Our Story

GETTING THE WORLD MOVING ONE PRESCHOOLER AT A TIME

Ready Set Dance began in 2015 when 5 dance educators came together to create a fun and fresh preschool dance curriculum for their own dance studios. There was a gap in the market for a class that would cater to the preschooler of today and appeal equally to girls and boys. After a successful pilot at their own studios the demand for the class grew organically amongst the dance community. In 2016, the Team was very excited to invite 20 schools to launch the program throughout NSW, QLD and the ACT. Experienced dance educators fell in love with the program and soon more and more studios were becoming a part of the Ready Set Dance network.

Fast forward to 2022,the program is now licensed to 260 dance studios across Australia and New Zealand with 20,000 preschoolers attending weekly. In addition to Ready Set Dance, preschoolers can also enjoy Ready Set Ballet which is a 30 minute magical introduction to the world of ballet. More recently the team have introduced a brand new original program to cater for a younger age group. Ready Set Move is a music and movement class for toddlers and their grown up.

The success of the programs led to a partnership with Nickelodeon who transformed the class program into a TV show which airs daily on Nick Jr, as well as 10 Shake and Paramount Plus. The innovative, participatory dance program premiered in January 2019 to critical praise from preschoolers and parents alike, ranking as the no. 1 Subscription TV program (excluding live sports/movies) amongst children 0-12 years. The TV show is designed to encourage active screen time and is underpinned by a core educational curriculum designed to teach kids fundamental movement skills while building confidence, coordination and creativity.  Ready Set Dance now airs in 120 countries and is dubbed in over 25 different languages.

The directors of Ready Set Dance were thrilled to win the prestigious, ‘AusMumpreneur of the Year’ title in 2020. The AusMumpreneur Awards are presented by The Women’s Business School and were created to inspire, celebrate and provide a community for Australian entrepreneurs. Ready Set Dance was also voted the Best National Activity for Preschoolers in the What’s on 4 Kids Awards in 2021.

Ready Set Dance officially launched globally in 2022 with dance studios in the US, Canada and UK joining the community. This exciting development aligns with the vision of the company to, ‘Get the world moving one preschooler at a time’.

JADE BARNES

Jade Barnes was the owner and Principal of Planetdance in Menai in Sydney for 18 years. This studio won the title, ‘Australia’s Best Dance Studio’ on ‘So You Think You Can Dance’.

Her students have danced with superstars like Beyoncé, become part of iconic groups like ‘Hi-5’ and starred in a vast array of musicals including ‘The Lion King’, ‘School of Rock’ and ‘Billy Elliot’.

Jade has worked as a resident choreographer with Nickelodeon on shows like ‘Play Along with Sam’ and ‘Slimefest’. She is widely known in the industry as the go to for casting and choreographing junior dance talent for TV shows and has worked in this capacity for Channel 10, Channel 9, Disney and ABC Kids.

Her educational background includes achieving honours in a Bachelor of Arts/ Laws degree from Sydney University.

Jade has a daughter Bronte, who was in preschool when READY SET DANCE began its journey. She credits much of her ability to engage preschoolers to the creative play and music she enjoyed with her daughter. Recently, she has created the Ready Set Move program which is launching in over 100 studios in 2022.

NATALIE ETTINGSHAUSEN

Natalie Ettingshausen is the owner of Ettingshausens which is one of Sydney’s largest and most successful dance studios with a 12 studio complex and over 1000 students.

She has nurtured students who have gone on to work in ballet companies, starred in major musicals like ‘Matilda’ and been finalists on, ‘So You Think You Can Dance’.

Natalie began as a Primary School Teacher who later chose to specialise on dance education. She is now CEO of an RTO and has her TAE and Diploma in Dance Teaching and Management. Natalie has two children who have shaped her philosophies on teaching and child development.

Her daughter Tamika is now at uni studying design and creative intelligence. Proof that a great dance education builds a confidence and creativity that opens many career pathways. Her son Cody has performed in professional musical productions like Strictly Ballroom, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Matilda.

Having a son in the performing arts has been a driving force for Natalie to make sure that READY SET DANCE is a great introduction to dance for boys.

BELINDA AGOSTINO

Belinda Agostino is co owner of one of the leading dance schools in Sydney called All Starz Performing Arts in Peakhurst, with her sister Priscilla. All Starz is recognised as an exceptional technical school producing great all round dancers. In fact, the top female dancer on, ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ , Lauren Seymour is a well known graduate from the school.

All Starz has successfully produced dancers performing in ballet and dance companies around the world and within Australia. While she can claim various titles and choreography awards along the years what brings her the most joy is seeing each student learning and growing not only as a performer, but as a sincere individual with resilience and grit, values that she thinks are taught in dance class and by being part of a team.

Belinda has a degree in Marketing and a professional resume as an International Singer/songwriter. She also has an 8 year old daughter who was a preschooler at the founding stages of READY SET DANCE.

She became more in tune with what was happening on kids TV and what attracted her daughter to shows like Dora and the wiggles during her daughter’s early toddler years. Her daughter is her biggest inspiration for the songs and lyrics she’s written for the show!

PRISCILLA SEVERINO

Priscilla Severino is the co-owner of the award winning All Starz Performing Arts Studio with her sister Belinda. She loves everything about dance and anyone who knows her always describes her as very expressive and extremely passionate. Her expertise has always been training strong technical dancers and ensuring they learn the correct foundations of each style.

This has been a strong focus for her in the fundamental stages of planning for the Ready Set Dance classes. Her graduates are amongst some of Australia’s most successful and recognisable dancers and for Priscilla there is no better feeling than seeing a student she has taught since preschool years living their dream as a professional dancer.

Priscilla has a passion for graphic design and technology in general and is the tech head of the team without a doubt. This stems from her early uni days studying computer engineering.

This skill has come in handy especially for the early Ready Set Dance days as she has loved creating all the graphics and merchandise and she has continued to oversee this department to this day. Priscilla attributes her passion for designing the READY SET DANCE brand to her most important role as mum to her 2 young daughters.

GLENDA YEE

Glenda Yee was the studio owner of the Glenda Yee School of Dance in Prestons, Sydney for 33 years.

She has produced talented performers who have made the top 20 in, ‘So You Think You Can Dance’, musical theatre performers who have won Australia’s most prestigious awards and is well known for her ability to create commercial dancers and pop stars like Nikki Webster.

Glenda was also an examiner in all styles of dance with the Australian Dance Association and was the founder and president of Project Dance.

She is also a qualified primary school teacher.

Glenda has two children who are excelling in their own fields.

Her daughter Kaylie performed in Las Vegas with Britney Spears and is considered one of Australia’s most successful commercial dancers.

Her son Trent owns his own personal training business developing young elite athletes.