5 Tips For Aspiring Dancers
Whether you are an aspiring dancer, just starting a dance career, or you are already on your way to being an established dancer, there are some basics to keep in mind that can help you achieve your goals.
Always Be Learning – Be it through dance class or workshops, there is value in expanding your skills and pushing your limits. Don’t just focus on the style of dance you are most comfortable with or interested in. Take ballet class even if you don’t plan on being a ballet dancer because every style of dance can offer you moves, perspective, and strength that builds your technical base while enhancing your abilities with other dance styles. Fill your toolbox with a range of skills and you will become a better dancer. Directors, agents, and choreographers will take note of and value your diversity and range.
Keep Auditioning – Auditions are arguably the most gut-wrenching aspect of being a dancer, except for perhaps opening night. If you are not in the right mindset, they can be downright disheartening. That’s true until right up until you get a part, and that is not going to happen unless you keep auditioning. There are certain skills that are specific to auditions, so it stands to reason that the more you audition, the better you will get at auditioning. Each one, the good and the bad, is a learning experience that you should treasure. Never let yourself be discouraged if you don’t get the part. Letting your brain spiral into a quagmire of self-doubt after being dismissed from the audition process gains you nothing. There are hundreds of factors, some not in your control, that impact a casting decision. The simple truth is that there are no unsuccessful auditions if you walk away from each one with a little more knowledge, experience, and resolve than you walk into it with. So find as many relevant auditions as you can (we have hundreds of current dance audition listings) and remember can gain something from everyone.
Care for Yourself – Maintain your body and mind and you will reap the rewards in many ways. Get a solid night of sleep before auditions, dance class, rehearsals, and performances. Take yoga to keep your flexibility up. Avoid drinking and smoking. Learn meditation. You have likely heard the phrase “my body is my temple” so make it a point to be an amazing caretaker of that temple.
Get an Agent – You may be full of the “do it yourself” spirit but there are not many people whose careers will not benefit from having an agent on their team. Granted, getting an agent is a whole process by itself but it’s one worth exploring if being a professional dancer is your goal. Like auditioning, this can sometimes be a long and occasionally disheartening process before you get what you are looking for.
Be in the Dance Culture – Trying to make it as a dancer can physically and mentally taxing, not to mention very time-consuming. There will be times when you need support from your friends. However, if none of your friends are part of the dance scene then their understanding of your situation and lifestyle may prohibit them from being any help. Sharing your feelings about a disastrous audition you bombed at is way more cathartic when sharing it with others who have been in the same situation. There is also a networking aspect that comes from surrounding yourselves with others who seek the same goals as you. Perhaps they have auditioned for the same choreographer as you in the past and can offer a game-changing piece of advice. Maybe a fellow dancer knows about an upcoming cast opening that is not posted yet? The audition room may be just that more zen if you happen to have dance friends auditioning alongside you. You never know when knowing the right person can lead you towards better success in your career goals.