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Katherine Smith Contemporary Dance Ensemble (KSCDE)

KSCDE is committed to representing a high level standard of excellence and artistry, traditionally preparing ALL dancers of today in the dedication and discipline to become future professional dance artists.

Our artists possess a prevalent and unwavering passion for the professional world of dance. Under the guidance and direction of Artistic Director, Katherine Smith, dancers continue to develop their technical and performance skills with opportunities to perform throughout the greater Washington, DC Metropolitan area, participating in special community and seasonal events, as well as KSCDE’s own sponsored annual programs. Ensemble members will also have the opportunity to experience a few master classes, workshops, seminars and choreographers from various professional artists to further cultivate their artistic gift. Ensemble members present various styles of works created by the artistic director as well as local and national choreographers.

KSCDE is a multi-generational pre-performance dance ensemble with three objectives: (1) Fostering the pre-professional training of advanced level youth dancers; (2 challenging and furthering the development of technical and performance skills for dancers ranging from ages 10-18 with sincere aspiration and potential to develop into young advanced level dancers and (3) Providing a platform to adult performing artists who desire to enhance, maintain and sustain their craft and/or re-embark on their dance aspirations.


Executive/Artistic Director -Katherine Smith

Katherine is a former professional dancer who has worked with renowned choreographers, James Truitte, Talley Beatty, Ulysseus Dove, Donald McKayle, Kevin “Iega” Jeff and Faye Snow. Her concert experiences include Dayton Contemporary, Rod Rodgers, Forces of Nature, New World, D.C. Contemporary and Juba Dance Companies. Katherine has toured Africa in “Spirit”; Beijing, China in the first Pacific Cultural Exchange; Vienna, Austria for the 6th Annual Summer Dance Festival and Seoul, Korea sponsored by American Dance Festival. Her theater credits include Debbie Allen’s “Soul Possessed” at the Kennedy Center in Washington and the Alliance Theater in Atlanta; George Faison’s “For Colored Girls” at the American Place Theater in New York (Off Broadway) and Baltimore’s Center Stage; Mike Malone’s “Black Nativity” in which she received the O’Keefer Award for Best Female Dancer in a Musical Production; “Bessie’s Blues” at the Studio Theater (Helen Hayes Award); “Purlie” at the Fox Theater in Atlanta; and the national tour of “The Wiz.“ Katherine, an Equity Union Member in the Arts, received an Honor’s Award in recognition of her achievements as a performer and instructor from the International Association of Blacks in Dance (IABD) and now currently serves on the board of IABD. She has served as Program Manager & Artistic Director for BodyMoves Contemporary Dance Company. Katherine has also served as master class instructor & guest choreographer for IABD, Philadanco Summer Dance and D3, Your Soul’s Movement Performing Arts (Denver), Hill Dance Academy Theater (Pittsburgh), Zion’s Daughters, Black Movement Dance Theater at Georgetown University and Straight to the Pointe Dance Company and is currently on the dance faculties of The Duke Ellington School of the Arts,

Howard University, and Jones Haywood School of Dance.

KSCDE Rehearsal/Class Schedule

Rehearsals for KSCDE are scheduled on Fridays and Saturdays. Rehearsals are held in two locations

KSCDE 2017-2018 season and rehearsals begin:

Friday, September 08, 2017 (7:00 pm – 10:00 pm)

Joe’s Movement Emporium

3309 Bunker Hill Rd

Mt. Rainer, MD 20712

(240) 290-2227

followed by Saturday, September 9, 2017 (11:30 am – 1:30 pm)

Adinkra Cultural Arts Studio

3804 34th Street

Mt. Rainier, MD 20712


Saturday, September 9, 2017 (2:00 pm -7:00 pm)

Joe’s Movement Emporium

3309 Bunker Hill Rd

Mt. Rainer, MD 20712

(240) 290-2227

*Schedule subject to change for individuals and/or performances at the Director’s discretion.

During Rehearsal Hours, Nutrition Breaks Will Be Given to Members. Please Provide Nutritional Lunch/Snacks with Plenty of Water and Nutrient Drinks. Members under age of 12 years old are not permitted to Leave Rehearsal Premises.

Rehearsal Arrival/Departure

All members are to arrive at least 10 minutes before the beginning of rehearsal.

Please pick up member(s) on time. The Director will do her best regarding time management!!

Thank You for your patience & cooperation in advance!

KSCDE Additional Rehearsals

In preparation for performances, additional rehearsal time may be needed requiring KSCDE to report earlier on Saturday and KSCDEA to remain later on Saturday or to report on Friday. Additional rehearsals for KSCDE may also occur during the week, Wednesdays and/or Thursdays (but will be limited). Additional rehearsal notification via email and/or in writing will be distributed in a timely manner.

KSCDE Uniform

We want our students to feel good about what they are doing and understand the traditional etiquette connected to their dance training. Proper attire and grooming helps members to “Look the Part to Play the Role!” Proper attire and grooming also diminishes distractions and allows the instructor/choreographer to correct placement, posture, body lines, shapes and other physical applications. All members are asked to adhere to the following uniform and grooming guidelines.

KSCDE Uniform (Adherence to uniform policy will be strictly enforced)

Young Ladies: Any Style Black Leotard (avoid too much chest area exposure) & Flesh Tone or Black

Convertible Tights. No holes in tights please!

Young Men: Black Tank T-Shirt or Short Sleeve Style (should fit to body), Black Convertible Tights

*Members should have accessible (in dance bag) fleece sweat pants/shirt in case of cold studio conditions

and flip flops to travel to & from restrooms.


Young Ladies:

  • Hair (including braids and weaves) must be secured in a bun so that there are no loose pieces. A hair net is recommended. NO large bows, barrettes, head scarves or other hair adornments except bobby pins/clips.

  • NO Hair Dye – for photo sessions and especially 2 weeks before a performance

  • NO colored finger/toe nail polish. A neutral/clear polish is acceptable.

  • Fingernails should be an active length, nail slightly extended from finger tips.

  • Small post-style earrings are permitted. NO other jewelry is allowed.

  • NO visible tattoos. Tattoos must be covered with makeup.

  • Female members should not wear panties under the tights unless it is absolutely necessary. (if necessary black or flesh tone panties/briefs are recommended)

  • Female members should wear appropriate support under the leotard.

  • We encourage and recommend female members of appropriate age to remove underarm hair (as necessary)

Young Men:

  • Hair short or closely cut

  • NO Hair Dye – especially 2 weeks before a performance

  • NO jewelry (earrings)

  • NO visible tattoos. Tattoos must be covered with makeup.

  • Male members must wear athletic support (dance belt).

KSCDE Member Policies

Members must responsibly adhere to the policies set forth to maintain an active status in the ensemble. Members who

exhibit the inability to follow these policies will be asked to leave KSCDE.

  • Grade Point Average (GPA) Members are to maintain a high level of commitment to excellence and artistry.

· Members must maintain a GPA of 2.5 or better. Members falling below the GPA of 2.5 will either be placed on probation and/or suspended until GPA returns to 2.5 or better. A copy of the dancer’s report card must be presented to the Artistic Director or her Administrative Assistants within 7 days after the grading period has concluded. Parents are asked to inform the Director if the dancer’s GPA falls below a 2.5.

Time and Attendance:

  • Members should arrive at least 10 minutes before scheduled rehearsal time. Members arriving late must receive permission from the director/choreographer to participate, thus jeopardizing cast selection in sections of choreography and/or the choreography.

  • Members should always arrive fully dressed in uniform and properly groomed! (see uniform/grooming requirements)

  • Consistently attend rehearsals, master classes, workshops, seminars and guest choreographer sessions.

  • Frequent absences before a scheduled performance may prevent the member from performing at the scheduled event. This criterion does not apply to absences due to school obligations which must be accompanied by a written notification at least 48 hours prior to the absence from the member or parent.

  • If the member misses a tech rehearsal or rehearsal right before a performance, the member must receive permission from the Artistic Director to perform.

  • Member must notify the Director via email or telephone, if member will be absent, arriving late or leaving early from rehearsal at least 48 hours in advance when possible; or or (301) 675-7964


As representatives of KSCDE, members are expected to always conduct themselves in a positive manner displaying respect, discipline, kindness, and cooperative team work. Disruptive behavior; excessive talking, lack of focus and rudeness to others will not be tolerated, resulting in being excused from rehearsal for the day, suspension and/or removal from the ensemble.

1st time – warning

2nd time- meeting

3rd time- suspension or dismissal from ensemble (at the discretion of the Artistic Director)

  • Cell Phone Usage

There shall be no cell phone usage during rehearsal time except during official established breaks.

  • Social Media and Protocol

As a KSCDE Ambassador all members are expected to only post information and pictures that are appropriate. ALL members must provide the Executive Directors with their sign-on names for ALL social media accounts. Your social media pages will be randomly monitored by leadership. If leadership feels that a post is inappropriate and jeopardizes the reputation of KSCDE, the member will be requested to remove the post from their page. Failure to follow this directive could lead to probation status, suspension, or dismissal from the ensemble.

  • Sexual Harassment

KSCDE has a zero tolerance (0) for sexual harassment of its members. This includes member to member, member to leadership, and leadership to member. Failure to adhere to this provision will lead to the member’s suspension and/or dismissal. See Handbook Appendix “A” for full definition.

  • Bullying

KSCDE has a zero tolerance (0) for bullying of its members. This includes member to member, member to leadership, and leadership to member. Failure to adhere to this provision will lead to the member’s suspension and/or dismissal. See Handbook Appendix “B” for full definition.


KSCDE Fees and Payments

The KSCDE ensemble fee is for the program year. This fee includes a fundraising fee. If you choose to fundraise instead of including the fee in your tuition, subtract the established fundraiser fee from the total contract amount and you must adhere to the fundraising policy set forth in the fundraising section of the handbook. The ensemble fees includes all training and rehearsal times, costumes, choreography sessions (unless otherwise communicated), company sweat suit, and general fundraiser fee. The ensemble fee does not cover other fees associated with participation such as practice uniforms, transportation, travel expenses and any other items that may be required for training or performance purposes. There is no tuition reimbursement or credit for members who withdraw early from the program or are suspended or dismissed by the Artistic Director before the end of the season. Acceptable forms of payments include Cash, Check, Money Order and Credit Card. Accounts not current by the 2nd Saturday of the month will be assessed a fifty dollar ($50) late fee.

Three Fees payment options and schedules:

  • 1 full payment by September 16, 2017

  • 2 equal payments (Payment Schedule: 3rd Saturday in September and 2nd Saturday in January)

  • 10 equal payments. (**first payment due September 16, 2017)

Payment Schedule:

**All payments are due on or before the 1st Saturday of the month except in September. Any payments not received by the 2nd Saturday of the month will incur a $50.00 late fee.

*Please note: The 10 payments plan is not equivalent to monthly tuition. It is a payment plan option that allows the parent to make 10 equal payments for the convenience of the parent.



*RETURN CHECK FEE: $36.00. This fee will be charged to your account.


All costumes are the property of KSDCE. Costumes will be distributed before the first KSCDE performance and

must be returned to the Artistic Director at the end of the dance season and or at the requests of the Director. All costumes must be returned and accounted for at the end of the dance season before the dancer’s account will be cleared. Dancers will be solely responsible for damages to costumes due to gross negligence and/or reckless conduct by the dancer and their accounts will be charged a fee equivalent to the replacement cost of the costume.

KSCDE Parent Fundraising

KSCDE Parent Fundraising has an active role in support of ALL members, the director, supporting staff, and is an integral part to the mission and success of ALL KSCDE endeavors. All parents shall pay a fundraising fee established by the Executive Director for each dancer that is a part of the ensemble. Parents have an option to pay the fundraiser fee combined with the monthly tuition OR participate in the KSCDE sponsored fundraisers and raise enough proceeds equaling the amount of the established fundraiser fee by December 2, 2017. Also obtaining Medallion Circle sponsors is another option for fundraising. For each Medallion sponsor obtained, the dancer will receive 50% of the sponsorship towards their fundraising fee provided that a completed Medallion Circle form is submitted with the donation.

Other Parent Expected Participation

Parents are expected to:

-Attend parent meetings

-Serve as volunteers for fundraisers, performances, carpools etc. and

-Sell a mandatory minimum of five (5) tickets for Each/All KSCDE sponsored shows only. Selling of tickets help support KSCDE events.

Rehearsal/Performance Cancellations

KSCDE rehearsals and performances are scheduled on weekends (Friday & Saturday); however, in the event of inclement weather, information concerning rehearsal and/or performance cancellations will be sent via email.

Please exercise safety as it relates to the conditions of your area/location. Regular scheduled rehearsals that are cancelled due to inclement weather or for any reason, additional time(s) may be added to the regular schedule day(s) as make-up.

In the event of performance cancellations, rescheduling information will be provided. There is no deduction in ensemble tuition/fee for members unable to attend rescheduled rehearsals or events.

KSCDE Member Consultations

Consultation sessions may be scheduled with the Director. An appointed time with parent(s) will be scheduled to address any questions and/or concerns regarding the progress of a member and/or any other issues. The Director reserves the opportunity to request an appointed time with parent(s) for conference if deemed necessary.

Parent Inquiries

It is difficult to truly focus and address major concerns in the zone times of rehearsals. There is limited rehearsal time! Parent(s) are requested to put all concerns in writing, instead of interrupting rehearsals to engage the director/choreographer in conversations about concerns of any nature. Parent cooperation in following these guidelines is greatly appreciated.

KSCDE Photo Sessions and Videotaping (each member will be required to sign a photo/video release)

KSCDE reserves the rights to use photographs and video recordings of members for marketing purposes. Photos may be taken of all KSCDE members during rehearsals and performances, as well as appointed dates and times for marketing purposes. All KSCDE sponsored events will be videotaped. Purchase cost for group and/or individual shots and DVD's will be determined.

Video Recording and Internet Posting

To protect the integrity of all KSCDE members and the work of choreographers, video recording and internet posting from personal web accessibility of KSCDE rehearsals and performances is absolutely prohibited. DVD’s of performances will be available for purchase (cost to be determined) and strategic internet posting for marketing purposes from KSCDE website will be monitored by Executive Director.

KSCDE Limited Liability (each member will be required to sign a liability release)

The dancer is responsible for his/ her liabilities and indemnifies and holds KSCDE harmless, and any of its employees or agents representing or related to this program; including any and all liability for personal injuries (including death) and property losses (theft or damage) occasioned by, or in connection with any activity or accommodations for KSCDE & KSCDE activities.

KSCDE Suspensions, Dismissals and/or Early Withdrawals from the Ensemble

The Executive Director maintains the authority to suspend and/or dismiss a dancer from the ensemble for violation of the KSCDE established policies. Members who are suspended, dismissed or withdraw prior to the completion of the end of year adversely affect the entire company. Each time any member is suspended, dismissed or withdraws from the program, choreography has to be completely re-worked, creating additional work and hardship for everyone involved. Additionally, the ensemble fees are shared expenses and represented in the current fee structure. Suspension, Dismissal and/or Early withdrawals adversely affect the entire organization. NOTICE: A suspension, dismissal, and/or early withdrawal does not terminate your contractual agreement. You will be held liable for the remaining contractual obligation. There will be no refunds or credits for students suspended, dismissed and/or early withdrawals from the program prior to the end of the season.

KSCDE Auditions

All persons interested in auditioning for KSCDE must be at least 10 years of age and have a 2.5 GPA, if applicable. At the time of auditions, provide a head shot (5x7 or larger) and a dance resume. KSCDE auditions are held 2 times a year (August and December). New members considered for acceptance to KSCDE from the August auditions are expected to begin in September. New members considered for acceptance to KSCDE from December auditions are expected to begin in January. Advanced level students must have a minimum of 3 years technical training in various dance disciplines (including ballet) and a minimum of 2 years performing experience with an ability to demonstrate knowledge of terminology, physical application, execution and mental understanding of dance information to be considered for KSCDE at the discretion of the Artistic Director. It is mandatory for considered members and Parents to attend KSCDE Interview sessions (to be scheduled) before final acceptance. Existing members will be assessed periodically throughout the program year and may be re-evaluated for continued participation in the program.

KSCDE Commitment

KSCDE is aware of the opportunities and advantages of participating/performing with other dance schools, studios and companies which provide our youth with experiences of artistic excellence. However, KSCDE’s expectation of commitment, professional courtesy and ethics is not any different than others. KSCDE strongly request ALL Parents/Members be forthcoming in communication and ANY additional outside activities and schedules. Should a KSCDE member miss any two (2) performances within our 2017-2018 season, KSCDE will request a meeting with parent and member to re-evaluate a member’s commitment and status.

Thank You and Welcome to the KSDCE Family!!

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