Competition ran 2-2.5 hours early. Studio pick has clear bias towards the studio with the most numbers competing. Awards were very confusing with elite top first, top first, and first place as the adjudication.
first time experiencing KAR and will never go back or recommend. the doors open 30 mins before comp starts. expecting dancers to get mentally and physically prepared in 30 mins. they started a regional comp on Wed. afternoon going all day Thursday-Sunday... absolutely outrageous. they let in double of routines they should have. very clear they are only worried about money and not the dancers well being and education. their scoring system is outrageous and changes depending on level, age, and routine size. awards are confusing and misleading. they scheduled line dances with over 75 dancers right away in the morning so parking was outrageous at 730 trying to get in the building. I had to have a dad park my car so I could warm up my dancers and get them on stage, he missed the dance it took so long to park. very confused on how some dances could beat a dance in a category but they could still win an overall and the other dance wouldn't. everything just seems fishy and very money oriented. I would not recommend them or their sister comps.
There are so many things about this comp that I hate. First off, the adjudications - Top First Place, Elite Top First, etc.. Who came up with that bright confusing idea? Second, this comp is as political as it gets! Don’t believe me? Browse through their results and you will see the same studios all place in the top 10. A dancer who ran off stage and didn’t finish her routine actually placed in the top 10. The judging is a complete joke. There is 0 communication between Kar and studios so if you expect to get a question answered or need anything, you can forget about it. Rude staff members. We gave this comp 2 chances just to see if things had changed any this year. Not at all. KAR truly does not care about anything but money. Thankfully we won’t be returning next year!
This was my daughter's 4th competition season, and this is one of the worst competitions we have ever attended (we did 7 others during COVID, and none were as problematic as this one). I believe the venue was selected after we registered (it was supposed to be in Denver, but was moved an hour away to Colorado Springs, which was a hassle). Our studio arrived well in advance of our scheduled start time, and they decided to start early, which caused a huge rush in our dressing room. The competition staff kept pressuring us to hurry and get started, even though it was well before the scheduled start time. As a result, our littlest kids were in a huge rush to get dressed, had no time to warm up, and as a result, were stressed and rattled during their performances. We were then rushed outside and handed trophies in the yard in front of the building. I paid for a photogenic entry day-of, but it was never listed on my profile, so I have a strong suspicion that they took my money and never registered her. All in all, poorly run, rude staff, and a very stressful experience. I hope we never have to attend again.
I sort of liked KAR but there were a lot of bad things. Cons: The venue they choose was horrible! They had a separate dressing room for boys and girls. There were a lot of big studios there and they gave us the tiniest dressing room! There were at least about 100 girls just in the tiny closet they gave us. The boys had a bigger area than us and there were about 5 of them. So many girls had to go into the bathroom to change and do their makeup. Another con is that while we were dancing onstage they were changing the volume of the music!!! They would turn it up really high almost bursting our eardrums, or have it be so quiet we can´t hear it! The pros: The staff was very nice and helpful! I also loved the app, telling people what dances were next! They also had good video and photo quaility. The juding was also fair.
We weren’t pleased with the judging for this competition. However the venue was very big and was easy to load the props into the building.
We will never go back to this competition. They awarded a vulgar dance ( and it’s not just my opinion- I know plenty of people who did not feel comfortable watching this performance as they complained and left the theatre.) 2nd place overall. This is after people got up to complain, teachers from other studios, studio owners, parents, ext. They do not stand by their word stated in their rules, and when approached, the director was nowhere to be found. Nor did they return my numerous phone calls regarding this particular event. I’m not complaining because we didn’t win first overall, I’m complaining because of their lack of concern that multiple people from multiple studios felt filthy while watching. Everyone is entitled to their opinion opinion, yes. But this was well beyond child appropriate. I care about my students being judged fairly, and as children.
The location for this competition was fantastic! Also it was an overall really fun experience!
This was my daughters very first experience doing a competition. and we have been hooked ever since. our dance teacher new how to hook the new parents. everyone we ran into had smiles on their faces and treated you like you were the stars loved it cant wait to go back. it was on mothers day so i got to enjoy the dance mom life for the first time and WOW what a great way to do it. i will never forget our first one!! thank you for making it a great experience and we have never stopped dancing
I dread doing this competition every year. Last year we were force to pay $25.00 extra for media fee which is something we have to pay extra moving forward. Their judging is way off. The studio with the most dances is the one that wins the studio award even though the dances are not the greatest. They also have a dance convention which is a waste of time and money. We have it at our studio so we have to fork over $175.00 for over 30 kids to be crammed up in one room. Since this competition and convention are mandatory at our studio I will be taking my daughter out I will not be giving my money any more to this competition or convention
This was our first and only time we will compete at any competition by KAR or affiliated by KAR. I have attended dance comps where you hear “it’s political”, “they don’t like this style of dance or they like this style of dance”. I’m ok with that even though I thinks it’s BS because it’s a “dance comp” and every style should be judged fairly regardless of the comps preference. I also believe in “let the dance speak for itself”. If the dance and dancer is good it can’t be denied.... well I’ve been proven wrong! I have NEVER attended a dance competition where they were so blatantly bias towards one dance studio. KAR’s promotion of a particular dance studio was excruciating to watch. It does nothing to promo good sportsmanship and a healthy competitive atmosphere; quite the opposite. An example of this is dancing out of order to accommodate one studio multiple (A LOT) times during the 3 day, causing problems for other studios. Which in turn gave the “preferred” studio a sense of entitlement and arrogance towards other dancers. When a dancer says good luck say thank you, don’t smirk and roll your eyes. KAR allows super studios to run the show. KAR prefers super studios which offers them money and quantity over quality. KAR also prefers twerking and shaking your a$$ over technique. And your award scale first, top first, elite first; what the heck is that?! At least have the decency to slow down, speak clearly and louder for us to know what our routine scored. In my opinion KAR, your comp is a SCAM/FRAUD, you do NOT promote the best atmosphere for dancers to be creative, you are singularly focused on one thing $$$$. FYI... our dancers were committed to go to your Nationals in Myrtle Beach, reservations booked. Not now, we are NOT giving you any more money to have our dancers unfairly judged. I will make it my goal to let anyone and everyone know of our experience.
Walking in with no idea where to go, where the dressing rooms were, or any staff to talk to at 7am was a huge misstep. Yes, the technology factor is nice regarding the app and how they update everything. But, their point system and judging makes no sense. How did we get an overall 2nd and 1st place with the exact same composite score? Didn't seem fair to the other girls in our categories to have not placed if they too had tied with others. And don't go to Long Island if you're from the city. What a waste of your time- everyone is white, there is absolutely no diversity and everyone had a "I'd like to speak with a manager" haircut. Lots of Abby Lee wannabes with cicled feet and the same choreography entered 20 times. Yuck. The judges were very sweet but offered absolutely no real take aways. Will not return.
We attended a recent regional competition, which was probably my daughter's 5th or 6th one between two different dance studios. We always love KAR and feel that things run smoothly. The main downside is the venue, which isn't always the fault of KAR. Dressing room areas are horrible because it's in such an old theater, there is not enough space. This venue has been used for a few years now and they have made improvements, in terms of better security with employees posted at the entrance of curtains that block off the dressing room areas. But they are way too crowded and absolutely nuts on the busy days (Saturday and Sundays). Even if you arrive early in the day to get some space, it gets overrun with other dancers who plop their belongings right in front and in the "aisle" through the mess of Dream Duffles/Rack and Roll's. It's impossible to walk through there to try to find your dancer to help with quick changes, etc. As for the competition, there is always the issue of studios not seeming to enter their dances in appropriate levels, but we see this pretty much everywhere we go. They ran on time and sometimes early. Some awards are LONG, but it's hard to split them up much more than they already do. Judging was fair and it was always a good mixture of studios in the overall awards.
This was our first time at KAR and I wasn't impressed. It was on time and a little ahead of schedule at times, which is a positive. The adjudication system is silly. It's so confusing when you have the adjudications of "Elite Top First" "Top First" etc. Why put the word "first" even in it? It's not about where you placed overall.... it's about how you scored. It's especially confusing when there is an "Elite" division. I know our girls were confused on the adjudication system and it was VERY difficult to follow when they were giving awards. I'm not sure why you would go with something hard to understand....platinum, high gold, gold....or some similar system would fix this problem. Also....too many levels to compete in! I just wasn't a fan of this event and if I have it my way, would prefer to not ever return.
I enjoy attending KAR as both a dance teacher and mom. We have been attending for the past 10yrs. The venue, judges and awards ceremonies are always well put together. Communication is great before, during and after competition. I also enjoy the app you can download on your phone.
Our studio attends KAR Escondido each year which always sells out. We are a smaller studio. We bring roughly 30ish routines..... I had enough staff to work back stage so I thought I would enjoy myself by sitting in the audience. I got to observe the entire weekend from a parents perspective. What I found to be most upsetting was studios placing routines in the wrong levels and what’s worse being awarded with overall placements and judges awards. Now please understand I am not playing the victim. Our studio did very well and held our own amongst the larger studios. However, I can honestly say I saw more talent in the Primary divisions then I saw in the intermediate and Secondary divisions. Triple pirouettes, advanced acrobatic skills, fuertes for days, and the confidence that they have been dancing for many seasons before...... it was only natural those routines would place in the top 3. They were gorgeous, flawless routines. It’s too bad those gorgeous routines could not bump up into the intermediate division and let the truly novice dancers dance in the beginning division. I’ve talked to KAR about this issue and they always say the same thing. They don’t know how to regulate the issue. Well for starters why don’t you start bumping up the routines that can place in the intermediate division??? Are you afraid you will loose customers? Make studio owners accountable!
Overall We will continue to attend KAR each season because our studio enjoys the challenge. We may not always get top placement. There may always be a studio who comes in and Cheats. It is my hope that KAR grows a pair and makes these changes so that everyone can enjoy the competition.
Do not adhere to their own rules. Studios taking 10-15 minutes for props, not ready for their time slot. Consistently running 2 hours behind schedule. Awards very difficult to follow and understand speakers.
Judges do not have a well rounded dance background or knowledge of other genres. Judges have zero interaction in dancers. Scoring all over the place and inconsistent.
They ran out of programs by 10 am on Saturday morning.
Pure greed-way too many routines and dancers for one competition, not enough dressing space. We will not be back. They cater to the bigger studios.
Sometimes I wish they would check the kids and their levels better. Sometimes these kids are far better and do not believe they belong in certain levels!
Love KAR! High energy and just a fun competition.
Very nice Venue. Large and accommodating for all dancers. Kids had a good time and were treated right. Not a lot of studios were there for the event but we moved quickly because of it.
I was hesitant to attend KAR after reading the reviews for this season here, but tried to go in with an open mind. Sadly, I agree with a lot of the reviewers. If you look at each category you'll notice that whichever studio brought the most routines will be the top 5. Plus, I've never been to a comp that has a top 10, but awards them in separate groups and makes 10-6 feel like they're second class winners. Anyone who pays attention to an actual honest competition awards session will know that the point difference in a 1st place routine and 10th place routine can be just a few points. Making the dancers at the end of the line up sit down while you call up the "real" overall winners, talk to all of them, and wait for their choreographers to come on stage for pictures is ridiculous and a complete waste of time. They also send dancers out into the audience with buckets to collect donations while they talk about their charity work. As you can imagine, awards take more than a minute. The judges critiques were a joke and not worth the time it took to listen (no video critiques). They spent a good portion of the time on the costume, one took points aways because she didn't like the chosen dance shoe, and overall gave about 1helpful correction on the actual dance. DON'T WASTE YOUR MONEY!!
First, if there are five or four entries in a category, why not announce all of them in ranking order instead of only announcing top three? Our dancers like to know where they placed. Secondly, at the Lenoir regional they "ran out" of pins and crowns for title winners. We were told they would mail the pins and crowns to the studio. This is unacceptable. Our competition was small. There was no way they could have "run out" Saturday morning. They obviously did not prepare. Many dancers love to collect these pins. Entry fees are expensive and if the only thing they get to show for it is a pin, they should at least have those. Same for crowns. If dancers place in the title competition, yet all they get is a piece of paper, they are not getting the experience of getting crowned on stage. This is very disappointing and should not happen. Last, I believe we found out that the invitations to the NYC experience are determined randomly. We had a dancer who did not compete her solo, yet her name was still listed in the program, and she was announced as a winner of the NYC experience! She didn't even dance! I think this proves that these "invitations" that they hand out are not special or even picked based on any type of merit. It seems they randomly picked them and this time they picked someone who did not even dance. This is really bad. I tried to reference the Lenoir, NC event but it was not listed in the drop down menu below. Along with others, I also agree that judging is questionable but that is my own opinion. Not having pins and crowns, and giving out awards to people who didn't even dace, are not acceptable.
As a dance parent, this is the competition I dread the most every season. Judging is questionable and this place seems to cater to large studios. They do not post score break downs so they can have control over picking what the dancer gets or who places and who doesn't. Not a very honest competition. Our location is usually small with only one large neighboring studio in attendance every year and they usually sweep the whole competition not necessarily because they are phenomenal technical dancers, but instead because they bring the most money. This large studio also has dance chorography by KAR convention teachers. Every year, only this studio's dance pictures/videos make it onto KAR's social media while all the other smaller studios in attendance does not. Most elite top first adjudications were reserved for the large studio and the boy dancers but that's another whole story. I agree with the reviews down below that this competition runs on a who is cuter or who has the loudest costumes. KAR runs on over the top costumes and crazy big faces, not judged on dancing ability and technique. I wish our studio owner would stop picking this mess every year but although we place horribly here every year (we usually do well at other comps) the boys does well here so that could be a reason for our teams forced return. I guess we'll have to take one for the team but it's a HUGE waste of money. KAR is expensive. If you're stuck going here, is a smaller studio, and don't belong on KAR's list of favorites, don't expect a fair playing field, just clap, roll your eyes discreetly, and move along. If your a big loud studio with a ton of dances, ENJOY!
Absolutely crazy scoring this last competition. In the petite level, top 10 consisted of two 4 olds and several 5 year olds. There are NO way that a 4 year old should have been in the top 5. Seriously? They were judged on cuteness only. There should be a tiny tot level like Applause. A 4 year old should not be judged against a 7 or 8 year old. There was also one studio that would not show up for their scheduled time. We did keep track and every single solo/duet/group from said studio never performed on time. Most of the time they danced hour or two later.
Very poor judging! It seemed like they were going for cuteness and not on technique.
Completely disappointed with this competition. There was underjudging for cuteness rather than technique.
I have done Kar before with my children and had a great time, unfortunately I can not say the same about this past experience, routines called out of order ALL weekend to the point some moms missed their kids perform. Then when our studio owners asked to have one of our routines pushed back 10 mins to allow or girls to catch their breath and change before basically back to back Hip Hop Routines we were told no. Had girls coming off stage after second routine about ready to pass out. Schedule your stuff better!! Hopefully our studio owner will skip this one this year.
KAR, hire more young judges, from various parts of the country, who are knowledgeable about technique and today's innovative dance styles. Provide a mix of judges on a panel: male AND female, tappers, ballet teachers, hip-hoppers and contemporary dancers etc. And, change the judges completely for the Showcase, as one of your competitors does, to provide a new, level, field. If you keep the same judges, and just add a couple more, the previous bias is still present. Judges, recognize and reward technical difficulty and the ability to perform it cleanly. Don't mark your favorite style higher just because you like it better than another style. When you see groups that very obviously don't belong in a particular category, MOVE them, or penalize them. We saw groups who could have danced in Intermediate winning primary. We love your competitions, regional and national, but the judges at this year's nationals did not have the technical knowledge, background, or experience to judge a west coast competition fairly. It was obvious to audience members, with and without dance backgrounds.
This is just a revenue machine!! Scoring is biased for large studios!! You hear the same names over and over!! They are not judging talent....they are awarding by the spend per studio!! They also seem to have not cutoff for the number of entries they will take! My daughter performed on Friday morning at 9am!!! She had to miss school and I had to use a vacation day! KAR has seen my last $$
As a dance parent, we typically love attending KAR, but this year was not as enjoyable as previous competitions. Several studio mom's felt like the judges awarded only one style of dance, and overlooked the many talented dancers in several other genres. It was very clear that these judges were more comfortable with contemporary style soloists, and the scores reflected that. We also disliked that huge, pre-pro studios here in our area, brought multiple solos (no groups at all) and swept all the top scores and title crowns. It was a bit frustrating watching that happen, knowing that our dancers were attending nationals and could not compete title at nationals without qualifying at regionals. Maybe having a separate scoring system for title competition, that required a dancer to receive a target score or higher to qualify to compete at nationals, might be a better system. That way, all qualified dancers would have the opportunity to compete at summer nationals, not just the 6 or 7 dancers that won the crowns, but had no intention of attending KAR nationals. Many parents who were upstairs in the dressing rooms were also frustrated over the number of soloists that were obviously "out of category" in level, yet the judges gave them overalls. When you have a dancer turning 8 fouette's, perfect front aerials , and five pirouettes, they do not belong in the primary or even secondary division. Overall there are some things I would like to see KAR take into consideration before summer nationals this year, and for the 2018 competition season. We do love KAR for their range of categories and divisions, the time they put into announcing the top 5 winners, and the diversity of awards. Thank you for all the positive aspects you offer to parents and dancers.
We've been attending KAR for 10 or 11 years. Usually a pretty great, fun weekend. Not this time!!! WORST judging panel we have ever been STUCK WITH for the weekend! Entire panel had a completely one track mind, no recognition across the different genres. Please offer a diverse judging panel that is qualified to judge, appreciate and recognize the nuances, skill and technical abilities required to perform different dance genres. Just because you "like" a certain type of dance better than others and it's your personal preference, doesn't mean those dances were "better" in terms of performance... and they CLEARLY weren't better! And STOP REWARDING SUGGESTIVE DANCES and dances that are SO CLEARLY NOT PLACED IN THE CORRECT DIVISION!!! And to top if off, the schedule was a disaster. We are the last weekend (PHX - June 2017) before nationals, so maybe they were just distracted... but dances were scheduled on different days in the same division, all the teens and seniors were so close together it was impossible to be ready or even keep track of what was coming up next. I paid sooooo much money for all these dances this weekend and it was a complete waste of time and money. KAR you've got some work to do to win me back!
I wish KAR would consider using platinum, high gold, etc. for their adjudication awards just like almost every other competition. The elite top first, top first, first, etc. is confusing and unnecessary. I also don't see the point of having four levels instead of three like most other comps, since people still level dances down to secondary when they should be intermediate or elite.
We took a break from KAR bc we found the curve adjacation scoring that they had been using obnoxious. So we gave them a chance this year and NOPE! Never putting my studio through that circus again. they are in it for the $$$. And I noticed that KAR seemed to attract quite a few nasty studio's to our area that don't come around for any other competitions. Fees were high, there was an Friday 8am start (not a thing that happens on our area), and that goofy top studio award is of course going to go to the studio with the most entries (especially if the judges are only really giving out the top two adjucation awards). The only studio's that were placing their dances in the appropriate levels were the ones we competed against all season and all of the out of town studio's dropped their kids way down. So when you see dances in primary and Secondary that could have easily won in elite, there's a problem. The only bright side of the weekend is when we overheard the parents at the BIG studio that won everything complain about our little studio messing them up from sweeping the top 5.
Purely revenue driven. Raised fee prices, so I pulled dd's solo. After many years of attending this comp, I am very happy to say I will NEVER be back.
Definitely a revenue driven competition. We have gone to KAR for the past 4 years and finally decided not to return. Very, very political (just read through some of the reviews). Also, (and I know this is a personal preference) they do not assign dressing rooms. This can make it difficult to find a room that isn't overtaken by another studio.
After reading the reviews, it amazes me everyone is saying the same thing. This is so true they favor the studios who brings the most dancers. They also favor musical theater and I call it a cute competition versus a dance competition. Many cutesy. not so technical or intricate numbers where scored higher than those that were more about the art of dancing. I know everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but the unfairness is plain to see. We are doing it again this year, missed last year, I do hope it is a lot better experience than 2015. Way to many levels of dancing, does it take that many. Dancers who should clearly be in elite are competing in lower categories which is unfair to the kids who are in their right category. By the way although we are a smaller studio, we did well as we always do, just not my favorite comp.
Our studio has attended this competition a couple of times but we will not be attending again. This last experience was not a good one. We have noticed a pattern in the judging. There are definite "favorites" as certain types of dances were scoring in the overalls every time and scoring much better than others even when the technique and choreography was just not there.
KAR is my favorite competition by far. Reading all the other reviews it
seems like studios and teachers have a problem with the judging and say
that judges favor tricks. I completely disagree with this and think that
the judges favor clean technique. My students have been to KAR numerous
times and each time have won their division with a tap dance. No tricks,
just clean tap technique. Our lyrical dances and jazz dances have also won
several times with no \"tricks\" or acrobatics at all included in the
choreography. I love KAR and their judging and will return every year!
We just went to the KAR Convention in Chicago and it was amazing! The
instructors could really \"see through\" the Divas and called them out
when they were disrespectful. I\'m proud to say our studio took 12
dancers and they were all well behaved and worked a day long. The Talent of
the instructors and their teaching methods was phenomenal, my daughter
can\'t wait to go back.
So many reasons they only get one star...
If your dancer is strong in
technique but doesn\'t do any flashy tricks, then this is clearly NOT the
competition for you.
If you are expecting qualified judges, then this
is clearly not a competition for you.
If you are a smaller studio, and
not well \"connected\" then I would look elsewhere.
your dancer knows how to twerk, flip, tilt their crotch to the world while
wearing very age-inappropriate costumes, then I\'m pretty sure you will
have a great time.
I wish I lived near a bigger city with better
options for competitions....
Impersonal but well run.
If your studio owner is friends with the owner of KAR you will do just
fine, otherwise don\'t waste your time.
KAR is all about the money, the more you put in their pockets the better
you get treated. No brainer the more numbers you bring the better your
chances are to get in the overalls or a top studio award. Everyone gets
first place and if the judges don\'t like your number you might get a 2nd
place. The award ceremony goes on forever and all you can hear is Elite
Top First, Top First, first place it\'s ridiculous, do something besides
all first place. The directors hang out talking to the studio owners who
have brought the most numbers and spent the most money, they don\'t care
to talk to the smaller studios. The Dancers against Cancer is a great idea
but how much of the donation actually goes to the cancer fund? How do I
know when the plate is being passed around that the guy next to me
didn\'t take a $20 off the plate. My daughter did well and had fun but I
came away feeling like it was about the money and big business. The no
video rule is not enforced. Everyone has recording devices these days,
just let people record and if they want a professional video they will
purchase it. KAR needs to stick by it\'s own core values.
this is my second review, only because my first was from a regional and now
I am back reviewing the Nationals. I feel the same way. 2 Stars about sums
it up. I have the same complaints as other posters, ridiculous placement
where everyone gets some form of 1st place and scoring based on a curve.
There were some amazing schools at the Nationals competition, so
KAR does attract competitive schools.
I didn\'t go to nationals
expecting much, so I wasn\'t that disapointed. If your studio is into
flash and tricks, then this is the comp for you. If your studio is about
technique then maybe find another comp
Wow! I have been to countless (literally!) competitions with my girls. This
year my last is a senior and we are saying goodbye to comps. I have to say
that KAR is one of the BEST! They run on time, the judging is fair and they
have a positive environment. They don\'t nickel and dime you either.
Gotta love that pricing for video and photos is $15 per for the entire
We have done their regional and just recently returned from
nationals in Myrtle Beach. My daughter had glowing reviews of the backstage
staff and by the end she felt like the judges \"knew\" her and gave her
positive vibes. That\'s all I want as a mom. The Sheraton Myrtle Beach
however, is gross and dirty. They booked a simultaneous cheer competition
overlapping the 1st few days of our nationals and it was terrible chaotic
LOVE the KAR app and especially love that they take and
post photos of awards. Those are so hard for parents to capture and it\'s
an extra nice thing to do.
Additionally, the front of house crew at
the merchandise desk and at media were friendly and polite. Lots of times
at comps, the people at the counters can be standoffish like they\'ve
\"had it.\" Not so at KAR! The whole environment feels like a happy
celebration of dance. Although our competition days are ending, I truly
hope our studio continues to compete at KAR,
I will not be returning to another KAR competition. The scoring system
makes no sense & is hard to explain to students & parents. We attended KAR
nationals and at the lyrical workshop the instructor (who was also a
judge) requested no tricks in the improv section of the music before her
choreography started. She said several times that the judged are aware of
your tricks and everyone has the same skill set so they want to see you
move. She said they want to see something different instead of all the
tricks. What a hypocrite because the dances that won the overall high
scores were full of tricks. It\'s ridiculous when every dance from the
same studio has the same choreography & then the same studio wins the
overalls. We did amazing and won some overalls so this isn\'t a case of
a sore loser. My lyrical soloist bombed her turns yet placed in the
overalls while another soloist was flawless and didn\'t even get an elite
high gold. I had some very unhappy parents and if they\'re unhappy they
won\'t pay. Bye Bye KAR.
I have been attending dance competitions for 15+ years and have never been
so disappointed in a competition as I was with KAR. The awards they give
out are incredibly confusing. Everyone receives a first place
award,followed by a Top First and Elite Top First. This makes recording
the scores extremely difficult. They do not even show the point break down
in the program. Next, they score on a curve, which means Elite dancers may
not receive an Elite. This is so frustrating to have to explain to young
kids. Finally, they truly are more impressed with tricks than they are
actual dance. At one point I thought I was at a gymnastics meet and the
dance scored highest overall. I will not be attending this competition
next year for those reasons.
We didn\'t like this competition. The judging was on a sliding scale,
which was disappointing for our dancers. Ones that usually got High gold
or platinum received Gold. Won\'t be attending again.
It was an ok competition prefer their \"sister\" competition rainbow
over KAR. I didn\'t like the awards at all! Don\'t like the entitled
feel it has to it. Judges seemed to be more about tricks than the actual
technique of the dancer.
This is a competition that does not judge on actual skill. Horrible event
that is only about how much money you bring into the studio. BTW, have 2
daughters with 5 years of competition experience and not too mention a ton
of money and time spent. Unfortunately, seems like almost all competitions
are like that. Some just more than others...
The WORST Competition EVER. One of the judges, used to be a coach to our
child. This person was verbally abusive to our child. We pulled him from
the studio. This judges best friend is one of the directors of the event.
2 years in a row, our child received the lowest score out of the division
and for our new studio. Our child walked off the stage when they received
their award. We were so disgusted that they would be so political. Last
year we thought maybe it happened, but to happen two years in a
row...it\'s not a coincidence. Our children will NEVER go back to this
competition. Beside that, extremely politcal to studios that consistantly
go to to this competition. Don\'t waste your studios money. I would
give it a ZERO if it let me.
Worst competition experience we have ever had. They have too many levels
and do not enforce dancers to compete in appropriate levels. It was the
most political competition we have ever participated in. I made a verbal
complaint to the Director that this one studio in particular from
Pittsburgh were putting their elite dancers in primary and secondary
levels, whipping out back tuck layouts and Ariel\'s in a primary level...
The director\'s comment to me was, \"this is our number one complaint
and it always comes from honest people like you with smaller studios, if I
could get you all together you could drink wine and talk about it... \"
a little later I find that same director sitting and laughing with that
large studio\'s owner and teachers. To top it off that studio had the
rudest dancers and parents, to the point I had to tell one of the teachers
how rude her dancers were being to mine on stage. After that, the parents
from that studio surrounded themselves around where we were sitting yelling
louder as if they were harassing us just like their dancers had been
behaving. At the end of the whole competition the director who was
obviously friends with this studio who misplace
all of their dancers
throughout every level, comments how respectful all the dancers were that
It was this moment that I completely realized, I had not imagined
the political moves throughout the entire weekend and it was then verified
this large studio was definitely friends with this director and there was
nothing I could do but accept we had thrown our money away, and I will
NEVER participate in a KAR competition again and will share my story with
everyone!! Hopefully enough people complain and this one studio can
continue to have their \"fake\" competition only they will be the only
studio at KAR. Our scores were high but yet we got the lowest rating
because they base their overall ranking off of the other studios scores and
curve it. It is so unfair and political.
First off, my child did great . This is not sour grapes. This was one of
the worst competitions I have ever had to sit through. Award system was
ridiculous . Everyone received some sort of a first place award : first
place elite , top first, or first place. Comp ran early , so early that
people missed their children or grandchildren.
Staff was friendly ,
caring back stage. However through the whole competition audience members
were taping the event which was against the rules as with most comps. They
were taping other people\'s choreo . The mc kept announcing all weekend
their rules on this- that points would be deducted if you are taping your
own kids, you would be escorted out if you taped another studio. All
weekend the staff had to reprimand the audience . They had no intention of
carrying out their punishments so people just kept taping away .
worst part of the comp was the lack of qualification by the judges. One
judge coached dance teams for middle schools, hs, and college . Another was
a baton twirling cheerleader. The last judge looked like they were asleep
the majority of the comp. there was no one who specialized in contemporary
or modern. Needless to stay, the studio that looked like a hs dance team
did the best . One large studio attends 3-4 of their regionals each year
definitely did the best. Their choreography was very old fashion and
simple. It may have been appropriate to win lyrical numbers but not
contemporary . There was no one qualified to judge the contemporary numbers
Last complaint is the levels of the dancers . The comp discouraged
placing students in their highest level of elite . So there were studios
placing students in intermediate and secondary who were obviously over
qualified . However this gave studios more of a chance to spread the
opportunity to their students with at least 5 levels to dance at. I pray
that our studio does not waste our time or money here again.
This is by far my least favorite competition. I will list the pro\'s and
PRO:Nice Venue, plenty of dressing room space and nice large
stage that KAR brings.
PRO:Ran on time. This was nice because we
didn\'t feel rushed. However, the last night of the comp (Sunday, with
school the next morning) it would have been nice to have them run ahead.
PRO:Dancer for Cancer. Great cause, that was a plus.
levels. Ridiculous, way to many...it seems like a way to make it so that
everyone gets a win of some sort.
CON:No matter what you get 1st place.
I know we live in a world now where everyone seems to be entitled to first
place and to get to go home with a trophy, but it just became way to
confusing. They have Elite top 1st place, then Top 1st place, then 1st
place. When the MC is rushing thru listing everything off, you really just
miss out on what the heck is going on, you just hear \"1st place\" over
CON: They sell a program, but nowhere in the program does it
list how scoring is done or what the placement\'s mean. A lot of comps
will say 290~300 is Platinum, 279~289 High Gold....etc. This comp seems to
score based on a curve.
CON:Overstimulation everywhere I looked,
Between dances what was on the screens was loud, bright and too much
writing, I never felt compelled to read what was going on. Their website is
also way too much crap just glaring at you. Too much color, too much flash,
sometimes less if more. When my dancer looked at the clothes they were
selling, they didn\'t have anything that was simple and sedate, even if a
sweatshirt had something simple on the front, the back was full of big loud
designs. I guess its a matter of preference, but nothing about this comp
ever felt calm.
Sunday night as all the parents were dying to go home
the MC started to read off the results from Friday night solo\'s. Not his
fault, he was given the wrong results to read by someone. But that was even
more waiting. I give the MC credit though, he did a great job of filling
the open awkward time. He called the seniors up and asked them what thier
college plans were. I thought that was quick thinking on his feet, and the
senior dancers moving on next year deserved some spotlight.
many reviews, I think I am in the minority, as people seem to love this
comp, and I had really high hopes. This was our first year attending, and I
hope our last.
I would have liked to have seen/heard more comments on technique versus
presentation only in the judges comments. The reason for going to these
competitions are not just to get an overall impression. I was hoping for
more critique on technique.
Where do I begin? First and foremost, the score ranges are not provided
in the program or to studio owners prior to the competition. Judging was
horrible. The judges were partial to studios that regularly attend their
comps. There was one studio that apparently \"travels\" with KAR.
Placement of dances was unfair and made no sense. No dances were bumped up
for technique. Rules are not followed. We recieved many awards that were
misplaced as in given the wrong trophy or placement. We later found that
many of our dancers recieved higher scores and we\'re given a lesser
trophy. Shame on the judges and the owners of KAR. You should be fair
and have an adjudicated scoring system like the other reputable
competitions. I\'m very disappointed. When it comes to children you
should always remain impartial and fair. I feel like this is nothing more
than a money making scheme. There is no rhyme or reason for the scoring or
placement. I completely understand subjective scoring but this was like a
lottery drawing with preference toward specific studios. The most
inconsistent judging and inadequate judging I\'ve seen. Approximately
1/3 of our dancers were given the wrong trophies and placements. They were
even announced incorrectly. Many dancers were incorrectly placed in levels
who were clearly more advanced in technique. Some were placed in primary
levels and shouldve been in intermediate. Others were in secondary and
intermediate and were clearly elite dancers. I blame this on both the
studio owners and the competition. Maybe so many levels and so much
rhetoric to make it confusing so no one will question.
There are many things I like about KAR and there I some things that I feel
need to change. We attended KAR St. Paul April 21-April 24. I like the
feel of the venue and the staff is friendly and helpful. I like that KAR
tries hard to stay on schedule or ahead of schedule. My biggest complaint
is the performance categories for younger dancers. It seems like this is
an issue in other cities as well. Everybody 8 and under signs up to dance
in Primary, despite the fact that we have seen several of these dancers
competing solos, duets, etc. for four years. Many of these kids homeschool
for dance and devote a considerably larger amount of time to dance. It is
great fun to watch these kids, but frustrating if you pay to have your
child compete at the same level in a field of 61 acts. I would not
recommend paying a penny to have my 8 or under compete at this level unless
dance is your child\'s life. If studios do not follow their guidelines,
could the kids be bumped up a category or docked for breaking rules? I am
not sure how this should be handled, but clearly with two more levels above
primary, these kids could and should be spread out a bit better.
Very fun event for the kids. Awards are lively and encourage dancing and
comradery. They tend to be a bit long, particularly after long days. The
younger kids really enjoy the trophies given to solo numbers. Recognition
Biggest complaint the past two years is the venue. The
restrooms have been dirty on day one, and lack basic supplies (Toilet
paper, paper towels, soap). Over-flowing toilets are another
The auditorium was beyond hot, leaving audience members
dripping in sweat. The other areas were slightly better, but, on team
days, dancers were easily over-heated as a result. I understand KAR
doesn\'t have full control over this; however, perhaps choosing another
venue would eliminate this issue (seeing as it has been the same for both
2015 and 2016).
The changing areas for the dancers were fine last
year, but having LARGE studios share a small space with other studios when
very quick changes are needed, makes for unnecessary challenges and creates
tension between studios.
Adjudication seems fair and feedback and
critiques fairly good for the most part.
I really appreciate all the
levels they have and that the guidelines are pretty clearly stated and
available for parents to see. Wish there was some more enforcing or
questioning of appropriate placement though. Seems there was quite a bit
of sand-bagging going on.
one of our favorite competitions because it is usually held locally and
isn\'t extremely huge. Less plaques given for alternates than in
previous years. Love the plaques that overall high score winners
receive--they are very colorful and different each year. overall - we
enjoy this competition
Love the venue but the competition and awards feel so rushed. It seems
they are trying to squeeze too much into one day. Awards were said so fast
that I couldn\'t follow along and understand what was even being said.
Seems larger studios get preference. Not a fan!!
This is our second year at KAR. I definitely had mixed feelings about it.
Pros - The staff was super nice. Pics are great quality and price. The
trophies, plaques, pins are all really nice. Judging was fair, and we were
a medium sized studio. Cons - KAR had three comps going on this weekend in
our area. They had some sort of issue with their truck. So Friday night,
our comp was scheduled to start at 6:00pm but it didn\'t start until
8:00pm. Awards went until midnight. Most of those kids had to be back in
the morning for Lines that started at 8:00 am and were scheduled all day
and night thru awards at 11:00pm. Saturday morning, the comp was scheduled
to start at 7:00am. They did not open the doors until 6:50 am. There very
little time to get our soloist ready. I was super happy about the app, but
it stopped updating numbers Saturday morning. My biggest complaint was that
this comp had way too many dancers for the size of the venue. This made
dressing room space, hallways really tight. And getting a seat in the
theater nearly impossible sometimes. I missed production and awards after
because there was literally no room. Even the Fire Marshall was there
towing cars and clearing aisle ways, etc.. Either cut the number of entries
or find a bigger venue. And please stop allowing strollers in the
theater!!! I really liked KAR last year (it was at a much larger venue)
and I liked a lot about this weekend but I\'m afraid SO will not want to
go back based on the over booking and over crowding. You will have to do
better next time.
Loved our 1st experience with KAR this past weekend. Very, very organized,
ahead of schedule, fair judging. Loved the venue. Dressing rooms were super
tight but there were a bunch of them. My only complaint was the awards
that took over an hour every single time.
Everyone on the staff was very friendly and helpful. The venue was not big
enough to support the number of dancers at the competition. The regular
dressing rooms were up three flights of stairs and very tight. The large
conference room held a lot of dancers, however the hallways were also
needed and it made it very difficult to get through. Awards, I have a few
problems with those. First the names of awards (Elite Top First, Top First
and First), it was it sound like everyone got first place!! I understand
that you want your own names for each level, but these are just wrong!!
Second, because we all know that the competition does not always go from
1-600 in that order it would be helpful for them to be read #363 Lean in n
Me Top first. I can understand calling up teachers for the winning act or
choreography award, but not all of the top five dances!!
KAR is always our first comp of the season and we love it for a lot of
reasons - it is always organized and well-run, the venue in Baltimore is
beautiful, the staff is awesome. I just wish the awards were a) shorter (I
believe calling up the choreographer for the whole top FIVE is a big much)
and b) more consistent. KAR is always the one comp of the season where the
placements seem to be SO different... though that isn\'t the worst thing,
and i wish the adjudications weren\'t called \"First Place\" etc. I
find that super confusing. Overall though I do love KAR :)
For the most part, our studio loves KAR. They are super friendly and
professional. This past weekend I had a 10 year old who competed a solo at
KAR. She fell during the first 30 seconds of her dance and spent the rest
of her solo crying tears of humiliation. HOWEVER, she stuck it out and did
fabulously. And when she got off, the MC or director came up and told her
how amazing she did. He helped dry her tears and gave her a free t-shirt
for being \"the most professional dancer he saw all weekend.\" She felt
so special that she is no longer nervous for the next competition. In my
book, this is the heart that makes a competition.
The only thing I
really would like to see KAR improve upon is their scheduling. 2 years in a
row now, KAR has sent out a tentative schedule, asking studios to check it
out and submit changes by [deadline entered here]. Then they send out a
final schedule saying no more changes may be made. However, they continue
to adapt the schedule to meet the needs of the studios who did NOT meet the
deadline. This cause an incredible disorganization. I feel that this
rewards studios who do not pay attention to deadlines and details, while
asking the studios that do to pay the price. This does bother me
All in all though, we really enjoy the experience of KAR
and will continue to go back.
Very disappointed for the second year in a row. On the positive side, the
kids enjoy it and the staff are good to them. On the down side is the
judging. And to be clear, my daughter did very well at these events. Last
year, everyone from our studio who danced at the secondary level received
34 points for technique and everyone who danced at the intermediate level
received 36 points for technique. There is a huge variation in these
This year, we all danced at the same level
and all received between 36.5-37.5 points for technique with only one
exception out of over 20 solos. Some of these girls with lots of
experience and some with very little and a huge amount of variation in
technique. Very unfortunate as these girls work hard and deserve
thoughtful, pertinent judging.
The judges critiques had very few
comments at all and lots of dead time. There were very few words of
encouragement or praise, if any and the couple of remarks of constructive
criticism consisted of \"stretch\" and \"push\". Almost nothing
to help the girls improve.
Two different people announced different
award sessions....one was good, the other was very difficult to understand.
We recently attended KAR with a VERY small number of acts. I have to say I
was so pleased with the whole competition!! Each and every member of the
staff that we encountered was extremely pleasant and helpful. The scoring
is a bit confusing to figure out at first. All of the judging seemed very
very fair. I read reviews where only studios with a large number of act
placed high and from our experience this was not the case at all! The
awards ceremony is a lot of fun for the dancers!! They really take time and
pay attention to each dancer. It is also very nice that they take photos of
the top scores. I feel as though KAR really makes these dancers feel
special and they recognize dancers with special awards even if they
didn\'t place in the overalls which I have never seen another comp do! We
loved KAR and cannot wait to go back!! The venue chosen was very nice as
A good competition--could give better prize money.
We just attended their one day convention and really enjoyed it. The
teachers were great and our students had a fantastic time. The big drawback
was that there were too many dancers in the ballrooms provided. There
wasn\'t enough room for the kids to do things full out for fear of
kicking or hitting the dancer next to them. If they would have booked a
bigger venue, I would have given it 5 stars.
Staff is excellent! Event is run smoothly. Best run comp we go to. Plus-
amazing photos to pick from.
regional competitions was well organized, professional, and entertaining. A
great challenging competition for dancers of all levels!
Both regional and national competitions are well organized, professional,
and entertaining. Events are well attended and the competition is fierce.
A great challenging competition for dancers of all levels!
We have done this competition the last 4 years and it is one of our
favorites. Great overall experience
Worst most political competition I have ever been to. If you attend
nationals and conventions they will score you well or if you work for them
your students will score well. Basically a joke
Competed in KAR back when I was a kid! Great competition. Looking forward
to bringing my dancers to it again this year!
A good competition overall. I enjoy the video snips of the winning entries.
However, scoring seems bizarre and dysfunctional and awards take an
excessively long time to complete.
Very helpful staff! My daughter really enjoyed her first out of town
I love this competition they give out great awards to the dancers.
By far our Favorite Competition to be at
♡ that you have an overalls for title competition. This definitely you
ahead of the other competitions. You always give out fun light up things in
stage and the kids have a blast at your competition. Definitely my favorite
We have been to both KAR competition and convention and have had very good
experiences at both. The teachers at convention were extremely well
qualified and were very attentive to the kids. KAR is a fun competition
and I have found the scoring to be very fair, it is one of our favorites
NOT HAPPY W/ STAIRS TO DRESSING ROOM :(
Our 1st convention of the new season & our 1st time at KAR. It was quite a
relaxed atmosphere. She didn\'t compete, but went to experience the
classes. Everyone was nice but it seemed a tiny bit disorganized & the
workshops did not challenge my dancer. Great environment for beginner to
Went to KAR nationals in myrtle beach! Best experience ever for any dancer.
I was really disappointed in the competition. I did really well at the
competition including being invited to nationals but I had no interest
after regionals. The scoring was very confusing as everyone got first.
Not to mention it was too long. Maybe they can limit dance submissions
from studios. I guess I was just expecting more as all my friends
recommended this competition and I was not excited to be there at all.
We love Kar , staff are awesome , setup is easy, we\'ve been doing for 2
We enjoy KAR!!! :)
I like many aspects of the KAR set up. The multiple levels for placement
are great- unless there\'s that ONE studio that always places their
dancers down and they sweep everything. Didn\'t happen too badly this
last year as it did the year before though...
Having just moved from a
large market to a small market I\'m interested to see what the KAR
competition here is like...
Hmm. Seemed to be more of a moneymaking scheme. Judging seemed based on
something other than actual dancing. Long event.
meh. This seems more revue driven than some others. Just going through the
Pretty good but I\'ve seen better. I sent them multiple emails and no
Mehhh. The last couple years we have felt like it didn\'t matter if we
were there or not, just another number. The event was well done though.....
I am a big fan of KAR overall! I do wish they would be a little more
strict on the dances that are entered in the wrong levels... but it\'s
probably not their job to be the ethics police with studio owners that
place their dances waaaaaaay under what they should be. They didn\'t run
super early this year... which is awesome! I love a well planned, on time
event. (I think running super early is a sign of poor planning.) One
thing this year that was really, really disappointing was the photography.
Every year I wait for KAR to buy photographs... but this year I was sorry I
did! Their photography was just plain BAD this year! :-( They missed
MAJOR moments in every single dance my kid was in (and there were 10+
numbers... so not an isolated incident). I wish I could get my money back
on the photos and go back and spend that money with one of the other comps
we did earlier in the year.
Overall I thought this competition was well run. The awards ran smoothly
and not too long. There are different levels based on years danced and
competition experience as well as age that make the competition a little
more fair for less experienced dancers.
I love the different levels based on competition experience! Super
friendly staff! Takes getting used to awards. I love that they clear the
stage and play the music for the top 5!! Makes it that much more special!!
1st and hopefully last time at KAR. 5 levels is out of control! When you
only have 4 groups enter in the Elite (highest level) then there is obvious
leveling down to win.
Scoring is ridiculous with everyone getting a
\"first\" of some sort. Too difficult to understand as they announce
because \"first\" is in every adjudication. What happened to the days
of gold, silver and bronze. In life, not everyone gets first. It seemed
very obvious that the studios that brought the most numbers won everything
and these studios should not have been competing in the levels they were.
Costume award is a joke! The one that won was an ordinary body
suit. I saw several that were obviously had made and these were not the
winners. Again - to a studio that brought lots of numbers. No surprise
I think it is nice that they try to raise money for kids
with cancer, however, spending a half hour each at 2 awards ceremonies on
fundraising is crazy. They had girls from 2 studios go through the audience
to \"pass the plate\". Again, the large studios with lots of entries
who won everything. Why am I not surprised? How did these girls get
picked? Why not some from each studio?
Lastly, it seems rigged when
an award is being announced for top studio and the teacher starts to walk
out before they are even announced.
Overall a decent competition. However, having 4 levels of competition was
ridiculous. The highest level was Elite, and very few studios put dances in
that category; almost everyone was in Secondary and these dances had
individuals who have been competing for 10+ years in them. Soloists who I
had seen at other comps this season in the Elite category were for some
reason placed in Secondary or Intermediate at this competition. Weird. Two
levels are helpful; four levels are just opening it up to less than ethical
studios going for the easy win rather than being in the highest level.
Awards were well run and fun for the kids; however the number of special
awards were really high and led to a lengthy awards session. Scoring seemed
consistent with other competitions we have been to this season.
Well run and fabulous!
Love the different levels allowing all to compete
Love love KAR. In CDA, ID!
Have liked KAR in the past but the venue was terrible. Very old
building(west Memphis), very crowded, no where for my child to warm up. Ran
an hour early so we were frantic to get on stage. The stage was very
slippery, my daughter does an acro solo and fell during her front aerial.
Lots of kids were slipping it was dangerous! We spent all that money and
time for her to fall on stage and have the judges favor musical theater.
Very biased judging! Not happy!
our studio does very well, considering it is very new and growing ... BUT,
the judges seemed to award everything to only tap and musical theater in
over alls, for three days straight. Nothing in contemporary or jazz seemed
to do well at all, and the judges were very critical of appearances instead
of critiquing the dance itself. or the dancers, and their technique. Some
corrections were helpful, but they were very simple, like point your feet,
or shoulders down. The rest were about wanting a certain shade of lipstick
instead of the color they were wearing, and saying they didn\'t like
french twists for hair at all, etc. These aren\'t helpful for 11 and 12
year olds just getting into competition, in their first and second year,
who need technical and performance critiques and guidelines from
professionals. My girls were very interested to hear NEW advice and
corrections, and they didn\'t receive much to apply.
of whole weekend was DEFINITELY running over 2.5 hours ahead, and expecting
my soloist to perform as soon as she walked through the entrance doors,
straight from school, (she is in high school), without letting me know they
were running ahead until AFTER she went on, and did awards. I got an email
alert 40 minutes AFTER all of that telling me they were ahead of schedule
and to get the soloists there asap. She was scheduled for 7:40pm, and they
wanted her on stage at 5:05pm- calling over and over for her, saying they
were waiting for her and the whole competition was stalled because of her
being late... when they clearly scheduled the whole day (Friday) completely
wrong, starting at 8am with the tiny ones, and ending up 2 1/2 hours ahead
on a school day for older girls! It was so stressful for my soloist, who
has never had a solo before, and it was a rough experience to get thrown on
stage and feel like a burden to the whole competition. Her own mother
didn\'t even make it, even though she was 2 hours early to see her
It was good. There was an amazing amount of talent at this competition. I
was concerned about their being so many levels, but it was really done
right. We are from a very small studio & still placed well. It ran ahead of
schedule which is always nice. Good job.
I honestly love KAR every season... My only complaint is that awards take
FOREVER. I think it\'s nice that they recognize every winning dance, but
every awards ceremony is close to an hour if not longer...Makes for a LONG
weekend, especially if you\'ve already been dancing all day and then have
to sit through awards forever. But I like the way they do their levels and
it\'s super organized and well-run!
Best comp of all of them. Best awards. Best announcers. Best organized,
best award ceremony. Really care about all the dancers and studios. Bring
up the studio owners no matter what size the studio is. Outstanding
judges. No other compares
The scoring is ridiculous.
What I do not like about this competition is that there is no clear cut
designation for the scoring system. I have asked for an explanation and all
I could get was there was some sort of formula they use, but no one could
tell me what the formula was. I have twins that of course both have
solo\'s, one got an Elite top 1st and the other a 1st which made her feel
horrible because she felt like she scored like a 3rd tier dancer when there
was only 8 points difference between both girls scores. In 8 points my
daughter dropped down to a 3rd level adjudicated award and it made her so
upset because before we got the score sheets she thought the judges must
have hated her and previous to awards felt really good about her
performance. She now knows that she scored very well. It was just extremely
confusing and I still don\'t understand how they came to that
designation. Otherwise the competition ran very timely and ahead of
schedule and the girls enjoyed the rest of the weekend.
Liked KAR years ago, but this comp has changed so much, and it doesn\'t
have that family feel that my studio loves. It seems to be about bigger and
better- and while bigger and better is fine, don\'t leave the wholesome
caring aspect out of the door. Staff seems less interested than they used
to be. Go back to your old ways KAR
Pretty fun competition! The dancers had fun at award ceremonies. No issues
but nothing really stand out about this competition though. I would rank it
next to Rainbow or Hollywood Vibe.
We enjoy KAR- the venue is always nice, the staff is always friendly, and
for the most part the judges are fair. I do think that a few mega studios
get preferential treatment, but that happens most places.
We always put
KAR on our regional schedule.
We participated at the CT competition and we will not be going back. The
venues is very small and it was a sold out competition but yet they closed
off the balcony so we couldn\'t use it. They also closed down the
elevators so we had to claim the stairs with all of our belongings. There
is only one way to enter and exit backstage causing it pure chaos and
dressing rooms are under the stage so there are parents and kids back and
forth while we are trying to line up for our performance. There was a rude
studio who thought they owned the place from NY. Why come down to small CT?
Find a competition in your own area. They were so rude and very mean but
KAR doesn\'t care because they give them a lot of business with their
many entries. The staff is very rude. We\'ve been to numerous
competitions and this by far is the worst one. Not to mention they run
behind and take 10 minutes in between production and line numbers. Will not
be attending this competition
Liked KAR years ago, but they have changed through the years and I get a
very superficial fake feeling from them now, and it\'s bad. The event
feels like a cheap gimmick with no substance and rubs me the wrong way. We
will never go back.
Blah for 4 years straight. There were some talented dancers that placed
where they deserved, but this competition loved only a certain genre of
dance (musical theatre)...4 years in a row and the same stuff!!! Silly
faces and dancers who fall on stage placed higher at this regional. (You
would not see this in cheer or gymnastics comp...if you fall, you are
deducted no matter what). I even witnessed a top 15 solo award ceremony
that happened 2 times because of a scoring error...bumping #15 out of the
overall!!! I felt awful for that dancer!! Fancy gift shops and marketing
do not over shadow the lack of incompetent judging at this competition.
Overall, the competition was pretty good. I do feel, however, that many
dancers were entered at the wrong level (should have been higher, based on
ability, not years they\'ve competed). The staff was great, and the
competition ran early which is always a plus!
Well done competition and very \"high tech\" if you want to call it
that. Our experience just wasn\'t that great. Hate their levels. Just
because you are 10 years old doesn\'t mean you are automatically a
\"intermediate\" dancers. Not to mention we got to experience JoJo at
our KAR competition. Also, they need judges who are diverse in ALL genres
of dance. Will not be going back.
We recently attended KAR in Torrington, CT. This was by far one of the best
competition experiences we have had in 6 years. They are organized,
friendly, post pics for everyone online to remember the day...I can go on
and on. They also don\'t charge ridiculous fees for the pics and videos
of your child\'s routine. I think that their rules are reasonable, clear,
and definitely reflect years of running successful competitions. We will
definitely attend KAR in the future and look forward to a convention in the
We were very cautious being a new small studio. We had a fabulous time.
Great pictures and videos for a great price. Ran on time. I think this
might be one of our favorites this season!
I wish I could give 0 stars. Clearly this comp favors big studios with
many many entries. Small studios like ours with 10 entries are lost
against big studios with 78 and 84 (not exaggerating!) entries. Makes it
extremely discouraging to see the same studio and in fact the same exact
girls receive first, second and third place in one group - this actually
happened! why do the rest of us show up? cookie cutter routines with the
same old costumes win big, small studios are overlooked. guess we need to
spend $10 grand to get a prize.
I am reviewing the KAR Convention, not competition.
large, clean venue
- teachers are easy to follow
- nice scholarship program
can videotape and
take pictures during class
We had a really good time in previous years. LOVE LOVE LOVE the $14 videos.
That is the best price out there. It was well produced and we look forward
to attending again in May in St. Paul.
ATTENDED MANY YEARS, RUNS SMOOTH
This was our 1st(& LAST)experience with KAR. We have been to Rainbow
several times & enjoyed it. I would give them 1 star, but the environment
was fun.The issues that we saw at this event were
upsetting. A lot of
very large studios were allowed to level down. These studios probably
brought in more than 10 thousand $ based on large groups & productions. Our
studio is smaller & only
brought around 15 pieces. There were large
prod. & groups that more
than 50 % (closer to 75 %) of the dancers were
secondary competing in the primary level. We didn\'t
any large pieces so it was a non issue for us but it
didn\'t bode well for the day.The larger studios had solos
as primary who were doing immaculate handsprings,
arials & turns in 2nd.
Maybe these routines were genuinely competing in their 2nd year & maybe the
studios was dishonest, that
isn\'t the competition\'s fault.
However, if a routine got what I can
only assume was an almost perfect
score they should have been bumped up.
This was NOT done. Our studio
didn\'t have any dancers in this
category but it still upset me. The
new dancers in this category who are
still working on perfecting turns,
leaps & pointed toes had zero chance of
placing because of this. Some
our (& other small studios) who gave almost perfect routines (a
wobble) placed lower than routines with bent knees, flexed feet,
out of turns & arials that put their hands down or fell on their
was under the impression that perfect technique was better than
tricks & completely bombing them, but this is not true at
KAR. Our routine that received one of only 2 TOP 1st place routines placed
below 3 1st place routines. What? They went from 45 minutes ahead of
schedule to 30 minutes behind during large group awards! Small studios stay
away, your best is not enough against larger studios worst.
Love KAR. Always had great experiences with them. Awards are a little
confusing though. I don\'t like the idea that only a certain percentage
of participants can get a certain ajudication.
Love this competition!
Great Competition, fun for everyone and all levels. Staff is excellent,
organized and very helpful. Girls loved the pins and trophies this year.
KAR never disappoints! Great comp, on time, and the work they are doing for
cancer awareness is amazing, they are really giving back! The KAR app is a
huge bonus, and it was great to receive a free PDF program of the
competition vs. having to purchase one at the competition. 4 levels of
comp has its pluses and minuses, I do believe there were several routines
from 1 studio in particular that were in the wrong level, but that\'s not
the fault of KAR. Looking forward to Nationals this year!
Excellent competition! They did run ahead but having the KAR ap on my phone
was very convenient. As with many comps I would appreciate the awards
portion to be read so that we can hear and keep up with what is being read.
Sometimes they read it off too fast. We LOVE that the tops winning dances
have their song played instead of just being announced, it\'s a nice
touch and adds to the suspense of finding our who won.
Great comp! The backstage staff are terrific. They do tend to run ahead
though. Sometimes up to an hour ahead.
This was a terrible experience, and I don\'t think my child will
participate in the convention scheduled for August. First of all, the
catogory grouping was unclear. Second, the judging didn\'t seem to be
impartial; studios with multiple groups performing throughout the entire
weekend placed higher than smaller studios. And finally, the awarding
system was confusing. It actually appeared this organization was trying to
avoid spending the money to purchase trophies that ACTUALLY explained a
team\'s placement in the competition. I thought this competition welcomed
diversity....what a let down. I expect competition to be tough, but I also
expected it to be fair.
I typically love KAR, but for some reason, awards this past weekend took
FOREVER - like 90 minutes per awards session! Too much! And they have made
their judging much harder.
It was big and fun and well run. Not as good in the past few years though.
My daughter loves this comp.
Not a good experience at all. And I also asked them months ago what other
competitions the producer they had that planted the camera in the dressing
room was at, because I want to know if he was at the show we attended. No
answer from them for months now! I am very concerned about the lack of
concern they are exhibiting about this serious and terrible act.
We used to like KAR. I have noticed a significant change over the years.
The whole #KARstrong thing REALLY bothered me. They weren\'t the victim,
the kids were. I get a really bad feeling about them now. I read on the
Dance Teacher FB group that they are now passing around buckets for Cancer.
I\'m ALL for cancer charities, but I just don\'t think it\'s
appropriate at a children\'s dance competition with 5 year olds dancing.
KAR used to be very personable. Now it all just feels like a cheap gimmick
and rubs me the wrong way. We aren\'t going back.
Ok comp. kids had fun. Agree that they favor large studios. Might go back.
Terrible! If your not with a huge studio paying crazy money to attend
don\'t bother! It\'s all about the $$ here! Will never attend this
comp. again. Totally not fair. Went 2 yrs. in a row and same large studios
there repeating same solos/ group dances and same routines winning. They
play favoritism. Competition is allowing studios to put dances/dancers in
lower category then they belong in and they know it. Social media
doesn\'t lie when you look up different studios and they show their elite
dancers and they are dancing in the intermediate level. Worst weekend ever
in balto. Do yourself a favor and save your money . Worst judges ever.
Wonder what they will do when same 3 large studios continue to compete same
routines against themselves. Sham on KAR
Okay competition, really seemed to favor tricks over artistry despite
called \"Kids *Artistic* Revue\". Scoring was confusing I wish
would post a scale so we can see what range we scored in everyone
got \"Top First\" or \"Elite Top First\". Other than that
was beautiful, the staff was very friendly and the photo and
amazing quality wise. I also really enjoyed that you can
program for free. I would probably go back but overall an
the competition had a very nice quality but I don\'t
see how this got to
be \"America\'s favorite dance competition\"
I completely disagree with the statement that KAR Is all about politics and
$$$. I recently competed at this competition as a dancer and choreographed
and entered several of my own pieces. I come from a very small studio, with
a competition team even smaller at about 30 dancers. A solo entered under
me as a teacher won first place and my own personal choreographed solo also
took home first place. To say that we were awarded with this because of my
reputation or because we are a \"big spending studio\" is obviously
Horrible competition. They were all about the money in my opinion. They had
some of my dancers performing on a Friday morning, and said to tell them
ASAP if we could not do that date for a refund. I took two days to contact
the parents, since this was a big decision to pull out after all the
planning, and then they told me it was too late for a refund. My student
was told by her school she could not miss any more. I called MANY times and
got the run around, rude people that said it was my fault. A manager
refused to call me. Then they charged me money to get the entry numbers, as
the director, and threaten to penalize my dancers if they were late. I was
forced to pay to be able to know how many dances they had to change. The
worst experience after 18 years of competition.
We come from a small studio and we absolutely LOVE KAR!! We love the vast
variety of awards, the consistent judging, the amazing competition site
crew, the awesome awards ceremonies, and the quality venues! If I had any
criticism I would like to see improvement on, it would be that their office
staff (prior to competition) can be short/unfriendly in both email and on
the phone. Thank you KAR for making competition fun, friendly, and
I agree with some of the posts below. KAR is all about money and politics.
Way too many \"gimmicks\" for my taste. I regard it as the Walmart of
So much to say!
Pros - My daughter and her teammates had a blast
at KAR. The competition was really well run, thanks KAR staff. I know not
everyone likes levels but I think that they worked really well at this
comp. There were very few dances that I felt \"leveled down\".
Judging seemed mostly spot on. Loved the digital program, keep doing that
please. Award ceremonies were pretty exciting, the kids loved them. I
would vote to go back.
Cons - the awards emcee announced the award
first then the dancer or studio and they were not named in numerical order.
It was really hard to understand who won what. Please consider making the
small change to announce the act first, then the award. Dressing room
space was really tight. Schedule came out 6 days before the competition.
That is really too late especially when you had to register 30 days
beforehand. Remember, we all have lives we have to juggle just to get
there. Last thing, please reconsider your tent revival style sad cancer
speech and basket passing for donations. I think your intentions are
honorable, but the execution not great. One of our dancers lost her father
to cancer two years ago. So after dancing to fun music with her team and
getting pumped up for awards, she had to be slapped in the face with her
greatest life\'s pain. I sat in the audience with her mom who put on a
brave face but was clearly upset. I\'m sure we were not the only studio
with members who have such a fresh pain. Please consider their feelings.
The way you surprised them with it and made them sit through 20 minutes of
it was not considerate at all.
Polished and fairly well run. The kids had fun. Awards were confusing and
rules not are easy to find as most competitions.
Love KAR so much! It\'s the best dance competition out there. Staff is
always friendly and the competition always runs smoothly. Love how they are
like family. I completed at KAR growing up and now my kids are competing at
KAR. So many great memories and many more to come. And Las Vegas Nationals
are the best!!!
Just to let everyone know, this competition is all about the
politics. No matter how talented your kids are, you will NOT
unless your studio gives hundreds of $$. Also, a lot
have connection to the owner of KAR and are very
friends so its a
given exchange meaning you bring KAR the
and Kar will give you
the trophies. So for all the
parents in big studios attending KAR, ask yurself if your kid is really
earning those trophies or if KAR is just playing favorism for you BIG
studio. So please do
yourself a favor, DO
NOT GO TO THIS COMPETITION
unless you want to waste
Some of y\'all really need to learn how to write a paragraph.... Go back
to sixth grade. I can never say what I have to say about Kids Artistic
Revue, to another competition. Even though the horrible thing in Cypress,
it\'s still a excellent dance competition. No other competition compares
to Kids Artistic Revue in any way. Not as big as Starquest, but not as
small as DEA. Their nationals this past summer were unbelievable. The LED
stage took my breath away, and it felt like being on Broadway or something
I have been competing students for 27 years now. I have
competitions over the years. We have attended KAR
Nationals for 15
now. This year we decided to go somewhere else.
We were so
The area was fabulous Atlantic City but
the comp ....
its not even close
to the amazingness of KAR. Are the
Kar Regionals too
big??? Yes i agree
with that statement and shared
that with the
director. But no other
competition holds up to the
organizational skills, amazing judges,
amazing awards and
outstanding teacher recognition. We are a a very
but we manage to pull out many
championships at Kar as well as
grand championships over
studios. Do I sometimes question
the judges in my head??
Of course I do.
thats what its all about. But
Kar makes it so the
scores are with in a
resonable range. We had one of
our tappers get
a 98 from one judge and an
87 from another at this
doesnt allow that. That is
proposterous!!!. And kar
adults to compete in the beginning
entry levels and walk
away with a
platinum when our hard working beginner 6
yr olds were
golds in the beginning levels. That was obsurd.
6 national championships and one grand national
absolutely no cash at all. And the company made alot
were over 1700 entries and 60 studios there. Kar gives cash
winners. We also got dinky trophies for 1st overalls.
hugh awards to the studios. And the only way our studio
this comp was if we placed and the chorepgraphers
mentioned AT ALL!!!! The
award were lack luster and
They would wait all day to do
them and have over 500
to give out. It
was terrible. Kar never does that
and is very
considerate to all the
dancers. Our dancers ALWAYS feel
KAR. And what happened in
Cypress could happen at any competion.
I know that the director
handled the situation immediately and
respect to the city involved.
So remember that KAR is the best
!!!Love it and will always be
We were disappointed. Seemed to be very bias and inconsistent judging. And
I just don\'t trust them after the reports of the despicable incident in
Attended KAR Nationals in Toledo, OH this weekend. Not impressed. They
have these girls attend all these extra meetings that extend their stay for
days such as a pre-title meeting at 8am when you don\'t have to dance
till 7PM. The judges had everyone from a particular studio that works on
only arm stands that resembles a circus act. Sorry, but standing on your
arms for half of a dance is not dancing. However, these were your winners
though. All these girls worked so hard on dancing only to lose to someone
who sits in one position with their legs in the air. You are making money
selling food and snacks but there is nowhere to sit and eat. My kids had
to eat on the staircase. I won\'t even get into the cypress incident.
I am very disappointed with KAR. They need to take responsibility for the
horrible incident in Cypress and publish all the competitions the
perpetrator was at through the years he worked for them.
Our favorite competition each year. Adjudication is always fair,
regardless of studio size. Well run, usually ahead of schedule, organized,
friendly staff. Prices aren\'t ridiculous - I love the fact that my
dancers can get video and pics of their routines for $14 - that\'s the
cheapest in the industry. I agree that the events from the last few days
are disturbing, but it could happen anywhere to any company. Hopefully
this will bring about positive changes across the industry.
We love this competition! The incident that happened could happen anywhere.
It will not deter us from competing with them, period! Looking forward to
nationals and future competitions.
Please stop with all the #KARstrong stuff. KAR is not the victim, the kids
are. I don\'t think it\'s fair to blame KAR but I also don\'t think
they should be focusing soley on themselves. It wouldn\'t hurt for them
to step up and take some kind of responsibility. It\'s obviously an awful
situation and hopefully ALL comps will change policies moving forward.
Wow!! Just read KAR\'s attempt at covering this up on their Facebook
page. Many of us parents have called the Cypress police dept and realized
the horrific truth! There were indeed videos of our girls changing in
Cypress. For shame KAR! OUR kids come first. I gave KAR the benefit of the
doubt and then they blatantly lied to everyone. Call the Cypress PD
KAR continues to be the BEST competition around. I know that no matter
what city we attend that we will be receiving a 1st Class Show all the
way!! We love how organized the events are and that they truly care about
the dancers! We are a small studio & still receive fair treatment by the
judges and competition as a whole. We also love the fact that KAR does not
try to gouge parents with overly priced items. Their clothing and items
are more reasonably priced than most dance shops. And lets be honest... $14
for a dvd of your dancer\'s performance or for pictures of the entire
routine... I have never seen any other competition company give the parents
such quality for a price that is affordable by hard working dance parents.
In regards to the current events that have come to light I would like to
state that one ugly & sick individual do not make a company. KAR is made up
of MANY other amazing individuals who provide top quality each and every
weekend, in each and every city they are in.
This situation is extremely troubling to everyone I know. Was this an
isolated instance? Did this happen in other cities? KAR needs to address
this immediately! Any loyalty we have built up through the years is waning
and deserves a public response to this awful awful situation.
Very scary stuff! We will never attend a KAR event after this terrible
betrayal of trust. He belongs in prison for the rest of his life.
Worst competition out there. These money hungry scam artists do not care
about the children or the industry. All that they care about is making an
extra $ and will do anything in order to do so. Competition started on
Friday morning with Petite solos/duos and many had to scratch so they
didn\'t have to miss school. One very large studio that was there took
all the first overalls in the intermediate and elite divisions even if they
deserved it or not, and this particular studio director also works for KAR.
HMMMMMM... Many inferior dancers were winning from this large studio,
most of which haven\'t won or placed all year. Two sets of results were
accidentally posted on their site Monday which were deleted once they
noticed, showing that they had a correct score and a altered score for the
studios that were not this one particular \"favorite\" studio. Most
horrific display of cheating I have ever witnessed, do not know how this
company is so big or successful. Only a matter of time before everyone
realizes that they are cheaters and quit attending. My studio will NEVER
be back. Judging was very biased to tap and musical theatre, these people
do not keep up with the industry, current choreography trends, costuming,
etc Simply awful waste of our time and money.
The staff was nice, however, I believe if you are going to put rules in
place stating that performances should be age appropriate then 7 year olds
in bras and panties performing stripper moves would not win 1st overall.
Also, it is a shame that you cannot employ judges who are knowledgeable in
all of the types of dance you accept into competition. If you don\'t
have someone who can judge them fairly then you shouldn\'t take their
My absolute favorite competition this season! I LOVE the way they play the
music when they do awards...the kids got so excited & so did the parents!
Very organized & well put together! :)
Really disappointed in this competition! This is the first time that our
studio has done this one, so we didn\'t know what to expect. The first
clue that there would be a problem was during the Junior Solo Awards on
Friday afternoon. There was an AMAZING Junior soloist with impeccable
technique and beautiful performance quality who was beaten out in overalls
by a MUCH less capable dancer. We were SHOCKED at this result and wondered
what was wrong with the judges. The second indication came during Senior
Solo Awards when a young man with professional-quality technique and
choreography came in third behind two INCREDIBLY lesser-qualified dancers!!
Again, SHOCKED! Neither of the aforementioned dancers are from our studio
and I do not have any personal relationship with them, but I still feel
that they were done a tremendous disservice. I also feel that our dancers
were very much underscored, earning Top 1st awards for routines that have
won Platinums and Double Platinums all season. We really feel that there
was some obvious favoritism going on and it was incredibly disappointing!
I have no problem with my girls being beaten by better dancers, but will
not accept being grossly low-balled to ensure that others win. We will
NEVER do this competition again!!
Awful experience at KAR. Won\'t be back. There was a scoring
inconsistency discovered after comp was over that made it clear that the
results can\'t be trusted and that KAR has no interest in making things
I like how they play the music for overalls, very fun and suspenseful. is a
bit long and always seem overbooked. like that the teachers get to go on
stage and get credit for all of their hard work.
My least favorite competition 2 years in a row. Our director decided after
this year we will no longer dance at KAR comps. So unorganized,
disqualified one of our groups for a print mistake & was completely rude on
more than one occasion!
Always a favorite! Runs on time, entertaining emcees during awards, judges
that give thoughtful critiques, sticks to the program. Always reliable!
The competition was great ran smoothly and nicely. The only bad thing that
I have to say is that they don\'t respond to emails ..my girls won the
adventure award and I have written emails as well as called and left a
message to the person in charge and got no response. What\'s the point of
giving an award if someone can\'t use it anyways..besides that everything
I use to LOVE Kar but it seems they have gotten too big for what they can
handle. They focus more on their web stuff rather than the comp these days.
Liked most about this comp except the AWARDS!! It went on forever!! Would
rather they re look at divisions and put all divisions together instead of
all solos. That was MISERY!! Scoring/division is weird as it is different
than any other comp. My daughter competes elite all other and had to drop
to secondary here--she was confused as was I:/. Everything was great--on
time, nice facility, actual awards nice, reasonably priced
pics/apparel/etc, and dressing room easy access.
This was one of our favorite dance competitions!
We very much loved KAR. The judges gave great critiques, fair scoring and
we LOVED how for the top 5 they play the bit of the song. The kids get so
excited hearing their music. Our only small issue was how they gave out the
title award at a separate awards ceremony from the soloists adjudication.
Not even just later - on a completely different day. I had a soloist who
wasn\'t in a group number that had to book a hotel room and stay
overnight just because she was entered for title but they didn\'t give it
out at the awards ceremony the night she performed. I feel that should be a
little more organized. But their pictures and video were AMAZING. Best of
any competition ever. And the best prices. Even if they don\'t get their
organization together, the pictures are enough to keep bringing us back. We
bought every routine and will continue to come to KAR to get our routine
videos and pictures for as long as they continue providing such stellar
quality at the lowest prices I\'ve ever seen. LOVE them for this.
We used to love everything about KAR... What happened to this
organization?!? The scoring system doesn\'t make sense, seems like an
excuse to give overall awards to the top money contributors! Awards last
way too long- very unprofessional and even dangerous for dancers! NOT a
competition for young ones- don\'t take a chance.
They seemed really organized and my parents and students loved it!
Unfortunately, I was not too happy with how they score routines. It is VERY
generalized and \"blocky.\" The way they give out overall awards is a
little odd too. But overall, I would still attend.
Competition started on Thursday afternoon, with dancing on Friday
too. What about the fact your primary customer is in SCHOOL
hours of 8-3 for most particpants? This has always been a
competition of ours, but this year it was different. While our
Great in the scoring and overalls, the scoring itself was
differnt than in years past. Additionally, the competition
started early @
7 on saturday and sunday, and went past 11 pm on
saturday and until 10 on
Sunday. Long days, not to mention the awards
ceremonies were LONG...and
exhausting. too many dances at this regional
- seems more about the money
- and perhaps no thought given to the
\'kids\' that are participating.
Love that KAR has 5 level of competition! We had a great weekend at NJ
regionals... and our girls helped raise money for the KAR Dancers Against
Cancer Fund! No complaints from this Dance teacher/ Dance Mom :)
Professional. Fun awards. Lots of awards. Good staff. Runs very well. Great
While we have always loved KAR, this year was much different. Our studio
did well, no mistake about it, but starting a competition on a Thursday
when kids have school should be re-considered. Children\'s education
should be first and if you travel, that means the kids could possibly miss
almost three days of school. The scoring also changed. Using a bell curve
on scores??? Not good. Sad because I loved KAR but it seems collecting more
money for more entries is what has happened. :( The staff is awesome and
the videos and pictures in connection with it are fab!
I WAS JUST HERE LAST WEEK FOR A COMPETITION AND IT WENT AWESOME MY GROUP
GOT 1st place!!!! I loved the judges comments also
A lot of fun, but too big and too flashy. I don\'t like competitions that
start on Thursdays - kids in school. Our dancers did great, but judging
seemed a little biased for some. Money seems to drive this industry. Would
like to see technique truly win over flashy costumes and inappropriate
In our 5 years of competing, this has to be the very best ever. The staff
was so friendly and nice. The director so down to earth and kid oriented.
We just got back from Sparta and I just want to say thank you for making it
such a great and enjoyable weekend. It didn\'t even feel like a
competition. I love you guys and keep up the great work. Hope to be there
again next year.