About everybody dance!
Everybody Dance! provides high-level school-day and after-school dance classes to underserved children and youth from preschool through high school, at little or no cost. Along with the benefits of dance, such as discipline, focus, and achievement, Everybody Dance! provides a safe haven to build positive friendships, helping students raise the bar for their own lives.
Everybody Dance! in-school uses dance as a tool for learning, where Teaching Artists bring standards-based curriculum to life in high-energy classes for K to 8 students. Students experience creative and physical expression while Teaching Artists work with academic instructors to incorporate movement into daily curriculum: Imagine kindergarten students making the sounds and shapes of the alphabet with their bodies, or 4th graders choreographing a dance to show how food is digested, or 8th graders exploring social studies through the history of hip-hop dance in America. These innovative mixtures of mental and physical education give students an alternative to traditional schooling and create a new way to retain, and even enjoy, each lesson. Each semester ends in a student performance showcasing the vocabulary, concepts and movements learned.
Everybody dance! after-school focuses on the technical mastery of dance in a studio setting. Students are encouraged to study multiple forms of dance – ballet, pointe, jazz, modern, tap, hip-hop, breaking – with leveled training and annual assessments that allow them to advance in accordance with their technical mastery. All students are given the opportunity see professional dance performances, take master classes with professional dance partners, and participate in annual performances at the Ricardo Montalban Theatre in Hollywood. Students with pre-professional goals are additionally offered the chance to audition for a youth company and ballet conservatory program. As students prepare to transition into post-high school college and career, we offer enrichment opportunities to pave the way, including mentorship, teaching assistantships, student leadership, and the chance to present their own choreographic works.
We hire professional dance instructors whose passion for dance resonates with and engages students. Described by the LA Times as “some of the best children’s dance instructors in the world,” our Teaching Artists inspire students to achieve their very best in the dance studio, teaching beyond technique by imparting life skills and instilling in our students confidence, creativity, community, and commitment.
Why Our Approach Works
Everybody Dance!’s most salient characteristics – culture, community and consistency – play an integral role in moving us toward fulfilling our Mission:
Culture of high expectations and performance: Our dance instructors have high expectations for themselves and students, providing them with new opportunities that stretch and challenge them. Students must arrive on time, be suitably attired for dance, and master requisite skills before advancing to higher levels. Instilling this discipline gives students a standard to hold themselves to that gives them a well-earned sense of accomplishment.
Emphasis on parental involvement to help build a culture of community: Families contribute 15 service hours annually. In 2016, 95% of parents completed their service hours, contributing a total of 6,662 volunteer hours to every part of the program. Quarterly parent meetings include a topic of discussion and time where parents can provide input into the program. We find this input invaluable to our vision of transforming the lives of present and future students.
Sequential, consistent, long-term dance training: More than half of after-school students, ages 8 to 19, study two or more dance forms and dance five or more hours per week. On average, students in the after-school program stay with us for 7+ years. The opportunity to continue to participate in Everybody Dance! throughout their schooling allows students to embrace the skills they’ve cultivated from dance and apply them to every day life like it’s second nature.