduled for August 7th-11th and 14th-18th. 

For the 2024-2025 season, the MANDATORY choreography intensive weeks are scheduled for August 5th-9th and 12th-16th. 

Solo, duo, and trio choreography will not be held during the two week choreography intensive. Instead, dancer’s will sign up for a time during any week in the summer/early fall to learn their choreography. This will not be assigned so you have the freedom to pick the time that works best for you. We do not want to overwhelm the dancers with too much during those two weeks of choreography.


Financial Commitment:

Being in a program such as this requires a certain financial commitment. If you have not paid your competition bill by the time it is due, your dancer will not be able to compete any solos at that competition. Tuition must also be up to date to be able to compete. We will also take money from your fundraising account to help cover costs. If this is a recurring pattern, your child’s participation on the team may be put into question. When selecting how many dances you are comfortable with your dancer competing in, cost and time commitment need to be the leading factors. A lot of our dancer's want to participate in everything but it is sometimes beyond a families ability to financially afford. Please be realistic and do not rely on anticipated fundraising money when choosing dances. Fundraising funds can drastically fluctuate from year to year and should not be relied on. 


  • $250 (for duos and trios, cost is split)

  • Dancer's are guaranteed 5 hours of choreography. Any time required over the 5 hours will be an additional $50/hour until the dance is finished.  

  • Half is due before you are able to schedule your choreography practice, the second half is due on the first day that you come to learn choreography.


  • $90 per group dance (If you are in three groups dances it $90 x 3)

  • Due: On the first day of the Choreography Intensive Week 


  • $75 (Please note that this increase is to reflect costs associated with production props) 

  • Due: On the first day of the Choreography Intensive Week 


  • $10/month Group Rehearsal Fee (All Groups and Production) 


  • $5/month rehearsal fee per solo, duo, and trio


Competition/Convention Entry Fees 

You will be given a convention and competition schedule at the beginning of the year. Each dancer’s competition costs vary based on the size of the group performing each dance, and the number of dances the dancer is participating in. If your monthly company fees and tuition are not paid in a timely manner it could result in your dancer’s performances not being entered into the competition. 


Solos, duos, and trios are not required to compete at every competition. We will ask you at the start of the year which competitions you will be competing in to help determine your monthly payments. If you change your mind after payments have begun and add or withdraw a solo, duo, or trio from a competition, a $25 fee will be applied to account for additional administrative work it causes.  Please note: refunds are dependent on the competition refunding any already paid registration fees. We will not apply a $25 fee if the withdrawal is due to an injury or illness. 


Travel/Hotel Expenses 

Every effort is made to select competitions that will provide our dancers and their families with the best experience possible. While we try to select “local” competitions, there are some instances where a competition will require some travel and hotel expenses. These expenses are at the cost of the families. The studio does not provide compensation for such expenses. 

Required Company Jacket

Each team member is required to purchase a company jacket. This is so we can be seen and recognized at competitions as a team! 


Costume Expenses

Costume charges are additional. Competition Costumes will be charged at cost when the costumes are picked, due at the beginning of the year. Costume prices will vary from dance to dance and you may be required to buy some pieces on your own.  If you quit or are asked to leave a team, you are required to leave your costumes at the studio for another person to fill your spot. This is not negotiable. Your costume will be returned to you at the end of the season. If you do not leave your costumes, for each costume needed, your account will be charged a replacement cost. 


Dropping Out from the Team 

If a dancer drops out of a duo/trio or group dance once choreography has been started (unless for reasons beyond their control such as an injury), there will be a mandatory $500 drop fee.  This is to help cover any additional rehearsals that may be needed to replace the dancer. 



All monies collected while fundraising may be used towards competition related expenses only (excluding hotel and travel expenses.) Any funds earned will be stored for you to use when you choose. You have the option to save them up or to apply a little bit to each competition. It is your money, so you may choose what you want to do with it. However, if any competition bill is delinquent, we will withdraw the money saved in your fundraising account to help pay for that competition. There will be periodical fundraising meetings to discuss new ideas and plans. You may choose not to fundraise at any event in which case you would not receive a portion. The dancers are expected to be fully involved in the fundraising because it is for them after all. The studio director/staff is not responsible for any fundraising. It is organized by the “team parents.” Please remember that while you are fundraising you are representing The Inspired Arts Company and you are to follow everything laid out in this handbook regarding etiquette, respect, and professionalism. Fundraising for the current season is closed prior to April 15th. Any fundraisers held after this date will be applied for the next competition season. If you know that you will not be competing the following season you may not participate in fundraisers such as the recital fundraisers. Any funds leftover after you depart from the team will be donated to the scholarship fund. 

Mandatory and Optional Competitions/Conventions for the 2023/2024 Season

Competitions and dates coming soon! Please note that we will be participating in one mandatory convention, 3 mandatory regionals, and one optional solo/duo/trio competition for the 2023/2024 season. 


Competition Judging

Every competition has different criteria for judging routines. The four basic things that routines are ALWAYS judged on are: 



The reason for all those extra ballet tech and stretch/strength classes is TECHNIQUE! This includes:

  • Pointed feet

  • Turn-out 

  • Extensions 

  • Proper execution of turns 

  • Use of Plié

  • Placement of Hands 

*Technique is always at least 50% of a routine’s score, so get to those ballet classes!



How well each student knows their routine and how well they entertain the judges and audience with it.    Also, in this area, is the use of facial expression to convey the “feeling” of the routine. 



Here the teacher is judged! Choreography scores are based on appropriate choice of music and costumes, use of stage, difficulty of the routine and how well the movement in the dance relates to the music. This is often the smallest portion of the overall score. 



This pertains to costume fit, whether undergarments are showing, neatness of hair and make-up. Hats and hair pieces must be securely attached and, if performing in a group, consistently placed. Costumes will be tested BEFORE the first competition to determine if you need to pin or secure it. Our “mock-competition” will be the competition showcase. This is a non-negotiable performance for all students and all teams, including solos/duets/trios. Double check that you have the proper bra/tights/shoe for each dance. Wardrobe malfunctions can bring down a score very quickly!


Awards ceremonies are usually held a few times each day of competitions and are the MOST FUN time of the weekend! Students are required to wear their team jackets on stage for all award ceremonies that they attend. They will be required to attend all award ceremonies for the teams that they are on, but students often like to go on stage for others. It’s a really great feeling to support your friends! 


Awards are the time to:

  • Hoot and holler (parents AND dancers)

  • Take Pictures 

  • Sit back and relax. 


*The most important thing to remember about awards is that ALL scores are the opinions of 3 or 4 judges. 


“A dance competition is the way a certain set of judges view a certain set of dancers on a certain day. If we had done this competition yesterday, or if one of the judges had been someone else, chances are the results would in some way be different. It is good that we compete as dancers, because we compete every day in life. Competitions help to show us where we have been, where we are now, and where we have to aim to go in the future. But it is important to remember that the true worth of anyone, as a dancer or person, will never be measured by a trophy or cash prize.”    - Richard Disarno, Dance America-Dance Olympus



Solo Trophies are kept by the individual who earned them. 

Duo/Trio Trophies can be brought to the studio or the dancers may decided to take turns on who gets to keep the trophies. i.e. “You can take the trophy from this competition and I’ll take the one from the next competition” *Remember to always handle this situation with grace and is a good idea to make this decision prior to receiving the award. 

Group Trophies will be kept at the studio. The representative from the group who went up to accept the award is responsible for taking the trophy home from the competition and returning it to the studio. 

Cash Prizes

Any cash prize awarded at a competition for groups will go to the studio. Any cash prizes awarded for a solo will go to the soloist. Any cash prize awarded to a duo or trio will be split between those dancers. Any cash prizes awarded for choreography will go to the choreographer. 


Arriving to Competitions

All competitions dancers are REQUIRED to arrive to competition 2 hours before they are scheduled to dance. If you are scheduled to dance at the start of competition for that day, you must be there when the doors open. Dancers should come with hair and makeup already completed. Dance competitions will often try to run ahead of schedule if it all possible, therefore coming ready is extremely important. You also want to leave yourself enough time to properly warm-up and review your dances. There is no reason for any dancer to be scrambling to get ready for their first dance of the day. If a competition is running very ahead of schedule, you can expect a text to be sent from a teacher or another parent as a heads up. 

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