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  • Gold Star Competition


  • 3.6 - Average Ratings
  • 105 Total Reviews
    Parent : 39.05 %
    Dancer : 15.24 %
    Studio Owner : 21.9 %
    Teacher : 23.81 %

  • 11 Middlebury Blvd ,Unit 1
  • Randolph ,NJ
  • 9739278007
  • info@headlinerscompetition.com

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HEADLINERS

Apr 21 2021

Don't bother wasting your time or money...this was our first experience with Headliners and it will be our last. These judges and staff are obviously overworked and underpaid. One of our dancers was left off the Headliners list. Our studio reached out to them for a week with no response. They responded after we already competed. One judge was tweeting about how awful solos are during the competition. The backstage manager yelled at me and told me she is going to scratch a dance because I told her they are already backstage and they apparently didn't check in (this was a studio block so our studio was the only one there). To top of the wonderful weekend the MC called Phoenix, AZ a bunch of Jerk Off Studios during awards other staff laughed and told her she was live. She did not apologize a the time just continued with awards. Try explaining to a bunch of children what "jerk off" means.

Venue : 4
Judging : 1
Staff : 1
Awards : 1
Communication : 1
HEADLINERS
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Apr 21 2021

From the office: As posted on our social media, the woman who made that comment (a tour employee contracted for just 4 cities), had her contract terminated. Regardless of if the mic was live or not, comments like that go completely against our standards. Headliners was started 30 years ago, and what was said was in direct conflict with our values. All employees, whether they work in my office full time, part time, or just on tour a few weekends each year are expected to remember that their actions have a direct effect on Headliners and we expect them to act in a professional manner at all times. That did not happen here. We do have to clarify that the term referred to a few people being difficult, not what people are insinuating. The tweets were also brought to our attention. There was nothing said about the solos or any dancer being awful. The tweet was "No More Solos LOL" making light of the fact that there were lots of solos to watch. The talent was absolutely amazing and that was also clarified by the judge. Onsite our staff was threatened with physical harm and yelled at for asking people to adhere to the venue guidance. That still does not excuse the comment that was made and the reason that person was terminated.

Apr 15 2019

I have never met a more friendly , honest, kind, and well rounded Comp staff as Headliners. We spent the weekend at their Chandler competition and even our fellow studios were kind. It was nice to be part of an organization that encourages studios to lift each other up!!

Venue : 5
Judging : 5
Staff : 5
Awards : 5
Communication : 5
HEADLINERS
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Apr 15 2019

Apr 06 2019

Nothing surprises me about dance competitions but this one did. During the awards, recognition was given to the teens who choreographed their own routines and fellow student routines. It was a nice gesture however, it seemed as though these students were on the judge's radar and received higher marks than they maybe should have. In the senior division, there were the usual lyrical, jazz and tap numbers which were all the standard dancing that I have seen before. I have been to enough competitions where I know tap doesn't get the same recognition as lyrical. There were a decent amount of tappers ranging from mediocre to professional grade. When it came to the overall top 15, the number 1 spot was a tapper. That was surprising since most don't place in the top 15 or if they do, it's somewhere near the bottom. The tapper was good but nowhere near #1 and no other tappers broke the other 14 spots yet some of them did receive an "Elite Gold" award. I then remembered that she got an award for student choreographer so it started to make sense. The judges have the certain dancer's numbers and they subjectively judge to that. Another special "judge's award" went to a tapper who played some "Mickey Mouse" song, wore a pasted smile and shuffle ballchanged her way to that award. People in the crowd had a confused look on their faces but not surprised. The only Male dancer received 10 recognitions but that is another story. I would love for the judges to put out their criteria for their ratings. As a person with a dance history and eyes & ears, I have a hard time understanding why certain awards are given to certain dancers. It's very subjective and doesn't promote self confidence in these kids. It makes a lot of them not want to compete in the future.

Venue : 4
Judging : 1
Staff : 1
Awards : 1
Communication : 1
HEADLINERS
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Apr 06 2019

Hello Dance Mom! As a dance mom myself, former dance competition team director at my mother's dance studio and now CEO of Headliners, I have also been to my share of dance competitions these 30+ years. I am proud to be a part of Headliners, who is known for their reputation of honesty and integrity in the dance competition world. The following addresses the comments in your post above: 1. I agree that tap typically does not score as well as lyrical and other dance forms at most competitions. As I was primarily a tap teacher, I love to see tap honored. So it is curious that when a tap routine does receive the accolades it deserves, it is met with adversity and skepticism. 2. The judges do not know what dancers have entered self-choreographed routines. The program does not separate these routines, and being a student choreographer has no bearing on any other awards. We, as a company, look to encourage the next generation of choreographers and offer certificates of recognition at every regional. This also notifies the dancer's eligibility to compete for Student Choreographer of the Year at Nationals. This is all explained in our program. 3. Title winners are selected by a consensus of the judging panel. As each soloist performs, the judges laptops give the option to check off that they want that dancer to be considered for the regional title. At the end of the session, the tabulator provides the panel with a list of all dancers listed for consideration. It is from this list that the title winners are selected to represent the region at Nationals. This is also explained in our program. 4. The judges have no access to the others scores, they do not know the outcome of overalls, and overalls do not have any bearing on any other special awards. At the awards ceremony you would have noticed that the judges presented their special awards and titles before the overalls were even announced. Judging criteria is also explained in our program. I encourage anyone reading this to go to our Facebook page - Headliners Dance Championships - to see recent reviews and commentary from dance teachers and studio owners. Should you, or anyone, wish to learn more about how our events are run, please feel free to contact us. My staff and I are at your disposal and would be happy to do so. You can call us at 973-927-8007 or email me directly at shari@headlinerscompetition.com.

Mar 13 2019

Sending positive vibes to our FAVORITE competition!! Shari, and Headliners are a class act all the way!

Venue : 5
Judging : 5
Staff : 5
Awards : 5
Communication : 5
HEADLINERS
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Mar 13 2019

Thank you so much. We appreciate you and all the teachers and studios supporting us each year!!

Mar 03 2019

Best competition pictures in the industry, there’s really no competition. Clear, free and they actually capture the tricks! The competition is a very professional environment and we always have a very good time! We have been to this competition in many different locations and venues such as Worcester, Derry for three years and this year Woonsocket Rhode Island And we have always had a great experience. This competition holds its events in spaces with ample dressing room space and stages appropriate for this type of event! One of few competitions that still hands out trophies with adjudication which is great especially for younger dancers. In addition the opportunity to donate trophies is an amazing program. This competition also offers a title program for the lower competitive levels which does an amazing job recognizing studios and dancers of all abilities. We love Headliners and can’t wait to be back next weekend!

Venue : 5
Judging : 5
Staff : 5
Awards : 5
Communication : 5
HEADLINERS
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Mar 13 2019

We are grateful for your review and thank you for taking the time to support us!

Sep 22 2018

I also attended the Headliners convention in Hanover, NJ in 2016. The event was amazing! The venue was spectacular (Hanover Marriott). The staff there were helpful and awesome to be around. The staff were amazing like always, the awards were fast and ran amazingly, the overall convention was amazing and probably one of the best ones you'll find out there.

Venue : 5
Judging : 5
Staff : 5
Awards : 5
Communication : 5
HEADLINERS
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Sep 22 2018

I attended Headliners in Lawrenceville, NJ in April 2018. The venue (Notre Dame High School) was beautiful and the stage was nice, dressing room space was average for a boys dressing room. The judges there were spectacular they gave both constructive criticism and positive feedback, lots of judges I listen to only talk when there is something that needs work, but these judges comment on not only things I needed to work on, but they also focused on some positive moments of my routine. The staff there were AMAZING! The merch stand was amazing, and the backstage crew was nice. Awards were awesome and they always go smoothly, the competition was running on time, and the communication in general was great! I loved the TV's backstage that showed what routines were checked in, which one was next, and which routines just went. It really helped out a lot! I 100% recommend this competition to you, it is one of the best run competitions you can find!

Venue : 5
Judging : 5
Staff : 5
Awards : 5
Communication : 5
HEADLINERS
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Mar 16 2018

Runs smoothly. Judging seemed fair enough, no real surprises. If you have seasoned intermediate dancers, this is not the comp I would pick. My daughter's team practices 2 nights a week, not more than 3 hours at a time. We attend 2-3 comps per year. I am not casting shade on those super talented groups, it just isn't fair to the intermediate dancer who is making progress, but not an elite performer. The rules about turn, leap and tumbling skills force them into the highest level along with dancers who are obviously dancing every day when they are in 8-10 numbers to our 3-4. They only did a top 5 when there were over 30 small groups. But in categories where there were only 4, they placed all. I would rather see a top 10 in larger fields and only a first or second in the smaller. 4th out of 4 numbers isn't an accomplishment. The special awards seemed to all go to traditional jazz, tap and musical theater. It was an okay experience, but I would not return with the rules about the levels. ADD: Just reviewed the judges commentary. The dancers do not pick costumes, hair styles, etc so it isn't beneficial for the male judge at this event to spend 1/3 of the time speaking to that he doesn't like their hair??? really? And the numeric values assigned were all over the place. Think 10 points different between judges for the same numbers. Makes one wonder if they were even watching the same pieces. How does one judge award a 19/20 for choreography and another 10? That's a 50% difference. The included media package is nice, but it isn't user friendly or simple, Very cumbersome and click-heavy.

Venue : 0
Judging : 0
Staff : 0
Awards : 0
Communication : 0
HEADLINERS
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Feb 27 2018

We attended Headliners in Seattle this month. They had a few hiccups since it was their first time in Seattle, but they definitely did everything they could to help the event run smooth. The staff was friendly and our dancers seemed to have a good time. Love the video and picture package of each routine that is included in your entry fee. That's awesome they offer that. Loved all the judges awards at the awards ceremony. Judging seemed fair and was so pleased my daughter placed in the top 4 at the competitive level! That is the one thing about this competition that makes me nervous is they base the levels on ability (no aerials, triple pirouettes, fouette turns in the middle level). Our dancers can do all of those so we had to do broadway(competitive) level even though we take a small number of hours each week, so it was scary to go against dancers that are taking 3/4 ballet classes per week, plus tech classes, acro, stretch/strength, etc..., but we did ok! Hoping they do comne back to Seattle next year because we would definitely like to give this one another try!!

Venue : 5
Judging : 5
Staff : 5
Awards : 5
Communication : 5
HEADLINERS
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Aug 26 2017

Headliners is truly awesome. The staff is amazing, and their intensive and competitions are so cool. The intensive class I went to was spectacular, I had learned so much and was happy to be a part of it!

Venue : 5
Judging : 5
Staff : 5
Awards : 5
Communication : 5
HEADLINERS
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Aug 25 2017

My son and I LOVE this competition, and are excited to be going again this season! Everything is run on-time and so smoothly. We loved that they were done early and did not go until all hours of the night! Even though he has only attended one Event to date, I felt like I was surrounded by friends and always greeted with a smile. The Judges' critiques, were encouraging and offered keen insight-Not the usual "Nice costumes" or "Great job-Keep working" that he has heard before. The photos were amazing, and I was so grateful to have them all, as well as the videos to each of his routines. I love that they are included at no additional cost! We appreciated the 3 Levels of competition, too! Since he has only been competing for 2 seasons, we were able to enter him in their Novice Division. This year, he can feel comfortable in the Recreational Level, and hopefully the following year, enter the Competitive Level :-) We are excited to come back! Thank you Headliners...

Venue : 5
Judging : 5
Staff : 5
Awards : 5
Communication : 5
HEADLINERS
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Aug 10 2017

My studio has attended this competition 2 years in a row. We like the competition itself and the staff was nice and the event was organized. The media package was great! We have tested this one out with just a few entries and wanted to be able to go ahead and enter all of ours with them. I wish I could rate this competition higher, but the reason we will NOT be returning is because of the judges. We had 2 of the same judges 2 years in a row and they were horrible! Seemed to be very nice people, but AWFUL judges. One of them is a nice younger man, but did not give 1 critique! He kept saying "Wow!" and laughed a lot, but we came for feedback! We did not get anything helpful from him. The other judge is an older lady, and she had no clue what was going on. She wouldn't speak until halfway through the dance, and on one of our dances she said: "Oh wait this is a tap dance, how great!" 30 seconds later the dance was over.... When she did decide to give feedback, it was all opinion based like saying she didn't like the "hairdo" or in a duo she didn't want them to ever not be touching....the minute one girl had her own part she would say "nope nope this is not a duet" If this competition hired new judges, we would go back. We gave them 2 years and it was the same, so they are not on our calendar this season!

Venue : 3
Judging : 1
Staff : 4
Awards : 4
Communication : 3
HEADLINERS
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May 24 2017

It was my kids first time at Headliners. Pros. Well organized, ran on time mostly. Good programs, not too expensive. The judging was tough, which I like. Elite Golds were earned. Silvers were given. Not a feel good scoring system. Pics and videos come with registration. The pics I did get to preview are excellent. I just love that it's not an extra expense. But the pics were such high quality, I would have bought them. At every award ceremony, each judge gives out 2-3 judges choice awards. They were not based on scores. They give a short speech about why they chose that dance. Wow! Their words were so sincere and heartfelt. I can tell you that those awards meant so much to the dancers at our studio. Probably more than overalls. I wish you could have seen their glowing faces in the dressing room after. Our girls fell in love with one of the quirky judges. How nice to see that judges are people and have personalities. Cons. The venue was way too small. No place to sit or eat. Some studios brought in tables and set them up in the hall way. Talk about human traffic jam. Their was only one set of restrooms available. While looking for another, we walked through other studios dressing rooms, they were literally school hallways with no natural light or ventilation. Stinky. I did find the judging slightly skewed. Especially with contemporary dances. Contemporary dances that were more modern did not place as high as those that included more "traditional" elements as turn sequences, kicks and leaps. That genre, and lyrical are expanding to include really amazing, unique choreo. But choreo that was more traditional was placed higher every time. That leads me to another "con". There was not a high level of talent there. My kids dances were all in the highest level. We mostly competed against 1-2 studios. Kinda disappointing. But their could have been a little more competition if there weren't some studios that were blatantly leveling down. In the rules, the mid level states 2 hours of training a week. At awards, many dancers in the mid level told the emcee that they have danced for 5-7 years. I hope that the 12 year old duo who were in the mid level and told the emcee that they have been dancing for 7 years were super happy to place above a 7 year old duo from our studio. Sorry, that is an integrity issue. We all know that studios level down for the win. It's sad that most competitions do not enforce their rules. And this is not sour grapes. My kid was in the advanced level and her dances did very well. Would I vote to go back? Probably not. If we were a mid level studio I would.

Venue : 1
Judging : 3
Staff : 5
Awards : 5
Communication : 5
HEADLINERS
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May 03 2017

The judging was pretty good and the staff was sweat but the competition didn't run as smoothly as I've seen other competitions.

Venue : 4
Judging : 5
Staff : 4
Awards : 3
Communication : 3
HEADLINERS
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Mar 30 2017

I recently attended a Headliners event, and then I was browsing through here reading reviews and found some that perfectly explained how I felt about the competition. And now I just read that a judge came on here to defend about how the competition hires great judges. So I think that says enough. I am a teacher at a studio who did not have an overall wonderful experience with Headliners. The competition ran smoothly and the staff were very kind, but that's where the bar stopped for us. Nothing fancy going on here. I will have to agree with another recent review on here, that it is just second rate in comparison to what else is out there nowadays. I have attended "flashy" competitions where the judges are still very well educated, who also are master teachers, and they still hand out tons of overall money, scholarships to conventions and other great prizes. I was expecting more, but sometimes you have to just experience the difference for yourself.

Venue : 4
Judging : 2
Staff : 4
Awards : 2
Communication : 3
HEADLINERS
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Apr 02 2017

Hello. We work very hard to be accommodating and to make our events a positive experience for everyone. Please contact us and let us know what you did not like and what you would like to see in the future. We are always appreciative of constructive feedback - info@headlinerscompetition.com or 973-927-8007. We hope to hear from you.

Mar 29 2017

We attended headliners Lawrenceville, NJ. I can honestly say everything snd i mean everything went smoothly. The staff was pretty amazing and friendly. The emcee was loud and clear. Three days of competition with lots of talent. Thank you Headliners for an amazing weekend!

Venue : 0
Judging : 0
Staff : 0
Awards : 0
Communication : 0
HEADLINERS
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Mar 28 2017

I am a professional dancer, dance teacher, and most importantly to this forum, a dance competition adjudicator for multiple companies, including Headliners. Having been on all sides of the industry, I wanted to express my support and confidence in Headliners as one of the best I've encountered. Shari and the team work hard to bring professional, quality staff to each event they run. The judging panels I have been a part of for the past 6 years of working for them have always included a mix of dance educators with decades of experience, professional dancers with extensive credits and well rounded knowledge of all styles of dance. They do not hire based on the "cool" factor - you will not see the latest, trendiest "flash in the pan" convention "teacher" judging your students. Those stars may be stellar in their own right, but they have never taught a beginner dancer to do a pas de bourree or a time step. Headliners hires judges who care first and foremost about the kids, which is what it should all be about. As referenced on this forum, Headliners will also always take the time to answer your questions and address your concerns. Their events run on time or ahead of schedule, they offer a fantastic media package, and college scholarships. Is Headliners the flashiest competition out there? No. But is it an event run with integrity and support for the dancers? Absolutely.

Venue : 0
Judging : 0
Staff : 0
Awards : 0
Communication : 0
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Mar 27 2017

I really enjoyed this competition. The judging was fair and accurate. There was tough competition but a very friendly and positive atmosphere. Very on time and professional.

Venue : 5
Judging : 5
Staff : 5
Awards : 5
Communication : 5
HEADLINERS
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Mar 15 2017

I have attended Headliners several times in the past few years, and I have a lot of the same concerns people have expressed below. It all seems to be met with a lot of defensiveness on here from there head office obviously, which concerns me. I will just state my point of view as a dance teacher based on what I know in the industry. Headliners is a well-run, yet very dated competition. Buying iPads and having a computer scoring systems does not make you current or high tech. Truly, the fundamentals of the competition have not evolved, and they need a lot of new high energy ideas to help keep them relevant in the competition industry today. The main problem is the judging panel and who they hire to work at their Nationals. They have the same older lady judges at many events, who really do not give useful feedback on their tapes, but primarily are just not current. The rest of their judges are a bit younger, but honestly I have never heard a judge's tape from this competition that was intelligent or sounded like anyone was invested in the kids learning. There is a lot of opinion giving from the judges, and a lot of it is not relevant to the kids, not relevant for the dance industry in 2017 and just ego-driven. They really just hire second rate judges, which leaves them as a second rate competition. Once they realize that who they hire to represent their organization on stage makes a difference, and get some fresh blood in those judges seats, I think the competition could be back in the narrative. They are a great competition in terms of organization and running on time. However, they need to be honest about the type of studios that they cater to. This is not the competition for your top level studios, and you won't see that type of talent there. They claim you will, but you won't. Headliners is really just missing the big picture. They don't hire people that will attract the top level, because they're not top level. I am not saying that's a bad thing, it's just good to be honest about what you offer and the types of studios you should be hosting. A lot of parents have concerns on here about the scoring system and how their kids were scored at these events. I think scoring systems are all relative at each competition, and they're all just silly. Yes, they spread the love, like most other competitions of this nature, and who cares what they call a Gold or High Silver. The issue really is the substance behind what Headliners is doing that is lacking in integrity to make them a more attractive event for studios. They make a lot of mediocre studios feel like stars from what I have witnessed, and that's great if you think that is important. The judges they have really can't decipher a "top level" studio from a mediocre one at these events by too many points, so keep that in mind if you want to go there and "win everything!" Most parents loving this competition on here are probably studios who went to their event and did really well, because they are not a big competition any more. One or two day events, is really nothing. So you won some overalls and title jackets at their events so you LOVED it, but really step back and look at the substance. There are no scholarships to anything at their regionals (and not at Nationals either!). They award gift certificates instead of cash prizes at regionals. It's all just small things like this that make you sit at their awards ceremonies like, huh, really eh? The video/photo packages are excellent for value and quality of what you get from them. I'd say their photographer and videographer are top of the line from what I've experienced. There are a lot of things they advertise for their events, including Nationals that have likely never evolved. Their title competition at Nationals for me was a huge miss, and needs a lot of updating to attract more top level dancers to come and compete for it. Their master classes at Nationals were a big disappointment, but that comes from the teachers that they hired. There was just no real 'hype' about anything they did. Everything felt like an after thought, or "well, this is how we've don't it for 25 years and it works for us." I was waiting for the big THIS IS NATIONALS moments, and they never came. There are some great qualities that they bring to the competition industry, but there are a lot of old school beliefs that will likely never change unless they have new staff that come in and really make drastic changes to their core. However, if you love their event, it is because you love those 'old-school' qualities and so to each their own. It is a second rate competition, and people should know that going in, although I'm pretty sure if you look at their website/advertising and what they offer you would know that going into it. The people who run the competition seem nice, and eager to please, or defend themselves (however you choose to look at it!) but I really don't know how eager they appear to spend money on the things that need addressing to help bring this competition into the current century.

Venue : 2
Judging : 1
Staff : 3
Awards : 2
Communication : 3
HEADLINERS
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Mar 08 2017

Worst comp. The director has a reputation for her favortism towards big studios and friends. The most pathetic think is how defensive she is. Every time comes on here to complain on here about the comp she feels the need to come on and disagree with them. It's pathetic. I wouldn't spend $1 on Headliners nor would I recommend it to anyone.

Venue : 1
Judging : 1
Staff : 1
Awards : 1
Communication : 1
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Feb 16 2017

Wonderful experience! Very organized...The weekend ran so smoothly.Staff was always friendly and went above and beyond.The judges were very professional and gave great feedback. Judging was fair and consistent. Loved it!

Venue : 0
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Awards : 0
Communication : 0
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