2014 IDA Lifetime Achievement Award – Rhee Gold

Christy Lopez

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The 2014 Industry Dance Awards is happy to honor Rhee Gold as this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award winner! Known as the industry’s first motivational speaker, it gives us great pleasure to recognize him for his empowering ways and overall success as a leader in the dance world. As author of The Complete Guide to Teaching Dance, Producer of DanceLifeTV.com, and publisher of Dance Studio Life Magazine, what this inspiring man has created is a sense of community among talented and passionate people.

For the many years he has been around (he kindly asked not to specify *wink wink*), his vast knowledge has had a wide reach. But don’t put it past him to not keep up with the times, Mr. Rhee Gold is continuing to stay on the cusp of media with innovative ways of education. No joke, I actually just shared one of his wise Facebook statuses this morning. Read below:

“The dance teacher passes on something very special . . . it’s a passion that dances from one soul to the next. And once it’s there, it’s there for life Enjoy the journey” –Rhee

Mr. Rhee Gold took time out of his busy schedule for an awesome insight to his past, present, and future.

Son of Al Gold, a travelling vaudevillian, and Sherry Gold, a legendary dancer/studio owner – The Gold School (ring a bell?), Mr. Rhee was destined to be a performer himself. Growing up, he legitimately thought it was the norm for a dance studio to be run within a household. “I would just go downstairs to class and thought that’s what other dancers did.”

As he moved into his professional life in the industry, Gold was employed with a dance competition; He was very active with keeping up with the chaos of the events (a life that a few of us are also familiar with), interacting with studio directors, dealing with parents, and so on. It was then that he realized that there was a need for support & guidance for the teachers and studio directors in this industry.

He recalls his thought process, “There is something else that is in need out there – and it’s not a convention where kids take class. It’s more like we need to hang out with each other and talk about the life because I think the dance teachers, before I started doing this, were alone.”

The lightbulb above his head switched on. He decided to host events that could bring together teachers – this was the birth of Project Motivate.

“The very first event, I had 20 teachers come. They were very nervous. Then the second year, I ended up with only about six people. So, I thought it was over. Then after that, it was going, going and growing and growing. Then in the 5th year, it was 350 teachers, like this huge boom. Dance teachers talk each other and when they like something, they tell other dance teachers.”
He knew he had hit “gold” (pun intended). And so, he figured he wouldn’t stop there. Today, Gold puts on the DanceLife Teacher Conference and the DanceLife Retreats. What makes his retreats so special and unique is that he houses/hosts a group of teachers for their own getaway and vacation atmosphere to ultimately expand the knowledge of their shared passion.

“Between the magazine, the retreat, the conferences, and all the things we got going on… I just, I’m living the dream, but I work all day, every day to keep it all running.”

It’s more than obvious that the Industry Dance Awards feels that Mr. Gold is deserving of the Lifetime Achievement Award, and he gave us nothing but a respectable and humble response.

“I know that we all work hard. But, I’m flattered, I’m excited. And when it comes to raising money for charity and kids who dance realizing how important that is, I think that’s an awesome thing.”

For those who are interested in the many amazing experiences that Mr. Rhee provides, make sure to visit http://www.danceliferetreat.com.

See Rhee Gold accept his Lifetime Achievement Award live at this year’s Industry Dance Awards on September 10th in Hollywood, CA! Tickets on sale soon…

On that note,
“Enjoy the journey, and pat yourself on the back once in a while.” –Rhee