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How to deal with dance politics

15 Nov 2015 11:25 PMLauren Nairne
How to deal with dance politics

I know it may seem hard to believe and I know that some people may not believe me; Dance studio politics is EVERYWHERE!  Every studio, every school, every gym club and every social class deals with politics in one-way or another.  Even the nicest, happiest and most non-competitive studios deal with it… 

Politics comes in all shapes and sizes.  It could be issues with other schools/studios, issues with teachers/dancers from other schools, issues between competitors from the same school or rival schools or unfortunately it may even be an issue at your own studio. 

Whether you deal with these issues on a daily basis or only a few times a year at competitions it’s often hurtful, saddening and upsetting for kids and parents. 

What ever you are dealing with there are ways to handle it that will help you sleep easier at night.



Drop & Go

Don’t hang around! If your child is old enough to tie their shoe laces and go to the bathroom unassisted then it should be very possible for you to leave them at dancing for their 1hr class and pop to the shops to pick up dinner.  This will help in 2 big ways.

#1 – You are simply not around to get involved in conversations that may lead to issues with other parents and/or teachers.

#2 – Who wouldn’t want an extra hour in their day…. Gosh I need an extra 3 hours haha. 


If you don’t feel like you are able to leave your child in the care of his/her teacher, perhaps you are at the wrong school


Email or Phone … it’s easier!

If you need to talk to the teacher, pay bills, enquire about comps or exams; pick up the phone or send an email rather than walking into their class.  I can say with 100% certainty that not only will you get a more focused answer but your teacher will be grateful that her afternoon of teaching wasn’t interrupted with your questions.  Making him/her less frustrated with you… that’s a win!


Kill Them With Kindness

There is an old saying my friend reminds me of often: ‘love your enemy - it will drive them crazy’.  Remember to be humble, friendly, professional & co-operative at every eisteddfod, concert, exam, class and workshop.  This is relevant for dancers (obviously) but also for parents too.  You never know who is watching, who is observing you and your dancer and what job they might be able to give your child later in their career. 


If you walk away from a situation knowing that you dealt with it calmly, professionally and with a friendly attitude then one would hope that the other parties involved would move on or simply get over it! 


Ignore It

I know this option isn’t always possible and I know it’s hard for you and for your dancer to simply ignore issues that may arise.  However, sometimes when all else fails try try try to not let it worry you.  And never let it effect your dancing or the passion you have for dance & competition.  Out of sight, out of mind. 



Why do you love dance?  Why do you love having your kid/s in dance?  I’ll guarantee it’s not because you enjoy dealing with dance school BS.  When problems arise or issues occur try to remember why you are there in the first place.  Why you and/or your dancer love dance and competition and the happiness that it brings.  Nothing should change that and nobody should make you or your dancer/s feel otherwise.