All About Dance Lessons

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Each week Imperial Society of Teachers of Dacning Fellow and Examiner Phillip Stephens offers a review of the ABC hit show Dancing With The Stars. Phillip shares his thoughts on each couple, their costumes, their performance, their score, the judges' comments, etc, and offers great insight into the world of dancing. Click here for this weeks review

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If you'd like to become a dance teacher, or wish to gain professional degree certification as a dance educator or judge, contact Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (ISTD) Fellow and Examiner Phillip Stephens via The ISTD was founded in London, England, in 1904 and encompasses a wide range of dance styles. In the more than 100 years of its existence, the ISTD has become known as the World's Leading Dance Examinations Board.


All About Lessons

What type of lesson should I take? This is a question frequently asked by people enquiring about dance lessons. The answer depends on many factors, but is related to your underlying reason for wanting to learn to dance.

There are two main types of dance lessons: Group/Class and Private/One-on-one.

Group/Class lessons can focus on a particular dance, such as Argentine Tango, Two Step, or Swing, or can be on a variety of dances, such as one covering Waltz, Tango and Foxtrot, one covering Rumba, Cha-cha and Swing, or one that would cover all those dances. The group/class might be short term, say for 1 month, or it might last for 3 months depending on what is being covered in those particular sessions.

Some Group/Class lessons focus on wedding dance couples, so a partner is a must. Groups that cover Social dancing usually don’t require a partner because part of learning social dancing is the act of dancing with a variety of partners. Sometimes, classes are “open” – meaning that anyone with an interest in that class can join – while other classes are “closed” to a particular group of people.

Private lessons are not necessarily given in a private room. The term actually refers to taking one-on-one instruction from a professional. The training can be for an individual taking a lesson in which the instructor partners the client as needed. If the training is for a couple, the instructor will partner with both clients from time to time to make sure each client has a full understanding of the material being taught.

Some students take mostly group/class lessons augmented by the occasional private lesson used to refine knowledge gained in class. Others generally take only private lessons, but will join a workshop offered by a visiting coach or a workshop organized for a particular purpose such as one that specializes in styling, leg and footwork, better dance frame, etc.

For many people, the determining factor in what type of lessons they should take will be a financial one. As with golf, tennis, bowling, fishing, hunting or any other recreational pastime, people who are into dancing must be willing to commit resources to their hobby. Group/Class lessons are best for people who just want to learn the basics so they can have fun on the social dance floor. People for whom dancing becomes a hobby or who wish to do exhibitions or to compete must be prepared to take the more expensive private lessons.

Still have questions? Send us an email or give us a call. We’ll be more than happy to answer your questions.
Phillip Stephens 713=248-2299 /

Michael Schedler 832-721-3968 /

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