LA-based Artists in Training shifts to more holistic approach for supporting the next generation of artists
Robert Schultz is changing the game for in-studio dance conventions. His LA-based company, Artists in Training, has been on the scene since the early 2000s, but Schultz recently made a pivotal change to what the company offers dance studios.
“We’re shifting the focus of our in-studio conventions to crafting the whole artist, rather than simply teaching a weekend of master classes,” says Schultz.
“Building a career in dance starts with so much more than simply taking class and auditioning. You’ve got to know who you are to your core, and you need to embrace your artistry and connect with each other. We want to teach young dancers how to do this!”
Artists in Training is a network of professional dance educators, choreographers and artists. Convention favorites like Lisette Bustamante, Sloan-Taylor Rabinor, Chonique Sneed, and Hailee Payne frequently teach for AIT in-studio convention events. Other notable faculty members include Sienna Lyons, Lee Daniel, Tiffanie Carson, Caitlin Wheeler, Kavita Rao, Helen Estrella, Kelsey Nelson, and Re’Sean Pates. The AIT organization is intentional about working with a diverse community of industry professionals who are not only experts at their craft, but also mindful educators.
In addition to bringing high-profile dance educators to studios nationwide, AIT has also created a custom journal for their students. It is filled with prompts to encourage young dancers to develop more confidence in themselves and more respect for others.
“Giving dancers the opportunity to sit down, reflect and share their feelings with their classmates is a powerful way to help our students grow not only as dancers, but as humans and artists,” says Kathy King, AIT’s executive director and event coordinator.
Schultz also leads a special session for studio parents and staff called “Coffee Magic”. This includes a conversation about how parents can support their children through their dance journey with a more positive approach.
Artists in Training hopes to inspire dance studios and dance organizations nationwide to rethink how they are creating their programs but putting a more holistic focus on how educators can support the next generation of dance artists.
Schultz explains, “We’re asking ourselves ‘how can we get people communicating more, creating more, and supporting each other more?’”
Artists in Training offers in-studio conventions to dance studios across the nation. Studio owners can learn more at www.aitdance.com