In episode 43, we're sharing all details of our annual Performing Company Party: planning, location, food, decor, awards, senior speeches and more! This event celebrates all our Performing Companies and graduating seniors and is one of our favorite things we do and our dancers love it too!
PLANNING: The very first thing we do is secure a venue. Because our party involves all of our companies combined, we need a place that can handle about 400 guests. Once the venue is confirmed, we meet with a caterer and get all the food squared away. For us, this is a full dinner and desserts, so it’s pretty full out. We’ve been working with the same caterer for several years now, so we have a system and they know what we like and don’t like. You may be thinking, how in the world do they afford this? I will admit, it is a pretty big investment for us and Rhythm does pay for a large majority of the party, but we do charge a fee per person who attends and that usually covers most, if not all of the food and catering, which is a big help. Keep in mind, a party can be done at any budget and scale. This is just something we started several years ago and it’s become a tradition for us, our dancers and their families. We also select table cloths and napkins through our caterer and that’s when we really start envisioning what we want the space to look like for the night of the event.
Decor: We go VERY full out but we re-use everything for our show. We have colorful table linens and create our own centerpieces (~6 versions) inspired by the characters and main aspects of our show. We also use tons of balloons, create a step and repeat, multiple photo op areas and lots of over the top fun decor!
Event: It takes many people to load/unload the truck and set up! We meet at the venue and centerpieces make their way to all the tables, balloons are blown up and distributed throughout, dessert tables are created, and we don’t stop until it’s done! We have about 5 hours to make it and it is a marathon. But, when it’s done, it feels so special and we just know the kids are going to love it when they walk in.
Presentations & Awards: Once everyone arrives, mingles and takes a ton of photos, they take their seats and we begin presentations and dinner. We create personalized company awards for each and every dancer by creating personalized bag tags. We keep with the theme of our show and come up with fun awards names to coordinate with the characters of the show. It’s super fun and really personalized to each dancer. In addition, we give each of them a company t-shirt. It’s always so fun seeing so many kids sporting their new shirts! We also award scholarships to select dancers for their hard work and accomplishments.
Senior Speeches: We have our graduating seniors record speeches where they share what their experience at Rhythm has meant to them, thank their teachers and parents. It's their big finish to their Rhythm career! They send 50-60 photos that we show on a big screen while playing their speech. We have a lot of Seniors so we always have to get started on these early!
We hope this behind the scenes look at our company inspires you to start a tradition of your own, or if you already have one, maybe we sparked an idea that you can incorporate into what you’re already doing. It really is such a fun event that our kids look forward to all year long!
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