Dance can be an intimidating part of any Performing Arts audition, so it’s important to take as much time as you can to be well prepared. Our Head of Dance, Nathan Potter, gives his best advice on how to master your dance audition…
Eat breakfast – Even if you’ve had a bit of a sleepless night due to nerves and it may feel like the last thing you want, it’s important to make sure you eat a good breakfast and eat it early enough to digest!
Appearance – This is VERY important. It may seem like an old fashioned ethos, but for dance it works every time: be polished in your look. Wear suitable attire that shows your physique, preferably in a colour that you are comfortable wearing, but also one which attracts the attention of the panel. If you have long hair or hair that covers your face, tie it back so the panel can see your facial features clearly. You need to present as much as possible with your look, which includes what your face is doing! Plus, hair in the face while dancing will get on your nerves.
Warm up –Some auditions may start with a warm-up, but to be safe, make sure you arrive early and take the time to warm up yourself. When you’re fully immersed in your audition piece, this is when injuries can occur.
An over-crowded dance studio – In this case everyone has the same idea – to ‘get to the front’. A good and fair choreographer will want to find good dancers and give everyone the best opportunity, so when it’s a crowded affair, they’ll most likely switch lines during the audition so everyone can see what’s going on. Don’t worry about where you’re standing – they’ll still see you!
Relax – The dance combination is taught quickly, so it’s important to stay relaxed and focused. Pay attention, listen, look, learn, take note of the style immediately and copy what is being shown. When you’re relaxed and enjoying the moment, you’ll be more likely to flow with the movements.
Think for yourself – Focus on yourself and not on the people around you. If your mind is distracted or focused on other people, then you might pick up moves incorrectly.
Ask questions – If something is not clear, ask! Questions are always welcome and even if you’re not the one asking them, still listen – the answer will most definitely help!
The rounds – Once the choreography has been taught, you might be put into smaller groups of three to six people. This is the time to show what you’re made of. If you make a mistake, pick it up and get back in, and always keep smiling. The worst thing you can do is to walk away.
Stay in position – After dancing, always stay in position until the panel asks you to move for the next group, or even for you to perform it again. If you’ve made a few mistakes, don’t look deflated – keep your composure and focus on the panel.
After the audition – Wait until you’ve been given clearance to leave the studio. If the panel need to see anything else, they’ll ask at this point, so always pay attention to what’s going on in case you miss anything. You’ll have been pushing yourself for an hour or so, so remember to cool down. You can take this time to think about the next step in the process.
If you’re tense and nervous, the panel will be too. If you’re having a good time, so will they! REMEMBER! Everyone on the panel wants you to succeed and be your best.