What Makes Tye Chua Dance Different?


Our Warm and Encouraging Atmosphere

At Tye Chua Dance we stress the importance of encouragement, support, friendliness and responsibility. It is vital to the health of our school and company to have our students display these values. Cliques, gossip and mean-spiritedness are not tolerated. Because we are a small school it is essential for our students to be able to work through any tensions quickly and gently. Our students really care and look out for one another, going out of their way to be helpful to each other – it’s wonderful to see them thrive in such a collaborative environment!


Small Class Size

We limit class sizes to just 10-14 students, depending on age.  We believe that proper dance education requires consistent attention from the instructor and this just isn’t possible in larger classes.  Teaching proper technique is critical in ensuring the safety of our dancers.  Larger classes simply do not allow for the amount of personalized focus we believe our dancers deserve and require.


Our Artistic Team

Unlike many schools and studios, Tye Chua Dance does not have one Artistic Director.  Instead, we have an Artistic Team made up of our two founders, Aimee Tye and Gene Chua, along with Angi Polderman.  Together these three Artistic Team members make the decisions for the school and company such as what shows to perform, what classes to offer and so on. 

Our Artistic Team is special in another way as well – all are former professional dancers who were members in major dance companies across North America including Detroit Metropolitan Ballet, Winifred Haun & Dancers, Second City Ballet, Joel Hall Dancers, Boston Ballet, Omaha Ballet and Miami City Ballet.  No other ballet school in the area offers training by such highly skilled dancers.  In this way we are uniquely qualified to pass on our training and experience to our students.  We have first-hand knowledge from working directly with such greats as Twyla Tharp, Paul Taylor muse and répétiteur Mary Cochran, Martha Graham dancers and répétiteurs Gay DeLanghe & Peter Sparling, Judy Rice, David Shields, Joel Hall, Winifred Haun and Kalamazoo’s own Therese Bullard, who personally trained both Aimee Tye and Angi Polderman to become professional dancers.


Comprehensive Dance Training

At Tye Chua Dance, we offer comprehensive dance training.  While our main focus will always be high quality ballet instruction, we believe that well-rounded dancers also require education in the following areas:

  • Character and National Dance

  • Modern Dance

  • Contemporary Dance

  • Jazz

  • Choreography

  • French and Italian Ballet Terminology

  • Anatomy

  • Theatre Arts

  • Costuming

  • Self-Care

We offer a variety of courses throughout the year to help produce the most knowledgeable and skilled dancers possible.


Commitment to Safe Dance Practices

We are dedicated to the health and safety of our students and follow these principles:

  • Encouraging Healthy Lifestyles

    • Including physical health and emotional well-being, providing balanced approach to training and teaching dancers to be self-advocates.

  • Providing a Safe Physical Environment

    • Our environment is free from dangerous obstacles and our studio is well lit and conditioned with high ceilings, sturdy barres, sprung floor system and Marley non-slip floor covering.

  • Using Knowledge of Anatomy, Kinesiology and Physiology to Support Performance and Safe Dance Practices

    • We monitor each student and explain how our bodies work and how that relates to movement. We ensure that movements taught are appropriate to age, physical development, experience and skill level.

  • Using Injury Prevention and Management Strategies

    • Informing students and parents about burn out, repetitious injuries and use strategies to reduce injury by ensuring students are working at the appropriate level.