Tide Talks: Kaitlin Hague, Director – Bayside Dance

Tide Talks: Kaitlin Hague, Director – Bayside Dance

How long have you lived in Wynnum?

My husband and I moved back to Wynnum in 2014 after a few years living in Belmont and Carina.

What was it about Wynnum that made you want to make it home?

My parents are windsurfers so my childhood weekends (when I wasn’t dancing) were spent by the bay playing in the sand with my brothers while they were on the water. My grandparents have always lived in Wynnum, and when I was 10 years old my mum moved to Lota. For me there is so much familiarity about this suburb, and now with a young family the attraction of the bay, wading pool, parks and easygoing lifestyle make this suburb a perfect fit. 

What is your favourite cafe in Wynnum?

Dramanti.

What is your favourite shop in Wynnum?

Cultivate Design Co.

Tell us how you started Bayside Dance?

We had just moved back to Wynnum (to help care for my father-in-law), and I was driving to the Gold Coast every day for work (I was working in the marketing department at the Arts Centre there, while teaching dance in Coorparoo in the evenings). I had some family friends ask about dance classes, then I had some more ask, and the seed of an idea sprouted. Before I knew it, I had registered a business name, built a website and hired a hall! On my first day I had seven students, and now we have close to 600, offering 90 classes a week. 

You are not only a dance studio owner, you’re a mum and a wife. Any tips on balancing the juggle?

Oh my gosh! The juggle is real! I couldn’t do anything I do without my husband, firstly. We both work full-time hours, but as he’s a carpenter, I tend to handle the mornings and daycare drop-offs, and he does pick-ups and evenings when I have to work late. We also have help from my mum and step-mum (which our daughter adores). I have worked really hard to set my business up with amazing staff and systems so that I don’t have to be there every day (I have over 20 employees), so I generally work two very long 12 hour days, and then pop in and out as required through the rest of the week (and weekends sometimes too). I guess the lesson on both fronts is that you can’t do it all on your own. And online grocery shopping! 

If you could choose any location in Wynnum/Manly to hold a dance production, where would it be and what would it look like?

I would love to host a big dance festival in the “bandstand” park one day! Or maybe a floating stage on the Wading Pool.

What has been your career highlight thus far?

I’ve just recently been formally accepted to study a PhD looking into early specialisation in dance. 

What inspires/motivates you?

I have had amazing mentors (both formal and informal) that inspire me to reach new heights as a business owner and making a positive impact within our community. My daughter is the sunshine of my life and watching the world though her eyes has been the very best teacher. 

What is your favourite quote?

There are shortcuts to happiness and dancing is one of them – Vicki Baum

Do you have any hidden secret talents?

I’m not sure how “talented” I am at it, but I love baking and cake decorating!

Tell us how you find having a Wynnum-based business?

The Wynnum community is really supportive. I love the many connections I’ve made with other business owners. 

What’s next for you?

Hopefully not another 2020! Covid and related restrictions saw us pivot to online learning for 10 weeks and lots of events cancelled, so in 2021 I’m keen to see our dancers performing a little more and having a bit more of a “normal” year. While we were in lockdown we renovated the studio so we now have four dance studios. I’m looking forward to recruiting some new superstar team members and filling those studios with dance and joy. 

Tide Talks features local personalities and small businesses in the Wynnum-Manly area of Brisbane’s Bayside. We want to show off the eclectic mix of entrepreneurs, creatives and change-makers that make the area so appealing! If this reminds you of someone, please get in touch at hello@dotdashevents.com.au or contact us.