Rules & Regulations

The Show Dance Competition’s mission is to create an inspiring atmosphere for all performers to showcase individual talents and strengths. Our commitment to developing new and old relationships while supporting studio directors and dancers in a stress-free environment. Our competition is fast-paced and relaxed. We do our best to stay on schedule and thus occasionally run solos on the Friday evening prior to the competition due to time constraints.

We reserve the right to update rules and regulations at any time.
All entries must be postmarked 21 days prior to the event. Late fees assessed to late entries. Registration is on a first come, first serve basis and all fees due are required to reserve your space.

  • Fees must be paid by the deadline in order to receive discounted rate
  • No refunds due to cancellations

The Show may provide videography and/or photography services at each competition at a reasonable cost. If so, we ask that the audience refrain from taking pictures/video in order to preserve the quality of our products. If these services are not provided we will issue one media pass per studio to use camera equipment with the understanding that only footage from the home studio is recorded.

ALL ages are as of January 1 – including solos.

  • Premier: 6 and under
  • Mini: 7-8
  • Petite: 9-10
  • Junior: 11-12
  • Teen: 13-14
  • Senior: 15-16
  • Elite: 17-18
  • Adult: 19+

Practice times include all technique, choreography, and individual (ie. solo etc.) classes. Appropriate level should ultimately be determined by the instructor when not clearly defined by guidelines. Contact The Show with questions pertaining to level*.

  • Recreational – dancers who participate in class 3 or less hours/week.
  • Intermediate – dancers participating 3-5 hours/week.
  • Advanced – dancers participating more than 5 hours/week or those looking to push themselves to the next level.

*Any dancer/routine can choose to participate in a higher level than their studio hours, but not lower. Instructional hours include private/solo lessons and level should be based on the majority of the dancers in the routine.

*Any routine that scores an Elite Platinum at the recreational or intermediate level may be moved up at the discretion of The Show and/or the judging staff.

  • Ballet – Must contain ballet movement. No acrobatic tricks or other forms of dance should be encompassed in a piece entered in the “Ballet” category.
  • Pointe – Dancers must be en pointe for more than 75% of the piece. 
  • Lyrical – Contains interpretive dance as well as extension and control.
  • Tap – Must contain tap technique and steps in more than 75% of piece. Tap sounds in music may lead to point deductions IF it is used for he dancers’ own sounds.
  • Jazz – Contains jazz technique.
  • Hip Hop – Must use isolations, pop and lock, or other street styles associated with hip hop dancing.
  • Clogging – Contains standard clogging steps. Tap sounds in music may lead to point deductions IF it is used for the dancers’ own sounds.
  • Open – Any combination of dance styles including acrobatic.
  • Character – A routine portraying a character.
  • Acrobatics – Must utilize acrobatic movements in more than 50% of the routine. Acrobatics pieces should also encompass dance steps.
  • Production – A routine is considered a “production” when the following are present: time over 4 minutes, mixture of dance styles and/or songs. Dancers frequently enter and exit the stage.
  • Student Choreography – Any dance style may be entered in this category. All choreography must have been done by a student or sudents wihout additions by an instructor. Instructors helping clean the piece is okay.

* If you do not see your dance category listed, please check the registration site, or email your request to SHOWDOWNDANCE@GMAIL.COM. Categories are updated frequently.

** The Show reserves the right to move any routine that is entered incorrectly into the appropriate category.

  • Props – Studios are responsible for all of their own props during competition.
  • Tricks – Only three acrobatic tricks (considered one pass, round-off back handspring is ONE trick) are permitted in any routine not entered in the Acrobatic or Open category.
  • Solo, Duet/Trio, Groups – 4:30 minutes
  • Productions – 10:00 minutes

All judging decisions are final.

The Show will provide a copy of a blank judge’s sheet to each entered studio! We tell you what we are looking for –    use this to your advantage during rehearsals! 

Judges are instructed clearly. Elite Platinum is a difficult award to earn. Beginning with the 2010 competition, all levels are judged equally. Overall awards will be given in each level to distinguish novice, recreational, and competitive levels. Any “tied scores” will be broken by the “technique” score.*

We want every dancer to have the opportunity to perform their dance! Occasionally a soloist will forget or “freeze” during their performance. When this happens, we will make every effort to allow them to re-perform the piece if time allows. However, an automatic five points will be deducted from their total score and the removal from eligibility to receive an overall award.


140-150 – Elite Platinum
135-139 – High Platinum
130-134 – Platinum
125-129 – Elite Gold
120-124 – High Gold
115-119 – Gold
110-114 – Elite Silver
105-109 – High Silver
100-104 – Silver

Due to the size of the competition, recreational AND competitive dancers are scored equally. Recreational dancers should shoot for a Platinum as their top score. Please be honest when registering the levels of each group. See the LEVELS section above when figuring the dancer(s) LEVEL.  **Please be aware that The Show and/or judging staff have the ability to agree to move dances up a level if an elite platinum is awarded in a recreational or intermediate level.

Soloists can compete with up to three solos, but only ONE of them can receive an Overall Award.

All Competition scores will be posted to our COMPETITION RESULTS page soon after each competition.

Few factors will result in point deductions which are not associated with technique/ability. They are:

  • Excessive time.
  • Inappropriate costume, movements, or song selection.
  • Due to fairness, blatant coaching on the sides is not allowed and may result in point deductions.

*Any dance which is considered explicit or inappropriate will be interrupted AND disqualified.

  • Each participant of solos, duets, and trios will receive a medal.
  • A plaque will be awarded to each group dance. Each dancer in group routines will receive a pin for their dance jacket or dance bag.
  • Overall signs and first place signs will be awarded to the overall high scores in each age group/division.
  • A trophy will be awareded to the highest score for 12 and under and the highest score for 13 and up regardless of group size.

* Depending on competition size, either the top five or top ten of each division will be announced at awards.  All placements can be found on your dance comp genie accounts.

* Additional awards include The Showstopper, Show-Out,  Show-Up & Show-Off Awards which are determined at each event by the judges as choreography, entertainment, teamwork, precision or other special standouts.  Showbucks will be awarded to group dances that our judges would like to see again at Nationals.


If you have any questions or concerns, please ask.  We will do everything we can to update or modify rules for competition.

All participants, teachers, and spectators shall assume liability for any damage to personal items and/or any injuries that may occur. Please be aware of your surroundings and use caution.

In the event it is recommended to follow COVID-19 procedures, block scheduling will be utilized to reduce crowd size. Each studio will be assigned a dance time and adjudicated awards will be presented following their final routine. ​

Audience size will be limited to one spectator per dancer and dancers will not be permitted in audience unless space permits.​

All spectators and staff will be required to wear masks. Performers will be permitted to remove masks on stage only if studio protocols have placed proper restrictions/spacing within each team.​

Each competition will be live streamed to the Showdown Youtube channel to allow for online viewing live. Videos will not be archived or available for viewing later. Each studio must collect video release forms from parents/guardians.​

Overall awards will be presented the week following the competition via live stream. Awards streams will include studio footage and special guest presenters!​

Register Early!

Competitions fill up quickly, so take advantage of our early bird registration deals and register today.

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