FIRST COMPETITION INFORMATION:
Completing an Entry Form for a Competition:
Make sure you fill out the entry form taking careful note of the first date you can post the entry and the last date on which you can post the entry. The last date is the date the competition closes. The sooner you complete the form and post it, the better it is. You will need a SCOT-Dance Card to be eligible to compete so make sure you get that issued before the competition. KEEP the part of the entry form that states where the competition is held - put it in a safe place where you will remember it is. Double check that you have given all the information requested in the entry and that you have signed the waiver which is sometimes printed on the back of the competition form. Remember to put a stamped addressed envelope for confirmation of entry and your cheque along with the competition entry into the envelope. The last entry to be received by the competition secretary dances first, so it is best to get the entry form submitted as soon as possible in order that the dancer has some preparation time before his/her turn to dance. When you get your entry confirmation returned to you, put it in a safe place and take it to the competition. It is not essential to have the confirmation on the morning of the competition but it is useful in case of mistakes. It is essential to take your SCOT-Dance Card.
One Week Before:
Check you have all the items on the attached checklist. Check your destination on the map especially for out of town competitions.
Hair for Competition:
Hair should be braided back off the face or up in a bun. A bun is preferable if the hair is long enough. Ask one of the other mother's or the class representative for information on how to put a bun in. Practice before the competition as it is harder than it looks!
The dancer should go to bed at a reasonable time. Pack the items on the checklist the night before. Make sure you have packed all the items on the checklist. If you are not sure, phone your class representative or one of the other mother's who have an experienced dancer. You might also want to pack a few healthy snacks i.e. fruit, veggies & dip, and water.
Day of Competition:
When you arrive at a competition (allow at least one hour before it starts). The first thing to do is look for someone you know who can guide you around. Perhaps arrange with one of the more experienced mothers beforehand meet with you on the morning of the competition to explain the procedure to you. The next best thing to do is look for the entry / program table. This is easy to find. (Usually you spot it as soon as you walk in) If you really can't find it, ask someone. They'll be willing to point it out to you. Line up. You will likely have to pay for yourself (parent). You do normally do not have to pay an entry fee for the dancer.
At the admission desk you will be sold a program which details the order of the dances.
Dancer's Competition Number:
Find the Registration Table. This will be where most dancers are concentrated and they're holding in their hands a card with their photo on it. You will have to show your dancer's SCOT-Dance Card to prove that he/she can compete. You will then get a number (which you will likely have to give back at the end of the competition). The number should be pinned at the front on the kilt. The number is generally placed at the front of the middle of the kilt just above the hemline. Take a look at how other people do it and copy. The number should be straight. The lines of the kilt or skirt are generally a good guide. At the registration table someone will
direct you to the changing rooms.
The first thing to do after you have the number is locate your dancer's name in the Progam under your dancing status e.g. "Beginner" or "Primary" and then on the actual events schedule in the program, it will detail the platform for the "Beginner" category i.e. Platform A for Beginner A, or Primary A, Platform B for Beginner B or Primary B and Platform C for Beginner C. There will also be a dancing schedule detailing when the dances begin. It normally starts with the Beginner Fling but not always! If you are unsure, ask someone.
After that (time permitting) find a seat across from the Platform where your dancer will be performing - you can leave your coat on it to keep your space. Don't leave any valuables lying about. Make your way to the change room to get your dancer ready. Keep an eye on your time and the schedule of the dances which will be in the program, it is easy to under/over estimate
the time. Listen to the announcements at all times.
Take time to warm up. Don't do this near the front of the stage. Find a hallway or waiting area - sometimes there are designated warm-up areas. See if you can find anyone from you class, even if they're in a higher level. It's more fun if you know someone. Have your dancer practice the dance he/she is going to be doing next.
Never be afraid to approach some of the Mothers from the Dance School and ask them to check your dancer over before she goes on stage or explain how it works. They would be glad to help!
Start of the Competition:
Soon they will be announcing the beginning of the competition. The Judges are normally introduced and then the dancing begins. Listen carefully; if you hear your group called i.e. "First call for (Category of Dancer) e.g. Beginner A - Platform A etc.". Personal names are not used just categories i.e. Primary, Beginner, Novice etc., check one last time that your dancer's sleeves are in place, shoe laces are tucked in, socks pulled up and held in place with white elastics etc., then send the dancer to the seats at the side of the stage on which he/she will be dancing on. Right beside it there is someone holding a clipboard. This is going to be where the dancer will wait. The person in the line up area will tell the dancer where to sit.
Note to Dancer:
When you walk on to the stage remember to hold your hands properly and after the dance wait until the judge nods to indicate you can leave the stage. Do not pull faces or indicate any disappointment with your dancing no matter how disappointed you are. Smile at the finish and walk off the same way you walked on - orderly fashion. Do not talk loudly, giggle or make remarks about other dancers while waiting in the line up area nor should you practice your dancing. It can interfere with the dancers on the floor.. Parents are not allowed in the line up area.
The procedure will be as outlined in the program until all the dancers have danced.
The program lists when the competition results are scheduled to be announced. Primary dancer awards are normally given at the end of the Highlands and before the Nationals. All Primary dancers are normally called up even if they do not get a placing, they get a ribbon for their effort in competing.
Procedure for Dancers receiving medals:
The dancers' numbers who placed are called out. When you hear your number called, this means that you must go to the stage. Take your Scotdance card with you and proceed to the designated line up area. Do not run, walk on to the stage properly. When they announce what place you won, bow or curtsy nicely, step to the front, shake hands, return to the line by walking behind the row of dancers to your place in the line, bow/curtsy again. Leave the stage with the others when all the medals have been handed out and if you won a first, second or third get your SCOT-Dance card stamped at the registration table. Remember to pick up your card after you leave the stage. (The Primary dancers do not have to get their cards stamped).
Return of Number:
The paper numbers used at CHDA competitions are not returned. At some competitions they will ask the you return your reusable number at the end of the event. Check you have all your belongings and have not forgotten anything.
Never be afraid to approach some of the Mothers from the Dance School and ask them to check your dancer over before he/she goes on stage or explain how it works. They would be glad to help! Everyone who has a dancer competing has experienced the confusion of a first competition.