Absolutely the worst competition I have ever been attended. I will never recommend this company. The awards are cheap buttons what did we actually pay for., wish I could give no stars at all
Thought the MC was great and it ran on time.
Clean, nice Venue. Was organized and friendly staff.
Pictures are expensive.
Nice competition, but needed more dressing room areas.
This comp was ok.
1st time at Applause. Enjoyed it. Ran on time, fair judging. Thank you for awarding 1st & 2nd place if only two dancers in a level, especially in the petite level. I know the dancers would have been sad if not called on stage for overalls. Same with title! Loved that awards are so quick and that there was several awards throughout the day. Loved the top 10 for solos! Super fun for the kids to get called up in no particular order.
Friendly staff and the competition ran on time but will not attend again, there were 11 dancers in the senior category and only top 5 were called even though top 10 were called in all other categories, no one over age 16 placed. They also made an error in announcing the score for my dancer that attended saying she had received platinum then said "wait never mind, High gold" and the trophy was stripped from her hands. She was devastated.
I as a parent and studio employee loved the Applause app for my Iphone but maybe it needs to be offered on other operating systems as well. The contest runs very smoothly and we were finished both days an hour ahead of schedule that was nice also. Staff was very nice and helpful couldn't have asked for better. The only thing I didn't like was that we entered a group at one level they sent out a tentative schedule then 5 days before the contest when the final schedule came out they changed our routine to a beginner level which caused it to change days so we had a dancer we had added because of the dance being slated for Sunday for over 3 weeks on the tentative schedule but the level change made the group dance on Saturday and we couldn't do anything but make large adjustments to the routine since the dancer couldn't be there on Saturday. We would never have paid to add her if we had thought they would make that change . Still a great event!!
I appreciate the fact that when there are a lot of entries in one age group/category, they announced more than just top five or top ten at overalls. For example, there were 50 entries in my daughter's solo category, and they announced top 15. However, on the website results page they still only list the top five. It would be nice if they listed the ones they announced at the competition. Rules and things such as age requirements are not listed on the website, which is frustrating. It is nice to be able to download the digital program from the website; however, they do charge $5 whereas it is free at KAR. However, I still enjoy being able to see/print a program for $5 on Thursday before the competition starts.
Great experience for our new team, they really had a lot of fun! Awards ran smooth, fair across the board as there were some larger studios there and we are small/new. The Judges comments were really helpful/useful to work for team improvement. Appreciate the digital download for music. Event ran on time and also ran ahead which is a bonus as a director being there all weekend long. Would like to see assigned dressing rooms if possible in the future. Will definitely be attending again!
Honestly I try to start with the positives in any review I write. This competition wasn't horrible. It was just okay and there were a lot of things they could have done better that I encourage them to look into fixing. The venue in Middleton was nice, however the main, biggest changing area was a gym which just so happened to be right next to the entrance for a basketball game that was being held the same day at the same time. So as the doors to the changing area were being opened constantly those in line to enter for the basketball game were fully able to see in. Not to mention many of these girls, many in skimpy costumes, were walking back and forth past these people waiting in line. It just made me as a mom cringe.
The judging was strongly biased towards jazz dances. With what seemed like bonus points for twerking. Just saying that because I like to know myself. Judges all have different preferences but since we are fortunately with a studio that keeps things age appropriate I prefer to not go to competitions that prefer those types of dances.
Timing was all over the place. The first night ran over an hour behind with many girls not getting back to the hotel until midnight. The second day they must have been trying to overcorrect and were very ahead.
Seems others have mentioned how they do awards so I won't repeat that.
Parking at the venue was good, prices for food/clothes/pictures were comparable to other competitions we have been to.
After 10 years and many dance competitions I would say that Applause is the worst competition we have ever attended for various reasons.
1 - The competition wasted a lot of time between numbers. We never got ahead of schedule and some studios took advantage of costume change times making everyone wait.
2 - The awards ceremonies seemed rushed and disorganized. Incorrect scores read. Trophies taken away and redistributed because they couldn't get passing them out correct. The method of recognizing the top soloists is the worst I have ever seen. To call up the top 10 and have the winners move forward of the lower scores is very ridiculous. To only acknowledge the fist place dancer shows that they care more about the $$ than the dancers.
3 - The director was rude starting with the morning ride in the elevator at the hotel. Her demeanor was not pleasant like many other directors we have seen over the years who wish kids good luck for the big day ahead. She took no interest in the dancers and was very rude every time anyone interacted with her.
4 - The judges never seemed engaged. I am not sure how you judge with your heads down. How can you not smile or interact with the dancers on stage is disappointing. No kid wants to perform for 3 stone cold faced judges who don't seem to want to be there or care what they are watching. Not once did they seem engaged until the end of the day when they packed up to leave.
5 - The scoring was very questionable. Dances that look plucked out of the 1980's with no technical difficulty beat dances that were technically challenging. The choreo recognized was usually very traditional and would not be suited for larger competitions like KAR, 24-7, Velocity, or Starpower.
Overall, our dancer's absolutely hated this competition. So much our studio has decided to not waste any more money on their nationals. At one point many just wanted to go home and not waste any more time on this joke of a competition.
Thanks to the competitions out there who go out of their way to provide an honest and fair environment for dancers. We appreciate you even more now. I know understand why many of Applause events are small with very little participation. It's because of how they run their program. Wish we had done more research before wasting many thousands of dollars with them.
While there are a decent amount of things to like about Applause,
problem we had was so big, it left every one of our dancers and
uncomfortable and NO ONE wants to return because of it.
have soloists competing for crowns, you either a-
recognize them all with a
certificate where they are sitting and then
only call up the girls who are
getting crowned, in the order they win
(BravO!) or don\'t recognize any
of them and just call up the girls
who win in order (KAR). You do NOT call
them all up in stage to stand
there in a line and then pick out the queen
and the 2 princesses while
the other girls who lost just stand there and
watch them get their music
played and have their pictures taken. You
especially don\'t do this in
the petite age group where all the girls are
under 8 and there are only
four of them so 3 girls get a crown and one girl
is left standing by
herself as the loser. Losing is already sad enough.
Losing publicly like
that is mortifying.
And the sad part is,
I\'m not even writing
this as the disgruntled teacher who\'s kid
didn\'t win. My girl did
win. All 3 of them who were entered in their
respective age categories
actually. My problem is when my studio doesn\'t
even want to scream
and cheer for our girl who did get crowned, because
everyone was too
busy being heartbroken for the one 7 year old who was the
without a crown and was crying by herself on stage left because
called her up for nothing. Cersie got off easy with her walk
atonement compared to this little girl. \"Shame! Shame!\"
We competed at Nationals. This year was our first year competing at
Applause regionally and at Nationals. We are not a big mega studio. At no
point, did I feel that there was favoritism for big studios or those with a
long track record at Applause. My only issue is that one of the judges
definitely had a long relationship with two sisters who competed. It was
pretty obvious when they were onstage. Maybe he needs to be told to tone
it down. But I never felt that the judging was unfair. Did tappers and
Acro dances place? Yes they did. I found that refreshing. Most comps we
go to do not have any judges who know anything but jazz and lyrical.
Perhaps those who do not compete in Tap or Acro may not understand the
technique, detail and stamina it takes to dance well in those styles.
Fwiw, our studio brought approx 60 dances. Only one was Tap, one was Acro.
Yes, I felt the judging was fair. I liked the awards ceremonies. The
dancers were appropriately recognized but it didn\'t take too long. The
entire week was really organized, thank you for that. A few of our studios
dances were in the big show. What an honor. I super love love loved the
introduction read before each dance. It made each dance personal and more
interesting. None of our dances \"won\". My only beef is that only
the first place winner was recognized during awards. To get to the big
show means you are already a winner. I don\'t know why they do not give
each dance a placement award at that point. To shove the losers off stage
in such a brusque manner is inconsiderate. My only other issue is that
only a top five is truly recognized. At the awards ceremony, I have seen
top 10, top 20, top 8, etc.. But on the website, etc. it\'s only top
five. Why give out the award onstage nut not recognize it anywhere else?
Those are my only two beefs, they are small and easily fixable. I can\'t
wait to give you five stars next year.
Great Comp!! Fair judging, also ran ahead of schedule.
After being very disappointed with how the competition had gone so far we
were very excited to get into the best of the best. We danced the best we
ever had and had a great day. Once it was time for awards they made all of
us line up by category and wait while the finale preformance was going on.
I was a little upset not to see the preformance and thought it took away
from the appeal of having a finale number. After waiting for a while we
were escorted on stage as they quickly announced our names. They had not
told us how things would work and we were very surprised when they started
to announce the winner. After finding out we had not won the staff put
their hands on us and pushed us off the stage. After getting into the
hallway they yelled at us to get against the wall and out of the way. There
was no focus on the children\'s feelings or enjoyment of the ceremony and
seemed very rushed. I believe it being so rushed and being pushed off stage
takes away from the experience for both losers and title winners. Not a
good way to end out the week with applause. Our studio will not be coming
It is clear that Applause is concentrating on building a clientele in order
to generate income. There is an obvious bias to a few studios. Judging does
not reward technical elements and ability. They do not work to make new
participants feel welcome. Like most studios, we are part of a large
network of dancers and studios and we spent a great deal of money to attend
regionals and nationals. As a studio we will speak to Applause in terms
they understand-- we withdraw our money and support of this company. We
will not return, nor will we recommend this competition. In financial
terms, Applause will lose at least $20,000 plus recommendations. Applause
will not last.
Judging seems to not recognize technical difficulty. There were many times
where our jazz/lyrical dances placed lower than a tap or acro that requires
less technique,stamina and strength. Many children seemed to be in the
wrong age or difficulty level. As a part time teacher at my studio I got
very upset over how sad the 6-10 year old kids got when they knew that 13
year olds beat them. This is not fair. Walking down the hallway it was
obvious that some studios knew the staff very well and other studios were
ignored completely. Funny enough studios who knew the staff also did better
at awards. Although they did have vip passes to get into the \"best of
the best\" finals without the highest technical score it seemed like they
defeated the purpose by choosing the same studio that already had many
other numbers get into the finals. After competing in star systems
Nationals for many years we feel we have wasted our money and time this
year. We will not be coming back.
This is always my favorite competition! David and Angela did a fantastic
job MC-ing; they were very clear. I have a hearing problem but was able to
understand all the awards (that never happens). David even took the time to
say a few words to my very nervous daughter before her solo. It made all
the difference. Especially since one judge didn\'t even look up to watch
my daughter dance (not the comp\'s fault). Can\'t wait for nationals.
There was a lot to like about Applause. Well organized, friendly staff,
ran early and awards that don\'t take forever. They even recognized that
a dancer was in too low of a level for their talent. It\'s nice when a
comp follows their own rules. But, speaking of rules, I don\'t know why
they have to be such a secret. They are not listed on the website or the
program. Post them for us parents. The overalls seemed pretty accurate.
But at least 90% of the adjudications were platinum. I find it hard to
believe that most dances fell in that one category. Maybe if I knew the
scoring system, it would make sense.
I would return but please post
While I felt like judging was fair...I wasn\'t impressed with a lot of
things at this competition. I couldn\'t find the scoring rubric online or
in the program, but I am super curious what the platinum window is, it must
be huge because almost everyone received platinum. I only heard a FEW
people get high gold on Saturday. One would think the ones who got high
gold likely were horrible, but they weren\'t...which left me scratching
my head. The awards covered way too many categories in one sitting, solos
and duets/trios were in with group awards and when there is 3 competing
divisions you can only imagine how long it took. There needs to be more
awards, in turn making them shorter ceremonies and less confusing. The
trophies are super cheap and generic as well.... Wasn\'t impressed with
this competition at all. I feel like they could easily turn it around by
paying attention to details, such as improving the trophies (make it look
like you actually care about what you\'re giving the
girls/studios...maybe cut out the paper certificates too...) & sort out the
awards ceremony mess...organization could be improved as well. I did like
the way they gave the point score when giving overall awards, that
doesn\'t happen often.
Applause was okay. It was well run and on time. However, it felt \"low
energy\" and I am not sure if that was the venue or the staff? I felt
the scoring was all over the place. Simple dance numbers with multiple
mistakes scored higher than complex numbers with few errors, while in other
spots it felt fair. I thought way too many people got platinum. The
judging wasn\'t very tiered. It was very congested in the hallways and
it was difficult to grab kid-friendly food to refuel them. The choices
were limited and the line was very long at all times.
We just attended the Minneapolis Applause competition. It was an incredibly
well run regional. The event personnel were friendly, knowledgeable, and
helpful. I LOVE that the MC/Music table is backstage! I am standing right
there if there are issues...no running around to the front of the house.
Also, all of the judges critiques and score sheets were uploaded and
available by my MONDAY 4:00 class!!! That was awesome. Some competitions
do not get these up until Wednesday. It was really refreshing to have
these in time for class.
we went to an applause competition not 100% it is the same as this one but
we sure did enjoy it
We really like this comp. They are always very friendly and tend to run on
time and be super organized!
Always a wonderful comp
Love this competition!
My daughter has competed at this competition several times. They always are
high on my list of favorite completions because of their professionalism in
the way it is ran. They also have well rounded judges that know all dance
We had a lot of fun at Applause... Will hopefully be returning again!
We are always enjoy Applause!! :)
Great first experience! Ran on time, very friendly and organized. Great
venue!! Only negative was no food available for purchase but there is s
greT pizza place that delivers!!
This is always my favorite competition!! Staff is super friendly, judging
is fair, and MC is very understandable during awards (a rare occurrence in
the dance world).
My team attended Applause\'s regional event in Batavia, Illinois back in
March. Applause is definitely a quote unquote \"real\" competition.
Your seasoned competitive dancers seem to be here, making competition a
little more tough. Judging is hard, but fair. They give out many overall
awards. Only complaint is that there wasn\'t much space for dressing
Terrible judging. Clogging won in every age and skill division. Very
difficult to get a judges critiques.
We liked that they have top 5 for overalls. Also liked that they break it
down by 3 different levels, which makes it fair for the top 5 overalls. We
had a lot of fun and the judges seemed to be fair.
Applause is a fun, low-stress competition. Awards are quick and concise. They offer many scholarships, specials, dance camps and more beyond just the adjudications. Applause has an app that you can download to follow scheduling up to the minute, nearby food, etc.
Attended Applause in Orlando. I loved the venue and dressing area. The
judges and announcer were friendly. The things that caused me not to like
this competition much is as follows: They do not announce first place
winners for each catagory when there are more than two routines in it as
almost all other competitions do. When there is some tough competition at
an event it is nice to at least know who won each catagory. Second, while
they had other adjudication levels they only used TWO levels ALL WEEKEND
LONG. They gave out only high gold and platinum. Really??? Why bother with
levels at all. I saw stellar routines and ones that were hardly polished
and they all fell within those two levels. Last, the title competition was
confusing. Apparently, there was different scoring for title yet they
didn\'t make that clear. I left confused and disappointed that I spent
the extra money for a part of the competition I didn\'t understand.
Yes there is favoritism towards big studios and everyone has noted that.
But the thing that I did not like about this competition is how they only
do a top 5 instead of a top 10 for the overalls. And everyone in the top 5
is from the same studio. Hard to place for solos. It is nice how there are
3 different levels though. I don\'t really like the trophies they are
kinda boring and have nothing to do with dance but overall it is a fun
I loved applause judges critiques! I know they change from city to
city...but still. As a teacher, I hate coming back with a score I\'m not
happy with and nothing to work on, I feel like their critique matches their
score and are very helpful!
just did this competition this past weekend. Very well organized, their
focus is definitely on the kids, fun awards, friendly staff. They are on
my A list.
We have done this competition for several years. This year more than any
year before the favoritism to larger studios was obvious. Judges and
backstage workers had traveled to some of the competing studios and worked
with their students and it showed. Who knew you had to hire people so you
could do well at a competition?
We won\'t go back and it was going
to end there but when I went the site and saw some others speaking to the
same issues we had, I thought I would put this out there for what it is
Sadly for some competitions it seems that if don\'t have a
large studio with 50+ numbers you don\'t get a nod. I have accepted that
over the years. I am thankful there are now sites that you can go on and
get teacher/SO reviews to help you make informed decisions.
Can I give them a -- stars this competition was the worst competition I
have ever been too they care more about money than the kids. The scoring
was so bad I could write down what every studio received before they even
announced the accredidation.
Competition ran ahead of schedule which was great. Did not like this
competition as it showed favoritism towards certain studios. Our kids did a
phenomenal job, but did not get the awards they deserved.
Had a great weekend in SC. Ran ahead of time & smooth transitions.
Excellent Judges did great scoring, very pleased! One of our favorite
ran early, even with a mega studio and lots of quick
venue was great! Felt that judges were low but
consistent. I really liked how many overalls they gave out
recognized the top 25 for teen and senior elite solos which I
since it was super competitive. However we only got one of
the judges critiques and zero videos, competition did not respond to my
We love this competition! It moves somewhat slow, but they accommodate
studios nicely. The staff members are very friendly.
Lots of dead time between routines. Too many intermissions. They
always favored larger studios, but this year it was very obvious.
judging was all over the place, again favoring larger studios. I
HATE the new format ... They now do solos, duets and trios throughtout the
weekend mixed in with small and large groups. LONG. HARD. BORING!
WEEKEND!!! Thank goodness I love my dance family and we all get
It took almost 2 weeks before we were able to access our judges
I enjoyed this competition and would not attend again. It may not be my
favorite but I do enjoy the organization of it. The one thing I do not like
is the awards ceremony. During awards they called up the top five dancers
in no particular order and then announced who won what place from there.
When they get down to the top two left they make an effort to go out of
their way and present them as the top two dancers. It is a little defeating
standing up there recognized as one of the top dancers but then receiving
second. It is more natural to have all dancers sit and wait to be called.
Overall, a fairly normal dance competition. Seems to favor larger studios.
The staging and such is well done and professional. Photos and videos are
of good quality. My biggest concern with this competition is transparency.
It can be difficult to find their rules and regulations.
Attended their regional event. Ran on time. Some comps we went to last year
have been between 1-2 hours ahead which can get frustrating. Liked the
judges comments and venue.
Have gone to the regionals for 3 years now and this was our first time
going to nationals. Judging is consistent and fair. Loved the classes
offered at nationals (one teacher called out dancers for inappropriate
moves). Very positive experience and I hope we get to return in the future.
This is a very organized competition that runs smoothly & on time.
request for one of our numbers to go earlier in the day (due to a
obligation for one of our dancers) was honored & handled
do feel that they don\'t give out as many overall
awards as other
competitions of the same caliber do (they only do top 5,
even in fairly large groups, where others will recognize a top 10)& I would
like to see them place more
dancers in the overalls, but otherwise, it
was a good competition.
As a dancer I attended this competition, I loved it. As a teacher last year
attended l raved about how professional they were, ran on time, judged
fairly, loved the idea of donating trophies to a great benefit. This year
was my first year owning a studio, we attended the competition that I raved
about. My studio got robbed it was a sin. How do girls that were platinum
winners all season long get golds? When I emailed the competition, they
were just as rude. I will never go back to applause. I also didn\'t like
how they favored certain studios.
We have always had a great experience with Applause, it\'s been one of my
entire studio\'s favorites. That is, however, until this year\'s
Nationals. It was very, very obvious that there was some favoritism going
on. In addition to that, I personally believe they should regulate how many
dances they put into one category, because I don\'t think it\'s very
fair if one studio gets all top 3 spots, which occurred multiple times at
nationals. I was very disappointed at judging, and thought many dances that
were very good did not score as well as they should have. Favoritism is
pretty obvious if the same 2 or 3 studios are taking top spots in all dance
categories. Overall very disappointed at our nationals experience. Will
probably return to the regional, don\'t think we\'ll be going back to
This year was our first experience with Applause and we really enjoyed it.
Felt it was judged fairly and loved the venue it was held at. Will
hopefully return next season.
This was my favorite of all our competitions this year! Right on time &
judges were spot on!
As a parent we went before KAR bought and absolutely hated the
experience--sold out comp, poorly organized with 8 and unders competing
from 8 in the morning until 11 at night and an awards session at midnight!!
However, we went to one in a new venue with KAR as new management and it
was totally new experience. Much more organized with no late sessions and
better thinking when scheduling. So I give them a thumbs up with new
Would have really liked a top 10 instead of only top 5
We have been to this one many years and this year their judging was the
hardest I\'ve seen. They actually ran ahead of time even though they were
sold out. Not the comps fault, but the ac could have worked better in the
theater. I do wish even though it\'s the end of their season, they would
still have a supply of t-shirts etc on had to sell.
Had a great time at this competition!
Good competition. Only complaints - no real judging (everyone, even bad
dances, was scored high gold -- not a fan of the mentality everyone wins,
give kids real feedback to improve) and not allowed to even bring water in
Liked this competition!!
I thought this was fun but the judges should critique more
This is our studios first year of competing ,and my daughters
first year of dance she just started dancing in august
must say I am impressed with this competition I really
all the dancers and felt it ran smoothly
run very well.Kids loved it!
Great competition! Ran smoothly and staff was very helpful.
It was nothing more than ok, but not bad. The last time I went there I
didn\'t like how they only did a top 5 and not a top 10. Idk if it is
still like that.
It wasn\'t bad or great. They need to work on making it more
We haven\'t attended this comp in several years but I liked it ok when we
We went here for the first year and we will be going back. The backstage
folks are extremely nice and helpful. They interacted beautifully with the
dancers and made it more fun for them. Well run-- good venue both for
dancers and dance parents. Overall fair judging, attracted quality
competition. Our studio has decided to attend their national based on the
professionalism of this competition.
Good competition overall. The staff are very nice and my last time
competing at Applause, they ran 45 minutes ahead of schedule! The judges
score very high, which is nice when it comes to awards. The past few years
it has been held in bad locations like crappy high schools. But the actual
competition in general is worth while.
This USED to be one of the best competitions in the circuit. They sold out
to KAR when the owner died. If you like KAR, which is all about the $$,
then you may like this one.
It\'s a fun competition that myself and my students enjoyed going to. As
time went on, they tried really hard to be like other competitions and it
just kind of took the fun out of it.
Haven\'t been in years. The last couple of times we went I felt there was
blatant favoritism to one studio. It wasn\'t just against us- I was
feeling OTHER studios were better and could never come out on top when they
should have. It\'s hard to call favoritism when it\'s you vs. them, but
observing other studios and feeling bad for them just made it very clear. I
don\'t think we will go back.
We go to this competition often.
Solid comp that attracts decent talent in our area. Nationals was small
compared to others we have been to.
one of my studios favorite competitions! We attend applause usually every
other year (to change things up a bit) but we\'ve competed at applause 5
times since I\'ve been on the team. The staff is so kind and friendly and
helpful. The venues are always very nice, clean, etc. Other studios are
friendly, fun award ceremonies, great judging, fair scoring. 10/10 would
Enjoyable competition with high energy. Awards are long with the addition
of dance-downs, etc, but otherwise, good judging and a wide variety of
We had a great experience at Applause. Looking forward to dancing with them
This past spring was our first ever Applause competition. The staff was
kind, however, the schedule was jumbled and out of order. They "lost" our
best dancer's score and video. The comments were inconsistent on the
videos and the contest seemed to reward faces and costumes over quality and
technique. We will not be going back.
nice. My family has attended and gave it rave reviews.
Very nice competition. Had a wonderful experience here.
recommend this one. Love they allow adult division
We very much enjoyed our first experience with this competition this year
both at the \"local\" regional and again at nationals this summer.
Both were run very nicely and remained either on or just ahead of time.
Staff was friendly and the most important is the kids enjoyed it!
Lots of great feedback. Tends to run long.
We do this competition every year and love it!
Love it! Excellent competition.
Applause is such a pleasant, smooth running competition to attend. Love
Very friendly staff. Competition ran ahead. Awards were normal length
although I thought the actual presented award could have been nicer. (In
some cases it was just a certificate). I\'m not one to think everyone
should get a trophy but if you ARE going to hand something out it
shouldn\'t be a sheet of paper. Definitely would attend again.
We attended last year & there were long waits between numbers (costume
changes) but they didn\'t move ahead when other dancers were ready.
Announcer kept asking if anyone was ready to dance to come back stage -
seemed weird to me. Don\'t like that the rules & general information as
well as the schedule isn\'t posted online.
Awards was a bit difficult to follow, but nice comp. I like that they use
their facebook page to let people know when they are ahead of schedule.
The past few years, I've found the judging to be very inconsistent. Not
unfair, but inconsistent, if that makes sense. It runs smoothly, though,
and runs on time or ahead.
This comp has really grown in our area in the past couple of years. My only
complaint is that they tend to go a long time between awards presentations,
which makes for a super long day for younger dancers. That said, their
awards move fast and are my favorite, no fluff.
We didn\'t get to attend this year, but have always enjoyed it in the