Audition DOs and DON’Ts

From industry leaders in full time dance education

Are you looking to audition for a full time or part time dance course for next year, or anytime in the future? Have you checked out Dance Informa’s comprehensive Full Time Dance & Auditions Guide? As you prepare to audition in the coming months, take into consideration this valuable audition advice from the directors of some of Australia and New Zealands top dance courses.

By Rain Francis.

Pamela Apostolidis
Dance World Studios/APO Arts Academy

Do… your research! Establish exactly what the audition brief entails, what roles are available, your suitability for those roles and determine what you need to prepare.

Don’t…. just do auditions for the sake of doing auditions. It’s important for auditionees to make a good impression when attending professional castings – quite often, first impressions last!

Jason Coleman
Jason Coleman’s Ministry of Dance

Do… express who you are in the way you perform the choreography. It is extremely important to dance with feeling. You cannot convincingly portray choreography from looking in the mirror, it needs to come from your soul. Dance like your love it. You should dance like you do with every step, but particularly in an audition.

Don’t… hide up the back. Situate yourself up the front and as close to the centre of the studio as possible. Show the panel who you are. Hovering at the back of the room will only give you less time to impress and prove yourself.

Angus Lugsdin
Queensland Dance School of Excellence

Do… Be confident. An air of confidence enhances any amount of talent/ability.

Don’t… forget to prepare. Preparation leading up to the audition is vital. Arm yourself with as much knowledge as possible about the school or company and the associated personnel, so that you can demonstrate genuine interest in the interview.

Sarah Boulter & Lisa Bowmer
Ev and Bow Full Time Dance Training Centre

Do… show your individuality. We like to see a dancer who is quietly confident with who they are, somebody that displays qualities that endears us to want to work with them! We like to see that a dancer is one step ahead of us in every aspect, ready and willing for any challenges that may be thrown their way, and above all reliable. When auditioning, we want to know what a dancer will add to a team. A strong sense of creativity is high on our list!

Caroline O’Connor
Brent Street

Don’t… go in with a feeling of terror, thinking that the panel is not going to like you. Everybody on the panel always wants someone to turn up who is really good. So try and keep that positive attitude.

Do… be yourself. The more you are yourself, and remain individual, rather than trying to be a clone of someone else, the more you stand out. So be in touch with your strengths and be aware of your weaknesses, so you can work on them.

William A. Forsythe

Do… bring a positive energy with you and give your all at the audition. Give every part of the audition a go, even if it is not your main talent. e.g. if you’re a dancer, give the singing and acting a go. You don’t need to be brilliant, you just need to show you’re willing to give it a go and learn.

Don’t… compare yourself to anyone in the room. You have your talent and they have theirs. People have different skills; just do YOUR best.

Dulcie Lee
Dance Factory

Do… think of your audition as a performance, rather than a trial by terror! Aim to entertain the panel as if they were an audience. A good first impression is a lasting impression.

Don’t… panic if you happen to slip along the way. Relax, pick up where you left off and treat it as an exercise in learning what to brush up on for your next audition. Remember it is also a learning experience.

Garry Trinder
NZ School of Dance

Do… consider the material you’re presenting within the audition as choreography, not merely classroom exercises. In any audition, the panel is looking for a sense of performance from you.

Don’t… think the panel is looking only at your dancing.  They will also be appraising how you conduct yourself with others, how conscientious you are in learning the material, how you respond to feedback and whether you can cope in stressful situations with grace and humour. During the audition, absolutely every minute counts!

Nicole Davis
Dance Force

Do… believe that you have something to offer and make the staff watch you. Listen and follow choreographers’ instructions carefully. How you learn and take on board corrections given to you is extremely important.

Don’t… forget to introduce yourself to the director and be courteous to staff and other students.

For information on Australia and New Zealand’s full time dance courses check out the 2013 Guide:
Full Time Dance & Auditions Guide























Top image: © Andrew Ross | Dreamstime.com

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