Happy Halloween + October News + The Mystery of Two Left Feet

We love October, and not just because we get to see all the dancers in costume. We also love giving dancers a chance to practice learning a small piece of choreography (whether about pumpkins or witches or broomsticks), so that when spring session comes they'll be more prepared to learn their performance routines.

Dancers are invited to wear costumes to class during the week of October 24th through October 28th. Please do be aware that Tuesday students will not have class on Tuesday, October 31st (Halloween). We have already accommodated for that holiday in your fall session schedule and pricing, so go enjoy the festivities.

MOVEMENT OF THE MONTH: WHEELBARROW
In the spirit of Halloween and our "oh so fall" photo, why not practice wheelbarrows with your child at home. Just hold onto his legs between the knee and ankle as he "walks on his hands." Wheelbarrows aren't just fun (and seasonally appropriate), they also improve shoulder and arm muscles all the way down to the smallest muscles in children's wrists, which helps to develops the strength young children will later need to write.

SEEKING TWO LEFT FEET
Returning dancers! Please check the jazz shoes that went home with you after the performance this past spring. One of our teen dancers ended up with two right foot jazz shoes (sizes 7 and 9). If you have the two left, please contact Angela, who will arrange the switch.

DANCE IN THE NEWS: DANCING TO THE RYTHM OF WORDS WORKSHOP
Teacher Sonja's dance company, Liss Fain Dance, is sponsoring a free dance/creative writing workshop for students ages 8-12 at 826 Valencia on October 21st from 3-5 p.m. Dancers will write a story and bring it to life with movement. Interested? Register here!

QUICK TIP: HYDRATE IN THE MORNING
Dehydrated dancers? Give your child a cup of water first thing--and while you're at it, drink one yourself.

It's Time + September News

It's time! The studio is open for fall semester today. We can't wait to see you this week.

Please read on for an announcement about our new teacher, some ideas about the drop off policy, movement of the month, tips, and more.

OUR NEW BALLET TEACHER
Steppin' Out is so excited to welcome our new ballet teacher, Sonja Dale. A classically-trained ballerina, Sonja currently teaches at the Orinda Academy of Ballet and the Professional Ballet School. Sonja has performed with acclaimed Bay Area companies including ODC/Dance and The Mark Foehringer Dance Project, and taught for Shawl-Anderson Modern Dance Center and the Menlo Park Academy of Dance, among others. You can read more about Sonja's background on our website. Sonja will be teaching the ballet portion of pre-teen/teen Ballet/Tap/Jazz Intermediate II/III from 5-6:30 on Wednesdays as well as Advanced Teen Ballet from 6-7 p.m. that same day.

You can learn more about all of our 2017-18 teachers here.

REGISTER NOW
Want to add a class? Have a friend who wants to dance? We still have room in a few classes. Register here or get more information about our classestuition and policies, or teaching staff.

The following classes still have spots--pass it on!

  • Tuesday 3-4 p.m.: Tap/Pre-ballet/tumbling ages 3-4 with teachers Angela Rose Dorantes & Dora Donovan
  • Tuesday 4-5 p.m.: Tap/Ballet Beginning II ages 6-8 with teachers Angela Rose Dorantes & Dora Donovan
  • Wednesday 10:30-11:30 a.m.: Tap/Pre-ballet/Tumbling ages 3-5 with teacher Angela Rose Dorantes

WHERE TO GO DURING CLASS
As we start the semester, please review our class policies. We encourage parents of dancers ages seven and older to please drop off their child rather than staying to observe (at least after the initial transition is complete). Dancers younger than seven may be dropped off too, depending on the comfort level of parent and child.

What can you do in one hour while your dancer is taking class?

* Take younger siblings to the new Chan Kaajal parkaround the corner on 17th and Shotwell!
* Stop into Gus's Market to get some grocery shopping done or grab a healthy snack
* Get your car washed at Auto City Car Wash
* Meet a friend (or another parent in class) at the Stable Cafe 
* Grab a coffee at Linea
* Head to the Flying Pig for board games and sandwiches
* Explore the relatively new Tartine Manufactory(before the lines get too long) or the nearby Heath Ceramics
* Grab some tacos at Mateo's 
* Window shop on Valencia Street

MOVEMENT OF THE MONTH: SIDE STEP
The side step is a building block of many hip hop routines that anyone can do--even parents! An easy way to get the rhythm of this step is to clap each time the legs come together. Start by stepping the right leg out and bending the knees. Then bring the left leg in to meet the right and clap your hands together. Remind your dancers to use inner thigh adduction to bring their legs together! Then repeat on the left. Once you have the basic step down, vary the speed, stepping quickly or slowly or mixing speeds together.

DANCE IN THE NEWS: THE SPECIAL BRAINS OF DANCERS
Submitted by a Steppin' Out community member, this month's featured article highlights a recent study of dancer's brains by two American universities. Find out how your dancer's brain might be developing.

QUICK TIP: PACK HER BAG
Younger dancers who might be nervous beginning classes for the first time will benefit if you pack their bags with them in advance. As you assemble water bottles, shoes, sweaters, and special objects, have a fun chat about what to expect--it will pay off later.

Fall Registration Is Now Open + August News

Public registration is now open for fall--pass it on! For those who have already registered, read on for some resources for purchasing dance attire plus our regular monthly newsletter content.

REGISTER NOW
Public registration is now open on a first-come, first-served basis. Register now or get more information about our classestuition and policies, or teaching staff.

WHERE TO BUY SHOES AND CLOTHES
Every year around this time we forward you some basic information about shopping for dance attire in San Francisco so you can get prepared for the start of the fall semester on September 5th. If you're curious about our casual and supportive dress code, you can read it at the bottom of our tuition and policies page.

Shoes:

If you are buying new shoes, please buy black tap shoes and pink ballet shoes for girls and black dance shoes for boys. For teens, please buy black tap and jazz shoes, pink or nude ballet shoes, and nude character shoes (if needed). If you already have shoes or find some second hand, any color is fine!

We do have some tap and ballet shoes in the shoe bin for you to use on a first come, first served basis. If you find a pair that fits, feel free to take it. If you've outgrown an old pair, we'd love your old shoes back so that another student might benefit from them. 

Otherwise try:

Clothing: 

  • Discount Dance also offers clothing
  • Target has a dance section
  • Sears also offers dance and active wear
  • eBay and craigslist are good sources for second-hand dance attire

MOVEMENT OF THE MONTH: AMI
The tail end of summer is the perfect time to try out a hula move (which also helps us with a hula hoop!). To ami, have your dancers bend their knees while rotating their hips right, back, left, and front for a full circle of hip rotation. This is not only a beautiful hula move, but also a great hip warm up before any style of dance. In traditional hula, dancers ami when facing forward but also when moving their bodies in a complete rotation, using one foot as a pivot and taking a step on the outside foot for each hip circle. Remember to balance by rotating the hips an equal number of times in each direction.


DANCE IN THE NEWS: AYODELE CASEL'S TAP DANCE ARTISTRY
Your whole family needs to see Casel's amazing tap sequence, part The New York Times' "Speaking In Dance" series.

QUICK TIP: LET YOUR CHILD BE CHOREOGRAPHER
Keep your child's interest in dance from waning over the break: let him make up a movement phrase and teach it to you.

Congratulations to the Steppin' Out Community

We did it! Together we pulled off another fabulous year. Whether your part was joining what has got to be the most supportive audience in the West...or dancing your heart out on stage....or getting your dancers to the performance and having their backs in the moments they needed it most...whatever role you played, you are a part of what makes this event possible and we thank you:

Thank you to the parents, grandparents, and other grown ups who brought their dancers to class every week.

Thank you to the dancers who worked so diligently all year long and who supported each other and became part of the Steppin' Out family. You were simply wonderful.

Thank you to our amazing teachers who gave not only their time and their creativity but also their love.

Thank you to our staff for keeping us on track and organized all year long.

Thank you to our community--to all the people who stepped in when we really needed someone...to work the curtains, to staff the table, to make another pot of coffee--thank you!

Thank you to our volunteers who made sure the kids were where they needed to be every minute of each show.

Thank you to the parents, grandparents, and friends who sewed skirts and capes, made roses, and otherwise went way beyond the call of duty to make the dancers look amazing on stage.

Thank you for your generous donations and the way you always support each other when someone could use a hand.

Thank you to everyone!


This was a magical--and memorable--year. From dying costumes in bathtubs to misplaced leotards to smaller dancers who just needed the right kind of motivation, from moments unexpected to moments simply breathtaking, the force was strong this year (strong enough to protect all of our dancers from a malfunctioning lightsaber, for one). We are moved, inspired, and deeply grateful.

Steppin' Out is now officially on summer break until after Labor Day, when our fall sessions will begin and our newsletters will resume. Look for Fall 2017 schedule information in July, registration in August, and classes in September. Because life is just better with dance.

Have a wonderful summer!
 

Performance Invitation & Reminders

For our wider community, we'd like to formally invite you to the Steppin' Out 2017 Annual Performance at Everett Middle School on June 3rd and June 4th! There is no charge to attend any or all of the three shows and parking is available for $10 in the school parking lot (at 450 Church Street). Our daytime shows on Saturday, June 3rd at 11 a.m. or 2 p.m. showcase all of our dancers, while our evening show on Sunday, June 4th at 5 p.m. features our older dancers only. 

For our current dancers, we'd like to remind you of some key information about the upcoming dress rehearsal and the performance:

  1. Dress Rehearsal is this Sunday, May 21st at Everett Middle School. Regular classes will still be held on Saturday, May 20th. Please check the Dress Rehearsal Schedule for your child's call time (and please arrive on time for your scheduled 30-minute window). Make up and special hair styles are not necessary for the dress rehearsal.
  2. Performance fees and costume payments are now due. Please pay during class or make arrangements with Angela to pay these fees so that your child will have a costume during the rehearsal. A staff member will be on site during the rehearsal to take payment for costumes and sell tights (if needed), but we need costumes picked up as soon as possible. Please review our Costume Information page to be sure you have everything you need.
  3. The actual performances are scheduled as listed for Saturday, June 3rd at 11a.m.Saturday, June 3rd at 2 p.m., and Sunday, June 4th at 5 p.m. Call time is 30 minutes prior to the start of the performance. Hair and make up should be fixed before to arriving at the theater (see Performance Hair & Make Up Guidelines for more). Parents are responsible for changing their own children's costumes and shoes. Parking is available on site for $10 and flowers and water will be for sale as well. Don't forget to invite your family and friends--no tickets are needed and everyone is welcome.
  4. We need parent volunteers! Parent volunteers sit with their child's class during the performance to make sure all dancers stay together quietly and to walk them back and forth between backstage and their theater seats. Volunteers have an excellent view of the performance. For classes with dancers younger than eight, we need two volunteers per class. Older dancers are expected to sit together without supervision (but parents are always welcome to join them as well). Please sign up to volunteer at the studio or email Angela.
  5. At the end of each show, all of the dancers will take a bow together. The dancers will then remain on stage until a parent or guardian comes to pick them up. Feel free to take pictures as you congratulate your performers!
  6. Some schedule reminders: Saturday classes will run as usual on May 20th and then dancers will return on the 21st for Dress Rehearsal. The following week, we will run normal classes Tuesday, 5/23 through Saturday, 5/27. Then the studio will be closed during the week of May 30th through June 2nd, but we'll see you at the final performances on June 3rd and 4th. After the performances, Steppin' Out will be on summer break until after Labor Day, when our fall sessions will begin (look for a registration reminder in August).
 

Showtime! + May News

It's hard to believe we are only three weeks from our dress rehearsal--and only five weeks from our final performances! All of our dancers have been working hard to prepare for their special moments and we know their hard work will pay off on stage. 

PERFORMANCE INFORMATION
If you missed our special performance newsletter, you can view it online here. Below are some highlights plus new information about costumes. 

1. Performance fees are now due. You are welcome to pay for your costume and performance fee together if that makes it easier (see below for more information on costumes). We take cash, checks, and credit cards (and please speak to Angela if finances ever pose a problem).

2. Please check the following links for further information:

Dress Rehearsal Schedule 

Performance Schedules:

Performance Hair & Make Up Guidelines 

Costume Information

3) Costume Details: You can now check your dancer's costume plans (and costume pricing) by clicking here. You may bring home costumes as soon as they arrive and you pay for them, but please hang them in a safe place until dress rehearsal. For your convenience, we sell high-quality tights in various colors for $5 at the front desk (or feel free to provide your own). As always, should finances pose a problem, simply speak to Angela.

4) Schedule Reminder: Steppin' Out's final class of the spring semester will be Saturday, May 27th. There will be no classes held the week of May 30th-June 3rd. Instead, we'll have a short break during the week and the performances on the weekend of June 3rd and 4th. Also, please note that Saturdaystudents will have regular class sessions on Saturday, May 20th, the day before the dress rehearsal. 

MOVEMENT OF THE MONTH: EXTENDED ARMS

This month as we finalize those small details that matter so much for on-stage polish, have your dancers start working on extending their arms. Floppy arms don't stun on stage, but beautiful extension is powerful (and can cover for any missteps). Have your dancers imagine their arms as wings, starting not from the sides of their bodies but from their backs. With their shoulder blades sliding down their backs, have them send energy along their entire arm and out through their graceful fingers. If their fingers get too stiff, have them drop their fingers with their arms still extended, then extend fingers one more time. 

BRING YOUR CREW TO THE SHOW
The "performance fee" model means that we don't sell tickets to our performances, so bring anyone and everyone. Family, friends, teachers and more are very welcome to attend any or all of the performances; please spread the word!

DANCE IN THE NEWS: BAY AREA DANCE WEEK
Last week was Bay Area Dance Week, an annual celebration of local dance in all of its incarnations. Read about the events of the week here and be sure to put it on your calendar for next year!

QUICK TIP: SMILE LIKE YOU MEAN IT
We ask our dancers to smile on stage, but why not give them an image to go along with it? Tell your children to think of a close friend or favorite pet to help bring a smile to their faces when the curtain parts.

Steppin' Out Annual Performance Costume List 2017

Tuesday 10:30 & Wednesday 10:30   $40

Tap: Purple leotard, silver skirt and sequin belt

Ballet:  Purple leotard, mermaid skirt and starfish hair clip

·       You will need white tights 

Tuesday 3:00 (front)    $32

Tap & Ballet: pink tutu dress and hair clip

·       You will need white tights

Tuesday 4:00 (front)    $42

Tap: Hot pink leotard, black fringe skirt and feather headband

Ballet: Hot pink leotard, pink tutu, and unicorn headband

·       You will need white tights

Tuesday 4:00 (back)   $46

Tap:  turquoise leotard and sequin skirt

Ballet: turquoise leotard, Hawaiian print skirt and flower for the hair

·      You will need tights white tights

Tuesday 5:00 (front) $12

Creative Movement/Jazz: Black tank top and cheetah print leggings

Tuesday 5:00 (back) $42

Tap: Romper

Jazz: Black tank and sparkle skirt

·      You will need nude colored tights or bare legs

Wednesday 9:30 $15 girls $5 boys

Creative movement: 

Girls: Blue with white polka dot dress and yellow leggings

Boys: Blue shirt (bring your own light blue pants)

Wednesday 4:00 (front) $45

Tap: Yellow dress, blue cape and yellow hat

Ballet: Yellow dress and rhinestone headband

·       You will need white tights

Wednesday 4:00 (Back)   $40

Tap:  White leotard and 50’s skirt (skirt is on loan and will need to be returned after) short white socks

Ballet:  White leotard, Hawaiian print skirt and flower for the hair

·       Bare legs or nude color tights

Wednesday 5:00 (front)   $48

Ballet: Red and black Don Quixote tutu with fan

·       You will need white tights

Wednesday 5:00 (back) $40

Lyrical Jazz: White leotard and white skirt (skirt is on loan from Angela)

·      You will need nude tights or bare legs

Wednesday 6:00 (Back) $3

Ballet: Same white leotard as jazz, water color sarong (on loan from Angela) and flower for the hair

·      You will need nude tights or bare legs

Thursday 9:30   $43

Tap: pink leotard and fairy skirt

Ballet: pink leotard and shimmery ballet skirt

Konrad: ballet-black t-shirt and silver belt & Tap: suit

·      You will need white tights

Thursday 4:00 (front)   $48

Tap:  Sky blue leotard, sequin skirt, and headband with bow

Ballet:  Sky blue leotard, butterfly skirt, and headband with bow

·      You will need white tights

Thursday 4:00 (back) $50 for the girls and $25 for Tate

Tap-girls: white leotard, red skater skirt, red sequin sash, red bow for the hair

Tap-Tate: Please provide your own white or red shirt (t-shirt is ok), and black pants or shorts I will provide the red sequin sash for the waist.

Ballet: white leotard is to be worn under Star Wars costume (except Tate-no leotard)

Thursday 5:00 (front)   $40

Tap & Ballet: lavender tutu dress

·       You will need white tights

Dominic: mom’s making something special

 Thursday 5:00 (back) ladies $12 men $10

Ladies: You will need to provide your own black pants, shorts, or capi pants. Price includes a blue top and gold cuff bracelet.

Men:  You will need to provide your own black pants or shorts and a black shirt.  Price includes a gold hat

Saturday 9:00 (front)   $40

Tap & Ballet:  Fuchsia color leotard, sparkle skirt and sparkle hair clip

·      You will need white tights

Saturday 9:00 (back)   $40

Tap & Ballet: Black leotard, colorful skater skirt and sequin belt.  Sequin bow for tap and hats for ballet (hats are on loan from Angela).

·      You will need nude colored tights

Saturday 10:00 (front)   $40

Tap & Ballet:  Light blue dance dress and hair clip

·      You will need white tights

Saturday 10:00 (back)   $46

Tap & Lyrical Jazz: Teal dance dress and bling hair clip

·       You will need nude tights

Saturday 11:00 (front)   $35

Tap:  Black biketard and green/blue dress

Ballet:  Black biketard, hot pink skirt, and hot pink bow for the hair

·      You will need nude tights or bare legs

Saturday 11:00 (back) $42

Tap:  Black leotard and red swing skirt

Jazz:  You will need to provide your own “Dace audition” outfit.  Think leg warmers, off the shoulder t shirt, wrap sweater, ballet skirt, colorful and fun!!!!

Saturday 12:00 (back) $45 (ladies)

Tap ladies: Primary color dress and nude tights or bare legs

Jazz ladies: Price includes black shimmery shirt.  You will need to provide your own black bottoms (shorts, Capri, pants, leggings, or skirt) and a black top to go under the shimmery shirt.  Black top should be a fitted tank top, cami, or leotard.

Quinn: For Jazz wear any style black shorts or pants and a black shirt. Any style shirt is fine and if you find something with mesh even better! For tap please provide your own black pants and white, red, blue or yellow colored shirt.  Wear accessories like suspenders and/or a long tie, maybe a hat? Have fun and think La La Land!

Saturday 12:00 (front) $25-ladies TBD men

Jazz ladies:  Price includes a fun top. You will need to provide your own black bottoms (shorts, pants, or Capri) I suggest you wear the same black bottom as the Thursday Jazz dance.

Jazz men: TBD

Tap ladies: You will need to provide your own black dress (or Black pants and top if you prefer that).  Dress must hit above the knee (but not too short) and have some swing to the skirt.  Each dancer will need to provide their own accessories.  Dancer has a chosen an accessory color and they must find a minimum of 2 accessories that color to wear with the black dress (or pants).  Accessories can include a belt, hat, glove, bracelets, hair clip, or earrings just to give you some ideas.

Tap men: You will need to provide your own black pants, white colored shirt and accessories of your choice.  Alex Y= Blue and Alex F= Red

Steppin' Out 2017 Annual Performance Information

We are currently in the final two months of preparation for our big event! As we prepare, here are some things you will see at the studio:

  • Classes will begin to practice in front of each other (back studio watch front and front watch back) or parents attending that day
  • Mirrors will be covered so dancers can better learn their dances (without relying on the mirror)
  • Once costumes arrive, students will try them on and practice in them in front of the mirror

There are only seven remaining weeks of class, so please try to attend every session.

Performance Fee/Tickets:

We are now collecting the performance fee for each dancer who will be participating in the annual performance (we hope every student will!). Performance fees are $30/dancer plus $10 for each additional sibling. The fee replaces the need for tickets--please bring as many family members and friends to the performance as you would like for no additional charge. Please bring a check, cash, or credit card to the desk no later than April 30th to pay the performance fee. If paying the performance fee poses a financial hardship, please contact Angela.

Costumes:

The only other fee will be the costume charge. We are still finalizing costumes for many of the dancers, but you can expect costumes to range from $30-$60 per class. If your child will not be performing, she or he is still welcome to order a costume. If paying for costumes poses a financial hardship, please contact Angela.

Location:

All performances and the dress rehearsal will be held at Everett Middle School at 450 Church St

Parking during the performance will be available on site for $10/car (proceeds benefit the Everett PTA).

Dress Rehearsal:

This year we will have the opportunity to practice our dancers on our actual performance stage at Everett Middle School. This is a great opportunity for our dancers to get a feel for the stage and work on spacing. Dress rehearsal will be held on Sunday, May 21st from 2-8 p.m. You do not need to attend for the entire six hours--instead you will be called for a 30-minute window (please arrive on time). Please check the schedule to see what time your child's class is called.

Performances:

To avoid a five-hour marathon, our classes will be divided among three performances of 1.5-2 hours each. To find out when your child will perform, please check the schedules below. Please make sure to read carefully to find the day and time of your child's class as some songs are used in multiple shows but by different classes with different choreography. 

Teacher News:

At Steppin' Out, we feel that the best teachers are working artists.. but sometimes they have to perform, too! Recently, Teacher Zoe has been away working on a musical called "Noise Off" with the Sierra Repertory Theatre. While she's been out, Teacher Dora has learned all of Zoe's dances and has been covering her classes. Zoe will be back in the middle of May. In addition, Teacher Jordon, who has been a part of the Steppin' Out family for six years, has been cast as Eleanor in the Cirque du Soliel Beatles show in Las Vegas! She will be leaving for this amazing opportunity in the middle of May, but will fly back to be with her Steppin' Out students for their performance. Teacher Zoe will fill in for Jordan during the second half of May and help Jordan's students with all of their dances.

Performance Hair & Make Up

All dancers should wear some make up to avoid being washed out on stage. For age-appropriate guidelines, see our Hair and Make Up Requirements.

Performance Hair & Make Up Information

Make Up:

Students are required to wear stage makeup during the performance so they don't appear washed out by the lights on stage. Below is a helpful guide to determine how much make up your dancer should wear:

ages 2.5-5: lipstick or lip gloss and blush
ages 6-8: lipstick or lip gloss, blush, and a small amount of eye make up
ages 9-12: lipstick, blush, and eye make up
ages 13-up: lipstick, blush, eye shadow, eyeliner, and mascara

*all boys should wear blush so they don't look like ghosts on stage

Students are welcome to wear more makeup than listed for each age group. Make up can be in any color you choose.

Hair:

Students must have their hair combed the day of the show. Students may wear any hairstyle they desire but should take into consideration any costume accessories such as hats or crowns when choosing a style. 

Sunday June 4, 2017 5 P.M. Performance

The following classes will be performing on Sunday, June 4, 2017 at 5 p.m. (official order tbd):

Tuesday 5:00: The Schuyler Sisters & It’s Time

Wednesday 5:00: Bridge Over Troubled Water

Wednesday 6:00: How Far I’ll Go

Saturday 12:00: Another Day of Sun & The Greatest

Wednesday 5:00: Don Quixote

Thursday 5:00: 24K Magic

Saturday 10:00: Gypsy & Scars To Your Beautiful

Saturday 11:00: I Hope I Get It & Steam Heat

Saturday 12:00: Anything Goes & Cheap Thrills

Quinn’s Solo 

Saturday June 3, 2017 2 p.M. Performance

The following classes will be performing on Saturday June 3, 2017 at 2 p.m. (official order tbd):

Wednesday 4:00: Beauty and the Beast & Madeline

Wednesday 4:00: We Go Together & We Know the Way

Wednesday 5:00: Don Quixote

Wednesday 5:00: Bridge Over Troubled Water

Wednesday 6:00: How Far I’ll Go

Thursday 5:00: 24K Magic

Saturday 9:00: Magic Tutu & L-O-V-E

Saturday 9:00: Almost There & Lollipop

Saturday 10:00: Be Our Guest & I’m Late I’m Late

Saturday 10:00: Gypsy & Scars To Your Beautiful

Saturday 11:00: Trashin’ The Camp & Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

Saturday 11:00: I Hope I Get It & Steam Heat

Saturday 12:00: Anything Goes & Cheap Thrills

Saturday 12:00: Another Day Of Sun & The Greatest 

Saturday June 3, 2017 11 a.M. Performance

The following classes will be performing on Saturday, June 3, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. (official order tbd):

Tuesday 10:30 & Wednesday 10:30: On the Good ship Lollipop & Part of Your World

Tuesday 3:00: The Pink Panther & Coronation Band Suite

Tuesday 4:00: Ballin’ the Jack & The Unicorn

Tuesday 4:00: Build Me Up Buttercup & How Far I’ll Go

Tuesday 5:00: The Schuyler Sisters & It’s Time

Tuesday 5:00: Here Comes the Lion Guard

Wednesday 9:30: Teddy Bear’s Picnic

Thursday 9:30: Never Smile at a Crocodile & Be Our Guest

Thursday 4:00: Wink and a Smile & Here Comes the Sun

Thursday 4:00: Star Wars & Accidentally in Love

Thursday 5:00: Animal Crackers In My Soup & Colors of the Wind

Wednesday 5:00: Bridge Over Troubled Water

Wednesday 6:00: How Far I’ll Go

Saturday 12:00: Another Day of Sun & The Greatest

Dress Rehearsal Schedule: Sunday, May 21st, 2-8 p.m.

This is a great opportunity for our dancers to get a feel for the stage and work on spacing.  We are not asking all the dancers to come for the entire six  hours--only for 30 minutes--so please be on time. Here's when to come:

2:15-2:45

Tuesday 10:30 & Wednesday 10:30: On the Good Ship Lollipop & Part of Your World
Saturday 10:00: I’m Late I’m Late & Be Our Guest

2:45-3:30

Thursday 4:00: Wink and a Smile & Here Comes the Sun
Tuesday 3:00: The Pink Panther & Coronation Band Suite
Thursday 9:30: Never Smile at a Crocodile & Be Our Guest

3:30-4:00

Tuesday 4:00: How Far I’ll Go & Build Me Up Buttercup
Wednesday 4:00: Beauty and the Beat & Madeline

4:00-4:30

Wednesday 9:30: Teddy Bear’s Picnic
Saturday 9:00: L-O-V-E & Magic Tutu
Tuesday 4:00: The Unicorn & Ballin’ the Jack

4:30-5:00

Wednesday 4:00: We Go Together & We Know The Way
Tuesday 5:00: Here Comes The Lion Guard
Thursday 5:00: Colors of the Wind & Animal Crackers in My Soup

5:00-5:30

Saturday 9:00: Almost There & Lollipop
Saturday 11:00: Trashin’ The Camp & Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

5:30-6:00

Thursday 4:00: Accidentally in Love & Star Wars
Tuesday 5:00: The Schuyler Sisters & It’s Time

6:00-6:30

Saturday 11:00: Steam Heat & I Hope I get It
Saturday 10:00: Gypsy & Scares To Your Beautiful
Wednesday 5:00: Don Quixote

6:30-7:00

Thursday 5:00: 24K Magic
Saturday 12:00: Anything Goes & Cheap Thrills

7:00-8:00

Wednesday 5:00: Bridge Over Troubled Water
Wednesday 6:00: How Far I’ll Go
Saturday 12:00: The Greatest & Another Day Of Sun

 

Practice Makes Perfect + April News

Spring has officially arrived. Whether you've already finished your spring break or are eagerly looking forward to its arrival, Steppin' Out wants you to know that we hope spring treats you right--and that we look forward to seeing you at the studio whenever you're in town. Steppin' Out will be open this entire spring so please come and dance with us.

Now is the time for all dancers to really focus on learning their performance pieces. Please attend class whenever possible and practice, practice, practice. Also, keep an eye on your inbox. Currently registered families will receive a special email with details and information about this year's performance on Monday, April 10th.

MOVEMENT OF THE MONTH: GROW

Now that spring has sprung, we're all attuned to the image of seeds beginning to sprout. This image can help our dancers better understand extension while also having fun. Have your children start as tiny seeds all curled up and then begin to grow and expand from their centers outward, eventually reaching arms, fingers, legs and toes into as great a stretch as possible. Tell your dancers that this is what they should feel when extending an arm or a leg in a dance routine--as if they couldn't stretch even another millimeter! 

WORLD MUSIC & DANCE TAKEOVER AT SOTA
Treat yourself to music and dance while supporting SOTA! Friday and Saturday, April 21st and 22nd, at 7:30 p.m., the Dan Kryston Memorial Theater will showcase Taiko drumming, Afro-Brazilian, Afro Cuban & West African drumming and dance, senior compositions, Tahitian/Taiko crossover, a Mariachi performance and a Middle Eastern music ensemble debut. Learn more here.

DANCE IN THE NEWS: GAY IN BALLET
We at Steppin' Out were inspired by the story of two out ballet dancers, James Whiteside, a soloist with the American Ballet Theatre, and Parker Kit Hill, a performer who has also been cast on tv. Their perspectives about being "male, but not the correct male" and their honestly about the discrimination they've faced make for powerful and important reading. Read Gay in Ballet: Two Men are Defying Traditions in the Dance World.

QUICK TIP: PRACTICE TOGETHER
Younger dancers learn best when their grown ups practice along with them, so why not learn your child's dance too?

 

Performance Save the Date + March News

We are so excited to announce that the Steppin' Out annual performance dates have been confirmed for June 3rd and 4th at Everett Middle School. We'll showcase half of our dancers on Saturday, June 3rd at 11 a.m. and the other half later that day at 2 p.m. The advanced dancers will also be performing on Sunday, June 4th at 5 p.m.

We'll start measuring for costumes in class this month, so please let us know if your child won't be performing this year (you are always welcome to order a costume even if you can't perform). We'll have more details about the performances (and dress rehearsals) soon, but for now please mark your calendars and encourage your dancers to keep practicing their routines.

MOVEMENT OF THE MONTH: MIRROR MIRROR!

Mirroring another dancer is a great way to build skills and confidence! Have your dancer face a friend and take turns leading and following each other's movements as accurately as possible. This activity builds body awareness and kinesthetic "listening"--those "follow the leader" skills we need for mastering many new somatic tasks--as well as providing lots of giggles and plenty of fun.

TEACHER OLIVIA AT FAMILIES WITH DISABILITIES RESOURCE FAIR
Steppin' Out's Teacher Olivia will be manning a table at the Support for Families of Children with Disabilities 2017 Information & Resource Conference next Saturday, March 11th at O'Connell school. She'll be sharing information about our classes for special needs students and about the Steppin' Out Special Needs Dance Company. Please spread the word about this wonderful event that supports families who are looking for activities or support for their children--or better yet, stop by and say hi.

DANCE IN THE NEWS
A great use for dance! High school dance marathon raises record of $800,000 for charity over 28 hours of shaking and sweating. Read more about this creative fundraising strategy.

QUICK TIP: DRESS THE PART
Does your child have a favorite pair of socks, necklace, or headband? Sometimes wearing a special piece of clothing can help dancers get in the mood to be fabulous.

All About Love + Steppin' Out February Newsletter

It's the month when we celebrate love (and during times like these, love is especially important). So this month we focus on our community. Our dancers are all different, and those differences make us colorful, but we are lucky to come together in our shared love of dance.

We're also thrilled to welcome some new students to Steppin' Out this spring semester. Now that the first few weeks have passed, we can report that our new dancers are integrating beautifully into our community. And our returning dancers are doing equally well, having now made the transition from break back into their school-year routines. Let's keep this momentum going as we begin our performance choreography!

MOVEMENT OF THE MONTH: TWIST WITH A PARTNER

This month is all about togetherness, so let's practice a move with a friend. Twisting, or moving the top half of the body in the opposite direction from the bottom half, strengthens core muscles and integrates left with right and top with bottom--but it's a lot more fun with a pal! Have your dancers face each other and join hands and hold on tightly. Bend their knees, lift their heels, and move their knees to the right and their upper bodies to the left, then shift in unison to the other side. Since they'll be facing each other, they'll be twisting in opposite directions, which creates added tension, allowing them to work on balance and further develop core strength. And if you've got some great twisting music, put it on! Great music just adds to the fun.


DANCE IN THE NEWS
Since we're promoting love this month, we wanted to share some love for Steppin' Out teacher Jordan Drew's recent performance. DawsonDanceSF Dances with Vigor and Truth, the Chronicle's review of the show, praises the program and describes how Jordan "carved out her classical moves with steely precision." Congratulations, Jordan! We can also report that at least two Steppin' Out students in the audience were in awe of your work!

QUICK TIP
Ask your children what their favorite thing was about class each day when they're finishing up at the studio. We predict you'll love what you hear.

Spring Registration + Steppin' Out January Newsletter

Happy New Year and welcome back to the studio! We hope you enjoyed your winter break as much as we did. We had so much fun this winter during Steppin' Out Winter Camp that we're brainstorming an early summer camp this year. Stay tuned for more details. 

The big news of the moment is that it's time to register for the spring semester, which begins January 17th. The Steppin' Out community is now invited to register for any class that still has space. On January 9th, all remaining spots will go public, so act now if you'd like to add a class or change your schedule. To register, click here. For more information, click here. For questions, comments, or concerns, please email Angela: angela@steppinoutsf.com.

MOVEMENT OF THE MONTH: LOG ROLL
January is a good month to get cozy with the floor. Teach your dancers how to roll with full extension: arms stretched overhead, legs straight, toes pointed, tummy muscles engaged. The more your dancers extend and engage, the easier it will be to roll which, in turn, will reinforce proper lifting and extension in their dancing. Tell your dancers to imagine touching one side of the room with their fingers and the other with their toes. Then let them experience how much harder it is to roll when they aren't extending in both directions. And don't forget to remind them of this trick when they come to class!

HAPPY DRY BIRTHDAY!
The rainy season is upon us, with a vengeance. Have a dry happy birthday just the way you want it. We offer fabulous and fun movement-themed birthday parties of any kind, from basic to turn-key, at can't-be-beat pricing. Reserve your party now--parties fill up fast when the weather's wet.

DANCE IN THE NEWS
Our amazing ballet teacher Jordan Drew will be performing at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts with her Isadora Duncan Dance Award–winning contemporary ballet company dawsondancesf on January 27 & 28 at 8pm. dawsondancesf is ballet like you've never seen it--classical ballet reimagined with energy and athleticism. You can read more about her company and the performance here. We at Steppin' Out have been amazed each time we've seen dawsondancesf live. Support Jordan and enjoy an amazing performance by buying your tickets now. Recommended for kids aged ten and up.

QUICK TIP
Sometimes the transition from break back into our normal routines can be tricky, especially for young dancers. Prepare your children by asking what they most remember about class. This quick visualization will make it easier to return to the studio.

Tis the Season + Steppin' Out December Newsletter

It's that time again: the only time of year we play the Frozen soundtrack. This month you'll hear both "Let it Go" and "Let it Snow" as our dancers spin with their nutcrackers (like one of our Wednesdaydancers in her Clara dress, pictured above). Please read on for all the information you need to know for the season, including which performance of "The Nutcracker" to attend, when the studio will be closed for the holidays, and how to register for spring.

HOLIDAY CLOSURE
Steppin' Out will be closed from Sunday, December 18th through Sunday, January 1st. You have not been charged for classes during this winter recess. Please enjoy your holidays.

MOVEMENT OF THE MONTH: JUMP
All that footwork we do in ballet class really helps your dancer prepare to defeat gravity and jump! Plies are a good base from which to start and land. Ask your dancers to bend their knees with a straight spine and knees and ankles in alignment. Then dancers can push into the floor with the balls of their feet and spring up, then return to their deep plies. After a few warm up jumps, try having your dancers give you a "high five" at increasingly greater heights. You might be surprised at how high they can go. 

WINTER CAMP
We still have space in Winter Camp and we've updated our camp page with each day's enrichment activities, including making fairy and wizard houses and ice skating! Whether you need coverage the whole break or just for a day here or there, Steppin' Out has you covered. Come take advantage of our magical winter days packed full of delightful, age-appropriate activities and surprises. Learn more or request dates on our Winter Camp page.
 
REGISTRATION NEWS
Many of you have begun asking about registration for the spring semester. We at Steppin' Out want our families to be able to plan ahead, so we've set up a page with all the registration details you need to know. The bottom line: Even if you're continuing in the same class, you'll need to register again on January 3rd. We'll send you an email with instructions on that date. Students continuing in the same class have guaranteed placement for the spring semester if they register by January 5th. We look forward to continuing to dance with your children for the duration of the 2016-2017 season.

WHICH NUTCRACKER?
During this time of year, many families choose to see this classic holiday ballet performed live. While there are many excellent options in the Bay Area, here are a few of our favorites:

The classic, featuring breathtaking performances and spectacular sets: 
San Francisco Ballet Nutcracker

The 50-minute version, perfect for the younger crowd:
Mark Foehringer's Nutcracker Sweets 

The whimsical, audience-participation option:
Dance Along Nutcracker: The Fantastic Adventures of Captain Nutcracker

DANCE IN THE NEWS
Robert Battle, the artistic director of Alvin Ailey Dance Company, discusses dance, the value of the arts, and humanity in general in this powerful video, Alvin Ailey's Enduring Vision.

QUICK TIP
Winter is a special time for theatrical performances, especially in San Francisco. Why not give your child the gift of an experience in lieu of a traditional present? Those memories can last a lifetime and help inspire your young performer. 

IN MEMORIAM
We at Steppin' Out were devastated to hear of this weekend's fire in the Oakland Arts Collective, the Ghost Ship. Our hearts to out to the arts community and all of the friends and family members who lost their loved ones.