Dance agents are the key to opening the doors for real dance jobs. Sure there are jobs out there that hundreds of dancers take to do small shows and at home music videos but these jobs don’t pay. If you want the good jobs; the big music videos, tours, Broadway and the much sought after commercials you have to have a dance agent. Casting directors know which agencies have the best hot new dancers and that’s exactly who they call. Often times a breakdown isn’t even sent out because there’s no need, they can fulfill their roles with one or two agencies dancers. Thus acing your audition with a top dance agent is vital. But how do you know what they’re looking for? It’s simple, they want a great dancer, right? Yeah, but they also want a lot more than that.
Take some classes at well known studios and put those on your resume. Sure you could have danced for fifteen years at your home studio but if you’ve never taken a class from a major conservatory or famous studio in LA or NY your picture and resume are going in the trash. Training counts.
When you dance for them hold back on going crazy with tricks and turns you’re not capable of doing cleanly. Technique is extremely important, especially for Broadway or tour auditions. They want technically trained dancers who can turn out from their hips, wing their toes and produce clear, crisp taps.
Becoming a professional in one style is great but for auditioning you need much more. Much of today’s work is mixed styles already so you need to be able to adapt and pick up choreography quickly, there’s no time for practicing and reviewing time and again.
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Audition Tips for Ballet Company Auditions
Auditioning for a ballet company is the dream of many little ballerinas, but ballet is serious business. Treating your ballet company audition in a professional way can ensure fulfilling that dream of being a prima ballerina.
It's Different Than Ballet Class - An audition for a professional ballet company is different from just going to ballet class. While your teacher in ballet class will take the time to make sure you thoroughly understand a combination, a choreographer at an audition will not. Don't expect to be catered to as your ballet teacher does. Auditions are not classes. Auditions are job interviews.
Be Prepared - Know everything about the audition before you attend. Call ahead and ask questions so you will be prepared for anything. Check to see if you need to bring both soft ballet shoes and pointe shoes. Ask what other shoes you might need. You don't want to leave your tap shoes behind thinking it's only a ballet audition, just to have the choreographer ask everyone to tap. If you are supposed to perform a certain variation from a ballet, make sure you know it well and never assume the choreographer will go over it with you. Ask if you should bring a photograph, resume, audition fee, or anything else to the audition.
Know the Dress Code - Just as with ballet classes, many ballet companies have dress codes for auditions and rehearsals. You may wear a long-sleeved pink leotard and pink tights at your ballet studio, but if the audition requires a spaghetti-strapped navy blue leotard, you may not be allowed to audition just because you aren't wearing the right dancewear. If there is no specifi...
Are You Sure You Want to Be a Professional Dancer? – Just because you love to dance doesn’t mean that you will love being a professional dancer. Going “pro” means dedication, endurance, traveling, and long, hard work. When you’re a professional dancer, you must practically devote your entire life to dance. Make sure this dedication is something you really want to do. There are plenty of ways to enjoy dancing as a hobby or even teach dance as a career if dancing professionally isn’t quite for you.
Are You Good Enough? – Take a good honest look at your dance talent. Don’t make the leap to professional dancer if your skills aren’t up to the level necessary to be successful.
Keep Taking Class and Learn All Styles of Dance – Even if you are an incredible dancer, never stop taking classes, especially in the styles of dance you are weaker. Practicing your technique in dance classes will keep you on top of your game. You never know when you might be asked to do a ballet combination at a hip-hop audition, so being proficient in all style of dance is beneficial no matter your specialty.
Get in Good Great Shape – If you are going to make it big as a professional dancer, you must be in great shape. The demands of dancing professionally will require that you push your body to the limit. Being in great shape, both physically and mentally, will give you an edge over your competition. Eat well, drink water, and avoid situations where you might be injured.
See a Doctor – Get an exam with a doctor who specializes in athletes and sports injuries to make sure your body is up to the rigors and challenges of being a professional dancer. You don’t wa...
You Must Believe – A successful professional dancer believes they will make it, no matter what anyone else in the world thinks. You must believe you can do it.
You Must Persevere – A successful professional dancer has perseverance within himself or herself to keep pursuing and training, no matter the outcome. You must possess dedication to bring about success.
You Must Have Confidence – A successful professional dancer is confident in their abilities. Be confident about your dancing, especially when comparing yourself to other dancers.
You Must Work Hard – A successful professional dancer works hard. Practice and dedicate yourself to becoming a better dancer every day.
You Must Handle Rejection Well – A successful professional dancer lets rejection roll off their back. Disappointment is a part of a dancer’s life. Move on and do not let rejection get to you.
You Must Take Corrections and Criticism Well – A successful professional dancer takes corrections and criticism well. If a choreographer is taking the time to give you direction, be flattered. They would not waste their time if they did not think you were talented and worth it. Do not ignore corrections. Sometimes a choreographer gives corrections to see how “directable” you are.
You Must Have Strength and Stamina – A successful professional dancer is strong and has the stamina to make it through long rehearsals and performances. Consider adding a workout routine to your dance training to help increase your strength and stamina.
You Must Shine on S...
Tip 1. The Audition Panel is on Your Side – They want you to be good. The audition panel needs to find good dancers. They hope every dancer who walks in the door is fantastic.
Tip 2. Be Prepared – Have everything you need for the audition. This includes proper shoes, band-aids or moleskin, proper attire, a photo and resume, if required, and more. Being prepared will help you feel confident when auditioning.
Tip 3. Prepare Mentally – With mental preparation, anything is possible. Take a few minutes to mentally prepare yourself and focus before an audition.
Tip 4. Dress Appropriately – When auditioning, dress for the job. For example, a dancer should dress differently for a hip-hop video audition than for the lead role in a video production of “The Nutcracker.” When possible, look “performance ready.” Find out the specifics and come to the audition dressed appropriately. In fact, it is a good idea to bring extra clothing, make-up, and hair accessories so you are able to change your look at the audition if necessary. You will help the audition panel “see” you in the part.
Tip 5. Do Not “Hide” – Do not hide in the back while learning choreography. The audition panel will appreciate seeing you learn the combinations. It gives them an idea of how you learn. Many times a lesser dancer who is a quick learner may win the part simply because the rehearsal time is short and the audition panel needs dancers that learn fast.
Tip 6. Ask Questions – Do not be afraid to ask questions. The audition panel will not think asking for help or clarification is a sign of weakness. It will show...