A letter on Dance Teacher Network

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A letter on Dance Teacher Network.......Okay... so I judge dance competitions regularly. I have come to terms with the fact that some teachers will never put their dancers in tights. That’s fine, but could you please put them in a costume that covers all the necessary parts without relying on tape and “butt glue” to hold the costume in place? This weekend, I saw more wardrobe malfunctions and mishaps than ever.

Tights serve several purposes. ...To lengthen the leg line, blend the leg into the shoe, provide support, cover blemishes, enhance and finish off the costume and provide coverage in very necessary places. If you are going to put a dancer onstage in nothing more than a leotard or bikini bottoms without tights, you need to teach them all about grooming and etiquette. You also need to have them learn the choreography wearing the tiny costume so that you can choreograph it tastefully without tilts, straddles to the front and other extensions. The judges are looking straight up at the dancers from underneath. The venues are open to public. There are dads, grandpas, little brothers, big brothers and perfect strangers in the venue watching. This weekend I had to actually put my head down and miss quite a bit of a dancer’s solo because her top (which I knew wasn’t going to stay on from the beginning) fell down multiple times and the more she pulled to fix it, the worse it got. I didn’t feel comfortable watching and she just kept on going. I get it... you’re not going to put tights on your student. So, you have a huge responsibility in educating them on appropriate movement in their costume, certain angles they should not do extensions, body awareness and grooming.

This post isn’t a stab at the those who hate tights, it’s a word of advice to help raise awareness. We, the teachers are the responsible ones.


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