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Classique Dance

Classique Dance
How we got moving on a dance school's new identity.
The Brief

Classique Dance is a Central Coast dance school dedicated to producing and encouraging technically skilled and versatile young dancers. Positive and enthusiastic, the studio operates under the ethos that there is always more to learn. This philosophy has informed an educated evolution of Classique’s teaching methods and styles.

The hitch?

The school’s existing collateral reflected the time of its establishment in the early 2000s. The studio had grown with great success and reception, but the brand had not.

Classique’s identity no longer reflected its business.

Classique Dance website homepage before rebrand

Eager to elevate the look and feel of its brand, Classique trusted us to deliver a few key components across new collateral.

  • Appeal to parents, teenagers and children (especially)
  • Mix professionalism with fun
  • Express movement and line through design
  • Create a refined, inclusive tone
  • Highlight the fully qualified faculty (POD)
  • Modernise the user experience

As a team of dance lovers, Being couldn’t wait to start shaping the exciting, expert identity this uniquely talented school would soon embrace.

(N.B. We said we loved dance. We didn’t say we were good at it.)

The Process
The Logo

A logo is the visual cornerstone of any company’s brand. Classique’s original logo expressed movement through its cursive type and illustrated icon, but didn’t shrink legibly across more contemporary formats.

Research of professional dance companies revealed a commonality in logo typography – less emphasis on symbols and more on the potential of clean, capital text.

Building on an elegant (and distinctively Classique) colour palette, we rolled-out three prospective logos that each focused on a separate aspect of dance: movement, line and shape.

Apprehensive of legibility, the studio asked to preview a combination of presented concepts: remove the stack dividing Classique and distinguish ‘dance’ in bold.

The finished product embraces crisp cleanliness, echoing the bold refinement of internationally established professionals. Simple and classic, the logo will age timelessly, informing confident collateral design in the future.

The Tagline

Taglines offer brands the potential to summarise their identity from the outset. Successful taglines become synonymous with that company; you see or hear the name, and immediately recall their catchphrase.

Never having had a tagline, Classique was eager to embrace its own distinctive phrase – ideally, something playfully elegant. Exploring three ‘moods’ appropriate to the school’s ethos (sophistication, unrivalled experience, light humour) we composed a variety of fitting slogans. These included:

Torn between wit and style, the studio was divided on its ideal summary. Ultimately selecting something subtler in entendre, the final slogan is inclusive of the school’s complete curriculum, positioning dance as art – not sport.

The Collateral

The best collateral shapes and maintains a strong brand. Forging a connection between the company and the client, its presentation is a competitive differentiator.

Classique’s former collateral (enrolment form, timetable, studio guidelines) necessitated the graphic characteristics of its new identity: clean, bold, and confident. Visually communicating the essence of Classique, the revised collateral is a firm indicator of the school’s professionalism; every aspect of the rebrand has been considered and valued.

Original and rebranded collateral
The Website

Aiming to isolate Classique’s brand from local competitors, we compared the common traits of elite company websites – dynamic full-page images, consistency in colour and clear navigation.

The Australian Ballet website
Queensland Ballet website | Houston Ballet website

Classique’s industry qualifications (classical ballet in particular) offer patrons a key point of difference from local competitors. Underlining the necessity and benefit of educated training throughout the copy, we sought to enhance the expertise and overall look of the faculty with image consistency.

Classique headshot samples, pre-edit

Having received a range of headshots diverse in resolution, colour and perspective, constructing homogeneity was something of a challenge. Levelling the background, size, positioning and contrast of each photo was an advantageous move towards communicating staff expertise – visually uniting these individuals as a team.

‘Our Teachers’ page post-rebrand

To offer Classique’s brand a unique point of difference from other Central Coast schools, the new website opens on a brief classical video which delicately advertises both the studio’s high calibre and its genre specialty. Toning down the warmth of the spotlight (and additional banner images) in post, we established tonal uniformity consistent with the client’s favoured palette of blue, black and grey.

Raw video footage vs. post-edit

To create the illusion of movement, Classique ‘class’ buttons come to life with a mouse hover, zooming in full colour. Here the logo shines, weaving playfully through the unique lines created by the dancers. Typography contorts like an acrobat, fusing into the physical shape itself.

Classique class buttons with and without hover

The homepage is a triumph of movement – a complementary arrangement of dynamic shapes working together to offer the illusion of energy. An animated scroll effect shifts figures upon investigation, subtly dancing on the page.

Main points of potential interest are laid out clearly for user ease (dance styles, studio ethos, beginner classes for young children, contact details). Invitational copy and welcoming tone combine to encourage exploration of interactive features. The general effect excites.

Lively and striking, the new website offers an immersive experience from start to finish. Generous imagery immediately establishes a strong atmosphere of community and friendship, warmly greeting any visitor to the page.

The Result
Classique Dance Facebook page
Classique Dance Instagram account

Overjoyed to have created an identity that aligns so well with the studio’s vision, we were pretty pleased to see the new logo branded onto cupcakes at the school’s annual registration. (Our logos have never tasted so good!)

When we say we love helping brands become, we really mean it. Throughout our time in branding we’ve never seen someone fall in love with their rebrand as hard or fast as Classique. To bear witness to a client’s pure joy is something truly special – and a priceless reminder of why we do this in the first place.

You can explore the new website for yourself at www.classiquedance.com.au.

Be warned: it’ll make you feel like dancing.