How To Start Your Own Dance Studio – As a new dance studio owner, the process of assembling all the necessary equipment for a dance and ballet studio is fresh in my mind. Here’s what every dance studio needs:
1) Marley or other vinyl floor covering It is the preferred dance surface for ballet, modern/jazz and tap instruction There are many manufacturers of vinyl dance floor products Comes in rolls about 5-6′ wide up to about 100′ long Marley is usually rolled over a hardwood floor and “floats” on the floor, with no glue other than special vinyl tape applied to the seams and edges. Since the marley is not permanently attached to the ground, it can be rolled up if required for display elsewhere One important thing is that ballet dancers can’t use rosin on Marley – rosin damages the vinyl surface and is difficult to remove.
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2) Sound system for Bluetooth connection to CD and/or iPhone/Android device. It is important to have a sound system with a remote control so the instructor can easily repeat sections of the music as needed.
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3) Barrage on wall or freestanding Please see the Barrage Construction section below for more detailed information
4) Wall mirror Mirrors should be installed on at least one wall (preferably two adjacent walls). They should be as close to the floor as possible, but young dancers can also see their feet from anywhere in the studio as long as the mirror is less than 15 inches from the floor. The top of the mirror should be at least 6′ off the floor
5) A small table for instructor’s notebooks or other instructional materials may also be used for the sound system.
The most important piece of equipment in ballet school is the barrette There are many bale barrages available commercially, but in the end we decided to make our own barrage for the following reasons:
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7) Commercially available braces are expensive Typically, a professional-grade 12′ bar costs between $400-$1000 for a free standing model and $300-$600 for a wall-mounted version.
8) Our experience with commercially available free standing braces is that even the highest quality models fail at contact points.
9) We wanted a barrage that was completely rock solid and would last for many years We believe that most commercial free-standing barges are too light and “weak”.
10) We wanted a barre system that was flexible enough to meet the scheduling needs of our school’s many age-group ballet classes and modern, jazz, and tap classes.
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To give our school maximum flexibility in our class schedule, we decided to build two free standing 12 foot barges for our two dance studios. We chose free standing barres so that we could (1) have dancers on either side of the barre and (2) orient the barre as one 24′ span or two parallel 12′ spans. Since (unlike commercial barges) we didn’t need to dismantle the barge for transport, we decided to eliminate the joints (and therefore the possibility of joint failure) by welding the joints together using steel tubes.
– Piping material is Schedule 40 1 ½ inch steel black pipe The outside diameter of this pipe is 1.9″ Use of 1.9″ diameter tube (a) makes welds stronger and (b) very comfortable to hold.
– Barre’s legs are an inverted “T” and the “feet” (ie flat on the floor of the leg) is 2′ long.
– Legs extend 18″ on both sides of the top of the bar This allows the bar to move easily
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– Decided to weld a lower barre between the legs at 32″ for our younger dancers.
Schedule 40 pipe is available from most steel suppliers (search for “Steel Pipe City Name”). Pipe comes in 21′ lengths and steel vendors typically make one cut for each pipe. I cut the pipes into 12′ and 9′ lengths to minimize waste.
Our welder had no problem making the barrage Complete de-boring of all exposed ends is included in the fabrication The result is a smooth, rounded tip that doesn’t require an end cap of any kind
After completing our welder barrage I purchased rubber feet (1.5″ diameter and 1″ thick) and bolted to the ends of the barrage “feet”. It worked well in our studio without damaging Marley
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To finish the barrage, I first sanded the surfaces with 180 grit sandpaper to smooth the horizontal grip surfaces and prepare them for painting. Then I spray painted the textured black Three coats created a beautiful finish similar to powder coating at a fraction of the cost
A dancer’s response to barrage is always excellent Although heavy (they weigh 60 pounds each) the two young dancers have no problem moving them to the center and backing up against the wall when necessary. We had no problems as the bars were a fixed height
The total cost of 4 barrels is about $450 in materials and $400 for welding services, $850 or $212 per barrel. you are dancing You can ignore the scratch to learn more; For the past three years you’ve been secretly planning the subject of your first lesson—in fact, you’ve been eagerly planning to open your own studio. Your passion for dance and desire to pass on such a beloved art form is a driving force for running a studio, but they are by no means sufficient to make it a success. Owning a studio is a commercial venture that requires capital, business acumen and an often overlooked attention to detail. Here are six risk mitigation strategies to make studio ownership easier
The best way to learn about running a studio business is to work in one, preferably in different roles or jobs and in cycles throughout the year. You will learn from different bosses with different customer and market profiles (Professional courtesy, however, means your ultimate studio exists in another area.) You’ll notice the ups and downs of running this type of business—the unique problems and how they’re solved, how the money flows. Business To provide this experiential context, take advantage of the resources of your state and city to educate yourself on business fundamentals. Mentor yourself through a program like SCORE, a nonprofit business-to-business mentoring association At Scor.org, you’ll also find business tips, in-person or email consultations, listings of local (free) workshops for small business owners, and webinars. Above all, be comfortable with business finance and marketing
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Even before owning your own studio, you can follow a student by offering a built-in client for the first year as a studio owner. Offer your dance tutoring services at local dance school programs, gyms and churches
Denise Schindler, owner of Blanchard Dance Center in Kenner, Louisiana, first offered dance classes at a local day care center, which was as painless as possible for the owner. “I told him I would send the registration form and the students would pay me directly,” says Schindler. “I said the children should not be boys or girls – they do not have to be turned into leopards. And I traveled to school to teach After two years, many of Schindler’s students were ready to leave daycare but still wanted to take dance classes with her, and a studio with guaranteed enrollment was born.
A formal business plan is an important reality check to balance your passion for your business idea Do market research on your potential customers (the free widget, SizeU, at sba.gov/sizeup can help), and test different prices for classes based on variable classes and potential enrollment. Calculate all your costs, including marketing, website design and maintenance, signage, studio-managed software, equipment and insurance policies. Once you’ve started, you’ll need to adapt this business plan frequently, but the startup plan should have a blueprint of how you’re going to make money. A great resource is sba.gov, where you can find a business, related blogs, and a 10-step guide to local advice, guidance, and training.
Studio space is probably the biggest expense you will face If you buy or lease your space, you’ll need to pay a monthly mortgage or lease payment, and you’ll need to invest in a build-out to fit the space to your needs. Then there are the extensive utility and maintenance bills At least consider renting an alternate space for classes As long as your use is professional and your course is legal, a Legion Hall or Foreign War Hall is a great place for veterans weekly dance classes. Renting during slow rental time slots will usually get you a cheaper rate
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Or consider adapting your garage or basement
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