General Competition Information

Welcome to our general information page about competitions. Whether you’re a first time dancer or an old veteran, please read through everything.

Have a question we haven’t addressed? Please ask! You are probably asking a question other people are wondering but might be too shy to ask. It might seem like a lot of rules and expectations, but it isn’t that scary, this is honestly the part of the year that all of our students and teachers look forward to every year.

General Festival Information

Please arrive on time. At our out of town competitions this is 1.5-2 hours ahead of your scheduled dance time. At our home competition, an hour is sufficient. Normally, we do a backstage rehearsal shortly before students perform, if you miss it because you are running late, you will not be permitted to go on the stage. Please allow for traffic and weather. There is nothing more disappointing than arriving just as your group is about to perform and you do not get to go on stage with them.

All competitions charge an entrance fee at the door, and vary from place to place. Have some cash on hand.

Many places have Competition gear available for purchase.

Leave your valuables (jewelry, electronics, etc) with your parents, and not in your costume bags. Expensive clothing is also better left at home, in your vehicle or at the hotel. Sometimes things go missing, please use your discretion.

Remove all nail polish (fingers definitely, toes if you have bare toes at all in your dance). No earrings, unless they are small studs. Piercings that cannot be removed must be covered with a bandaid, as well as tattoos.

Absolutely no underwear under costumes, that what your tights are for. Exception to this is hip hop only students.

Some of our competitions have assigned change rooms, some are open for all, your teacher and dance friends will be able to direct you to the right place when you arrive.

Do NOT use the public bathrooms as changerooms. These are for the public, and can get us disqualified.

We have an amazing group of parents and students that can help you out if you are unsure of the hair or makeup. Please ask them to help you out if you need it (and festival veterans, please make sure to help out the newbies, we all remember how overwhelming our first couple of competitions were). Your teacher will most likely not be able to help you, as they are usually very busy at competitions.

When you get to the venue, please locate your teacher and let them know you are there. If there is enough time, they will let you know if you have time to watch or if they would like you to go to the practice room. It is highly encouraged that our students go and watch and cheer for all other studios, it’s always fun to watch and see other dancers and dances. Students that have time to watch, please make sure you have a full zip hoodie or something to wear over their costume in the audience that is easy to take off without wrecking their hair. Costumes can be incredibly distracting in the audience for everyone (performers, judges, other audience members), please cover up in the theatre.

Tap shoes are only permitted backstage, they are not permitted in the rehearsal hall or the hallways, students must carry them with them until they go backstage.

Once students go into the rehearsal hall, parents are allowed to go to the theatre or wait in the lobby. Parents are not permitted in the practice hall. This allows time for your teacher to go over any last minute instructions and get students focused for their upcoming performance. Students will remain with their teacher until after the medal awards after their category. After the awards, students may go with their parents and you can go home or stick around to cheer on the other dancers.

All students will require the same makeup, tights without snags or holes, and clean wrinkle free costumes. Hair must be neat and tidy, with all flyaways glued down with gel and/or hairspray. All students must have the same footwear as required by the choreographers and the dress code. Part of our mark is based on presentation and grooming, not to mention it is distracting when students do not have the same costume elements as the rest of the group.

General etiquette

Please do not enter or leave the theatre during performances, please wait until the performance on stage is finished before entering or exiting. It is extremely distracting to the dancers on the stage when the doors open and shut and people are moving around the theatre.

Please turn your ringers off in the theatre.

Keep small children seated and quiet.

There is absolutely no photos or videos permitted in the theatre!! This can get us disqualified. If you want to take photos, please do so in the lobby. Please do not think you are fooling anyone by being sneaky about it, there is nothing more embarrassing for your teachers when the festival/competition coordinators mention that your parents aren’t following the rules. We know you are excited to show your friends and family members how your children are doing, please save all your video taking for the year end recital. Some of our competitions do have an official photographer in the audience, you are more than welcome to purchase photos (and sometimes videos), but it is not mandatory.

No one is allowed to approach the judges at any time. The judges decisions are final, and discussing this with the judge will get us disqualified.

Please do not get too caught up in the medals. This is one (or two, or three) personal opinion(s) on one particular day, so please remember that when we don’t necessarily agree with the medal standing. We’ve all seen the dances that we would personally give a higher or lower medal to, it is one person’s opinion. Part of the fun of competitions is the performance and all the fun things that go along with it (like costumes, the energy, and according to a lot of the students, the hotels and swimming pools), and just having a good time with our dance team. It’s the best time of the year in dance land.

Sometimes we have experiences with other studios that are not pleasant, if this happens, please let your teacher know right away so she can discuss it with their teacher. Please remember to be respectful at all times, and if we need to vent about things that happen at festival, please save it for when we get home.

Please remember that you are representing our studio and town, and we ask that you show everyone what a wonderful dance family we have and be polite and courteous to everyone, regardless of which studio they dance for. Dance events are great places to meet friends from other towns and cities, and it’s a lot of fun to see our friends from year to year. It’s going to be a great competition season!

Competition bag checklist

Hair things/makeup:

– bobby pins

– hair spray/gel

– combs/brushes

-hair nets, hair pieces

-straightener, curling irons, etc

-studio makeup (everyone needs the same colours, the list is

-face gems (Miss Maria will be bringing them to the first competition, not applicable to hip hoppers), they’re glued on with eyelash glue


-costumes (yes, this is obvious, but it has happened)

-beige, clear strapped bras (absolutely no bra straps showing on stage), pin all straps under costumes!

– accessories (hair pieces, gloves, arm bands, etc) (if you lose them, you might not be permitted on stage, and you will be responsible for creating a reasonable copy)

-tights (a brand new pair and a backup is not a bad idea, snags happen, usually right out of the package at competitions)

-correct footwear (jazz shoes, ballet shoes (absolutely no canvas ballet shoes), foot undies, Converse running shoes, tap shoes)


-safety pins

– extra tights

-water bottles (no energy drinks or pop or anything that may stain costumes)

-feminine products


-nail polish remover

-any other things you think may come in handy