How it works

Competitors are put into sections according to both ability and age (this varies from comp to comp slightly but the sections are generally as follows).

Novice – Where every competitor starts, you have to stay in novice until you are placed 1st or 2nd in this section. When you have achieved this you move into the open sections. These are arranged according age.

You can have multiple solo’s including Ballet, Tap, Modern, Song and Dance, Character, National and Lyrical.

You can also have a duet or a trio and there are group sections for groups of 4 dancers or more – these are really fun to be a part of.

Baby 5 years and under
Class A 6-7 years
Class B 8-9 years
Class C 10-11 years
Class D 12-13 years
Class E 14-15 years
Class F 16+ years

Hard work but lots of fun!

The standard is very high and therefore a private lesson each week is needed to learn your solos or to improve them. Once a solo is learnt we can move on to learning another.

Everyone in the company must also attend the ‘Festival Class’. In this class their solo’s may be performed, flexibility worked on, and any other advanced movements and tricks that can not be worked on in their weekly classes.

We also use this class to work on duets and group dances. Home practice is essential if you are in the company, as is stretching and improving flexibility.

Competitors at the festivals are very well limbered dancers. With the standard being so high at the competitions you may not always win your section or even get placed 2nd, 3rd or 4th but it’s the taking part and doing your best whilst having fun that’s important! The more comps you do the better, this helps to gain more experience and confidence as a dancer and a stage performer.

Levels of Acceptance

We have compulsory classes that the company memebers must attend take each week, Ballet, Tap, Modern, Jazz, Stretch and Tech, Commercial and Body Conditioning.

Along side these classes, company members must also attend a private lesson each week and festival class, where group dances are rehearsed.

Children in our lower school can start company training as long as they understand when they reach main school level (age 6) all the above subjects must be attended. If you are part of the company you must be very committed.


High Standards

You will need a costume for each dance. Costumes are of an extremely high standard at comps, they are beautiful and often made from scratch or ordered from a dance costume company.

They can be expensive but once bought they will wear this costume for a couple of years at each comp, until they grow out of it or the dance. We can then make a decision if to pass the dance down to someone younger, to sell the costume on or for you to keep the costume.


Get in touch

Please contact our Office if you have any questions & we will be more than happy to help.


Amaze and impress

I just wanted to send a quick message of thanks again. I know how difficult things must be at the moment and yet your teachers continue to amaze and impress me.

Today in ballet and tap, both Miss Kirsten and now Miss Liz have kept both my girls excited and engaged. They are so encouraging. Plus this is not a one off. My daughters also do musical theatre, YPA and lamda. Miss Amy continues to make my eldest daughter grow in confidence and it is so lovely to see her skills develop. Plus, all of the Lamda teacher are amazing. In each class, Miss Steph, Sean and Miss Amy make the lesson both fun and rewarding. Thursday is my daughter’s favourite day of the week and I know that is largely due to her excitement to spend time in YPA and take part in such engaging activities. 

Please pass on my thanks once again and let your teachers know that in an extremely tough time, they are certainly bringing a lot of light into the children’s’ lives.

A very pleased parent

A massive thank you

I just wanted to get a message to Jack to say a massive thank you for what he did today during her private lesson.

She was anxious prior to her lesson and said to me that she felt self-conscious and embarrassed doing freestyle.

Jack was amazing with her. He reassured her and made her feel able to talk about her feelings openly. She seems to be having a few self-confidence issues lately and it nearly moved me to tears hearing Jack speaking to her today.

Parent of a 10 year old.

The encouragement you have given

Personally, I would like to thank you and the other teachers for all the encouragement you have given and all the care and concern you have shown.

I have always been amazed at both how you combine your desire for such high standards with genuine recognition of the efforts of every pupil and how you combine running such a visionary business with maintaining a real family atmosphere.

We very much appreciate everything the SDSD staff are doing to support dancing during the restrictions, working so hard to get classes online and everyone organised.

A big thank you to everyone at SDSD for keeping it all going.

Parent of a 10 & 13 year old.

A positive impact

I’m so grateful for both the lessons and workshops because they’re keeping her active both physically and mentally. She’s really finding this lockdown much tougher than last year and has been quite upset which is heart breaking for me to see. I wanted to express how much of a positive impact you have made on J by maintaining the lessons.

There is nothing better than being in the studio but the zoom lessons are keeping her focussed and feeling a sense of normality.

Parent of a 10 year old.

You have been fabulous

Just to say a huge thank you for everything that you do as a school. I knew when I helped out with the show in 2019, that we made the right choice sending I to Sophie Dee for her dancing. You instil such great values and work ethic into your students from an early age.

I practised all the time for her exam, saying she wanted to make us and Miss Kirsten proud. We said everyone would be proud no matter what her score but to see her come today with a distinction, I don’t think anyone will be able to take this smile off my face for weeks!

You have been fabulous during these last 18months, you would never know that whilst dealing with all the government restrictions you have also had to change venue. I hope when the summer break comes you all take a well-earned rest and enjoy time with your families.

Thank you so much for everything you do for our daughter.

Parent of a 5 year old.

Teaching discipline

My son is part of the Boys Class at SDSD with no dance training apart from being part of Street Dance crew so we were a bit apprehensive but I have to say my Son absolutely loves it to say he's passionate about it is an understatement, its taught him discipline and how to express himself and also body conditioning.

They have a great Teacher in Jack his guidance and encouragement is amazing Saturday is the best day of the week.

Parent of a 12 year old.

I would highly recommend

My daughter has just finished a week of summer camp and has thoroughly enjoyed herself.

Every day she has come home keen to show me a dance or sing a song she has learned. She normally just grunts when she gets home and isn’t keen to share her experiences, so this has been quite a turnaround! She has happily skipped off to class each day and thinks Miss Amy and Sean are just wonderful and even asked to go back next week.

Parent of a 6 year old.

Buzzing and filled with glee

Just wanted to message you as had two very excited and happy girls tonight having returned to the studio. They were buzzing and filled with glee as they described their lessons.

Caoimhe was particularly pleased to have got star of the week in singing and is so excited about being filmed next week.

Once again, your teachers made the experience joyous and memorable. Please pass on my thanks to all.

Parent of a 8 and 4 year old.