Austin dance instructors discuss the lessons they offer
What styles of dancing do you teach?
Deidre Robinson: "Classical ballet, pointe, jazz, modern, tap and hip-hop."
Dominic DiGesualdo: "For the most part, all the partner dances. We also teach a little hip- hop and lyrical."
Bill Pinter: "We teach ballet, modern, different types of jazz, tap and hula."
Who we talked to
Deidre Robinson, owner
Austin Dance Arts
What's your favorite dance and why?
Robinson: "Ballet. I was with the Houston Ballet for many years."
DiGesualdo: "Swing is always fun, no matter what."
Pinter: "I was a ballet dancer so it would have to be ballet."
Besides learning how to dance, what are some other reasons people take lessons?
Robinson: "Many use it as a social network or as a personal challenge. Others just like to perform."
DiGesualdo: "A lot of times it's to surprise a spouse or significant other with something that will make them happy."
Pinter: "Some take it for exercise, while others take it because they were always curious and finally decided to do it."
How do you charge for dance lessons and what's the cost?
Robinson: "Adults buy a monthly class card. Each class on their card costs $15 and lasts an hour and a half."
DiGesualdo: "It's by the session. Private sessions cost $85 per session while group classes are $15 per class."
Pinter: "We charge a walk-in rate of $17 per class. They can purchase a 16-class card for $170 to save money."
How often do you recommend your clients take a class with you?
Robinson: "If they want to improve, at least three times a week."
DiGesualdo: "I would hope to see them at least once a week."
Pinter: "As often as they can."
What is your experience in this industry?
Robinson: "I've been dancing since I was 4."
DiGesualdo: "I've been teaching dance for 10 years."
Pinter: "I've been teaching for 15 years."
How many instructors teach in your studio?
Robinson: "Six instructors."
DiGesualdo: "Eight instructors."
Pinter: "Between 35 and 40."
How far in advance does someone need to schedule lessons with you before they can start?
Robinson: "Our adult classes rarely fill, so they can call or come in at any time."
DiGesualdo: "They can call and come in on the same day. We'd prefer a couple days' notice, though."
Pinter: "You can walk in, sign up for a class and take it that night."
How do you handle the most dancing-challenged clients?
Robinson: "We try to focus on what they can do well and build upon that."
DiGesualdo: "There's a dance for everybody. We just need to find a dance they can handle."
Pinter: "You have to be patient and work with modifying the regular routine to an individual's skill level."