Audition PracticeApr 17, 2023
Today we are going to talk about audition practice. Growing up, we did prepare for interview situations for competitions that included an interview, but we never really talked about the whole process and how to prepare for an audition. I wish we actually practiced more often because I could have really used some help.
This is definitely important and even if some students don’t want to be a professional dancer when they grow up, they can still learn a lot from the process.
Some great ways to involve practicing for an audition is to actually have a mock audition. Instead of just talking about specific things, that they might forget, teach class like you would be teaching a routine at an audition. Give them a number, have them perform in small groups. Have them perform in large groups. Maybe even invite a guest to judge the audition. It’s great to get their point of view. Most of the time auditions teach routines fairly quickly. Dancers need to be able to pick up choreography quickly most of the time. Some jobs might allow you more time to pick up the choreography, but it’s best if they can learn to pick up choreography quickly and the only way to get good at it is by practicing learning routines quickly. Play games that involve showing some moves only once, to see who can remember.
Another great practice is not only learning the choreography quickly but performing it quickly. I know I use to take my time before I was comfortable with the moves and finally would be able to open up on stage. At auditions, they need to see your personality shine right when you enter the room.
Another thing that dancers should work on and I can’t say it enough is freestyle! I remember this one time I was directing a dance team and was holding auditions. I had a dancer show up very late and so she missed most of the dance routine. I decided to give her a chance since I was building a team from scratch, and it was our first year and I needed as many dancers as possible. Well, I told her to do as much of the routine that she did learn and show me what you got during freestyle. Well, let’s just say, her freestyle was inappropriate and was just… not good. I ended up not hiring her for the dance team it was that bad. Always be prepared and if you are late and someone gives you a second chance, like I did, don’t blow it! Have something ready to go so you look your best and look confident! Most auditions I have been to I have had to do freestyle at some point.
Have your students even dress up for the audition practice. Have them prepare a resume or headshot. Maybe even schedule a day where they can have specific headshots done at the studio. We should really be preparing our students as much as possible. Even if you don’t think they are interested in dancing professionally. I felt like I never got any advice or a pat on the back besides my mother who supported me and tried to work with me. But sometimes, even if the parent does have experience with auditions, it’s good to have a teachers input since some kids don’t want to listen to their parents lol. I know I try to give advice to my daughter but often times doesn’t want to listen, but someone else can say the same exact thing and then she will listen.
Students should also take turns being the choreographer or judge so they can be on all sides. I have learned so much through the years being in all positions it really does open your eyes and I wish I would have known what I know now. That’s why I am here talking about auditioning and how important it really is to practice and give them the confidence. And it will only make you look good as a teacher.
So for those that are listening that are auditioning right now, practice!!! Practice with a friend or your dance team. If you are a dance instructor, help them be prepared and practice for all types of dance auditions whether it’s for broadway, a cruise ship, musical, theme park show, dance team for college, sports team. The more practice, the more they will be comfortable and most likely stand out at their audition!