Encore DCS 27th Annual

Grand Finals 2024

North Charleston Convention Center

Sunday, July 14 - Saturday, July 20, 2024

Grand Finals


2024 Grand Finals Information

We are excited to see you at Grand Finals at the North Charleston Coliseum and Performing Arts Center (also known as the Charleston Area Convention Center.) Please see the information below for important information regarding this event. As always, we offer free livestream of all performances and awards ceremonies.

The venue charges $10/day for parking on site.


A tentative schedule is available online and is subject to change based on the number of entries received. A final schedule outline will be posted at least 3 weeks prior to the event. Detailed schedules will be emailed to all studios approximately 10 days prior to the event.

Deadline and payment:

A 50 percent deposit is due one month in advance and full payment is due 2 weeks prior to the event or a $10 late fee will be added for each routine. Any credits that were won at regionals for Top Groups have been applied to your account and you can apply these credits on the final check out page.  Please note that any gift certificates won at regionals for Overall Group, Highest Scoring Group, or Top Studio can only be redeemed towards group entry fees.

Workshop classes:

Encourage your students to take our 4 workshop classes taught by the judges for a total price of $70 if registered and paid in full two weeks in advance.  The cost is $80 after the two week deadline.  Four levels of classes are available and are based on student age (Petite 8 and under, Junior 9-11, Teen 12-14 and Senior 15 and up.) Teachers have the right to place students in a higher-level class if they choose. To register dancers for the classes, please select “Add New Routine” and choose “Nationals Convention” for the correct age group and then select dancers.  Disregard the levels for this entry type.

Observer bands will be available for purchase at the event for $20. Teachers will receive one observer band per room. Class size will be limited.  If space allows, students can register at the event for $80.

Title Competition:

A Title winner will be awarded in each age group and each level! For example, there will be a Junior title winner and 4th through 1st runner-up awarded in Recreational, Competitive and Elite! Please register for title in advance.  If you do choose to add title at the event, the cost is $60 and it must be added before the dancer competes their solo.  

Soloists competing for title will compete their solos during solo competition for their age group and level. Overall Appeal and Showmanship scores determine title placement. The Top 10-20 students (depending on the number of dancers registered) in each age division and level will be announced at solo awards ceremonies and those finalists will be invited to participate in the title competition that evening.   For the title competition, finalists must report in dancewear of their choice 10 minutes prior to the start of the competition.   No parents or teachers will be allowed backstage during this portion of the competition.  Each finalist will be asked to improv individually when their name is called.  The finalists will improv all together when instructed to do so.  After the improv portion of the competition, finalists will be dismissed from the stage to change into their dressy outfit for on-stage questions.  Each group of finalists will return to the stage and the Top 5 will be asked to introduce themselves (name, age, hometown, and an interesting fact about themselves) and answer an age-appropriate on-stage question.

Title winners will be crowned at the conclusion of the title competition each night.  Results for title are determined by the student’s original “title” score received during their solo performance (the combination of overall appeal and showmanship.) Judges will score students 1-10 for improv and 1-10 for on stage question and these numbers will be added to the original title score.

The cost to compete for title is $50. As a reminder, there are two ways to compete for title at Encore DCS:

1) If a student competes only one solo AND enters the title competition, they will be eligible for Overall Solo and Title Winner.
2) If a student competes multiple solos AND enters one of them for title, their two highest scores will be averaged for Overall Super Solo and they will be eligible for Title Winner.

Encore Artist Endowment:


Encore Artist Endowment is a new scholarship foundation started by Encore DCS.  We will present a $10,000 award to a graduating senior who is pursuing a degree or career in dance or the performing arts. To be eligible for the scholarship, applicants must meet the following criteria:


  1. Applicants must be Graduating Seniors from the Class of 2024 and must be registered to attend Encore Grand Finals this year.
  2.  Applicants must create a video no more than 2 minutes long, addressing the following points:
    *  A brief introduction
    *  Plans after graduation
    *  Why you should be chosen for the scholarship
    *.  Your dreams within the dance industry

      3.   Applicants must submit 2 letters of recommendation.  One of these letters must be from a teacher, administrator, or staff member from the applicant’s high school. 

All submissions are due by June 30 and should be submitted to this google form:


Video files and letters of recommendation should be named with the applicant’s name so they are easily identified. Email EAE@encoredcs.com if you need assistance with uploading documents to the google form.

Members of the EAE board will vote on up to 5 finalists.  All applicants will receive an email on July 8 stating if they have been chosen as a finalist or not.  The finalists will participate in an in-person interview with select board members and Grand Finals judges on Thursday, July 18 at Grand Finals.  This scholarship is in honor of Jessica Schaefer and will be presented at the Grand Finals Gala on July 20.

Standing Ovation Championship:

The Standing Ovation Championship will be held in all three levels and will recognize winners in two age divisions for each level (11&Under and 12&Over.) Judges will select up to 10 age 11&Under routines and 10 age 12&Over routines in each level that they would like to see in an Encore performance. These routines will re-compete for large cash prizes! (The number of routines is subject to change based on judges picks and the number of entries received in each level.)  The Recreational division championship will be a separate event.  The Competitive and Elite Standing Ovations will be a part of our Grand Finals Awards Gala!

The winner will be selected based on entertainment value, star quality, technique and overall appeal discussed among the judges' panel along with audience enthusiasm. Limit of one routine per studio for each age division and level. For example, a studio can have one age 11 competitive routine and one age 12 competitive routine but cannot have two age 12 competitive routines. Productions are excluded from the Standing Ovation Championship. A Top production award will be given in each level instead.

Cash awards are as follows: Recreational Division $500 each, Competitive Division $750 each, and Elite Division $1000 each.

Competitive and Elite Standing Ovation and Awards Gala

The Competitive and Elite Division Standing Ovation Championships will now be featured at our star-studded Awards Gala.  The Gala will include the Competitive and Elite Standing Ovation Championship, the Opening Number, the announcement of Top Studio, Cover Model, Most Entertaining and Best Choreography Awards, and awards for Top Performances in Jazz, Tap, Musical Theater, Hip Hop, Contemporary, Lyrical and Specialty (all other categories)!

Three tiers of pricing will be available:

Limited VIP Tickets are $75 each and include reserved table seating near the stage with complimentary champagne for adults, hors d’oeuvres, and a cash bar.  VIP tickets must be purchased by Wednesday, July 17 at midnight.  Teachers will receive one free VIP ticket for every 30 registered routines.  Please email Susan@encoredcs.com if you are eligible for free VIP tickets! 

Early Bird General Admission tickets to the Competitive and Elite Ovation and Awards Gala are $25 and include entrance to the show with a guaranteed seat plus access to a cash beverage station.  Students competing in the championship or other performances must purchase a ticket if they would like to watch the remainder of the show from the audience. Early bird tickets must be purchased by Friday, July 19 at midnight.  Regular general admission tickets will be available on the day of the event for $30.

Standing Room Only tickets are $10 each.  These tickets are very limited in availability and will only be available online on the day of the event.

All tickets must be purchased online.  This event will not be livestreamed.  Students performing in the Gala must purchase a ticket if they would like to watch the remainder of the event from the audience. 
Age 4 and under are free.

Tickets will be available for sale on our website starting June 10!

Opening Number:

The Grand Finals Opening Number will be performed on Friday before group awards (time tba with final schedule) and also at the final Awards Gala. 


Females should bring the following:

* A black leotard of their choice (any style) to wear as a base
* Tan tights and tan jazz shoes (OR bare legs and no shoes  - please.. NO turning shoes)
* Please bring a white or neutral colored (tan, khaki or light brown) dress, skirt or oversized top or two piece outfit that is soft, sheer, flowy - NOT ATHLETIC! No patterns, sequins or glitter. 
* Males should wear black pants and a neutral or white shirt with black jazz shoes or bare feet. 

 Participants will be charged a fee of $20.

The following students are invited to participate in the Opening Number:

Elite Division 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Overall Solos and Super Solos from current season regionals
Elite Division 2nd runner up, 1st runner up and Title winners from current season regionals
Elite Division 1st overall duet/trios from current season regionals

Current Dream Team Members
Please note that a minimum number of participants are required at regionals in order for a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winner to be announced. Only students announced at regionals as 1st, 2nd or 3rd (as explained above) are eligible for the opening number.

Students must be pre-registered for the Opening Number via the studio’s online registration account.  Choose “Opening Number Participant” as your entry type when registering online.

Students ages 9 and over that did not pre-qualify are invited to audition to be a part of the Opening Number.  There will be an audition fee of $20 cash payable at the door.  Students will register for this audition on site.  Registration for the audition will tentatively be Monday at 8:00 AM and the audition will begin at 9:00 AM.  Any students who are planning to audition should bring the necessary items needed for performances (mentioned above) in the event they are selected in the audition process.

Grand Finals Photogenic and Cover Model Competition:

Students can submit one 8x10 headshot for our Grand Finals Photogenic competition. To register for photogenic, choose “Grand Finals Photogenic” as the entry type. Photos should be submitted at the event by Thursday, July 18 at 12:00 noon.  The students name, studio name and age as of January 1 of the current year should be written clearly on the back of the photo. Photos will not be accepted via mail or email and must be picked up after the event. A winner will be recognized in each age division (Mini, Petite, Junior, Teen and Senior.) Winners will receive a Custom Photo Frame and $50 Gift Certificate to any Encore DCS event. Students must enter the photogenic competition in order to be considered for Cover Model.

Senior recognition:

Graduating seniors should bring their graduation caps for a special senior recognition at select awards ceremonies! In addition, Encore DCS would love to recognize all of your graduating seniors in our program. Senior photos must be submitted by June 30 in order to be in the program.  Please submit photos here:


Souvenir Program Ads:

Celebrate your dancer or studio with a special ad in our Grand Finals Souvenir Program. Include pictures and a special message in our program to wish your child or your students the best of luck. Your design must be PRINT READY and emailed to encoredcs@gmail.com. All ads and payment are due by June 30. Order forms are available on the Grand Finals section of our website.

Parent Performances for Charity:

Enter your dancing parents in our fun and exciting parent competition for charity! Encore DCS will donate the entry fees from the winning routine to the charity of the winning studio’s choice!

All information above is subject to change and will be updated as needed prior to the event.


The Standing Ovation Championship

A group dance battle with CASH PRIZES awarded in all 3 levels!


  • Star-Studded opening number featuring overall soloists and title winners from Regionals!
  • 4 levels of Master Classes taught by the judges with scholarships awarded in every class!
  • NEW Solo Title Competition and Awards Gala
  • Standing Ovation Championship with CASH PRIZES in all three levels!
  • Photogenic competition and selection of the new Encore DCS Cover Models!
  • Over $10,000 in cash prizes and scholarships!

Sunday, July 14 - Saturday, July 20, 2024

North Charleston Convention Center

5001 Coliseum Drive
N Charleston, SC 29418