School of Performing Arts Commot

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Contact details…
   Address:   Shop 16, Mount Annan Shopping Village
              2 – 4 Main Street Mount Annan
              NSW 2567

   Phone:     Ben Stokes – Director
                                                      School of Performing Arts
              0402 119 073



                                                           Shop 16, Mount Annan Shopping Village
                                                               2 – 4 Main Street, Mount Annan
                                                                     Director: Ben Stokes
                                                                       Ph. 0402 119 073
Welcome to Commotion!
Commotion School of Performing Arts was founded by Ben Stokes in 2002. Ben
wanted to open a unique studio that was parent friendly and which provided a            We have over 80 classes per week on our 2009 timetable, in a variety of styles.
relaxed yet professional approach to performing arts.                                   We cater to all ages and abilities, from beginner to advanced. The various
                                                                                        classes we have on offer include… Jazz, Hip Hop, Tap, Modern
Commotion aims to offer high quality performing arts education at a minimal
                                                                                        Expressive/Lyrical, Ballet, Stretch and Strengthening, Acrobatics/Tumbling,
cost to parents. Our policy includes low fees, inexpensive costume hire, flexible
                                                                                        Glenn Wood Tap, Singing, Acting/Drama, Musical Theatre, Boys-Only Hip Hop,
dress code and convenience of location. While remaining affordable and
                                                                                        Fitness Boot Camp, Private Lessons and Performance Troupes (audition only).
hassle-free, Commotion School of Performing Arts provides quality teaching
                                                                                        We also have a range of classes for adults including Adult’s Hip Hop/Funk and
with an emphasis on performance professionalism. "Dancing without the fuss."
                                                                                        Fitness Boot Camp. Here is a breakdown of the classes we offer, and what to
Our aim is to provide a safe, educational and recreational environment for all          expect from each class:
ages, with high-energy fun classes taught by experienced teachers in a friendly
and encouraging atmosphere.                                                             TINY TOTS DANCE
                                                                                        Available… to all students aged 2.5 to 3
Operating out of our fully-equipped studio premises in Mount Annan,
                                                                                        Requirements… black Jazz shoes
Commotion School of Performing Arts offers a huge range of classes catering
for students of all ages and abilities. Our 2009 timetable has over 80 classes          This class is designed to introduce the students to dancing. Starting with the
per week including Jazz, Hip Hop, Tap, Ballet, Modern Expressive/Lyrical,               very basics and working through a large repertoire of steps and movements, we
Contemporary, Musical Theatre, Fitness, Stretch, Acrobatics, Singing, Acting &          focus on co-ordination, musicality, memory skills and most of all… fun! Students
Drama and more.                                                                         will mostly be developing their Jazz skills, but will also be introduced to basic
                                                                                        Ballet and Tap movements throughout the year.
Commotion School of Performing Arts, although only 7 years old, has fast
become one of Sydney's most reputable dance and performing arts schools.
                                                                                        FAIRY BALLET
Our students have competed in numerous elite competitions at which we have
                                                                                        Available… to all students aged 4 to 5
been very successful. In January 2009, 50 Commotion students travelled up to
                                                                                        Requirements… a fairy dress and a wand (these can be purchased from our
Queensland to perform at the Showcase National Dance Championships,
                                                                                        front desk – or sourced from home) – Ballet shoes are optional, otherwise bare
representing NSW against top studios from all over Australia.
Whether you do one class a week just for fun & fitness, or you train for many
                                                                                        This very special class is all about being fairies. The students dressed each
hours a week in our Advanced Dancer Development Program, Commotion
                                                                                        week in fairy dresses with wings and wands will be led by their teacher, also
School of Performing Arts is the place to be.
                                                                                        dressed in fairy wings. The students will take a magical journey of the
There's a class for everyone at Commotion!                                              imagination as they are introduced to fundamental Ballet techniques including
                                                                                        Tendus, Plies, Port de bra and Sautés. Dancing to popular music that students
Inside this handbook…                                                                   of this age group can enjoy, the fairies have so much fun each week whilst
       Classes ………………………… ……….. page 2                                                 learning all about Ballet.
       Fees & Payments ……………………… 8
       Policies & Guidelines ………………… 9                                           PRE-JUNIOR JAZZ/HIP HOP
       Timetable ………………………………….page 12                                                 Available… to all students aged 4 to 5
       The Benefits of Dance ………………….page 13                                           Requirements… black Jazz shoes
       Troupe.. ……………………………………page 15                                                  Mixing important Jazz technique with funky Hip Hop choreography this class
       The Concert ………………………………page 17                                                 offers young students the best of both worlds. Starting with a warm up and
       The Benefits of Drama & Acting ………page 18                                       stretch, the students then work on some technical progressions down the room
       Helpful Hints 19                 (what we call corner-work), then return to the centre to learn some fresh
       Class Placement …………………………page 21                                               choreography. The students develop a large range of skills including the art of
       F.A.Q. …………………………………… 22                                                 performance. This fun class is ideal for everyone and is guaranteed to put a
       Contact Information …………………….page 25                                        1   smile on any kids face.                                                         2
PRE-JUNIOR MUSIC/THEATRE                                                              BALLET
Available…to all students ages 4 to 5                                                 Available… to all students aged 4 to 20.
                                                                                      Requirements… pink Ballet shoes or foot-thongs
This fun class introduces young students to Music, Singing, Dance, Drama and
Acting. In this class, your child will learn new songs, poems and dances. They        Many people say Ballet is the foundation of all other styles of modern dance.
will also play Drama games and explore all areas of the Performing Arts               Ballet is all about grace, strength and control. The techniques learnt in Ballet
through play. Students will have enjoy learning and developing confidence and         class are essential for all dancers, even if your specialty is Hip Hop. Those that
building self-esteem while playing role-play games, using puppets, dressing up        do Ballet will see improvement in all their other classes too. This year we have
in characters and pretending to be pop stars.                                         separated Ballet and Lyrical, so that our students can fully develop the
                                                                                      necessary technique to take their dancing to a greater level. Ballet is where
JAZZ                                                                                  students learn about the discipline of dance and focus on developing and
Available… to all students aged 4 to 20.                                              strengthening their technique.
Requirements… soft black Jazz shoes (not Jazz Sneakers)
                                                                                      We will be working with our own unique syllabus, which incorporates the best of
The most popular of all of our classes, Jazz is the class where students can          R.A.D, B.A.L and Checcetti. Commotion Ballet is fun and user-friendly. We use
really develop the widest range of skills. We start with an extensive warm-up         music from the pop charts, we avoid the out-dated old-fashioned exercises and
and stretch, then do some corner work (ie. Kicks, Leaps, Spins etc.) We then          we focus on developing the techniques and skills that are most relevant to
return into the centre to learn some choreography. Each week students learn           modern dancers.
new combinations, this helps them develop the ability to quickly pick up new
choreography and introduces them to a large variety of movements and steps.
It also adds variety to the class, making it more fun and exciting. Most weeks,
                                                                                      Available… to all students aged 6 to 20.
the students will break into groups to perform the choreography for each other,
                                                                                      Requirements… foot-thongs or bare feet
helping to develop performance skills and confidence.
                                                                                      ***Students must do Ballet to be eligible to take this class
TAP                                                                                   Lyrical is a relatively new style of dance, which is a cross between Modern
Available… to all students aged 4 to 20.                                              Expressive and Modern Contemporary. Lyrical takes the techniques learnt from
Requirements… black lace-up Tap shoes                                                 Classical Ballet and puts them into context with modern music. Students dance
Tap dancing is all about rhythm and co-ordination. In this class students work        to ballads from the current charts.
on various Tap techniques including everything from shuffles to double pick-ups       Lyrical dance is about expressing emotion and portraying meaning or story
and wings. Each class at every level will be introduced to at least one brand         through dance. It’s about breaking down the structure and rules of Ballet and
new tap step or combination every week. Students are introduced to a variety of       exploring new movement and feeling. Lyrical can not be categorised into a box
tap styles including Traditional Tap, Broadway Tap, Street Tap and Stomp Tap.         – it is an open dance style with endless possibilities and creative freedom.
Available… to all students aged 6 to 20.                                              SINGING
Requirements… Hip Hop sneakers, sandshoes or “chucks”                                 Available… to all students aged 6 to 20.
                                                                                      Requirements… plastic sleeve folder for lyrics and notes
Hip Hop is the most fun of all the dance styles, and the most modern. Students
will develop isolation techniques and classic Hip Hop skills. Most of the time in     Commotion School of Performing Arts offers group Singing lessons under the
class will be spent learning new choreography and developing performance              direction of our wonderful Singing teacher Hanna Hyeronimus. Students will
skills. At Commotion we always use inoffensive music and keep the movements           learn various techniques and styles from Musical Theatre to Pop. Other topics
appropriate for the age group.                                                        in the course include scales, pitch control, microphone skills, performance
                                                                                      techniques, breathing exercises, projection and harmonies.
Commotion specialises in Hip Hop for children, and we are proud to provide up-
to-date relevant moves and innovative choreography. We were recently                  Our Singing classes are kept to a small size so that each student gets individual
crowned the National Champions of Hip Hop for all age groups under 15 at the          attention. Over the year the class will build a repertoire of songs to perform.
Showcase National Championships.                                                      Many students will get the opportunity for small solo parts within some of the
                                                                                  3                                                                                   4
DRAMA/ACTING                                                                          DANCER’S BOOT CAMP
Available… to all students aged 6 to 20.                                              Available… to all students aged 8 to 18.
Requirements… plastic sleeve folder for scripts and notes.                            Requirements… sneakers, sandshoes or gym shoes.
Our Drama/Acting classes are fun and challenging. Under the direction of our          Another new concept for 2009, this revolutionary class will benefit all dancers.
Performing Arts Co-ordinator Marlee Hyeronimus, the Drama/Acting students             Under the guidance and direction of Tony Wrightson, a fully qualified personal
will learn a range of theatre and acting skills. Some of the topics covered are       fitness trainer and Director of the Wollongong Fitness Boot Camp, the students
Improvisation, Drama Games, Shakespeare, Various Theatre styles, Physical             of this class will work on strength, flexibility, balance, core muscle development,
Performance, Acting for Screen & TV, Scriptwriting and Play building, Speech          stamina, aerobic conditioning and cardio fitness. Designed to help prepare the
patterns and Accents, Projection, Monologues, Character work and more.                body for the diverse physical demands of a dancer, this class is not about losing
                                                                                      weight, or getting buff (although these things may happen), but actually about
All of our Drama classes are kept to a small size to ensure plenty of individual
                                                                                      improving your dancing abilities.
attention for all students. Over the year, the class will learn several plays and
scripts as a group, in pairs and also individual monologues. To see the many          Carefully constructed so as not to put too much pressure on the delicate
benefits of studying Drama and Acting refer to page 22 of this document.              developing bodies of our young students, the class is constructed in a way that
                                                                                      allows each student to work within their own limits.
MUSICAL THEATRE                                                                       You will break a sweat, and will escape your comfort zone, but you will LOVE
Available… to all students aged 10 to 18.                                             the results of this class. Guaranteed to leave you feeling happy and with a
Requirements… plastic sleeve folder for lyrics, scripts and notes.                    positive feeling of accomplishment, try this class today!
Musical Theatre is where Dance, Singing and Drama meet. In this class
                                                                                      TECHNIQUE TRAINING CLASS
students will learn a range routines and songs from Broadway Musicals. This
                                                                                      Available… to all students aged 9 to 20.
class is heaps of fun and will prepare students for a career in Musicals. Under
the direction of our Performing Arts Co-ordinator Marlee Hyeronimus, students         Compulsory for Troupe students, but also open to all other students, this class
will enjoy exploring the exciting world of Musical Theatre, working on character,     focuses on developing strong Jazz and Ballet technique to help dancers
musicality, performance techniques and stage presence. The students will also         improve in all styles. Students will master essential dance skills including
learn about the audition process and what its like to develop and rehearse a          pirouettes, fuettes, jump-splits and more, as well as working on strength and
Broadway Musical.                                                                     flexibility. Under expert instruction with individual attention for each student, the
                                                                                      class will also learn motivation techniques and guidance in goal setting.
$2 BONUS CLASS                                                                        At the end of each year, the students will under-go a mock exam process and
Available… to all students aged 6 to 11.                                              will be assessed by the teacher. Every student will receive an individual report
Requirements… Black Jazz shoes or Joggers                                             outlining their strengths and areas to improve on. They will also receive a
This brand new class is open to all students who are enrolled in at least one         certificate stating that they have completed one year of the Commotion
other class at Commotion. Each week the class will be taught by a different           Technique Training Program.
Senior Assistant Teacher. Each teacher will have undergone some teacher
                                                                                      BOYS HIP HOP CLASS
training with Ben, and will be at least 15 years of age. Sometimes the class will
                                                                                      Available… to all students aged 7 to 12.
be co-taught by two Senior Assistant Teachers. The style will vary between
                                                                                      Requirements… you must be a boy!
Jazz and Hip Hop, depending on the teacher. This is a really fun opportunity for
students to be exposed to various styles of choreography and develop their            Boys only! This class provides an opportunity for the guys to work on their
skills. The Seniors of Commotion have a lot of experience and great knowledge         dance skills in a safe, comfortable environment – free from judgement and
to pass on to their students and they develop their teaching skills.                  criticism. Focusing on a more masculine style of Hip Hop and utilising strength
                                                                                      and attack, the Boys Hip Hop class is carefully designed to suit the needs of
This class is an open class, which means that you only pay for the lessons that
                                                                                      young male dancers from Beginners to Advanced. There is an exclusive reward
you turn up for – you can choose when you want to do this class. Your $2
                                                                                      system used in this to help motivate and inspire a love of dance. In addition to
should be paid directly to the teacher at the beginning of each class. No-one will
                                                                                      Hip Hop skills techniques and choreography, students will also learn dance
know which teacher will be teaching next until the class begins… it’s a surprise.
                                                                                      tricks and will be introduced to some basic Break-dance moves.
                                                                                  5                                                                                    6
Available… to all students aged 6 to 20.                                                Fees & Payment…

                                                                                        Classes at Commotion won’t cost you
Our new Acrobatics program for 2009 features a brand new teacher, and will
                                                                                        an arm and a leg. In fact, even though
focus on a wider range of skills – everything from cartwheels, round-offs,
                                                                                        Commotion School of Performing Arts
walkovers, buranis, handstands, dive rolls, front flips, back flips, partner lifts,
                                                                                        has a reputation as one of the best
layouts and more. Over the year - there will also be an introduction to other
                                                                                        dance schools in Sydney, we are still
circus related skills, including juggling, fire twirling, pois and other circus
                                                                                        one of the cheapest.
performance skills. This year, the Acrobatics students will perform a spectacular
Cirque Du Solei style routine at the end of year dance concert.                         Students who do more than one class
                                                                                        per week receive a large discount.
Available… to all students aged 4 to 20.                                                The above pricing is for all group classes. Private lessons are available upon
Requirements… Black lace-up Tap shoes.                                                  request for all styles of Dance, Singing and Drama, and are $25 for 30 minutes.
The Glenn Wood Tap Syllabus is fast becoming the most recognised Tap                    Troupe rehearsals are free, but there is a weekly $5 troupe membership fee
syllabus in Australia. There are now hundreds of dance schools all learning this        which helps to cover eisteddfod entry fees, and troupe costumes, which are
unique and revolutionary style of Tap. The program breaks Tap dancing down              also provided for free. Those that are “UNLIMITED MEMBERS” do not need to
into a simple and user-friendly structure to help students learn and master a           pay for troupe.
wide variety of steps and techniques. There are currently 9 levels in the               All classes missed must be paid for. If you are going to be away on holidays or
syllabus, from Beginner to Advanced. Twice a year an examiner comes to our              in the case of injury for more than 3 weeks and you let us know in advance, you
studio and assesses the students on what they have learned. The creative                won’t be charged for those classes.
rhythms, clear structure and rehearsal repetition of this syllabus make this class
the best and most effective way to become an expert Tapper.                             Payments can be made weekly, monthly or per term, as long as they are made
                                                                                        in advance. (Please don’t wait until week 9 before paying for that term’s fees.)
For ages 18+             Requirements… sneakers, sandshoes or gym shoes.                Payments can be made in cash or cheques made out to Commotion School of
                                                                                        Performing Arts. We have EFTPOS services available at the studio (Minimum
Taught by fully qualified personal trainer Tony Wrightson, this class is                $15, Credit card payments incur a 2% surcharge). If you require a receipt, they
specifically designed to help you lose those unwanted kilos and tone up. Using          are available upon request.
a range of proven techniques and exercises, the students of this class will work
on strength, flexibility, balance, core muscle development, stamina, aerobic            Students that pay for the first term’s fees in full during enrolment week receive
conditioning and cardio fitness.                                                        10% discount. Refunds are not available for change of mind or change of
                                                                                        circumstances. However, in some cases, you may be able to put the fees
You will break a sweat, and will escape your comfort zone, but you will LOVE            towards another class for the following term. If a class is cancelled, a refund will
the results of this class. Guaranteed to leave you feeling happy and with a             be given only upon request. This does not apply to Troupe rehearsals.
positive feeling of accomplishment, try this class today!
                                                                                        Students who don’t pay their fees on time may lose their position in their class.
ADULTS JAZZ/HIP HOP FITNESS CLASS                                                       If you are having financial trouble, please arrange talk to Ben privately and
For ages 18+             Requirements…sneakers, sandshoes or gym shoes.                 arrange a payment plan.
Don’t let your kids have all the fun! This fun and challenging class is suitable for    What is “UNLIMITED”?
all adults, even if you’ve never danced before. In a relaxed, pressure-free             Any student aged 4+ can become a Commotion “UNLIMITED MEMBER”. This
environment, the students of this class will be taught all the latest moves – at a      allows them to attend as many classes as they want. “UNLIMITED MEMBERS”
pace that is easy to pick up and fun to perform. With a focus on dance for              can even apply to dance in the classes that are above their own age. At only
fitness, students will learn basic dance techniques and improve co-ordination,          $50 per week, “UNLIMITED MEMBERSHIP” is great value. You also get a
cardio fitness, strength and even confidence. Plus it’s a great way to make new         massive 20% off all Commotion Workshops throughout the year, as well as
friends. Put the kids to bed early and come down to the studio because it’s your        20% off all Commotion dancewear. Plus, our “UNLIMITED MEMBERS” receive
turn now!                                                                               an exclusive discount card for shops and business around Mount Annan.
                                                                                    7                                                                                8
                                                                               LOCAL SHOPS
Policies and Guidelines…                                                       Senior and Pre-Senior students are allowed to leave the studio during
UNIFORM                                                                        their breaks to buy food from the local shops, only with written
There is no set uniform at Commotion School of Performing Arts. (“A            permission from parents. We will keep the note on file and it will last for
dancer should not be measured by the neatness of their bun or the              the whole year. No student will be allowed to leave without permission.
clothes that they wear, but by their dance skills alone.”) It is necessary,
however, that all students wear appropriate dance attire to ensure that        LOCKERS
they feel comfortable and are able to move without restrictions. - no          We have 50 lockers at the studio which are available for hire. The cost is
jeans, heavy jumpers, skirts etc. Correct shoes must be worn for each          $1.50 per week and is payable per term. If you have not made your $15
class. For safety reasons, no jewellery or watches should be worn to           payment for each term by week three, then your belongings will be
class. Hair must be neat and tidy.                                             removed from your locker. If you pay for the whole year in advance you
A                                                                              will receive a $10 discount making the total only $50 for the year.
Optional Commotion School of Performing Arts t-shirts, which are not
compulsory, are available for $20. Orders are processed each term. See         Some of the lockers have locks included, but others will need padlocks.
the front desk to see when the next order is being filled. There is also a     Most students should not require locks on their locker unless they are
range of Commotion dancewear available at very reasonable prices.              planning to leave valuables in there during the week. If you do put a
                                                                               padlock on your locker you must give a spare key to the ladies behind
FOOD AND DRINKS                                                                the desk for emergency access. We will keep it safe for you in an
Refreshments are available for sale at the studio at our front desk. We        envelope with your name.
have cold drinks, lollies, chips, chocolates and more. We now also have
fruit for sale, as well as dinner options such as frozen dinners, 2-minute     BAGS, RUBBISH AND NOISE
noodles and soups.                                                             When called in for their first class of the day, students should bring their
                         2009 Canteen Price list:                              bags into their studio and put them along the wall in the designated bag
                                    Chips…………………...$0.80                       area. No belongings should be left in the foyer. During breaks in
    Can of drink…………$1.50                                                      between class, and short drink breaks within class time, students should
                                    Noodle cups…………...$2.50
    Bottle of water………$1.50                                                    remain in the dance room unless going to the foyer to meet with their
                                    Zooper Doopers.………$0.50
    Poppers (Juice)…….$1.00                                                    parents, buy something from the desk or go to the toilet. The foyer
                                    Frozen dinners.………..$5.00
    Fruit………………….$0.70                                                         should be left for parents and students waiting to begin their first class of
                                    Le Snacks/Muesli bars..$1.00
    Chocolate Bars……..$2.00                                                    the day.
                                    Lollies…………………..10c to $2
TOILETS                                                                        Students should not enter the dance rooms until the teacher calls them
There is a toilet on our premises which is to be used by Pre-school and        in to begin class. Please don’t come in and sit down during the class
Junior students only. All other students should use the toilet which is        before yours, because it is a distraction to the other students.
opposite our front door and next to the florist. The toilets there are         All rubbish MUST be removed when you leave. There are bins provided
locked so you will need to pick up the key from the front desk. If you lose    in the foyer and in the dance rooms. If your drink spills or your bag
the key, you will be liable to pay $70 for the replacement costs. For          leaks, you are responsible for cleaning up the mess – please use the
safety, students under the age of 10 are not allowed to go across to the       mop or sponge from the kitchen.
toilets without an adult accompanying them. Students under the age of
                                                                               Parents and students need to keep all noise to a minimum when in the
14 must travel in pairs. Please make sure that you look both ways
                                                                               foyer or waiting in between classes. Our studios are soundproofed, but
before you cross the car park. PLEASE NOTE: Commotion School of
                                                                               some noise still leaks through and can distract the classes still in
Performing Arts holds no responsibility for any accidents that may occur
as students cross the road to go to the toilet. It is up to the parents to
decide if the student is capable to crossing safely.                       9                                                                                 10
DISCOS AND EVENTS                                                              HOLIDAYS AND WORKSHOPS
Commotion regularly runs children’s discos and other fundraising events.       Commotion follows the NSW public school terms and does not usually
These are always themed and are lots of fun. In 2009 we will be having         run classes in the holidays. We do however usually start the year one
one disco per term. The tickets are $9 and the discos are open to all of       week after school goes back, and we also finish the year one week early
our students as well as their friends and family. All the money raised goes    – so that parents can have more time to get ready for Christmas.
towards improvements to our studio and towards the costume
                                                                               We sometimes don’t run classes on major public holidays. Students will
                                                                               always be notified, and details will be posted on the website, in the event
TEACHER COMMUNICATION                                                          that a class is cancelled
Commotion School of Performing Arts now has a faculty of nearly a              During the holidays we do offer dance workshops for those students
dozen teachers. Our teachers are talented, professional and dedicated.         who want to extend themselves as dancers and learn new things. All of
If you would like to speak to your child’s teacher, whether it is to discuss   our workshops feature guest teachers, who provide a unique
their progress in class or just to ask some questions, please ask for an       perspective and innovative new choreography.
appointment at the front desk. We now have a message book, where you
                                                                               We also run a Summer School for a week during January, with well
can write your name and number and who you would like to speak to, and
                                                                               known guest teachers from within the industry and from TV. Our
that teacher will contact you at their earliest convenience.
                                                                               workshops are open not just to Commotion students but also students
If you only have a couple of short questions you might manage to catch         from other dance schools too. Information about our workshops will be
the teacher when they bring the kids out into the foyer in between             posted on the website.
classes. Please remember though that they have another class starting
immediately and may not have much time.                                        LABELS AND LOST PROPERTY
                                                                               Commotion’s lost property box has now reached gigantic proportions. At
Under no circumstances should any parent enter the studio unless
                                                                               the end of every term, the box will be emptied and the lost property will
specifically invited in by the teacher. If you need to give an urgent
                                                                               be given to Lifeline. Please ask your child to check if they have left
message to your child please ask the receptionist at the desk to send in a
                                                                               anything behind as you leave the studio. Please also make sure that you
note – rather than going into the dance room and interrupting the class.
                                                                               label all their belongings.
To help students learn their routines for Troupes or for the concert, some     SECOND HAND DANCE SHOES
parents choose to bring in a video camera and record their child’s dance.      If you have any old dance shoes sitting at home, you can bring them in
This is only allowed for routines that we are working on towards               to the studio and put them into our second hand shoe box. Just write
performance, not for the different choreography that the students learn        your name and number and amount you’d like to sell them for on the
each week in class that is for the sole purpose of developing their skills.    sole. When the shoes sell, the money will given to you. Commotion will
                                                                               keep 20% commission towards our costume fundraising.
Please do not come in to video until the teacher has sent an invitation out
in to the foyer. The class might be running late and the teacher may not
be ready for you to video yet.                                                  A small note from Ben…
                                                                                There is a fine line between a supportive parent and a pushy stage mother.
WEBSITE                                                                         I believe that children can only excel in class, develop a love of dance and
Commotion School of Performing Arts has an official website                     reach their full potential as performers under their own drive. A supportive, on this site you can find all the recent                 parent is always there to give positive re-enforcement, help with getting
newsletters as well as lots of information about our studio, the teachers       ready for performances and to nurture a passion for improving and working
and our class timetable. There are also lots of photos and a                    towards goals. My advice is to remember that your child’s dance education
forum/message board.                                                      11    is their own journey.                                                        12
                                                              This timetable is subject to change. The teacher information and class duration are a guide only. Some
                                                              classes will change rooms depending on the size and style of the class, please check with the front desk which
                                                              room your class will actually be in. If you’re not sure which classes are right for your child, or if there is a clash
                                                              of times, please call Ben on 0402 119 073. If any class does not have sufficient enrolments it will be merged
                                                              with a similar class. For available private lessons and dance coaching times, please contact the studio.

Use the code numbers in grey when you fill out your enrolment form. Once enrolled, you will be charged for the class regardless of attendance until you un-enrol from that
                                                                                                     …close to. I would never hesitate to call one of them for anything and I
The Benefits of Dance…                                                                               know they feel the same way. This weekend, I am missing a
                                                                                                     competition because of an important event in my business and the
The following is an excerpt from a website about raising children written by a                       amount of Moms helping us out moves me.
mother of two, Chantal Hubert.
                                                                                                    Confidence. I’ve said it over and over again; dance itself is not about
I didn’t realize that there was such a stigma toward competitive dancing until my                    the scores they receive. They get up on stage, they smile and they
daughters became involved. I suppose dance competitions are lumped in with                           perform. That in itself deserves a trophy and it’s the only thing I expect
pageants, cheerleading, and other events that involve “showcasing” young girls.                      from them, the rest is just bonus.
It’s not that I don’t understand the thoughts and feelings behind the strong                        Commitment and dependability. Both girls’ teams depend on them to
opinions surrounding competitive dance (I held many of them myself before we                         attend practice, participate in their numbers and show encouragement
started), I do. What I want to do is dispel some of the myths. You know the                          and dedication. They know what it’s like to have people invested in their
ones. That dance Moms are living vicariously through their children, placing                         performance and attendance and vice-versa. They’ve learned not to let
ridiculous amounts of pressure on their child and expecting only the best.                           others down and that it’s okay to expect the same in return.

At least one of my daughters has been dancing competitively for two years. Our             This is the time of year when studios are seeking dancers for the next dance
nine-year old started dancing recreationally at the age of three, like most                year. If you’ve been offered a chance, I would encourage you to open your mind
dancers. Despite being asked several times, I resisted allowing her to attempt             and give it some thought. I’m continually amazed at the strength my daughters
competing. Finally, at age seven, I felt she was ready enough to handle the                have gotten out of their dance experience, both in mind and body. I’m a Dance
task. She loved dancing, and being with her teachers and friends, but I still felt a       Mom and proud of it!
small amount of trepidation that she would be too timid and shy to get up in               Developed by Audrey Dascomb, RDE, Director of Dance Expressions Unlimited, the following chart
front of judges to dance. It’s true, Erin tends to be on the shy side, but how she         highlights the most common benefits of studying dance. There are physical, intellectual, artistic,
                                                                                           social and individual rewards which can enhance and enrich lives.
carried herself on stage turned out to be a complete surprise to me. Gone was
the girl who twisted her feet into the ground and stared down when people
talked to her. What I saw was a girl with a wide smile, confident gaze and a                PHYSICAL         INTELLECTUAL              ARTISTIC            SOCIAL           INDIVIDUAL
back straight with pride - and that was just being on stage, none of it related to                                                                         Team
any of the scores or medals she received.                                                                         Intellectual           Arts                         Confidence, Self-
                                                                                              Fitness                                                    Exploration
                                                                                                                  Stimulation         Appreciation                        esteem
                                                                                                                                                        & Cooperation
The positive aspects of dance allowed me to be quite a bit more comfortable
when it came to including our six-year old daughter this year. Totally opposite                                                        Musicality &
                                                                                                                 Calculation &
                                                                                            Coordination                                Rhythmic        Communication       Listening Skills
her older sister, she seems born to perform. She can’t resist the stage or                                         Planning
spotlight and I know she is in her element.
                                                                                           Cardiovascular                               Creative
                                                                                                          Sequential Learning                            Camaraderie        Self-Discipline
Dance itself doesn’t have to be about competition or exams or hours of                      Conditioning                               Expression
preparation. It can be a thirty minute creative movement class, ballet or a recital                           Patterns & spatial                                              Sense of
performance, but the benefits are undeniable…                                                Flexibility                               Imagination
                                                                                                                Development                                                Accomplishment
       Posture. Early on, dancers are taught that proper posture is essential                               Improved Academic
                                                                                              Strength                                  Innovation                            Persistence
        to peak performance. Dancers have straight backs and heads held                                         Performance
        high. I’m amazed when I see my daughter walk into a room with better                                Increased Motivation
        posture than anyone I’ve seen.                                                                            to Learn

       Focus is essential to dance. I find that after a class or practice my girls                           Mental Flexibility,                                            Open to New
        listen better and focus on tasks at hand.                                                             Problem Solving                                                   Ideas

       Friends. Our girls have made some awesome friends in their years of                                   Right & Left Brain
        dance. Not to mention many of the other mothers I have become…                                        Inclusion (Holistic
                                                                                      13                                                                                                    14
                                                                                        It is important that “Commotion Kids” Troupe members do a variety of classes
“Commotion Kids” Troupe…                                                                to develop their technique and dance skills to a level that can compete against
                                                                                        other schools. There are some pre-requisite classes and conditions for those
Every year Commotion School of Performing Arts selects a few very advanced              who are in our Troupes…
dancers who demonstrate extraordinary skill, or great potential, in dance
technique and performance to be a part of our exclusive performance group the                  Troupe students must do a minimum of 4 classes, but should do much
“Commotion Kids”.                                                                               more. These classes must include Jazz, Hip Hop and the Friday night
                                                                                                Technique class.
Students are auditioned in class over the first few weeks of the year. If your
child has made it into our Troupes, they will receive an invitation letter with                Students must have a good attendance record, especially to Troupe
more details.                                                                                   rehearsals and performances.

Split into various Troupes ranging from 6/under to Open Age, the “Commotion                    Students must be willing to work hard at all times in class, and take
Kids” perform at numerous events and functions all around Sydney, as well as                    responsibility for knowing all of their routines.
competing in several dance competitions.
                                                                                               Students must purchase the compulsory Troupe Uniform which is to be
The “Commotion Kids” are focused and dedicated dancers who work hard to                         worn to all performances and competitions. This will be available in late
learn and perform impressive routines which consistently do very well at                        February and will be at minimal cost to parents.
competitions. All of the trophies on display in the foyer have been won by the
“Commotion Kids” over the last few years.                                               If these conditions are not met, the student will not be allowed to continue in the
50 of our “Commotion Kids” travelled to Queensland at the beginning of this
year to compete against the best studios from all over Australia in the                 Those students that are chosen to be a part of the “Commotion Kids” Troupe
Showcase National Dance Championships. We received several first place                  have the amazing opportunity to gain extensive performance experience which
trophies and were crowned the “National Champions of Hip Hop” in each of the            is vital to any young dancer in training. The team-work skills, discipline and self-
Petite, Junior and Preteen divisions.                                                   confidence that students will develop from being in Troupe will help them grow
                                                                                        not just as dancers, but also as people.
This year, the “Commotion Kids” are going to focus on elite eisteddfods such as
City of Sydney (The Macdonald Challenge), SourceDANCE Hollywood                         Please note that each year all students must re-audition for admission into
Competition, Australian Dance Challenge and other competitions of this calibre.         Troupe, regardless of whether or not they were in Troupe the year before.
We also hope to perform at some large events like the Sydney Royal Easter
Show.                                                                                   Students that enrol at Commotion after the auditions will have the opportunity to
                                                                                        request a private audition. In some rare cases, we take on new Troupe
At the beginning of each year, students are auditioned in class and invited into        members halfway through the year.
our Troupes. Parents must understand that being in Troupe is a commitment
and that you must be available for performances and extra rehearsals.                   Throughout the year, parents of Troupe students will be able to find information
                                                                                        about upcoming performances and rehearsals on the Notes page of the
Troupe membership is only $5 per week on top of your regular fees, and                  website.
includes all rehearsals, performances and even your costumes. In some cases,
there may be some additional one-off fees to help cover the costs of a                  All members of the “Commotion Kids” Troupe receive their own trophy,
particularly expensive competition, but this is very rare.                              inscribed with their name, at the end of each year.

Remember students on “UNLIMITED MEMBERSHIP” don’t have to pay for                       This year, Ben is going to be working closely with a children’s talent agency to
Troupe.                                                                                 help some of the “Commotion Kids” go for auditions and secure professional
                                                                                        work. Some students may have the opportunity to get full representation.
                                                                                   15                                                                                      16
The Concert…                                                                         The Benefits of Drama/Acting…
                                                                                     Have you considered enrolling your child into our Drama classes?
Every year all the students at Commotion School of Performing Arts are invited
to perform in our annual dance concert. This is usually held in late November        Self- Confidence: Taking risks in class and performing for an audience teaches
and is a huge event that all of the students and parents look forward to. This is    students to trust their ideas and abilities. The confidence gained in Drama
day when all students get to feel like a star.                                       applies to school, career and life.
For the last two years we have held our concerts at the Evan Theatre in Penrith      Imagination: Making creative choices, thinking of new ideas, and interpreting
Panthers World of Entertainment. This is a great venue which has professional        familiar material in new ways are essential to Drama. Einstein said,
lighting, tiered seating for 900 and excellent backstage facilities.                 “Imagination is more important than knowledge”.
Each class will begin learning their concert routine at the beginning of Term 3.
                                                                                     Empathy: Acting roles from different situations, time periods and cultures
The students work on this each week in class, developing their skills in the
                                                                                     promotes compassion and tolerance for others’ feeling and viewpoints.
process and learning the importance of rehearsal, commitment, performance
techniques and teamwork.                                                             Cooperation/Collaboration: Theatre combines the creative ideas and abilities
We hold two dance concerts, one is a matinee show which features all of the          of its participants. This cooperative process includes discussing, negotiating,
Pre-School and Junior students, and the other is for the Intermediate and            rehearsing and performing.
Senior students. Troupe students will have some routines in each of the              Concentration: Playing, practicing and performing develop a sustained focus
concerts.                                                                            of mind, body and voice, which also helps in other areas of school and life.
Tickets are available through the studio about 4 weeks before the concert date.      Communication Skills: Drama enhances verbal and nonverbal expression of
Prices are kept to a minimum, and are very low considering the calibre of the        ideas. It improves voice projection, articulation of words, fluency with language
venue. There is also a discount if you buy tickets to both shows.                    and persuasive speech. Listening and observation skills develop by playing
DVDs of the concert are also available, for a very reasonable price, as well as      drama games, being and audience, rehearsing and performing.
professional photos and soundtrack CDs.                                              Problem Solving: Students learn how to communicate the who, what, when,
Rather than making parents pay hundreds of dollars buying costumes that their        where and why to the audience. Improvisation fosters quick-thinking solutions,
children will only wear once, we hire out our costumes for the concert from our      which leads to greater adaptability in life.
extensive costume library.
                                                                                     Emotional Outlet: Pretend play and drama games allow students to express a
The costume fee is cheap at only $35 for the first costume. For students who         range of emotions. Aggression and tension are released in a safe, controlled
are in more than one routine in the concert, the cost decreases by $5 for each       environment, reducing antisocial behaviours.
extra costume. (ie. second costume $30, third costume $25, fourth costume $20
etc.) This year there will also be a $10 concert performer’s fee, which covers       Relaxation: Many drama activities reduce stress by releasing mental, physical
the costs of the rehearsal and the medallion that each student receives at the       and emotional tension.
end of the year.                                                                     Self-Discipline: The process of moving from ideas to actions to performances
                                                                                     teaches the value of practice and perseverance. Drama games and creative
More information about the concert will be released throughout the year.             movement improve self-control.

You can still purchase last year’s concert DVD. There are only a few available       Trust: The social interaction and risk taking in drama develops trust in self,
at the front desk. We also have Photo DVDs and the 2007 DVD available too.           others and the process.
                                                                                     Memory: Rehearsing and performing words, movements and cues strengthens
                                                                                     this skill like a muscle.
*The Singing, Drama/Acting and Musical Theatre students have their own
special recital, which this year is going to be held at the Campbelltown Theatre.    Social & Cultural Awareness: Legends, myths, poems, stories and plays used
This will be held towards the end of the year, and will feature group and solo       in Drama teach students about social issues and conflicts from cultures, past
performances. All students will be featured.                                    17   and present, all over the world.                                              18
Helpful Hints…                                                                              HOW CAN I HELP MY CHILD IMPROVE?
                                                                                            Firstly, you should inspire them. Take them to musicals and shows, rent dance
                                                                                            DVDs and expose them to the potential of professional dancing. Secondly, don’t
                                                                                            stand there and make them practise in front of you – the rehearsal process is a
The cheapest and closest place is a little dance shop on Queen Street
                                                                                            very personal one, and it is much easier without another person there to judge
Campbelltown called DANCE HQ. Cheryl is the owner, she is really helpful and
                                                                                            you. If you want your child to practice, suggest they put the music on and ask to
knows a lot about what’s good and what’s not. This is often about 30% cheaper
                                                                                            see the dance after they’ve practiced it – not during. Remember, they don’t
than Bloch – but the quality is not quite as good. Their phone number is 02
                                                                                            want you to give criticism, all they want from their parents is praise &
4625 0882, and they are just across the street from the old Lone Star
Alternatively you can go to Bloch at Macarthur Square. They sell a great range              You could also consider purchasing a few private lessons either with their
of quality dance shoes, but beware of the price. Every year, they organise a                regular class teacher, or with one of the assistant teachers in the Dance
Commotion Discount Weekend – usually in October, just in time before our                    Coaching Program. You’d be surprised the difference that a couple of private
concerts, and give us all 20% off. They can be contacted on 02 4620 8588.                   lessons can make, especially for improving technique and lifting the student’s
Remember – Commotion students should no longer use Jazz Sneakers, we
prefer Soft black Jazz shoes for Jazz, and regular street shoes or “chucks” for
                                                                                            Also, a lot of people only do one class per week and wonder why the other
Hip Hop.
                                                                                            students around them are improving so much quicker. The more you put into
WHAT TO DO IF YOU’RE LATE OR GOING TO BE ABSENT?                                            your dancing training the more you get out of it. Try a few different classes to
If you’re late for class, please make sure that you come in quietly and with your           see which styles suit your child the best.
shoes on ready to dance – even if it means putting them on in the foyer. Don’t
interrupt the class to say Hi to your friends, just quickly apologise to your               Please don’t underestimate the importance of eating healthy and staying
teacher for being late and find a spot in the class. If your have missed                    hydrated. Dancers are athletes, and dance class can be extremely physically
choreography – do your best to pick it up quickly.                                          exhausting. Make sure your child has a drink (preferably water) with them, and
                                                                                            some light snacks for during the breaks.
If you are really too sick to come to class, or if you have other commitments that
were unavoidable, then you should send an SMS to 0402 119 073 explaining
that you won’t be there that night, and why. This is really important – especially           Useful Dance Websites…
for Troupe rehearsals.
                                                                                    – (national dancewear supplier)
DANCING TODAY?                                                                      – (local dance shop)
Children are fickle. Little things can change their mood so easily, and the
reason they might not want to go to dancing could be something little like a fight  – (kid’s dance magazine)
with a friend or even just wanting to watch a TV show – even though they might
not admit it.                                                                       – (online dance community)
When I was young I absolutely loved dancing – just as I do now – but every
                                                                                    – (international dance forums and advice)
now and then I would beg my mum to not have to go. She had a rule; if I didn’t
want to go to dancing three weeks in a row, then I was allowed to quit –
                                                                                    – (all about the syllabus)
because it meant that I really didn’t enjoy it, not just that I decided on a whim I
didn’t want to go anymore. She would ask me every week after I walked out of
                                                                                    – (our own eisteddfod)
class if I wanted to keep dancing, and my answer after class was always yes,
even if before the class it had been no.
                                                                                    – (workshops tours and competition)
I recommend that parents try this little test out for their children, if they say “I
don’t want to go to dancing today.”                                                 – (So You Think You Can Dance Australia)
                                                                                       19                                                                                      20
Class placement…                                                                         Frequently Asked Questions…
For many of our classes we split the students into Advanced stream and
Standard stream. This is because of the size of our dance school, and also so            Q. What is the youngest age that you accept students?
that all students can be working at their own level and get the most out of their        A. We have a special Tiny Tots program designed to introduce children who are
dance class.                                                                             as young as 2 and a half years old to dance and music. We have a larger range
                                                                                         of classes available for ages 4 and up.
Upon enrolment you will be asked to help make the decision as to which
classes your child would best fit into, but over the first few weeks of Term 1, the      Q. How much does it cost?
teacher will observe the students and may move them into the appropriate                 A. One class per week is $9. There is also a large discount available for those
classes. This is only for the classes that are offered in two streams. Please do         that do more than one class a week. Our "Unlimited Membership" is only $50
not be offended if you are moved from an Advanced class.                                 per week and allows the student access to as many classes as they want.

The staff at Commotion School of Performing Arts are extremely careful and               Q. Do you have to pay for the lessons that you miss?
concerned when choosing the correct level class for each student. It is very             A. Yes. But in some cases you may be able to take a make up lesson at a
important to remember that all students are individuals with very different              different time in the week.
talents and ability levels and they will not all progress at the same rate. In
maintaining a high quality of dance education, it is therefore sometimes                 Q. Are parents allowed to observe the class?
impossible to keep the same students together in a class year after year. Many           A. We don’t allow parents into the classroom, because it can prove to be a
students may need extra help and a slightly slower pace to help them master              distraction for the students. We do have an exclusive DanceCam system set
new steps that might come easily to others. This is carefully considered when            up, with cameras in each room transmitting footage onto three LCD screens in
placing students in a class. Many students are easily discouraged when they              the foyer. This lets parents see what’s going on in class without distracting the
are placed in too difficult a class. The most important thing is that the student        students.
enjoys the class and feels comfortable and happy. A happy learning
environment is sure to yield progress. Remember, it is very common to see two            Q. How much does it cost to enrol?
children of the same age and with the same number of years training with                 A. There is no enrolment fee at Commotion School of Performing Arts. The only
extremely different capabilities. Commotion is a very progressive school and all         costs throughout the whole year are the regular class fees and the concert
of our classes are challenging.                                                          costume fee at the end of the year.

Please do not be a competitive parent and want your child in a certain class             Q. Do you do exams?
because you think it’s more advanced or a more difficult class. Class placement          A. Most of our classes are non-syllabus, and therefore the students do not sit
is the teacher’s decision. After all, that’s what he/she is trained to do. Every         for exams. We are a progressive dance school, and we believe that students
dancer is unique and we cater to the individual needs of every student.                  can get more out of their dance experience not being confined to the same
                                                                                         steps week after week with the stress of examination. We do offer Glenn Wood
Commotion School of Performing Arts has established itself as an institution of          Tap in all levels and send students for exams with this syllabus twice a year.
excellence in dance training. Please give the teachers the opportunity to                Our exclusive Ballet Technique Training classes also do in-house assessments
observe your child in class, so that he or she may be placed at the appropriate          at the end of each year.
working level.
                                                                                         Q. Do you have insurance?
At any point during the first semester, students may be moved between the                A. Commotion School of Performing Arts has $10 million of Public Liability
Advanced and non-Advanced streams. This may be because they are                          insurance which covers all students, teachers and volunteer workers. Our
struggling to keep up with the others, or because they are excelling in class. If        insurance is with AON Risk Services. Students are also covered by our
you’d like to discuss class placement with your child’s teacher, please make an          insurance whilst performing with Commotion anywhere within Australia.

                                                                                    21                                                                                       22
                                                                                     …you see an empty hallway, and it tempts you to do a grande jete.
You know you’re a dancer when…
                                                                                     ...before everything you do you say 5,6,7,8. is life and the rest is just spare time.
                                                                                     …you've read every "You know you’re a dancer when..." list known to man. sit in a straddle when you are watching TV.
                                                                                     …your housemates hear a loud "thud" and don't even bother to ask what
...your body cracks loud enough to stop class but you don't hear it.                 happened. dance down the hallway instead of walk.                                       …you only buy stretch jeans. know most barres aren't in jails.                                             …you know that doing the splits is not a way to determine if you are a good
                                                                                     dancer or not.
...all your friends are eating dinner while you are in class.
                                                                                     …when you wait for something in the microwave you’re dancing. do plies and tendus while waiting in line.
                                                                                     …you spot when you spin around in your computer chair. do leaps in the parking lot and down the streets.
                                                                                     …dance somehow comes up in EVERY conversation. have the ability to balance your body on five toes, yet cannot bend over to
pick the clothes up off the floor of your room.                                      …when, while watching a performance, you catch yourself subconsciously
                                                                                     imitating the dancer's movements with your head.
...every hard floor is like a place for practicing.
                                                                                     …when you are sick you try to watch class anyway, until your dance teacher actually sit up straight in your chair at school.                             sends you home. have an entire drawer devoted to your dance stuff.                            …you can whip up a ponytail in 5 seconds flat. suddenly can't count past 8.                                                  …you check the Commotion website before you check your e-mail.

...your kitchen floor has marks all over it.                                         …you know the lyrics to every dance you’ve danced to. bend over to pick up something and your leg shoots up to a 180* angle.        …your watch is set up to the clock at the studio. miss more school for performances than your do for being sick.                …you choreograph in your sleep.

...when you refer to half time of a football game as "intermission".                 …you practice your dances in your chair at school.

…when you find bobby pins in the weirdest places - the kitchen, the shower           …you are stretching for gym and everyone goes, "WHOA!!"
drain, your shoes.
                                                                                     …your toes are pointed whenever they leave the floor.
…you can't listen to the radio without choreographing moves in your head.
                                                                                     …you never have to buy new Halloween costumes, you just use old recital
…you forgot what your friends look like with "real" clothes.                         costumes.

…nothing, absolutely nothing, is better then being on stage.                    23    Can you think of any more? – post them on the forum on our website. 24

                                                                                     …you get angry when other people TRY to dance.