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Meet the Aussie Norwegian Cruise Line dancers 

The Aussie cast members on Norwegian Cruise Line's newest ship, The Joy. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.
The Aussie cast members on Norwegian Cruise Line's newest ship, The Joy. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

A job performing every day for smiling, eager crowds. A place to stay and beautiful sights to see and new places to discover. Sounds like quite the wonderful dance gig, right? It gets better. Dancers for Norwegian Cruise Line rehearse in state-of-the-art studios before embarking on to the sea. They receive firsthand exposure to award-winning directors and choreographers like Warren Carlyle, Patricia Wilcox, Chase Benz, Tiger Martina and Mark Kanemura. And the repertoire includes shows straight from Broadway – Rock of Ages; Swing!; After Midnight; and Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, just to name a few. 

Norwegian Cruise Line cast members come from all over the world, as the Norwegian creative team auditions around the globe, looking for the best singers, dancers, gymnasts, aerialists and actors. Here, get to know some of the Aussie performers sailing the sea on The Joy, Norwegian’s newest ship, and performing in Paradis and Elements!

Tessa Fox, dancer/aerialist (Mornington, Australia)

Where did you do your dance training?

Tessa Fox in 'Paradis'. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

Tessa Fox in ‘Paradis’. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

“I started dancing/stomping around when I was three but started training seriously at 18. I started at a local school when I was younger, and then after high school, I attended Spectrum Dance and Patrick Studios Australia.”

When and where did you audition for Norwegian?

“I auditioned in Melbourne at the end of 2013, and did my first contract for NCL at the beginning of 2014.”

What do you like most about performing on a cruise ship?

“I love being able to travel the world and dance in the same job. I also love meeting and working with people from all different countries.”

Any advice for performers on how to prepare for an audition?

“Make sure you have done your research, be confident, don’t hold back, and always smile.”

Timmy J. Hickey, dancer (Corowa, NSW)

Where did you do your dance training?

“My education started at age six, but I stopped dancing not long after due to primary school bullying. I started again at age 14 and never looked back! I first started dancing at O’Malleys School of Dance in Corowa, my hometown, then moved on to study dance teaching and management at TAFE in Benalla, and from there, I studied three years of commercial dance and music theatre at Spectrum Dance in Melbourne. That’s where my career began to truly take off.”

When and where did you audition for Norwegian?

“Melbourne in March 2016.”

Timmy J. Hickey in 'Blazing Boots'. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

Timmy J. Hickey in ‘Blazing Boots’. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

What do you like most about performing on a cruise ship?

“Many things! The fact that we get to travel all over the globe and dance in exciting shows is beyond great! A consistent paycheck is just the icing on the cake!”

Any advice for performers on how to prepare for an audition?

“Don’t blend in, and stand out for the right reasons! You don’t want to be standing out for the wrong reasons, as you may not get looked at twice! Go into an audition with a smile on your face and a clear, open mind. Desperation isn’t attractive in an audition setting.”

Elise Kiely, dancer (Bellevue Hill, Sydney)

Where did you do your dance training?

“When I was three years old, at the Jazz Factory in Lindfield, then at ED5 Fulltime, Performing Arts Course in 2010. I took classes at Urban Dance Centre, Sydney Dance Company, Brent Street, Broadway Dance Center and Pineapple Studios.”

Elise Kiely in 'Elements'. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

Elise Kiely in ‘Elements’. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

When and where did you audition for Norwegian?

“In 2010, at Sydney Dance Company.”

What do you like most about performing on a cruise ship?

Working with an international cast and working with world renowned directors from Broadway. I also enjoy waking up in a new place each day and exploring different cultures.”

Any advice for performers on how to prepare for an audition?

“Work hard on your technique on the weeks leading up to the audition, get your body into pristine condition, and organise your outfit in advance. In the audition, perform fully with your body and facial expressions. Also, be you and have fun. Casting directors love to see that, as they will see that you love what you do!”

Keian Langdon, dancer (Sydney)

Where did you do your dance training?

“At eight years old at my local studio in my hometown of Nabiac, NSW. I took classes at McDonald College of Performing Arts, Sydney. And Queensland Ballet, Brisbane.”

Keian Langdon in 'Elements'. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

Keian Langdon in ‘Elements’. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

When and where did you audition for Norwegian?

“In Melbourne in 2014.”

What do you like most about performing on a cruise ship?

“The shows are beautiful, challenging and very enjoyable to perform! I’ve made wonderful friends who I’m lucky to perform and work with. And on top of that, I get to see some amazing places.”

Any advice for performers on how to prepare for an audition?

“Be prepared to adapt to many different dance styles.”

Tayla Lemon, dancer (Melbourne)

Where did you do your dance training?

“I’ve been dancing since I was four at a school in the south eastern suburbs, and once I finished high school, I studied dance at Patrick Studios Australia. But I also have lived in Sydney and taken classes up there and also in LA. I like to learn as much as I can from as many people as I can!”

When and where did you audition for Norwegian?

Tayla Lemon in 'Elements'. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

Tayla Lemon in ‘Elements’. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

“I auditioned in Melbourne in November 2013, and I got my first contract the next January.”

What do you like most about performing on a cruise ship?

“I love the energy from the audience from week to week. We get to meet and watch all different cultures and people who have travelled from all over the world to enjoy our shows. It makes it very interesting for us and keeps us motivated, and it is so much fun waking up in a different port every day.”

Any advice for performers on how to prepare for an audition?

Make sure you have done your research on the company you are auditioning for and what they expect you to bring to the audition. Be comfortable in what you wear and confident in your ability. Be yourself, and show what you know you are best at.”

Cody Roberts, dance captain (Brisbane)

Where did you do your dance training?

“Conroy Dance Centre, from about 10 years old and now continue to go back and teach still, 17 years later. I try to take class from as many places as I can! The basis of my education came from Conroy’s, although I spent several contracts based in New York and loved my weekly classes at Broadway Dance Center.”

Cody Roberts in 'Paradis'. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

Cody Roberts in ‘Paradis’. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

When and where did you audition for Norwegian?

“I auditioned in Sydney in 2010, and have been working pretty consistently since then with NCL.”

What do you like most about performing on a cruise ship?

“We get to perform in some of the best shows in the industry and travel the world and get paid to do it! What’s better than that?”

Any advice for performers on how to prepare for an audition?

“Don’t ever stop learning, and taking class. You can learn something off anyone, even your fellow performers. Every time you watch someone perform, try and take something positive that you can help yourself grow as a performer.”

Ali Rae Sinclair, dancer (Sunshine Coast, Queensland)

Where did you do your dance training?

“I’ve been dancing since I was three at a local studio, until I got a bit older and started to get more serious. Then I moved further north to study at Steps Dance Centre. I have also taken class in the likes of Sydney, London and all around New York, traveling there for a scholarship to the Rockette Summer Intensive Invitational Week in June of 2016!”

When and where did you audition for Norwegian?

“I auditioned in Brisbane, November of 2016, and received my first contact later that month!”

Ali Rae Sinclair in 'Paradis'. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

Ali Rae Sinclair in ‘Paradis’. Photo courtesy of Norwegian Creative Studios.

What do you like most about performing on a cruise ship?

“Not only do cruise ship’s provide a great way to break into the industry, but I’m doing what I love every day, meeting amazing people and audience’s who share the same love as I do, all while traveling the world. Sounds like a dream to me!”

Any advice for performers on how to prepare for an audition?

“Don’t let fear get the better of you. Understand, when you walk into that audition room, what ‘they’ are looking for, who you are as a dancer, and what you can bring to the table in collaboration of those two things!”

You, too, could be a part of the Norwegian team, as Norwegian Creative Studios will hold auditions this October in Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane. For more information, visit norwegiancreativestudios.com/auditions.html.

By Laura Di Orio of Dance Informa.

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