2023 Rules & Regulations

The Star Dance Alliance is a combined effort from the industries leaders in dance who strive to provide not only a high-quality experience, but ease in registration.

Click Here To Download Rules (.pdf)

Although each competition is run in its own way, all of the SDA competitions provide a quality competition arena to our customers in every aspect.

★ A combined registration system that allows studios to enter/update their roster one time a year, and easily transfer routines from competition to competition.

★ Streamlined Rules and Regulations that make it easier for studios to keep age divisions, group sizes and competition levels the same for each competition.

★ Routines may qualify at any SDA Regional Competition for all of the Star Dance Alliance National Championships.

★ SDA Star Dollars are awarded to Advanced Level Champions.

Regional winnings from 2023 may be redeemed for any SDA 2023 National Championship or for a 2024 Regional Competition from the issuing competition.

National winnings may be redeemed for a 2024 Regional Competition from the issuing competition.

Star Dollars may NOT be used for the World Dance Championships, World Dance Pageant, Power Pak or Wild Dance Intensive

SDA Power Rankings – www.stardancealliance.com

Every routine that competes at a SDA Regional Competition, and is awarded as the ‘Regional Champion’ in their division, is automatically entered into the Power Rankings. Routines are entered into the rankings with the score that their routine was given at that regional event. You can track the Power Rankings weekly at www.stardancealliance.com

Power Pak – www.powerpakdance.com

Invitations & Scholarships are awarded at all of the SDA Regional Competitions.

 Wild Dance Intensive – www.wildaboutdance.com

Scholarships are awarded at all of the SDA Regional Competitions.

 World Dance Championships – www.worlddancechampionship.com

Golden Ticket Invitations to the World Dance Championship are awarded at all SDA Regional and National Competitions to top scoring routines.

 World Dance Pageant – www.worlddancepageant.com

Scholarships are awarded at all of the SDA Regional Competitions.


• Entries will be processed on a first-come, first served basis and will be limited to the amount of performance time available at each event.

• Entries must be entered through the Registration System. NO PHONE, FAXED, MAILED or EMAILED entries will be accepted.

• All entries must include the correct names and ages of all contestants. It is IMPERATIVE that each studio roster be entered/updated with the CORRECT PERFORMANCE LEVEL. This WILL NOT be permitted to be changed after the schedule is complete.

• The name of a routine may NOT be the same name as the studio.

• No dancer may compete as an independent entry if their studio is registered for that event.

• If a dancer would like to compete at an event with two separate studios, that dancer MUST have written permission from BOTH studios prior to the event.

• Reserving a space in a particular event without a deposit does NOT guarantee your reservation. Reservations are on a first come, first served basis WITH a deposit attached to your account. Studios who have a reservation without a deposit will be contacted as a show fills to give the opportunity to put a deposit immediately to hold the spots.

• All Entries MUST be PAID IN FULL before they will be processed.

• Payments must be made by Credit Card or E-Check. Please note… when paying by E-Check, all payments must be received no later than 30 days prior to the first day of the event. NO CERTIFIED CHECKS, PERSONAL CHECKS, or MONEY ORDERS will be accepted. NOTE: There will be a phone payment processing fee of 5% for multiple payment transactions made through the office. To avoid this fee, please utilize our partial payment option online.


• Once payment is made, studios will receive a summary via email of all routines registered. It is the responsibility of the studio to review this information, including birth date and age division, and reply IMMEDIATELY with any corrections. NO CHANGES WILL BE PERMITTED LESS THAN 10 DAYS PRIOR TO THE COMPETITION OR AT THE COMPETITION. There will be a fee of $5.00 per change for all changes made less than 14 days prior to the competition. This fee must be paid by credit card at the time the change is made.

• No entries will be accepted at the competition for any studio who is not already registered. With the exception of Title, Photogenic and Costume entries, registered studios may add an entry ONLY if the show’s director approves it. Added routines may not be eligible for High Score Awards.

• VIDEO ENTRIES can qualify for our National Championships by submitting a video and a regional entry fee no later than June 1, 2023. Video entries will be adjudicated only.

• Each competition reserves the right to limit solos to two (2) per dancer, depending on venue capability and space.

• Each competition reserves the right to add additional competition days/times, if deemed necessary, and also reserves the right to move the competition location if it becomes necessary due to circumstances beyond its control. Please read through the following rules and regulations carefully, as failure to comply could result in disqualification.

• By completing your registration for a Star Dance Alliance event, all registered contestants do hereby grant permission to the Star Dance Alliance to publish their photographs and/or videos for promotional reasons. This includes social media, local television, national television, promotional videos, the web or in any other publication to promote its competitions. Furthermore, you hereby release all directors, officers or representatives of this competition from any and all claims for damages or injuries sustained while participating in any activity related to this competition. In addition, the Star Dance Alliance reserves the right to communicate one on one, or through our mailing list, with each studio using the email provided in the registration system.



A time schedule will be e-mailed (provided that an email address was correctly provided on your registration) no later than seven (7) days before the competition date to all entrants. In order to receive a detailed schedule, your account must be paid in full.

There is NO general format. Every regional schedule is based solely on the breakdown of entries by solos, duet/trios, groups and lines in each age division for that particular city. This breakdown is not available until all of the entries have been processed. At that time, a schedule will be set to best accommodate the entrants at that competition. No time requests will be accepted.

ALL ENTRIES MUST COMPETE ON THE DAY AND TIME ASSIGNED. We understand that there are sometimes unforeseen events that can arise. Any entry, which is not able to compete at their assigned day and time, may request an alteration to the routine’s performance time. If this is approved, this routine may be permitted to compete for ADJUDICATION ONLY and may not be eligible for high score awards. Any change in competition days and/or times is at the sole discretion of the Director and will be determined by the time allowance at each Regional Competition.

The number in which each routine is assigned is for reference and identification purposes. Routines are expected to perform in numerical order unless granted special permission by the Competition Director. If the backstage manager sees potential delays due to costume changes, you may be asked to compete out of sequence in order. Please be prepared to compete when we call your number, even though it may be a few numbers earlier than you anticipated.
• Unauthorized delay of a performance may result in point deduction and/or disqualification.
• Any routine not performed within 10 entries of their scheduled order may not be eligible for overall high score awards unless pre-approved by the Competition Director.

Performers MUST be checked in with the Backstage Manager 1 HOUR prior to their scheduled performance time. Failure to do so may result in your routine being disqualified.

**NOTE** If you determine that you do not have enough time between numbers to change costumes, it is imperative that you advise the backstage manager. If the backstage manager has not been notified of any problem, and you are not ready to compete when called, your routine may be disqualified.


IMPORTANT: Any person who is actively participating in a routine for ANY amount of time is counted as a performer and must be registered as such. This includes any person who can be seen by the judges for any amount of time, and any person who may be in a costume that covers their face.

Solo – (1) Performer
Time Limit – 2:45 minutes
Fashion Modeling Time Limit – 1:30 minutes
• Solos MUST compete in the competition level in which the dancer is registered originally on the studio’s roster. (The only exception is Fashion Modeling, Pointe & Vocal Solos, which must compete in Level 3).
• Soloists are limited to entering a maximum of three (3) solo performance categories and may not compete against themselves in any category. (Soloists may compete in the Fashion Modeling and Vocal Category in addition to the dance categories).
• A contestant may not place more than once for high score in the Solo division.

Duet/Trio – 2-3 Performers
Time Limit – 2:45 minutes
• No Duet/Trio may compete against themselves in the same performance category with the same performers. There must be a 50% difference in performers to place in overalls in the same age division..

Small Group – 4-9 Performers
Time Limit – 3:00 minutes

Large Group – 10-19 Performers
Time Limit – 4:00 minutes

Line – 20 or more Performers
Time Limit – 4:30 minutes
*Extended time may be purchased up to a MAXIMUM of 6:00 minutes. Any line over 6 minutes MUST be entered in the Grand Line Division.

Grand Line – 20 or more Performers
Time Limit – 7:00 minutes
• Grand Lines compete in the LEVEL 3 ONLY, and have NO specific performance category (Jazz, Tap, Lyrical, etc.).
• Average age will determine the age at which this routine competes, however, Grand Lines with performers age 20 & over must compete in the 12 & Over division, regardless of the average age.

At any Regional competition, if any act drops below the minimum number of performers required in the group they registered for, the act will be adjudicated, however, the act will not be eligible for High Score Awards. EXAMPLE: A group of 10 performers registered as a Large Group… if 1 performer is unable to perform, this will then drop the number in the group to 9. The routine can still be judged as a Large Group, but they will not be eligible for the High Score Awards. If the routine changes to a Small Group, and that Small Group division has not yet competed, then they will be eligible for High Scores.

EXTENDED TIMES: Solos, Duet/Trios, Groups & Lines may purchase extended time at the rate of $3 per performer for 30 second increments (Lines are limited to a maximum of 6 minutes).  Grand Lines may purchase extended time at the rate of $3/performer for 2 minute increments. To register for extended time, please check the box on the routine that indicates “Request Extended Time” on your online studio account.  

Note: Routines that are over the time limit will result in automatic point deduction of one point or a fraction thereof for every 5 seconds of overtime if extended time has not been registered for that routine




DIVISIONS: 4 & Under; 5-6 Yrs; 7-8 yrs; 9-11yrs; 12-14 yrs; 15-16 yrs; 17-19 yrs; 20-29 yrs; 30-39 yrs; 40-49 yrs; 50 yrs and over. NOTE: JAZZ, TAP, LYRICAL, CONTEMPORARY AND OPEN CATEGORY CONTESTANTS WILL ENTER THE FOLLOWING SINGLE AGE DIVISIONS: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19.

DETERMINING AGE DIVISION: Duets/Trios, Groups and Lines will compete at the average age division determined by averaging the age of all members of the group. Do not use decimals or round up. Example: If the average comes to 11.8, they will compete in the 11-year old age division.

ADULT AGE DIVISION: Any routine with a performer 20 years or older will compete in the Adult Division (with the exception of the 12 & Over Grand Line Division). All adult performers MUST compete in the Advanced performance level and are not eligible for High Score Awards. If enough routines are entered in the Adult Category, a special High Score Award may be awarded at that regional. Adult dancers may include Teachers, Professionals, Parents, etc.

PROOF OF AGE: All performers are required to have proof of ages on hand at every SDA competition. Failure to provide a birth certificate or drivers license if an age division is challenged will result in disqualification of that routine.

HIGH SCORE AGE DIVISIONS: High Score Awards will be given out in the Petite (8 & Under), Junior (9-11), Teen (12-14) and Senior (15-19) age divisions.

*AGE BUMP RULE – The oldest performer in a duet/trio, small group, large group or line may only compete (1) age division lower than his/her age. Example: A routine with a 15 year old performer may only compete in the Teen (age 12-14) or Senior (age 15-19) divisions regardless of the average age. A 15 year old performer may never compete in the Petite (8 & Under) or Junior (9-11) age division.

GRAND LINES – The oldest performer in an 11 & Under Grand Line may not be more than 19 years of age.


Studios are required to assign a competition level for EACH performer when they are entering their roster in the registration system. Please be certain that you are entering your performers in the CORRECT PERFORMANCE LEVEL. NOTE: DANCERS MAY ONLY BE REGISTERED AT ONE LEVEL…Any dancer found to be registered in more than one level may be disqualified (This includes if a dancer’s name has been entered into the system with a ‘slight difference’ in spelling, but is actually the same dancer). Dancer’s levels WILL NOT be able to be changed once entered.


The following guidelines are suggestions to be used in determining the appropriate level placement of each competitor.
Because no competition can possibly know how many hours a child dances or for how many years they have danced, it is left to the teachers own sound judgement when entering level placement for their students.

• LEVEL 1 (formerly Novice): This competition level division is for dancers who have little or no experience competing., and have a basic understanding of dance terminology. Dancers may only be considered ‘Level 1’ dancers for a maximum of 3 years. *NEW – Level 1 Dancers are limited to a TOTAL of (5) routines in the solo, duet/trio, small group and large group divisions combined. There is no limit on the number of lines or grand lines. A Level 1 dancer may NOT compete in more than 3 routines in Level 2 (with the exception of lines and grand lines). Entries will be adjudicated, and will receive High Score Awards within this level.

• LEVEL 2 (formerly Intermediate): This competition level is for the ‘on the rise’ dancers, and is recommended for dancers who have had approximately 2-5 years of competition experience. Entries will be adjudicated, and will receive High Score Awards within this level.

• LEVEL 3 (formerly Advanced): This competition level is for top-level competitive dancers who perform at an advanced technical level. All entries will be adjudicated, and will receive High Score Awards. ***This is the ONLY level that is eligible to receive Prize Monies. In addition, only advanced dancers are eligible to receive the Highest Level Adjudication.

• *NEW EXTRAORDINARY ABILITY LEVEL – The Star Dance Alliance has created a level at all of our competitions designed for dancers who have different abilities and may face developmental or physical challenges. We want these inspirational dancers have a place to flourish and shine like the stars that they are. This level is intended to give dancers that may have certain obstacles the ability to be judged fairly within their own level. Focus is placed on spotlighting these dancers in their unique abilities in an uplifting, respectful and loving way. Scoring will focus on showmanship, memorization and musicality. Dancers registered in this division may not compete in any other level other than lines or grand lines. Entries will be adjudicated and will receive High Score Awards within this level.

**IMPORTANT** – It is at the judges discretion to move any routine that they feel is placed in a level below their ability to the level in which they feel is necessary. All judges decisions are FINAL. If the judges determine that a routine should be moved to a different level, and that level has already competed, the routine will then be eligible for adjudication only.


Small Groups and Duet/Trios – The highest level of dancer in a routine will determine the level of the routine. Example: One Level 3 Dancer and 8 Level 2 Dancers will determine the routine to be placed in Level 3. One Level 2 dancer and 8 Level 1 dancers will determine the routine to be placed in Level 2.

Large Groups and Lines – No more than 1/3 of the dancers in a routine may be a higher performance level than the level that the routine is entered. Example: If a routine has 12 dancers – 4 Level 3, 4 Level 2 & 4 Level 1, the routine will be placed in ‘Level 3’ because 1/3 or more of the dancers are Level 3.

• No dancer that is registered in ‘Level 3’ will be permitted to perform in ANY ‘Level 1’ routines.
• No level changes may be made at the door.
• NEW – NO LEVELING UP of any routine in Duet/Trios, Small Groups or Large Groups.  These routines must compete at the level that the performers are placed in (determined by the rules above).  Example:  A large group contains (10) Level 2 dancers and (2) Level 3 dancers, the rules above will place them in the Level 2 division, and they MAY NOT ‘Level Up’ to Level 3.  (Lines and Grand Lines may Level Up)



• ALL Music should be uploaded though our registration system, and must be done at least 7 days prior to the competition.

• Contestants are required to provide their own music that must be recorded at the proper speed

• As a backup, we will accept the following:

• CD’S – There must be only ONE routine per CD. A back up of all music must be accessible in the event that it is needed. CD’s must be labeled with the routine name, number and studio name.

• IPODS – These will ONLY be accepted if it is clearly labeled with the studio name, address and phone #. Each routine must be it’s own separate playlist. The playlist must be labeled with the entry number (four digits) and routine title in the following format: “0384- Party in the USA”. It is also important to make sure that the repeat function is not enabled. The device MUST be fully charged, and it is the responsibility of the studio to provide a charger. This example is clearly labeled as entry number 384, Party in the USA.

• FLASH DRIVES – These must be labeled with the studio name. Each routine must be labeled with the entry number and routine title in the following format: “384 – Party in the USA”.

MUSIC CONTENT – Any music which contains profanity or racial slurs may result in a SCORE DEDUCTION. Note: If you are questioning if your music is ok, please send us your music in advance and we will check it.

All Star Dance Alliance events reserve the right to stop any music that contains vulgar or derrogatory language or content. If this occurs, the routine may be adjudicated only based on the portion of the performance that they judges viewed, and may not be eligible for overall high score awards.


• All dance divisions are permitted to have up to 25% acro/gymnastics tricks in them.

• The Cheer & Character divisions may contain up to 50% acro/gymnastics. Lifts do not count.

• Singing is permitted ONLY in the Song and Dance, Vocal, Musical Theater and Grand Line Divisions.

• We will have two handheld/wireless microphones at each venue. We do not allow any additional equipment to be hooked into the sound system, therefore, no personal microphones, headsets, etc. will be permitted.

• Judges reserve the right to move any routine to a different category/genre if they feel it is not properly placed.

Acro/Gymnastics – A routine that contains primarily gymnastic tricks, including, but not limited to walkover, front/back limbers, handstands, headstands, cartwheels, etc. There should be a blend of gymnastics and dance together.

Ballet – A routine consisting of classical steps & ballet technique. Ballet shoes must be worn.

Ballroom – A routine utilizing Standard or Latin Ballroom technique and must be performed with ballroom heels or ballroom shoes only.

Baton – Routine using baton(s) and baton technique .

Character – A routine that portrays a character that is easily recognizable.

Cheerleading – A routine that has a combination of strong, sharp movements, vocal cheering and dance. May contain up to 50% acro/gymnastics.

Clogging – A routine which uses clogging technique.

Contemporary – A routine that combines both lyrical and modern movements.

Drill Team – A group performing military type moves with precision marching and may incorporate any type of dance.

Fashion Modeling – (Level 3 Solos Only) Must include Runway “T-style” Modeling Technique
• FORMAL- Any party dress or “After 5” attire.
• SPORTSWEAR- Casual skirts, pants, etc., select sport, skiing, tennis, horseback riding, etc.
• SWIMWEAR – Any swimwear or swimsuit & cover-up.

Folkloric – Routine incorporating ethnic styles of dance such as polkas, Hawaiian, Spanish, Bellydancing, etc.

Hip Hop – A dance that consists of the latest street dance style, as seen in current dance videos.

Jazz – A routine that utilizes jazz technique such as splits, isolation, leaps, etc.

Lip Sync – A routine that utilizes pantomime techniques and mimics voices on pre-recorded music.

Lyrical – A routine that is performed to the lyrics or mood of the music.

Modern – A routine containing a contemporary style of dance.

Musical Theater – A routine performed to the music of a Broadway musical or a movie musical.

Open – A routine that is a combination of any of the other categories; a routine that does not exactly fit any of the definitions of any other category. (No Vocals permitted)

Photogenic Contest – Contestants should submit a 5×7 or larger photograph on the FIRST DAY OF COMPETITION to the registration desk. The photo must be of only one person. Photogenic contestants must be a registered competitor in that competition and may register more than one photo.

Pointe – (Level 3 Only) A routine that consists of ballet/pointe technique. Pointe shoes must be worn.

Pom Pon – A routine combining dance with the use of pom pons for at least 80% of the routine.

Production – This category may be entered ONLY in Line division and must have a minimum of 20 performers.

Song and Dance – A routine that combines dancing and singing. Both genres are expected to be present in this routine. Lead vocals may not be lip synched and may have back up vocal accompaniment only. We will provide two handheld, wireless microphones. No personal/studio microphones, headsets, etc. will be permitted.

Tap – A routine utilizing tap technique and must be performed with tap shoes only.

Vocal – (Level 3 Only) A performance of any type of vocal presentation. Accompaniment must be pre-recorded. (No lead vocals may be recorded; backup voices only will be permitted). We will provide two handheld, wireless microphones. No personal/studio microphones, headsets, etc. will be permitted to be hooked into the sound system.


At each regional event, we will host a Title competition incorporated into the solo competition. Any dancer in Level 2 or Level 3 who wishes to have their routine judged for Title should check the appropriate box while registering their solo online, or they may register at the door prior to their performance. There is no limit as to the number of solos that may enter for Title. All entries registered for Title will be judged for during the performance of their solo routine.

The Title Competition is judged on the overall presentation of their performance and everything is weighed equally (talent, choreography, technique, overall presentation, etc.) with only one score. A competitor can receive a total of 10 points maximum from the judges.

Title Age Divisions are as follows: Ages 5 & Under
Ages 6-8
Ages 9-11
Ages 12-14
Ages 15-19

TITLE COMPETITION AT NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS – Dancers may enter the Title division in the same manner as they did for regionals. Dancers are not required to have competed for Title at a Regional Competition in order to be eligible to enter Title at the Championships. *NEW – At any Star Dance Alliance National Championship, No dancer may compete for Title unless they are registered with a small group, large group, line or grand line at that championship.


• All routines will be allotted 2 minutes to build and remove props.

• Props that take longer will need to register for extended time.
• $25 – up to 1 minute
• $50 – up to 5 minutes
• $75 – up to 7 minutes
• $100 – up to 10 minutes

• Props should be loaded in and out of the venue on the same day they are used. Storing props in the wings is not permitted.

• All props must be fire-proofed. and must be labeled with the studio name for identification purposes backstage.

• Liquids, paints, powders, chalk & glitter are PROHIBITED from coming in contact with the marley floor. If any of these are utilized and happen transfer from the body to the surface of the marley floor, it must be cleaned up immediately and completely by the studio. This may result in disqualification or removal from overall high scores.

• No dangerous props may be used on stage (such as fire, swords or knives). Live animals are also prohibited on stage.

• Any item left on the stage (props, flower petals, paper, leaves, etc.) must be cleaned up by the studio in an efficient and timely manner. Failure to do so may result in removal from overall high scores.

• Please check the box during registration if you plan to use a prop and give us a description of it. You should also alert the backstage manager of any props that will be used before your performance time.

• Special stage or house lighting will NOT be provided or changed by the SDA for any performance.


• Teachers should communicate with our Backstage managers at the beginning of the competition to instruct who will be responsible for checking their dancers in to perform.

• Teachers should check-in performers in a timely manner and are permitted to remain backstage for an appropriate amount of time to prepare their students and watch their performance.

• Backstage areas need to remain clear of dancers, parents and teachers who are not waiting to perform.


• PHOTOGRAPHY & VIDEO RECORDING IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED. Failure to abide by this rule can result in Disqualification for the studio. If anyone is found photographing or video recording in the competition auditorium, we reserve the right to delete the video footage. Teachers… it is your responsibility to inform your contestants and parents of this rule.

• There is to be NO ALCOHOL OR TOBACCO at any event that is hosted at a school property. SMOKING is not permitted in any of our venues.

• Sportsmanlike behavior is expected from all contestants, teachers and families at all times. Failure to display proper decorum could result in immediate disqualification. This includes attempting to recruit students from other studios to attend yours at one of our events.

• A panel of well-qualified judges will judge contestants, and all decisions of the judges will be accepted as final.

• The Star Dance Alliance and the hosting venue are not responsible for personal injury or property loss.

• Please note that every venue is unique and has its own set of rules concerning outside food & beverage, use of helium balloons, etc.


A protest may only be initiated by a Studio Director/Teacher, and must be signed and submitted in writing to the director of the show within 30 minutes of the incident involved. Protests may not be submitted after an awards ceremony.

Star Dance Alliance Terms and Conditions

By submitting registration I agree to all the terms and conditions contained in this document. 2023 STAR DANCE ALLIANCE RULES (Click Link Before). In addition, the Star Dance Alliance reserves the right to communicate with me via the email I provided. 


​**NOTE** By acknowledging the “Release” on the registration form, all registered contestants do hereby grant permission to Starpower  to publish their photographs on local television, national television, promotional videos, the web or in any other publication, to promote its competitions. Furthermore, we hereby release all directors, officers, or representatives of this competition from any and all claims for damages or injuries sustained while participating in any activity related to this competition.

2023 Schedule



Meadowlands, New Jersey
3/3 – 3/5
Meadowlands Expo Center

Stamford, Connecticut
3/10 – 3/12
Palace Theatre at Stamford Center for the Arts

Towson, Maryland
3/10 – 3/12
Goucher College

Orlando, Florida
3/17 – 3/19
Osceola Performing Arts Center

Virginia Beach, Virginia
3/24 – 3/25
Sandler Center for the Performing Arts

Woodbridge, Virginia
3/24 – 3/26
Hylton High School

New Castle, Pennsylvania
3/31 – 4/2
The Cathedral New Castle

Zanesville, Ohio
3/31 – 4/2
Secrest Auditorium

Sparta, New Jersey
4/14 – 4/16

Troy, Michigan
4/21 – 4/23
Troy High School

Lancaster, Pennsylvania
5/6 – 5/7
The Pullo Center

Evansville, Indiana
5/12 – 5/14
Old National Events Plaza

Wilmington, Ohio
5/26 – 5/28
Roberts Centre

2019 National Championship
Virginia Beach
June 26-30

2023 National Championship
Virginia Beach, VA
June 27 – July 1, 2023
Sandler Center