Wednesday, August 31, 2011

SOBuzz: Getting Ready for Fall... Painting!

For a studio owner, getting ready for fall classes means a lot of things... piles of paperwork, phone calls and emails to return, attendance sheets and class signs to prepare.  For me, it also always means painting the studio! It seems like every year I end up painting one or more of the rooms.

Maybe it's just me, but I get very anxious when selecting a new color to paint the studio. Perhaps it's because I will be spending the next two or three years (if the paint is good) staring at the wall color, who knows?  Although I do fine choreographing formations, I'm not a very good visualizer of the end product.  I need something more.  I used to get a bunch of little samples, tape them to the wall and deliberate for a week, asking everyone who walked by whether "summer white" looked nicer than "classic beige".

But wait, there's a solution!

My favorite tool to use before painting is Sherwin William's "Color Visualizer" tool.  You can upload a picture of any room and "paint" using their colors.

Now I can digitally "paint" my rooms and change them around as much as I like before purchasing paint!  Hooray!

If you are still having trouble choosing a color or narrowing your choices consider the following:

Monday, August 29, 2011

Review: Tempo Magic App

I was so excited to try out my new Tempo Magic Pro app last week at our dance intensive tap classes (see previous post here).  I will admit that every time I see it on my iPhone screen I cannot resist the urge to say "tempo MAGIC" while wiggling my jazz hands with a magician-like flair.  Try it with me now... tempo MAAAAGIC!


Moving on.

The app is pretty straight forward.  The first thing you have to do is add the songs you want to slow down.  Tap the playlist button.

Link Love: Great Teaching Ideas!

Times Union
Hurricane / Tropical Storm Irene went through my area in upstate New York, but luckily power was all we lost yesterday.  Many places in my area are flooded, but we just had a few downed branches and trees. The creek by one of my studio locations overflowed and closed the road and parking lot, but didn't get close to the building.  I am so thankful for all of the workers who were out yesterday repairing the power lines and keeping people safe from flooded roadways.  Hope all my readers are also safe after the storm.

Now that the power is back on, I have been catching up on some dance blog reading.  There are some really great teaching ideas I can't wait to use in my classes in the fall and share with my teachers.

Happy reading!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Tempo-Changing App!

Just read Morris Partee's post over at Dance Advantage on this awesome new app for changing the tempo of your music:  Tempo Magic Pro

This app allows you to adjust your song tempos on your iPhone or iPod touch.  As a tap teacher, I am so excited about using this app in class!  Our sound system currently has tempo-changing CD players, so I used to burn my music to a CD and then use the CD player to playback with different tempos.  I am hoping this app will change my life.. hah!  I am teaching this week at our summer camp intensive, so I will report back with results. to go play with my iPhone now!

If you're also an iPhone addict, you might also like to check out this post on two free iPhone apps that I use as a dance teacher.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Theme Playlist: "Circus"

Fill your show with death-defying dances inspired by the big top!  This post was inspired by the SYTYCD routine by Tyce Diorio "The Circus Sets Up" (music from Water for Elephants soundtrack)

Welcome To The Big Top!
Charmed I'm Sure - Circus Contraption Charmed, I'm Sure - Grand American Traveling Dime Museum - very dark and scary - definitely for mature dancers
At The Circus - Dance A Story - Richard Maddock 
Happy Boys and Happy Girls - Aqua Happy Boys and Girls - Aquarium- a cute young jazz or hip hop
Glitter In The Air - Pink Glitter In the Air - Funhouse (Deluxe Version)- slower lyrical song

Animals & Performers
Animal Crackers - my favorite version is Joanie Bartels Animal Crackers In My Soup - Sillytime Magic
Talk To The Animals - The Broadway Kids Buy From Amazon

Lion Tamer - Sylvia - Prelude: The Huntress Sylvia, Ballet Suite: I. Prelude: The Huntresses - Delibes: The Best of French Ballet
Ponies - any sort of prancing ballet music

Treats Under The Big Top
Popcorn - Crazy Frog Popcorn - Crazy Hits
Cotton Candy - Melany Cotton Candy - Kidstuff By Melany- great for Kindegarten age
Circus - Britney SpearsCircus - Circus (Deluxe Version)

Clowning Around
Make 'Em Laugh Make 'Em Laugh - Singin' In the Rain (Soundtrack from the Motion Picture)
Send In The ClownsSend In the Clowns - The Very Best of Judy Collins
Tears of a ClownTears of a Clown - All Time Greatest Hits
Rodeo Clowns - Jack Johnson Rodeo Clowns - On and On - a nice soft-shoe style tap song

Death-Defying Feats!
Tightrope - Janelle Monae Tightrope - Friends With Benefits (Original Soundtrack)- upbeat jazz or tap
Tightrope or Acrobats - Into The Spin - Dessa Into the Spin - A Badly Broken Code - the strings remind me of a tightrope
Acrobats - Tea Party - Kerli -Tea Party - Almost Alice (Music Inspired By the Motion Picture) great jazz or acro number
Sword Swallowers - Steel Dreams - Cirque du Soleil Steel Dream - Quidam (Soundtrack)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Marketing for New Season

I can't believe that our studio's opening day is less than four weeks away!  Our last summer intensive starts this Monday and then we have a break before starting up in September.

This is a list of what I do to market my studio, including the failed ad attempts - hopefully it will help someone!

FREE - The best advertising is free in my opinion!
  • Internet Presence:  Make sure your studio shows up when you search "dance near ZIP CODE" on Google! Update or add your studio to Google Places, Bing, Yahoo, etc.  Check out this post for a way to see if your business is visible.
  • Facebook:  If you don't have a Facebook page yet, get one!  Post on your studio's facebook wall at least once a week if not multiple times.  For extra credit, mix up your posts between photos, videos and regular "Classes start soon - not too late to register!"
  • Twitter:  If you have a large Twitter following, that may be the way to go.
  • Email:  Keep an email list of everyone who has ever asked for information for classes.  Send email blasts once a month or so.
  • Demo Classes: Offer free demonstration classes and see if you can get them listed in local community calendars or websites.
Continued after the jump...

Monday, August 15, 2011

2011 Song Selections

Just wanted to jot down my song list from this past year for posterity!  (Or so I can look it up at a later time when I can't remember what that song was I used way back when...)

All links open in iTunes, unless otherwise noted

And my favorite dance for the year:

Friday, August 12, 2011

Just Married...

Please excuse the brief hiatus... I was off tying the knot!

Now it is "back to reality"... dance school opens in four weeks - look for many new posts for fall!
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