Welcome to Dance Studio Management by Robert Thomas  
  Hello, my name is Robert Thomas. My wife Miyoko and I have been dance studio operators since 1978. At one time we had as many as six studios. A few years ago my wife was ill and could not work (She is fine now :), but she was out for about two years : 0... I went in to teach her classes and let the management work go to hired employees... Big Mistake O :<... After complaining to a friend (Salman) of mine that has a small software company here in Iowa ( Iowa State University developed the first computer), he told me that much of what is done by the Desk Manager can be automated and put into an online software application that can be monitored from anywhere with an internet connection... I was impresses and we spent the next three years and lots of money developing this system..:) . We have been using it exclusively in our schools now for the last 18 months and have cut or costs by 75%, improved efficiency and I am back doing what I love and am good at, this is teaching and dialoging with the parents about the talents and directions for their children.. Billing, payments, scheduling, pay rolling, registration, attendance  is all done almost automatically... Also, I can keep a trusted old friend who started the business with us as manager to overlook the system and customer service needs when she has  free moments of time. She was not able to work with us after her 3 children were born. She doesn't need to come to the office and can work at home and with a laptop, go over e-mails and issues between homeruns at her son's baseball game.. We are not hoping to work with a large number of other schools at present.. We have one customer since 09/08. Customer service is a big issue and we all have "day jobs"  but if you are interested, let me know. It helped us. Maybe this system can help you!!  

-- To bring the benefits of Dance and Gymnastics to all, primarily through the presentation of the highest quality programs under the instruction of the most suitable and thoroughly trained faculty available.

-- To serve our students with unparalleled excellence, seeking always to anticipate their needs.

-- To serve our instructors and choreographers by providing the means for their work to reach the student community and providing the financial support to enable their efforts.

-- To serve our employees by providing excellent pay, benefits and working conditions, and by creating opportunities for growth and fulfillment through empowerment and personal accountability.

-- To serve our parents by offering programs that entertain, educate and in a positive manner promote the growth and development of their children as they mature into productive adulthood.

-- To conduct all our activities in accordance with ethical values, moral teachings and sound financial management.


Robert Thomas an Iowa native, studied dance in Iowa as a child with Ann Dirksen. In 1964, with the help of Ms. Dirksen, Robert received a dance scholarship to Ted Shawn's Jacob's Pillow in Lee, Mass. From the summer of 1964-1967, Robert retained a position in the highly competitive Harkness Ballet trainee program in New York City.

In 1967, at age 19, Robert joined the Harkness Ballet of New York. With the Harkness Ballet, Robert toured the United States, Europe, and the Middle East. When the first Harkness company disbanded in 1969, Robert was offered a position with The Stuttgart Ballet, The National Ballet Contemporair, The Joffrey Ballet, The Geneva Ballet, and the second Harkness company. Accepting a position with the Joffrey Ballet, Robert performed in New York, throughout the United States, Europe and Russia. Robert Thomas has been guest artist with The Andre Eglevesky Ballet Co., Lar Lubovitch Dance Co., Jack Cole, and Stuart Hodes Ballet Close-Ups. Robert has performed in over 70 major works, which include ballets by choreographers such as Ailey, Arpino, Balanchine, Boris, Cole, Cranko, Folkine, Harkarvey, Hodes, Joffrey, Lubovitch, Massing, Neumeier, Petipa, Rivera, Saddles, Sappington, Severs, Van Dancing, Walker, and Willed. Robert Has appeared in a variety of media: from opera to stage to television. From 1984-1986 Robert Thomas was assistant BalletMaster to the Joffrey Ballet.

Miyoko Kato Thomas received her extensive ballet training at the Tachibana Ballet School of Tokyo in her native Japan, subsequently joining the Asami Maki Ballet company. In 1964 she joined the Metropolitan Opera Ballet in New York City. A year later she signed with the Harkness Ballet Company and was promoted to the rank of Soloist in 1968. With the Harkness Ballet, Ms. Kato performed at the White House, toured Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, and throughout the United States.

Ms. Kato joined the Joffrey Ballet in 1974. She has performed works ranging from classical ballets such as leading roles in "Swan Lake", "Coppelia", "Giselle" (Queen of the Willies), "The Nutcracker", "Don Quixote", "Les Sylphides", "Raymonda", "Pas des Quatre", and "The Firebird" to modern ballets and jazz. She has worked with numerous choreographers including Antony Tudor, Jerome Robbins, Agnes deMille, Alvin Ailey, Twyla Tharp, Robert Joffrey, Gerald Arpino, and Jack Cole. Among the highlights of her career was a performance for President Johnson at the White house in 1965. In 1966 Kato toured Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East under the sponsorship of the State Department. In 1968 she performed in the Monto Carlo Opera House for Prince Rainer and Princess Grace of Monaco.

Miyoko Kato Thomas has been married to Robert Thomas since 1971. Robert and Miyoko opened the first Dancenter in 1978 in Ames. Robert and Miyoko own and operate the Robert Thomas Dancenters in Ames, Fort Dodge, Iowa Falls, Story City, Newton, and Marshalltown. In more than 20 years of dance instruction, Robert Thomas Dancenters have trained over 8,000 young dancers.

In 1981, Robert and Miyoko choreographed and assisted in the creation of the Iowa State Center's Nutcracker. They have served as artistic directors each year.

Robert and Miyoko are producers of the award winning Dancenter Dancers and the Iowa Youth Ballet.



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