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2023 Nationals

Nationals 2023

When: June 26 - June30, 2023
Where:  Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center

              31551 Thoreau Dr. N

              Schaumburg, IL 60173

Schedule:  Here

CRU Nationals Orientation Packet

Parents and Dancers,

The following packet was designed to help familiarize you and your dancer with the ins and outs of attending a National dance competition, as well as help you understand what to expect over the course of the next week. Should you have any questions that the below information does not answer, please feel free to contact me.Thank you so much, and looking forward to an unforgettable week of dance!

Before You Leave

Please be sure that your dancer has all necessary costume pieces, shoes, back-up tights, hair, and make-up supplies packed. If you are flying, I encourage you to pack your dancer’s costumes in their carry- on, as lost luggage is a risk that you don’t want to take with those irreplaceable costumes. Dancers who do not have their costumes will not be able to compete. If driving, it is advisable to hang or lay flat costume bags in the car. Make sure you are familiar with the schedule for the week and have planned water, meals, transportation, etc. well in advance so your child has a clear understanding of what each day looks like.


Once You Arrive

Once you have checked in to your hotel, please have your dancer double check that they have all necessary costume pieces/shoes. Should your dancer have forgotten something, it’s much easier to have it shipped from home earlier in the week rather than paying to overnight it. Additionally, please make sure costumes are hung in a way that they won’t wrinkle. If you need to steam costumes to remove wrinkles that arose during travel, please do so carefully so as not to damage the costumes. If you arrive before your child’s first day of

competition, I encourage you to take a few minutes to take a quick trip to locate the competition venue. (Speaking from experience, this will reduce stress for you and your dancer later in the week and guarantee that your child is on time for their first day of competition.) It is also helpful to locate which other families are staying in your hotel. (I might recommend a quick group thread on the Parent FB page.)


Schedule of Events

A detailed schedule of events is available on the parent portal. The general schedule is as follows:

  • Monday - Dancer Welcome Party

  • Tuesday - Duo/Trios, Teen Solos, Senior Large Groups, Masterclasses Wednesday - Intermediate Jr Small Groups, Teen Groups, Senior Novice and Elite Solos, Masterclasses

  • Thursday - Duo/Trios, Novice Junior Groups, Senior Small Groups, Senior Solos, Masterclasses

  • Friday - Junior Solos, Masterclasses, Entertainment Showdown, Choreography Review, Ultimate Showcase

As you can see from the general schedule, sometimes our routines are spread out across a whole day, sometimes they are back to back. More detailed info can be found on both our website and CRU’s website


Dancer Expectations

Nationals are a fun and memorable experience in a competition dancer’s life, and become a tradition that they look forward to for years to come. It is a great way to bond and grow as a team as well as an opportunity to showcase the routines they have worked so hard on one final time to close out the season. Here are some guidelines that will help ensure the event is a fun, safe, and successful one for the children:

• Priority #1 is the dancing! - While Chicago can be a fun tourist destination, our team is there first and foremost to

compete for a National Title. We are asking the parents to help support their dancers in this mission. Pool days are fun, but the sun and water are really draining on the dancers and are best saved for after they are done competing for the day. Also, please make sure that the kids are taking care of their bodies and being safe! The last thing we want is a dancer spraining something or breaking a bone; not only would they not be able to dance, it would force their entire team to have to restage.

• Be on time! - 5 days of National competition at an enormous convention center in a different state can already be overwhelming to young people. Being responsible and showing up on time will greatly diminish the stress on both the faculty and the dancers, as well as allow our groups to have the necessary preparation time to ensure they can feel confident and have their best possible performance. You never know what traffic will be like, the venue is huge and could potentially take 10 minutes to get through, locate dressing rooms, etc., so please leave plenty of to get to the venue. At Call Time, your dancer should already be in full makeup and have their hair completed. If you need help completing the braided hairstyle, please be sure to plan ahead so that your dancer shows up with hair ready BY call time. Please do not show up at call time with hair not finished, without costume pieces, etc. Remember, in the dance world, EARLY is on time and on time is LATE! And as a reminder, priority #1 is the dancing, so please don’t have your dancer show up late to their call time because they were at the pool/ shopping/movies/restaurant/etc. Thank you for your cooperation!

• Be supportive! - While your dancer may have days that they personally do not compete, that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be at the venue. I’m sure none of our dancers want to go to a National competition and feel like they don’t have anyone in the audience cheering them on and supporting them, so we encourage dancers to make a point to find time to support their teammates.Again, please remember priority #1 is the dancing, so on the flip side, if a solo goes super late and your dancer has to be up early to compete, in those situations it may be better for them to stay home and go to bed.

• Represent themselves and their team well! - Nationals is a much larger event, however our expectations for our dancer’s sportsmanship and behavior in public remains the same. Dancers should be polite, professional, respectful, supportive of their competitors, considerate of the people around them, and generally represent themselves in the best possible light at all times. Here are a few other public appearance guidelines that are specific to Nationals:

• Keep warm-ups on in the convention center unless otherwise specified

  • Look polished onstage for awards (i.e. hair up and makeup/eyelashes still on, lime jacket zipped or in full costume depending on instructions, sitting tall and clapping for all studios, standing in fifth position with an enormous smile when receiving any awards)

  • Please be aware of your surroundings and make sure you are staying with an instructor or adult at all times in the convention center and not wandering around, as it is a very large facility.


Audience Expectations

Just like our dancers are expected to represent themselves well in public, we are asking our audience members (whether dancer or adult) to do the same. Please be sure to go over these guidelines with your child, as well as any family members who may be attending.

• Enter and exit your seat between numbers, especially since I believe it is a convention center and not elevated seating.

• Cheering is great before and after numbers, but please remind small people that screaming is not the same as cheering ;)

• Should I cheer during the routine? General rule of thumb: upbeat dances (hip hop, jazz, etc.) go for it, contemporary and tap, before and after only, and keep it brief

• Please keep all comments positive and appropriate, as you never know who may be sitting around you.

• Conversations that require more than a brief whisper should take place outside the stage area

Remember, as adults, we are the role models for both our own children and other children at the venue, and the more we can lead by example and help remind our students what considerate, appropriate behaviour looks like, the better experience they will have.


Ultimate Showcase

CRU’s National finals conclude on Friday with their Ultimate Showcase competition. The top 2 in each category (solo, duet/trio, small group, large group, line, production) per level (novice, intermediate, elite) per 12 & Under and 13 & Older age divisions makes it into the ultimate showcase. Obviously, qualifying is a huge honor and should any of our routines be chosen, we will be recompeting at the Showcase on Friday. Should any of our routines qualify for the Showcase, you will know by Thursday night at latest (or Friday afternoon for solos) so you can plan accordingly. Showcase lineup will be available by Friday at 3:00 P.M.

Entertainment and Choreography Showcase

In addition to their Ultimate Showcase, CRU also runs a smaller showcase focused on entertainment value and choreography. This competition will take place from 4:00 - 5:00 on Friday. Any routine that is nominated will know by the end of that routine’s awards ceremony. As with the Ultimate Showcase, should any of our dances qualify, we will recompete.



We are very excited to let you know that CRU offers masterclasses at this event. These classes are available to all dancers, and we highly recommend that each dancer try to take at least one or two. Individual classes are $45 per class, or dancers can purchase an All-Access Package for $65 today (Thursday, June 22nd) on their website. Please remember to pack dance class attire and rehearsal shoes if you plan to participate. Schedule is as follows:


12 and Under Division (age as of 1/1/23)

6/26 from 2:00 - 3:00:  Musical Theater

6/28 from 1:00 - 2:00:  Lyrical

6/30 from 12:00 - 1:00:  Jazz

13 and Older Division (age as of 1/1/23)

6/27 from 1:00 - 2:00:  Jazz

6/29 from 1:00 - 2:00:  Contemporary

6/30 from 1:30 - 2:30:  Hip Hop


Spirit Days

CRU is hosting a different themed spirit day each day of the week, and we definitely want to participate, as the winning studio can win a $500 scholarship! Themes are as follows:

Tuesday - Beach Day (wear your best beach-y attire: sunglasses, hats, etc.)

Wednesday - 90’s Day (this a perfect time to bust out that Justin Timberlake shirt from last year’s production)

Thursday - Studio Spirit Day (all your most fluorescent lime, or SDC shirts for parents who might own or want to wear bright green)


Senior Recognition

Graduating seniors will be recognized on stage on Friday, June 30th at 8:30 P.M. before the final Ultimate Showcase awards ceremony. All graduating seniors are invited to attend.


In Case of Emergency

Should an emergency arise and you need to contact a faculty member, you can reach us here:

Meghan - (810) 730-8855
Leah - (248) 535-8442
Tiffany - (517) 599-3055
Shawn - (517) 490-4834

Texting is generally easiest, as most of the time, even if your child is not at the venue, we probably are. Additionally, we will be using the texting system for mass communication while at Nationals, so please be sure to subscribe to those if you have not.

Thank you so much, and looking forward to a great event!

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Nationals Schedule
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