Thank You: Thank you to everyone who sent the staff warm wishes, gifts, and cards! We had a fabulous holiday break and hope you did too!
Recital Save The Date: Saturday, June 10 is our annual recital. Please save the date, along with Thursday June 8 for dress rehearsal. We will probably have an All Cast Rehearsal and Picture Day at the studio that week as well.
Recital Themes: Our Kidance, Dazzler, and Diamond classes will be doing Mary Poppins. Our Tiny Dancers, Tippy Toes, Tutus for Tots, and Kidlets classes will be doing “Oh, The Places You’ll Go!” telling stories about growth, dreams, believing in yourself, and following your heart.
Bad Weather Policy: If school is cancelled or if bad weather arrives at the end of a school day, please check our Facebook page (Search “Gracefully Yours Dance Academy” and like us! Make sure to make us a favorite so we pop up in your newsfeed!) and your email too. We try to change the studio voicemail but sometimes we are not able to get to the studio to change it before the bad weather sets in.
Social Media: This is the day and age for social media! Like us on Facebook, or follow us on Instagram, Snapchat, or Twitter using the name “GYDAdance”!
Leadership Camp: Send your 5-12 year old to dance on MLK day, January 16! We will tie in our “Oh, The Places You’ll Go!” theme but focus on fun activities/craft/games on being a leader. Camp will run 10am-12pm and is $25/per dancer.
Specialty Series: The teachers have been working on a NEW series where our dancers will be able to take short, mini sessions in specific activities or studies of dance. We are working on the promotions for these and some series will begin in February!
Studio Closure Dates: Thanksgiving Break will be Tuesday November 22-Sunday November 27. Christmas Break will be Tuesday December 23-Sunday January 1.
Payment: Just a reminder—monthly tuition is due at your first lesson each month and is considered late after the 10th of the month. If paying in the studio via cash/check please fill out the envelope with your dancer’s FIRST and LAST name along with anything else the example asks for. I know many of your kiddo’s sweet nicknames and who is in what but Ms. Katie has been struggling with searching through our student list to find out which “Sally” is paying $5 😉
Referral Program: NEW—beginning November 1 we are launching a brand new referral program that will be a win for everyone. When you refer a new student to our studio you AND the new student will receive a $50 tuition credit after they have been with the studio for two months. Many of our dance families come from word of mouth and we want to start a system of THANKS to you and a warm welcome to them with this offer! Make sure when they register that they drop your name so we can give credit where it’s due 😉
Dress Code: As we are entering the colder months, please make sure you send your dancer in warm dance clothes. Tights and a long sleeved or three quarter sleeved leotard is recommended for those who get chilly easily. Wrapped ballet sweaters, form fitting cardigans, and legwarmers are also permissible, but please no baggy jackets, coats, or sweatshirts!
Parent Participation Week: November 14-17 we invite parents in of all of our classes to come in to class to DANCE! All students that have a parent come in to dance with them for their entire class will be entered to win a $25 tuition credit! So wear your comfy clothes & be prepared to take class with your dancer!
Variety/Pre- Show Sign-Up: Does your dancer want MORE from dance? I recommend signing them up for a solo, duet or trio in our Variety Show (older dancers) or Pre-Show (youngest dancers)! Small groups are available too for a small group of friends who want to perform their own group dance, separate from recital routines. Variety Show is between our youngest and oldest recitals and is where our older dancers perform their extra routines. Those dancers who are in our younger show will perform their routine in the Pre-Show before the younger show. Dancers in the Variety Show/Pre-Show get to pick their own song, style, and costume out. Sign-up will be out next month! These are optional additional routines to add to your dancer’s regular class(es). These lessons typically meet every other week from January-May and are usually a half hour in length each. The cost per half hour for a solo is $30, $15 per dancer for a duet, $10 per dancer for a trio, or $8 per dancer for a small group.
Nutcracker: Save the date! Our 2016 Nutcracker will be held on Saturday December 10 at St. John Evangelical Church of Christ’s Faith Hall (307 West Clay Street in Collinsville). Admission is a paper item, hygiene item, non-perishable food item, or NEW TOY (ages coming soon).
Christmas Bash Save The Date: We are going to throw an EPIC Christmas Bash for our dancers on Saturday December 3, complete with a dj, games, snacks, and more! We will send out an invitation via email to you in a few weeks!
Labor Day: The studio will be closed on Monday, September 5 for Labor Day.
Nutcracker Meeting: On Thursday, September 1 at 5:30pm we are having our Nutcracker Informational Meeting. This will be a brief meeting discussing what Nutcracker is, potential date, and more. Dancers who are 3 years old or older currently enrolled in Tippy Toes, Tutus for Tots, Kidlets, Kidance, Dazzler Dancers, or Diamond Dancers are eligible to perform. Our show raises food, toys, hygiene items, and paper items for the Collinsville Food Pantry each year.
Payment: Remember, September’s payment is due at your FIRST LESSON of the month and is considered late after the 10th. Payments made after the 10th should include a $15 late fee.
Italian Fest: There are two opportunities for non-company dancers to perform for Italian Fest Weekend. Read below for more details.
- Friday September 16: For any dancer currently enrolled in jazz, we have an opportunity for you to perform in front of a stage that evening. There are two practices involved for this, at $10 each. Thursday September 8 & 15 from 5:30-6:30pm. Both practices are mandatory to be able to perform. You will receive a note with details at your first practice. Wear dance clothes and bring jazz shoes! Sign up in the hall today!
- Saturday September 17: Calling ALL GYDA dancers! We are looking for dancers to ride in a trailer pulled by a truck (a “float” if you will). This is any current dancer at GYDA. The only cost to you is two LARGE bags of candy per dancer. Please wear a dance costume (if you are a first year dancer let me know and you may borrow one) and comfortable shoes.
Older dancers may be asked to walk and throw candy or carry our banner. We will also need parents to supervise the float, toss candy, and pass out flyers. Parent helpers should wear a GYDA shirt or bright pink or black. Sign up in the hall today!
Shoe Reminder: Ballet shoes should be PINK for girls (black for boys), Jazz shoes should be tan (slip on) and tap shoes should be black! All dancers enrolled in jazz class need jazz shoes! Thanks!
Try It FREE Week: This is for our current students to branch out a try something NEW! September 12-15 is the week we encourage you to send your dancer to a class/style they haven’t tried before (or in awhile) to see if they like it and would like to add it to their schedule. Here are options for you:
- 3-5 year olds: Tumble Tots, Thursdays 5-5:30pm
- 5+ year olds: Hip Hop, Thursdays 4:45-5:30pm
- 6+ year olds: Acro, Mondays 7:30-8:30 (non recital), Thursdays 5:30-6:30pm (recital)
- 11+ year olds: Lyrical, Thursdays 6:30-7:15pm
Non ballet students: Check out our schedule on the website for the best class for ballet/tap/jazz!
Bring A Friend Week: September 19-22 will be Bring A Friend Week! Each dancer is invited to bring some friends to their classes where the friends will dance for FREE! For every friend your dancer brings they will be entered in to win a prize!
Back to Dance 2016-17
Hello, and welcome (back) to GYDA!
The teachers and I are so excited for this new dance season. So far this summer we’ve launched our new online registration system (including auto-pay with credit cards! Yay!), started our 2016-17 competitive dance season with Grace Dance Company members, added to our More Than Just Great DancingTM curriculum, and spent countless hours working on a fabulous new dance season at GYDA. We are excited and eager to bring you your best year with us yet! And—we’re happy you’re with us! Below is a summary and a glance ahead for this upcoming year. I will be in touch soon with more details/reminders!
Happy Dancing, Ms. Abby
More Than Just Great DancingTM: In 2015 our studio joined a licensed group called More Than Just Great DancingTM. A friend of mine had joined the group earlier that year and I LOVED what I was seeing. After I did my research I realized I had found a group of dance studio and gymnastic school owners who have a heart for family, wholesome values, giving back to the community, and children.
These people really valued excellent customer service and running successful businesses. I had seen enough—I knew that their values aligned with ours and I couldn’t wait to join. After a phone interview with owner Misty Lown, a background check, and a few emails, we were accepted! It has now been almost a full year since joining and this has been one of my best decisions I’ve made this far in the business world as it keeps me constantly learning, in the know, and surrounds me with a wonderful support system. Throughout this year you will see us doing things to give back to our community (like our annual Nutcracker), really celebrating our dance family (our annual Christmas Bash), and more!
We want to be a dance studio that really DOES offer you more than just great dancing! This is why we teach your children about respect, loving others, fairness, and many other life skills. We only want the BEST for you and your family.
New Staff: At this moment we are happy to welcome Ms. Leah to our staff! Ms. Leah is our very own GYDA alumni and many of you have seen her subbing in the past two years at our studio. We are finalizing a new hip hop teacher and a new office admin person and will announce those when everything is final!
Nutcracker 2016: Each year our studio does a variation of the Nutcracker ballet. We raise food, toys, hygiene items, and paper items for the Collinsville Food Pantry. This is a smaller performance held in Collinsville. Most dancers who participate will come to an extra weekly practice to learn their routine.
The cost per Nutcracker group practice is $5 (main character solos are $10). There is also a performance fee which covers a costume rental. Unlike recital where you purchase and keep your performance costume, we rent out Nutcracker costumes to keep down the cost. Dancers in 7th-12th grade are invited to audition for a main character role. Main character practices are $10 each. For more information on our upcoming Nutcracker show, please attend a parent informational meeting at the studio on September 1 at 5:30pm
Sunshine Committee: This year we are introducing our first ever Sunshine Committee. This is a group of dancers ages 6+ who LOVE to dance but aren’t interested or ready for the competition world. These girls will learn three (perhaps more) routines to perform at various places throughout the school year (including Italian Fest, Nutcracker, etc) particularly focusing on places where CHEER and SUNSHINE is needed (nursing homes, children’s hospitals, etc.). We are asking the HAPPIEST and BIGGEST SMILING dancers to sign up because we want to bring the joy of dance to our community. We may also be doing other things for the community as needs or opportunities arise to really instill the gift of giving back. This is a non-competitive group with an extra commitment above normal dance classes but with costs kept as low as possible. This group will have choreography camps in August so they can be ready for their first performance in September. For more information, email the studio! If there are enough 4-5 year old dancers interested I am open to making a second, less demanding branch of the Sunshine Committee as well!
Grace Dance Company: Our 2016-17 GDC season has begun! Our competitive dance team this year has added new members and already started diving in to learning combinations that will be put into their competitive numbers. We will be auditioning for new members for GDC next spring and welcome any interested dancers ages 7+ who have been dancing for a minimum of 3 years! We would love to see you at our competitions and other performances this year!
Recital 2017: Last year’s performances of Annie and A Mickey Mouse Showcase were AWESOME! Our dancers put in a lot of hard work throughout the year and it showed. We have listened to the requests to move our show from a Thursday night to a Saturday and are working with the Belleville Township School District to make that happen! Stay tuned for an approximate date!
Christmas Bash 2016: Our 2016 Christmas Bash (studio-wide Christmas Party/2017 Recital Theme announcement) date will be announced SOON!
Costume Fee Due Date: NEW this year—instead of your $65 costume fee per class fee having a due date of January 10, we are moving this up to November 10 to ensure earlier costume arrival dates.
Because this is before Christmas, families may pay ahead for these fees if they would like so they won’t have to pay them all at one time in November. The remaining balance per costume of $15 will still be due in May. Ballet/Tap/Jazz classes all wear the same costume for all routines, however hip hop, acro, lyrical, pointe, poms all require additional costumes if you are enrolled in those classes.
Policies/Reminders: Be sure to check out this year’s FAQ and Financial Guide to be in the “know” about dress code, tuition due dates, and more!
March 2016 Newsletter
Recital Fee: This month there is a $60/family recital fee due this month for students who are participating in our June 9, 2016 recital. You should include your recital fee with your March payment, by March 10th. This fee helps cover the cost of recital as we have free admission and do not require tickets for entry.
Looking Ahead: Our studio will be closed for Spring Break beginning Friday, March 25th – Sunday, April 3rd. Dance will resume Monday, April 4th.
Waiting Rooms: Please make sure you share the watch windows with other parents during your dancer’s class so that all visitors get a chance to observe.
Dress Code Reminder: Girls should wear a leotard and dance tights with their hair up and away from their face/shoulders—including long bangs. Girls need PINK ballet shoes for recital, black tap shoes, and if applicable, tan jazz shoes. Boys should wear athletic shorts or pants with a comfortable t-shirt, black ballet shoes, black tap shoes, and if applicable tan jazz shoes. Cardigans or wrap sweaters are allowed during cold weather, but please no jackets or baggy clothing.
Benefit Concert: On Saturday, March 19 our dance company will be performing along with two other local studios to raise money for a boy named Xaivore. This performance will take place at Greenville College (315 College Ave in Greenville, IL) at 2:30pm. Admission is a love offering—so you may pay what you feel led to. We’d love to have you come out and cheer us on and help us raise money for Xaivore!
February 2016 Newsletter
Recital: Don’t forget! Our recital is set for THURSDAY, JUNE 9 with Dress Rehearsal taking place on WEDNESDAY, June 8. Pictures will be at the studio on a different day from those events. Our youngest students will be doing “A Mickey Mouse Showcase” and our oldest students will be doing “Annie”.
New Classes: Welcome, students in our new Wednesday 5-5:45pm and Tuesday 5-5:30pm classes! We also have several other students that have started in various other classes in January—welcome! We are so happy to have you!
Sweet <3 Camp: Dancers 6 years old and older are welcome to join us for Sweet<3 Camp on President’s Day, which is Monday, February 15. This is a full day camp (9am-3pm) full of FUN! We will start the day of with dancing, have a cupcake wars, watch a movie, play games, and MORE! See the attachment in the February Newsletter email or ask one of our awesome desk ladies for a flyer! The deadline to sign-up is Monday, February 8! Recital Fee: Just a reminder that in March there is a $60 recital fee PER FAMILY (not per dancer) due with your monthly payment. Please write a separate check for this, or if paying with cash put it in a separate envelope. Checks may go together in the same envelope. This fee helps cover the cost of the facility rental, scenery, and more!
GDC Trivia Night: Our competitive dance company, Grace Dance Company, will be hosting a trivia night on Saturday March 5 to raise money to cover their expenses. Doors open at 6pm in the Community Room at the Collinsville Memorial Public Library. Tickets are $10 in advance or $12 at the door. See Mrs. Michelle (Wednesdays) or Mrs. Jessica (Tues/Thurs) for more details!
Looking Ahead: We will be closed for Spring Break March 27-April 3.
Dress Code: In addition to sending your dancer in a leotard and *dance* tights each week, please make sure their hair is up. Shorter hair should come half up and half down if you can’t secure all of it up. Also just a reminder that all jazz dancers need TAN jazz shoes, all girls should have PINK ballet shoes (boys should have BLACK), and all tap shoes should be BLACK.
Bad Weather Policy: In the event of bad weather (snow, ice, tornadoes, etc.) we will change the voicemail on the studio phone by 2PM to confirm closing along with updating the studio Facebook page. If possible we will also send out an email and update our website letting you know if the studio is closed. If bad weather is to occur during studio hours rather than the daytime, please call the studio to confirm if we will stay open the remainder of the night before coming to class.
December 2015 Newsletter
Nutracker 2015: Our Nutcracker is set for December 12 and we now have TWO shows—a 2pm and a 6pm show! Our show is held at St. John Evangelical United Church of Christ’s Faith Hall (307 West Clay in Collinsville). Admission is a new toy (geared towards children ages 8+), a boxed pasta item (mac n’ cheese, hamburger helper, etc.), paper item, or hygiene item per person. All donations will be given to the Collinsville Food Pantry.
Christmas Break: Our studio will be closed December 22-January 3 for Christmas Break. Classes will resume January 4.
Christmas Bash: Our 2nd annual Christmas Bash will be held on Saturday December 5 from 10am-12pm. It will be a pajama party with breakfast/brunch snacks, a DJ, craft, games, and more. This is a FREE event for current dancers. Parents are welcome to join us at 11:45am when we make our 2016 recital theme announcement — this is the first time we have ever announced our June recital before January!
January Payment & Costume Fee: January’s regular monthly payment and a $65 costume fee/dancer for ballet/tap or ballet/tap/jazz classes. Acro students will need an additional $65 costume fee as well. There will be a $20 late fee for paying the costume fee after January 10.
Christmas Parties: Monday ballet/tap/jazz dancers will have their Christmas parties on December 21st. Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday ballet/tap/jazz (even ballet/tap only or pre-dance only) will have their parties December 15-17 in class. All ballet/tap/jazz dancers except for Monday 6-8:30 should bring a wrapped $5 gift exchange with no name in the “To” portion of the name tag and their own name in the “From” portion. Dancers are invited to bring treats to share with the class. Acro classes will not have a gift exchange, but are welcome to bring treats for a party. Grace Dance Company, and Mon. 6-8:30pm dancers will have a $10 Secret Santa exchange on the above dates and will NOT do the regular $5 gift exchange.
Christmas Parties Dress Code: We invite dancers to wear holiday shirts or ugly Christmas sweaters to your dance class party! These should be worn on top of regular dance clothes. Other festive wear is welcome.
Variety Show Sign-Up: Dancers interested in performing a solo, duet, trio, or small group in our 2016 Variety Show (the “pre-show” before our recital) should sign up for a practice slot this week. Practices begin in January. Dancers will need to bring a copy of their music to leave at the studio and a $65 costume deposit for this special routine, and they will pick out their costume at their first practice. Most practices meet for a half hour every other week from January-May. The cost per half hour is $30 for a solo, $15 per dancer for a duet, $10 per dancer for a trio, or $7 per dancer for a small group of 4 or more. Some dancers prefer to meet every week for a half hour, or every other week for an hour—please occupy these slots on the correct pages when signing up. Participation in our Variety Show is completely OPTIONAL!! Performing a routine in a show like this is a great way to showcase your dancer’s hard work and talent! Also, this gives the dancers the chance to have a say in their costume, song choice, and even choreography preferences. Practice slot sign-up will be on the counter in the kitchen area.
Poms: If your dancer is currently in an hour and a half dance class (ballet, tap, jazz) and is interested in adding a pom class to their schedule, please sign up in the hallway. This sign up is to generate interest only, and we are looking at having the class run 5-5:30 on Tuesdays. Pom classes are a half hour in length and will add to your monthly rate accordingly (making it only $3-4/class!). Pom classes will begin either in January or February and the class will require an additional costume fee (TBD—price will include a costume and poms).
November 2015 Newsletter
Studio Closure Dates: The studio IS open Wednesday, November 11 (Veteran’s Day). Thanksgiving Break will be Tuesday, November 24 through Sunday, November 29. Christmas Break will be Tuesday, December 22 through Sunday, January 3.
Dress Code: As we are entering the colder months, please make sure you send your dancer in warm dance clothes. Tights and a long sleeved or three quarter sleeved leotard is recommended for those who get chilly easily. Wrapped ballet sweaters, form fitting cardigans, and leg-warmers are also permissible, but please no baggy jackets, coats, or sweatshirts!
Spirit Week: Each November marks an anniversary of when Ms. Abby took ownership of GYDA. This year during the week of November 16, dancers are invited to go GYDA crazy when they come to dance class! Wearing pink, black, white, recital t-shirts, or any creative way you can think of representing our studio is encouraged!
Variety Show Sign-Up: In December, I’ll have appointment sign-up sheets for dancers who are interested in performing in our 2016 Variety Show with either a solo, duet, trio, or small group. These are optional additional routines to add to your dancer’s regular class(es). These lessons typically meet every other week from January-June and are usually a half hour in length each. The cost per half hour for a solo is $30, $15 per dancer for a duet, $10 per dancer for a trio, or $7.50 per dancer for a small group. Dancers who do a Variety Show Routine such as these get to pick their costume, music, and have a say in the steps and presentation of the routine. More information will be on the appointment sheets.
Nutcracker: Save the date! Our 2015 Nutcracker will be held on Saturday December 12 at St. John Evangelical Church of Christ’s Faith Hall (307 West Clay Street in Collinsville). Admission is a paper item, hygiene item, BOXED PASTA, or NEW TOY for ages 8 AND OLDER. The food pantry is in high demand of boxed pasta (macaroni and cheese, ramen noodles, hamburger helper, etc.) and toys for older girls and boys. Toys such as board games, sports balls, etc. Any new toys or non-perishable food items will be accepted, but help us spread the word for the demand!
More Than Just Great Dancing: In October, our studio joined the community of More Than Just Great Dancing with over 130 other studios from around the world. This affiliation/licensing is for select studios that have a specific passion and desire for the dance world. We teach our dancers that dance is MORE than being a great dancer, we help others (like our Nutcracker!), learn life lessons, about community, family, friendship, confidence, helping others, and so much MORE. I am excited to be part of this special opportunity!
Office Schedule: If you have questions while at the studio, feel free to ask one of our office ladies! Mondays are the same with Mrs. Ginny, Tuesdays and Thursdays you’ll see Mrs. Jessica, and Wednesdays you’ll see Mrs. Michelle. These ladies are friendly, knowledgeable, and here to help! All have been with the studio for a minimum of 7 years and know our policies, programs, and just about anything else you’d want to know to a T!
Christmas Bash Save The Date: We are going to throw an EPIC Christmas Bash for our dancers on Saturday, December 5, complete with a DJ, games, snacks, and more! We will send out an invitation via email to you in a few weeks!
October 2015 Newsletter
Columbus Day: GYDA will be OPEN for classes on Monday, October 12!
Nutcracker Ad Forms: These forms & payment are due October 1!
Payment: Don’t forget—payment is due at your FIRST LESSON of the month and is considered late after the 10th! We will be getting you a quarterly invoice out this month.
Bert’s Thank You: A big thank you from our competitive dance company, Grace Dance Company and their families to everyone who supported us at our Bert’s Chuckwagon Fundraiser this past weekend!
Bring a Friend Week: October 12-15 is Bring a Friend Week! Does your dancer LOVE to dance? I bet their friends would too! Bring A Friend Week is a great way for your dancer’s friends to try dance out for free! For each friend that your dancer brings to class they will win one ticket for our many drawings that week! We are giving away a HUGE rainbow zebra named Sparkles (who is on display now!) and many other dance trinkets. Tickets will be given for any non-GYDA visitor. Siblings that aren’t currently enrolled will also count as a friend. Current GYDA dancers are eligible for the drawings.
Bring Mom/Halloween Costume Week: The week of Oct. 26-29th, dancers are invited to bring their moms to class to participate/watch. Dancers may also wear their (non-scary) Halloween costumes to class the same week. We look forward to showing you all of the things we have been working on this year!
Movie Night: We will be having our first Movie Night on Saturday October 10 from 5-7:30pm at the studio! Cost is $5/dancer and a snack to share with the group. This is for current dancers 3 years old-2nd grade. Sign up in the hall today! Friends are welcome
Dress Code: Don’t forget! Dancers need a leotard, tights, and their hair UP for every class. All ballet dancers need pink ballet shoes, jazz dancers need tan jazz shoes, and tap dancers need black tap shoes. Dancers in a two hour tech class or more can wear dance shorts/pants for tap & jazz but all ballet dancers need a leotard only, or a ballet skirt—no shorts/pants! Cold weather is coming—make sure your dancer has a form-fitting cardigan or dance sweater she can wear—no jackets please!
Nutcracker 2015: Our show is approaching quickly! Our show is finalized for Saturday December 12 at St. John’s Evangelical Church of Christ’s Faith Hall at 6pm. Admission to the show is either a new toy, canned good, hygiene item, or paper item per person. All proceeds will be donated to The Collinsville Food Pantry. Please bless others during this holiday season by bring MANY of all items!
Christmas Bash: Save the date! On Saturday December 5 we will have our 2nd Annual Christmas Bash for current GYDA dancers!
Splits Club/Time Step Troupe: NEW this year! We are having a SPLITS CLUB and a TIME STEP TROUPE for dancers to work towards membership! Our Splits Club will be split into different levels.
You must meet each level requirement three consecutive weeks to achieve it.
- Level 1: one split down
- Level 2: two splits down
- Level 3: all splits down
- Level 4: all splits down and working on oversplits.
The Time Step Troupe will be broken down into the following levels:
- Level 1: saying and doing the first 3 standard time steps without error
- Level 2: saying and doing the first 3 traveling time steps without error
- Level 3: saying and doing the misc. other time steps as they learn them without error.
We will showcase these achievements on the bulletin board all year and each of the members will be recognized at recital