Are you looking for a dance studio convenient to the Gilbert, Chandler, Mesa, and Tempe Arizona area?  Finding the best local dance studio in the East Valley is easier than you’d expect.  Many of your children’s friends probably have already taken, or are currently taking, dance classes.  Where are they registered? 

If you are searching for ballet, hip-hop, or jazz classes, a quick search online can also help you find dance lessons at a local studio.  Make sure that the dance class times offered will fit well into your schedule and find out the price of the dance lessons. 

Once you’ve narrowed down your selection of dance studios, it’s usually best to observe a class before you register.  To be sure you aren’t interrupting the class, call ahead and ask when would be a convenient time for you to observe the teacher and the class that you’re interested in taking.  Usually, the teacher can speak with potential new students right before or after a class.

When you meet with the instructor, be sure to ask a few questions to determine if he or she has the proper background and approach to teach dance classes.  Ask about his or her qualifications, if they have been a professional dancer, or have a degree.  Students can be injured when dancing if not instructed properly in warm-ups, stretching, proper positioning, and the like. 

While observing a class, watch how the instructor interacts with the other students in the dance class. Good teachers will take the time to explain and demonstrate dance steps and work individually with each student.  The teacher should use positive reinforcement to ensure that their form is correct and that they are having fun. 

The type of dance floor that is in use in the dance studio is also important.  It should be a “floating” wood floor, not concrete or tile.  Also, make sure the studio is light, well ventilated, and clean.  Inspect the equipment, the ballet barre, mirrors, and take note of the sound system as it sets the stage for the dancing.  Sit back and enjoy the setting of the studio, look around at the surroundings and observe the “atmosphere” of the studio. Ensure you feel good when you’re there.

If competing is a prime objective of your dancing — check out the ability of the studio to offer choreography. Especially critical to a well-performed routine is often the movements and the transition between steps. Not all individuals are equally trained or have the creative ability to offer good choreography. 

Maureen McHale is a web marketing consultant located in Longwood, Florida.

Since 1989, Wagner Dance and Music, a performing arts school, has been teaching East Valley students. Our 3600 square foot Gilbert facility is conveniently located on the southeast corner of Gilbert and Guadalupe in the Big Lots plaza. We offer classes for ages two to adult in Ballet, Jazz, Tap, Hip-Hop, Lyrical, Tumbling, Cheer, Musical Theater and Voice as well as adult classes.  For more information or to sign up for a class, visit the East Valley dance studio website or call 480-892-7179.

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