No doubt turning the dream of owning a dance company into a fully operational business is a tough feat. From finding studio space, marketing, securing funding and more, it can all be very daunting. The challenge of taking a dance-related business to new heights can be even greater if you are a person of color. However, it's not impossible. According to the 2012 census, there are 27.6 million businesses in the United States, and only 2.6 million are black-owned. In honor of Black History Month, DT spoke with several black-owned dance studios and companies and asked them to reflect on the significance race has had on their efforts to run the dance company of their dreams.
About five years ago when instructor Alicia Dean-Hall needed to fill her classes at Central Park Dance studio in Scarsdale, New York, where she was a business partner with the owner, her obvious choice was to promote her services on Groupon.
"Running a Groupon was a no-brainer," she says. "If I had done an ad in the newspaper or something in the PennySaver, I would have had to pay a fee. Groupon is free, so I had nothing to lose."
However, she didn't expect the promotion to take off so well. Her growing class numbers coupled with the success of her Groupon promotions—about 100 for each promotion—enabled her to end her partnership with Central Park Dance studio and run her Dance Fit classes as her own business, while renting space from the studio, which benefits the studio and herself.
If you're a professional dancer or teacher, chances are you might also be a pro cashier, waitress, administrative assistant and all-around hustler. Securing enough teaching positions to make a living can be difficult. Cue the fitness classes.
Dancers have historically turned to popular workouts like Zumba and Cardio Barre that have a performance-like class atmosphere and share similar physical requirements to beef up their dance training. That's why it's no surprise that more and more dance teachers are now becoming fitness instructors to supplement their incomes.
So, let's get physical! Here are six fitness trends that dance teachers and studio owners will love adding to their schedules.