Elixir Dance Company Troupe Rules
Elixir is a troupe dedicated to supporting each other, working hard on great technique and our own creative expression, and sharing it with others. Although it's a lot of work we're all about fun!
The main focus of troupe practice at this level is to prepare for performances. Performance is a privilege, not a given. Your monthly fee is to pay for your weekly classes - not to buy a ticket to perform.
With all this fun comes a serious responsibility to your troupemates. The following rules are to make sure that no troupe member upsets the proverbial apple cart for the rest of us! We want to KEEP having fun, and to do that, we need to follow these rules:
Amy Danielson - this might seem obvious, but Amy is the troupe director and leader. Although this troupe is unique in that most of the creativity is directed by the students, she will make the final call on needed decisions and provide some structure. Amy does not profit financially from Elixir student troupe time or performances, so the work is shared equally between us all. If that's not ok with you, a different troupe might be a better fit.
Dancers must have completed and graduated from beginner’s Level 3 to Level 4 with Amy Danielson. Admission is by invitation, nomination, or application. In order to be in the troupe, you must present a solo audition for the other members of Elixir. All people in the troupe must be continuing students of Amy's, attending practice/classes regularly. It is a student troupe, after all.
Once accepted into the troupe, you must share all troupe responsibilties. These may include not only practicing regularly outside of class, creating your own costume, and researching the art of belly dance, but also sending emails, being a contact person for gigs, obtaining gigs, creating props, practicing in groups outside of normal practice time, learning to apply stage makeup, all electronic skills including regularly checking and responding to emails (2-3 times per week at least), This is part of being a part of Elixir - if you cannot commit to do these things, another troupe may be better for you. It is an honor and privilege to perform and create with this group of dancers, and to whom much is given, much is expected.
If you leave the troupe for over one month, you will have to reapply and possibly reaudition, and you may have to take extra refresher courses. You may not miss more than 1 month of the calendar year of practice/classes and remain in the student troupe. This is because it’s unfair to your troupe mates to create group pieces that you’re a part of, and then drop out for long periods of time so that they can no longer use them to perform. It wastes their time. This rule also keeps you from losing muscle tone and technique - the others are advancing while anyone not at class is declining, so it creates a wide skill gap which will make you and the troupe by default look unprofessional at performances. If you have to skip practice or miss a performance because of actual emergency, call ahead (or email) the second you find out and let Amy know.
Practice/class is crucial—both at home individually and at troupe practice. Come to practices prepared to work and with a positive attitude. Practicing at home at least twice a week is required, so you can keep up. I will ask sometimes for you to focus on a specific area to work on. Don’t be offended - if you weren’t doing well, you wouldn’t be in the troupe! Much of Level 4 (and on) consists of perfecting and refining technique, so if I ask you to practice something at home, please make every effort to do so.
Emergencies and Skipping Classes:
Emergencies happen! However, if you miss either of the 2 practices before a performance—you may not perform. This is only to be fair to the entire troupe, and isn't meant as a punishment. Also, as for all students of every level, you need to get to at the very least 3 out of 4 classes every single month. If there are 5 classes in the month, you will need to be at 4 of them. We all need to feel prepared, know which pieces can be performed at a professional level, be able to count on each other not to make the rest of us look foolish, and not be operating on last minute adrenaline. If you don’t get to perform, it doesn’t mean that you are out of the troupe— you just may not be caught up with what the troupe is currently working on. If you perform, yet aren’t prepared, it’s not fair to the rest of the troupe. When one of us flubs up, we all are brought down, so please be understanding and a hard worker - it's a great privilege to be in a troupe with your amazing dance sisters! Each performance should reflect that.
Your input as a troupe member is valuable! This is a troupe for all of us to have fun in. If something isn't clear, or if you need more help with a movement or more practice—this needs to be communicated to your leaders or the whole troupe. I'll need at least one working number to reach you, plus your email address— cell numbers are preferred. If you have a new idea or new music that would fit into our troupe—please don’t hesitate to share it after class - it may be just what we need! If you have an issue, don’t wait for it to get worse - please come to me to discuss and try to resolve the problem. Don’t let it ride and continue until it affects your performance and self confidence and you get left behind…
Performance, troupe photos, music, choreographies, weekly assignments, videos and updates will be available on
- The Belly Lab’s Facebook page,
- Google Drive and in
You will be required to learn to use them all. You are required to keep up with what we are doing - otherwise, how would we communicate important info? We do have the right to use any of your performance photos or videos (those of you performing with the troupe or hanging out before or after performances at the venue, or at practice, as well as any professionally taken troupe shots) for marketing, although we will make a huge effort to only display and use ones that show you in the very best light.
Again, communication is essential. If you would like to attempt a solo - let your troupe leaders know at least a month or two in advance. I will be available to help you polish it and get it ready for performance. If you would prefer not to do solos - please don’t hesitate also to speak up and let us know. This will also apply in the future when we get a performance ready to perform at festivals and need a whole show available and ready. To perform a solo, you MUST be at least at intermediate level (Level 4).
Your costume is your property as an individual dancer. You are responsible for purchasing or making it (just as kids in ballet class have to buy their own costumes for recitals!), taking care of it (make sure it's not stinky, and everything is sewed on tightly, etc.), and being sure to wear what is required for each piece. If you can’t afford the costume or don’t have time to make it for a specific piece, then you may not perform that piece in public. See "Costuming Requirements".