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Re: Arthur Murray Stinks
Posted by mm76012
7/8/2014  10:36:00 AM
I spoke to one of the big time franchisee owners once on the subject of floor size. It sounded like they ensure floors are small to make the energy and atmosphere intense. My only problem with this strategy is that it gets so crowded. You in fact due literally have group classes bumping into private lessons. The only positive to this is that after 2.5 years at an AM I am really good at leading a lady in crowded conditions. I also had to learn how to improvise even when working through a "routine." So that is a plus. I have not ran a lady into anyone in a very long time! (-:

My issue with the crowded floor is that when I was paying $125 for 40 minutes in a lesson I did not like having to work around the group classes. It distracted from the time.

The place I go now has a huge main floor and a smaller practice floor. We have had some of our private lessons on the smaller floor and it has worked well. All in all I really love the huge floor and do not miss the "energy" of the smaller floor.
Re: Arthur Murray Stinks
Posted by MaggieMoves
7/16/2014  6:07:00 PM
I started my ballroom experience with Arthur Murray out of undergrad. While I did have a bad experience with one instructor that I felt was intentionally limiting me so that they could milk more lessons out of me, the franchise owner quickly moved me to a more experienced instructor that I still actually do keep in contact with (it's been 6 years since I left). I felt I learned a lot from AM, especially on a social dancing level. I had learned most of the bronze syllabus when I was in undergrad, but still felt awkward socially when I went to go dance with a friend.

AM is really more about selling the experience than building a competitive dancer, which is what a lot of people want when they dance. It's mostly older married couples looking for something fun to do evenings or on weekends that don't want to be bothered by dance snobs which you find at some studios.

All of that said, when I started to seriously compete, I stopped going to AM and went to an independent studio for classes and invited local pros into my home to teach me on a per Diem basis. It's much cheaper and more effective that way.

Overall, my experience with AM was a positive one. I believe it's a great place for people to start... but don't fall for their sales tactics.
Re: Arthur Murray Stinks
Posted by Used to work at Arthur Murray also...
7/30/2014  6:32:00 PM
Please wake up. I see you've written about being an AM instructor and it's the best thing ever. You've been brainwashed and now you don't know it but you're brainwashing your students. I worked for aurthur Murray for a year. I had 0 ballroom experience. They hired me after I trained with them for about 4 hours per day and 16 hours per week(all in groups) for about 6 weeks. In 10 dances! Now I'm "certified". I was a very fast learner and a natural so I looked good even though everything about my dancing was all wrong. AM knew it and we the newbies knew it. I could also tell by this stage that there are only a few expert dancers in the bunch of instructors all over the state(we meet them often for meetings).So now I'm teaching. I noticed how quickly some of you (newbie instructors) got brainwashed. Yes, you are also brainwashing the students and I notice how many students get emotional about how we helped save their marriage or helped them come out of being a wallflower.

The point of this page is that you can get all that from another type of dance community that doesn't manipulate you. As an independent professional instructor now I still use visual and audible cues,vocal cues, psychological techniques(so students remember moves) and also motivate students to help get past uncomfortable stages in their dancing but never how I was I expected at AM. Fred astair is the same.

To be clear, None of the instructors or management is bad. They are good people. They just don't know how much BS comes out of their mouths because their studios' way becomes their CREED! I still have a close friend teaching there and she has good intentions. She considers it therapy for her students. But all the sales training and emotional manipulation kills it in my opinion. There are many dance communities where you can spend half of what you pay at AM and get better dance results. I couldnt stand when I had to learn a move right before teaching a student. Or when I saw instructors teaching styles they knew NOTHING about. Argentine tango and club salsa are excellent examples. I would watch people who have NEVER been to a club or milonga teach students who planned to go to these places. When the student asked of AM could do it AM put on a fake smile and said yes. Disgusting. They desocrated beautiful dances and pretended to know them even though they knew nothing. It's like slumdog millionaire at the taj when the young boy pretends to be a tour guide because the white people give him $100. "Right this way madam". Good answer if ur him. Disgusting if you work for aurthur murray.
If you don't get how brainwashed you are I feel bad for you.
Re: Arthur Murray Stinks - not to me
Posted by Sophie
6/1/2015  6:39:00 AM
Hi All,

This post is from 2015 and about London Arthur Murray Dance Studios.
I am absolutely delighted with Arthur Murray lessons. No one slows me down - quite contrary, I sometimes feel the teachers believe more in my skills than I do and encourage me to get more and more new dancing skills.
No one has ever "pushed me" to buy more classes. The whole 45 minutes of the private lessons are dedicated to dancing an not to marketing of AR.
After 5 months of classes both group and private I can actually dance 5 different dances! Perhaps for some people it is not much but I feel I made a massive progress form someone who never danced before to someone who can enjoy herself during parties and weddings.

So I find the below post a bit unjust. At least in London the classes are great.
Re: Arthur Murray Stinks
Posted by the dancing housewife
6/2/2015  12:46:00 PM
Not sure where you live, but check out the new Dance Tonight Studios popping up all over the country. They teach sound dance fundamentals with an over riding goal of bringing ballroom dance into the mainstream. There are studios in Atlanta, Fort Wayne, Knoxville, Chattanooga, Detroit, Columbus and more to come. I'm in Atlanta. Check this out dancetonightatlanta.com and while you're at it check out thedancinghousewife.com.
Re: Arthur Murray Stinks
Posted by Regarding previous posting.
6/4/2015  8:06:00 PM
ATTENTION: I went to "thedancinghousewife.com" once and it behaves suspiciously - like a bug; it invaded my search engine and pops up every time I enter article "the" or suddenly opens up spontaneously. I was not able to delete it.
Re: Arthur Murray Stinks
Posted by Anonymous
2/2/2016  12:20:00 AM
Thank you for all the interesting sharing and reviews. Definitely some great takeaways and what to watch out for. We all have experiences ranging from great to horrible. This is just one perspective - mine. Buyer beware. Know the pros and cons of what your getting into and exit when it has no value exchange for you.

1) It worked for a time for me, they're pricey.
2) Customer retention none existent. They were rude at times to certain customers who didn't fit their definition of 'ideal'
3) unfair wages. This really bothers me- they charge a lot per hour($120+) on private lesson and don't pay the staff a fair amount. At $120/hour I'll find a pro. I don't have all the facts but an instructor tells me it's minimum wage. Time to report them to labor law.
Most of us don't mind paying that amount if the instructor is fairly paid. AT $120+ per private lesson, I would have thought the instructor would make at least $25/hour + bonus for having X# of private lessons. I think the $70-80/hour is more reasonable. I shopped around and found other better value deals.
4) Also, not all instructors are made the same way - some are better than others no matter their weight or looks. Some instructors will burn your time with small talk so make sure you keep them on task to your goals, your paying them to teach dance not chit chat. I had to keep a franchise owner and dance instructor on point to what I wanted to achieve for the class. I was very specific on what we needed to work on in an hour (or less)I made sure he worked hard for his money with me. I want to do 4 things - that's 15 min for each goal.
5) I didn't care for the extra fees for themed dance events in their studio, which should have been discounted and have ability to invite friends and family to promote their business. To this point, they didn't really work hard on their business on new membership promos. This would have been one way to achieve this goal.
6)Value deal illusion. There was no way to just do group lessons, it was package deal or nothing. I would have to pay $1000+ for 10 private lessons to get the group classes for free (diminishing return here as you progress in your dancing). If you sign up as a couple you might get better value deal,but not for single and they were not helpful in pairing us up - we pay same amount for single as for couple, so they'd loose money on the deal if they paired the singles. Somewhere else at $75/hour, I'd get 10 lessons for $750 pp or per couple, not $1000+, with a partner thats $350 ea. Even with unlimited group class at AM which has diminishing return.
7) I originally got in since I could go to other AM in different states. I had a travelling job at the time which changed later. Life happens, I had other more pressing financial obligations and I couldn't dish out $1000+ for dancing.

I found plenty other dance events in the area to practice my dancing for a small fee ~$10 per event. Joining 3+ dance clubs was less than $100/year and I get discounts to many local dance events. Like many of you mentioned here in the threads - dance co-ops and your own social can be a better deal. Anyway, local dance events and other dance clubs was good enough for me, the goal was to continue at a more reasonable fee based on my availability and schedule not on AM's package, offer and schedule.

After awhile, I re-thought my dancing strategy and it clearly we were not on same page, so I stopped going and didn't renew.I flattened in their dance classes and it no longer offered the value exchange benefits for me. The variety of group lessons worked for awhile, until I found them too limiting and restricting to their studio. It was not enough for me but they would entice or tease the students just enough and pitching the 'you need to work on your private lessons for more '.

Some dances I am happy with group lessons for social club dancing and that's about it. AM do not offer consistency in weekly group classes which would have offered
Re: Arthur Murray Stinks
Posted by AM Student and proud
3/1/2016  3:13:00 AM
I am 11 years old and I have been in Arthur Murray Amman/Jordan for 4 years now. I am a Silver 1 student and I completely disagree with you. Arthur Murray is not only a dance studio but it is also a home. If anything, the instructors are champions and will do anything to HELP you become a champion, like them, and better. There is never any manipulation, fancy chains, and any other cruel traps like that. Arthur Murray are one of the most supportive group of people I have ever met. I don't know where you live or which Arthur Murray you go to, but Im telling you, in my country and most other countries Arthur Murray is the best studio (ranked number 1) in any studios in any country.
Re: Arthur Murray Stinks
Posted by terence2
7/5/2016  12:58:00 AM

Are you really 11 years old ?.. or, is your MOM writing this for you ?. Either way, if you are happy with you dance progress, that's good. How much do they charge for lessons ? ( per hour ).
Re: Arthur Murray Stinks
Posted by GMC
4/9/2016  6:40:00 PM
Just started Arthur murray dance friday and I never dance but we really enjoyed it. Ashburn va .great dance teacher and staff..loved it

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