You're The Boss! Escape Feedback 2017-2018
Author: Tim Sant-Turner - Head of Dance
Date: 6th April 2018
Categories: Brean, Cabaret, Camber, Competition, Southport
"We thought we would share with you, for the first time, our findings from 2017, and subsequently the changes we have implemented for 2018. "
On the Monday that follows every Dance Weekender, The Escape Committee sit around a table with cups of tea and a truly splendid array of biscuits to read through and discuss the feedback forms submitted by you.
The Weather Centre receives between 50 and 300 forms at every event, and the opinions expressed have helped shape many of the developments within Ceroc Escape over the last 8 years.
We thought we would share with you, for the first time, our findings from 2017, and subsequently the changes we have implemented for 2018.
All of these comments are genuine, but they really are a small sample from the hundreds of feedback forms you complete. Thank you for your thoughts to date, and if anything below sparks your opinion, please send any further feedback to email@example.com.
"Loved the cabarets this weekend, they're getting better and better"
"Please drop the cabarets, I come on these weekends to dance, not watch other people dance"
"Can you please do the cabarets in the afternoon, as I want to dance on Saturday night at 11pm"
"I looked forward to the cabarets the week before Storm and your line-up didn't disappoint"
"An hour is too long for cabarets, 15 minutes please"
"Watching the teachers perform is inspirational"
"The teachers bit is boring. I watch them all the time anyway!"
"Cabarets a waste of time. Can we have more competitions?"
As you can see, Cabarets polarise your opinions and continue to make us question their popularity. People love and dislike them in equal measure, but the opposition has made us question what else we can do instead. With a great deal of favour towards competition, we have chosen to trial a short Lucky Dip Champs at our Jamfest and Splash events and use it as an excuse to raise some pennies for charity.
Whats do you think? Should we drop the Great Escapee competition? Should we drop the Performance Class cabaret? Is an hour too long? What types of dance would you like to see showcased? firstname.lastname@example.org
"What's going on - men over in the classes, please relax the gender balancing"
"Gender balancing, you don't know what you're doing there were men over in so many classes today"
"The gender balancing needs tweaking as there's not enough men to dance with"
"As a girl, it's a nightmare to book on a weekender, please do away with the gender balancing"
"I had a nightmare trying to get a ticket for this event, please keeps some tickets back for ladies who book late"
"As a guy, I don't appreciate the fact that I am having to stand out in some classes"
Gender balancing is a nightmare to manage and it's difficult dealing with the disappointment of so many ladies that don't manage to get a ticket. However, Ceroc believes that both men and women deserve the same number of dancing opportunities as one another at a weekender and this is why we introduced it. We appreciate that it's not without its controversy, but in practice a weekender without gender balancing in our opinion would be unthinkable.
As the booklet often explains, there is a dynamic which is unfortunate - in many classes we are ladies short and in the evening freestyle we are men short. We don't think there is much we can do about this, but we would welcome any creative suggestions. email@example.com
It seems nothing divides opinion more than SiLC.
"Why are you pursuing this SiLC nonsense, I hate it"
"Loving the SiLC classes and freestyle - more, more, more please"
"Forget SiLC music and bring back the Chill-Out Music sets"
"silc freestyle the highlight of the weekend. can there be more daytime silc sets?"
"Too much SiLC and not enough Chillout"
"SiLC has given my dancing a new lease of life, I'm loving the learning all over again"
SiLC like many dances will not be for everyone. If nothing else the musical selection that we play won't appeal to everyone. Nevertheless, the thousands of people who have taken classes and are dancing SiLC up and down the country is testimony to the demand for a slower-paced dance style.
We do get a lot of comments about the music having deviated from Chill-Out since SiLC was introduced. This is really weird, because as far as we are concerned the music has not changed and what was once called 'Chill-out' by so many is now simply SiLC. Think of it as a rebranding, equipped with lessons, as opposed to a change from the former slower-tempo music that was once played.
"Swingers Hour is packed in the pub, please give us a bigger space"
"Swingers deserves a main-room slot"
The feedback is mainly in relation to Camber, but some people at Southport have also expressed concern about the space.
We appreciate that the space is limited for popular sets like Swingers. However, we have trialled Swingers in the Cyclone and it simply does not have the same vibe or energy. The reality is esoteric sets are popular enough to fill the pub, but not popular enough to fill the Cyclone. Like everything, this is under constant review, but for now there are no plans to change this.
"Please bring back the Silent Disco" (Southport)
"Stop wasting my money and your time with the Silent Disco"
"Bring back the Silent Disco, it was somewhere for Thunderball room people to go and change gear and have fun (being silly and not just dancing)"
"Please get rid of Tango and bring back the Silent disco"
"The Silent Disco is nonsense and people have enough rooms to dance in - if they want to be silly and dance on their own, then they should head into Southport and go to a club"
"The Silent Disco undermines what dancing should be about"
The complexities of whether we should have remained or left Europe are nothing compared with the Silent Disco debate at Southport. The fact is we got disproportionately so much more negative feedback, it was difficult to justify keeping the Silent Disco. It's also true to say that the numbers who enjoyed the Silent Disco at Southport were always less than at Camber.
Well apparently Brexit means Brexit so that discussion is put to bed, but what about the Silent Disco at Southport - bring it back? Your votes do count! firstname.lastname@example.org
TYGS - The Younger Generation
"I love that my children could come to a weekender with me. It meant I could have some free time dancing and enjoy the freestyle with them in the evening."
"No kids at weekenders...I book to get away from mine"
"The TYGs should do a performance in cabaret hour. They are great!"
"18 years minimum for weekenders. This is an adult only club"
We have decided to discontinue TYGs at this year's Jamfest, for the sole reason that the take up was too low to warrant the use of the space.
We do however stand by the fact that children should be allowed to attend weekenders. The younger generation are our future of teachers, franchisees and competition winners, and some of the biggest names we have in our Escape line-ups are only there because they started as mere tots with their friends and family.
"Chalet was disappointing and cold"
"Can't you do anything about the state of the accommodation?"
"My potato masher was broken"
"It's a good job I don't turn up for the 5 star accommodation!"
We are grateful that many of you recognise that, when it comes to your accommodation for the weekend, the level of luxury you experience is out of our control. We have a continued dialogue with Pontins about the cleanliness and quality of their rooms, however what greets us when we arrive at the site is as unknown to us as it is to you.
We can assure you that Pontins are putting in extra measures to enhance the quality of your living experience at our events, however any complaints in the first instance should be reported to the registration team before check in closes on Friday night. We will do our best to fix any problems and, if available, move your room.
But please, as always, keep your expectations low. We guarantee that what your room lacks, we will make up for with quality dancing across your weekend. Who needs sleep anyway?
"Turn the music down. I wanted a dance weekender, not an Ibiza rave"
"Music too loud in Boudoir...deafening"
"Couldn't hear the music at the back of the Cyclone, the DJ needs to turn it up"
Hopefully our issues with volume have now been solved since the introduction of our state of the art decibel readers which are on every DJ desk in the venue. Our DJs will also carry out frequent checks to ensure the music is balanced in the room.
"We want Northern Soul classes!"
Done, we will bring these classes to both Camber and Southport events this coming year!
"Can the floor lights be turned down for the lessons...it was blinding in some locations in the room and we couldn't see the stage."
Apologies, we didn't even realise! This will be sorted for all events moving forwards.
"Bring back Zumba!"
Ok! Check the schedules for more Zumba classes at all of our events in 2018.
Any further thoughts or comments on the above? You know what to do!
Thanks for reading and we look forward to seeing you at our events this year.
Timbo, Mr E and the The Ceroc Escape Committee x