Ready, Set, Go! Summer Intensive Auditions

Summer intensive auditions are just around the corner. You can make the most of your auditions and summer experience by being well prepared now. Get organized, be mentally ready and do some research!

How you present yourself on every level is important.  For starters, wear something clean and classic and make sure your hair is neatly done. If you're wearing make-up, keep it subtle. And don't keep any warm-ups on when the audition begins!  On a more personal level, make sure to put your best face forward. Even if you are nervous or stressed out, be nice and respectful -- to everyone!  You never know who might be noticing your behavior and attitude. This is meaningful while you're registering and warming up as well as for the audition class. After class, be sure to thank the panelists and the pianist.

During auditions, panels are looking at how you learn in addition to how you dance. Beyond paying close attention to the combinations, listen to all the corrections given as though they were aimed at you personally and try to dance responsively.

On a more logistical level, some basic practical preparation is critical.  Make sure you know, prepare and comply with all the deadlines and requirements -- dates, fees, photos, resumés -- of your auditions. These vary from audition to audition and it's important to be attentive to details. For instance, some programs require a photo in first arabesque while others request photos in other positions. Pay attention to the specifics and have materials ready that meet the criteria of each individual audition.

While it's important to keep an open mind, it's also vital to know what you want from a summer intensive. Different programs offer different cultures and benefits. Don't choose your auditions based on the reputations of the programs alone. It is well worth your time to research aspects such as class size, who the teachers are, what styles are taught, and what the performance opportunities might be. If you have the chance to talk to dancers who have been to the programs you are considering, ask them pertinent questions about their experiences.

Also, be honest with yourself about where you are in your training and what you most need. While you are bound to improve with the practice and hard work you put into any summer intensive, some programs are more about professional "polishing" than others. Talk to your year-round teacher about setting training goals (strengthening classical technique, expanding your stylistic repertoire, being seen by choreographers with whom you hope to work, etc.) and which program might be the best fit to help you reach your specific goals.