Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by dgarstang, Sep 14, 2013.
I sometimes pay $5 more, but for a Blackpool finalist. That's pretty much my limit though.
I'm not one of those, but when I took lessons with a direct employee of the studio, unlimited practice time was included with the price of the lessons (which were priced comparably to the numbers that fasc et al. were citing). Now that I take from an independent at the studio, I pay roughly the monthly cost of the studio's Friday night practice parties, and get both unlimited practice time and admission to those parties.
I've been fortunate to pay $100 for a Blackpool finalist, yay me.
Can't imagine paying $145 for a pedestrian pro.
Yes, the price point is in those areas. The thing to remember, however, is that it is a bundle price. You therefore only get your money’s worth if you do your best to enjoy everything that the bundle has to offer. That means participating in group classes, joining supervised practices, practicing with other students and if possible, enjoy the social dynamic and the good company
Otherwise, it’s like paying a for an 80 TV channel package when all you want to do is watch the Walking Dead. Sure, the show is great, but there are more cost-efficient alternatives if that’s all you want
How much could one realistically practice? Last AM I visited had several couples on the floor with competing music, etc. Maybe it was just a busy time of day.
Arthur Murray: Birth of a Salesman.
Ask your instructor how to practice. He or she will probably tell you to go to the studio and repeat patterns, do excercises, and work out things like footwork and body shaping... The things that you need to do to put your instructor's expensive teaching into your neurons (aka muscle memory).
Music is optional and many times you will see students practicing for hours without listening to music. Unless you are doing something to a specific piece of music, like a showcase, most times in a practice you will work with counts or slows/quicks anyway.
A busy studio, with lots of people practicing and working, provides an energy and vibe that will really help your dancing....
It's also taught me how to modify routines on the fly, navigate a floor (and I'm a follow, so am moving backward a lot of the time), and - perhaps most importantly - tune out everything else and get into my little "dance bubble". That said, I try to have one practice a week when the floor is quieter so I can really let QS fly without the risk of killing someone
Pricing wise, we're free for unlimited practice weekday evenings for those that have a standing weekly private. For those that just do group classes, practice is free the evening of the class. Very few people fall outside of the two above categories, but I seem to remember hearing the rate is $7/evening if you don't.
I pay $135 for a Blackpool Champion, would much rather pay $100 for a finalist.
Although franchises bring a great deal of people into the hobby, wonder how many move on vs how many quit?
The 'Bronze contract' works out to about what the OP states per lesson. This does include a theoretically unlimited number of group classes and 'practice parties', thusly, it is wise to attend as many of them as you possibly can. Sort of.
If you do not take an actual private lesson for x number of weeks (or months...), the charming & debonair staff will gradually become less so. Also, your VERY flirtatious teacher will also direct her sales pitch - I mean attention - towards other gentlemen who seem more eager to dispose of their disposable income.
On the plus side, the instruction is top-notch and extremely detailed, one teacher in particular (see 'flirtatious', above) stands head, shoulders and then some above all other dance teachers I've ever come across and no, it's not just 'cause she's hot. She really is that good.
However, the top figure skating coach in this area only charges $ 65.00/hour, and she teaches skills that are 100's of times more difficult than anything anyone has ever done on a dance floor, Fred & Ginger included.
Gotta pay extry for public sessions, though. $ 7.00/2 hours, last time I checked.
And there are no parties, unless you count the Christmas show......
This might seem like something of a side-question, but it's AM-related. Has anybody ever heard the sales-pitch used "Well, we teach 'classical ballroom' here" in regards to Arthur Murray and AM- minded studios? This is something I came across today. Not even getting into the argument that technically, International would be "classicker than American" because it's older, but whatever. I just wondered if this was an only AM thing, or just a really crappy pitch from someone who learned her dancing in the early nineteen hundreds, then passed it down, Marilyn Hotchkiss-style.
*note- let AM= Arthur Murray, not AMateur in this context.
Never heard that phrase... And was the woman you are referring to is... 100 years old?
(but in any case your argument that International is older than American is off.)
ya got your time frame backwards;ALL the then called " English " style, was based upon dances that were fully developed in the States and elsewhere.Their versions may have been different, BUT ,they were still F/Trots, Waltzes and Tangos, and their Q/step, was Peabody .
The latin in particular, wasnt "designed " in todays version until the mid/late 40s early 50s , and again , mostly developed in the States via countries of origin ( Cuba, Spain etc ) .
Technical differences do occur, between the 2 styles ( Intern and American ) but have been drawn closer together in recent yrs.
Yep, always a good idea to shop around for pricing AND quality of dance (pay attention to how good the majority of their students are!)
Not all franchise studios use manipulative/pressure sales tactics, but it sounds like this one does. Personally, I would never get involved... I don't like being pressured, and I don't trust the skill and knowledge of an instructor that needs to pressure their students.
If you can afford it comfortably, and you see it as a good choice as compared with other experiences you have had in the area, then why not? Go have fun!
Obviously, if money is a big issue, try to plan out a budget you can afford, and make sure you can get enough time dancing for the money you spend.
Chain studios can do a great job creating a social and fun environment.
On the other hand, I'm sure there are some independent instructors that could give you 2 or more lessons for $145.
Just find a situation that helps you grow and enjoy dancing and the rest will fall into place
This is from Ripoff Report about Arthur Murray Dance, articles , cases, complains. Even though some reports are informational and must read before investing so much money into dance, but a question does come to mind about 51 year old woman (#3 Consumer Comment ) who never danced before and was promised to be a professional dancer for $$$$ and $31000 ( back in 1968 it was a lot of money!!!) later she filed a lawsuit and lost it.
What she was thinking?
"Pinocchio" - Fairy Tale and money tree comes to mind
My LW and I haven't taken private lessons for a while, but we started at an Arthur Murray in a mid-sized Midwestern city. IIRC, the price at the time was in the neighborhood of $95 per lesson, which included all the groups, parties, etc. you wanted. I don't know what the studio charges now, but I doubt that market would support $145.
We got excellent instruction at the studio. And as beginners, we found it helpful to have financial incentive to show up for groups and parties ("We paid for it, so we might as well go.").
By the time we stopped taking private lessons (largely because other financial priorities arose), we'd learned enough to be able to go to a ballroom social and dance just about any dance, which was our goal.
Now that we've reached that point, I don't think we'd return to a studio that only offers bundled pricing. We're more likely to buy groups and/or private lessons a la carte at other studios.
One thing I always recommend ... and something we did when we started ... is to take advantage of the "free introductory lessons" most studios offer as sales tools. We treated them as instructor auditions. You might find perfectly good instruction at a non-franchise studio, where you can pay far less for a private lesson and buy other services as you wish.
Franchises charge depending on their location. In locations where cost of living is high like big cities they need to charge more to be able to pay rent etc. While is smaller areas where cost of living is somewhat lower the franchise can afford to have lower rates
Lets see if this posts correctly:
this is what is available to me through the week and what it would cost me if paying individually -
Monday group class: $15
Tuesday Group: 15
Tuesday social: 10
Wednesday Group: 15
Thursday Lesson: 65
Friday Group: 15
Friday Social: 10
Saturday Group: 15
based on one private lesson a week I get all of that for the $145 a week, actually I pay less because I am still locked in at my original price plus practice time anytime the studio is open, and usually a bronze party once a month.
Separate names with a comma.