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Top 5 Winning Tips for Dance Auditions

Ace Every Audition with the Right Dancewear

Top 5 Tips for An Audition Ready Look Plus Bonus Tips And Expert Recommendations

A Dance Audition – A Critical Part Of Every Dancer's Ife

Every dancer will testify to this one truth. Auditioning skills are very different from performing skills. Whether you are auditioning for college, a dance company, or an entertainment position, preparing for an audition can initially feel overwhelming.

So what is that winning formula for acing an audition and landing the role or job you want?

Moving to the world of auditions, means you have stepped up, thrown your hat into the ring and declared you're in the game; all is well until someone tells you that it is all about looks.

But before you lose heart in the confidence you have built through years of practice, know that if you look good, you would feel good, and if you feel good, your performance as a dancer would be good.

Here are some expert tips to help you be a winner this auditions' season.

1. Understand If it is an On-camera or In-person Audition to Determine a Look

In an audition for a screen, a dancer needs to realize that acting for a screen needs to be subtle.The camera will catch any nuance and emotion and more so all the little details of your audition outfit.

Colors perfectly acceptable for an in-person audition can ruin your look in an on-camera audition thanks to the lights and angles.Red can make the tone of your skin look weird while blacks can be depressing.

Record yourself over a camera and experiment with the choice of outfit and color until you get it right.

Prepare for the Audition

In theatre or a live stage, you have to remember that the audience isn't as close to you.

In a large hall or group call, there will be other dancers jostling for space. Movements and emotion should speak volumes. You need to be able to stand out on your merit and with lights and cameras not interfering, bring in your unique style through colors and styles that flatter you.

2. Understand the Role or Character You are Auditioning for

Take the time to research what position or role you are auditioning.

Read the audition notice carefully, so that you know as much as possible about the dance styles, the skill set required for the job and maybe even get an inkling of the choreographer who is likely to be in the audition selection committee.

This knowledge will help you determine what to wear, what shoes to bring. Also, understanding what the choreographer likes or doesn't like can only assist you in being better prepared.

Tips for Understanding the Character for Your Audition

An audition for a ballet role will mean a leotard, tights, ballet slippers, or pointe shoes.  If it is an audition for a ballet conservatory, a bun will need to be the hairstyle by default.

An audition for a hip-hop role, on the other hand, may allow you to express your personality a little more and a trendier outfit could be just the thing.

Be edgy, but, keep it clean and neat.

When auditioning for a role, it is easy to get carried away and wear a full-fledged costume. But you don't need to go all the way and that too at the cost of what looks good on you.

Be influenced by the style and the personality of the character but keep it versatile.

3. Prepare for the Type of Audition

There are different types of auditions, and here are a few quick tips on what you could wear to each type. For a convention scholarship audition, simple, stylish and functional dancewear pieces, rich in color and which do not distract judges from your body is a good choice.

Team it with simple makeup and an off the face hairdo.

A commercial audition gives you more room to show bolder hair and makeup styles, allow your personality to shine through.

Prepare for All Types of Dance Auditions

A classical ballet audition will have a sea of black leotards, but if the back of the leotard contains embellishments or has a unique or flattering cut, it can set you apart. 

While tying a bun would be essential, adding a braid or twist in the bun would make for a stunning change. Light makeup and pointe shoes will complete the required look required.

A musical theatre audition calls for vibrant color combinations, a popular one being red and black. Team it with black character shoes and a bolder lip and eye makeup palette to grab those spotlights.

Dance wears of Vibrant Color Combinations

4. Signature Look vs. Tailored Look for Each Audition

When determining a signature look or a put together tailored look for each audition, consider your confidence level. You don't want to go in with things that might shake up your confidence, whether that's your hair, your outfit or your makeup.

You want to stand out but not in a way that's awkward or obnoxious.

Tailored Look for Each Dance Audition

If you're going to emulate a character or portray a look, make sure it's an extension of who you are—it should never feel like a costume. Wear a dance outfit that fits you well but which may not be necessarily the trendiest outfit out there.

Bright colors are a plus and can set you apart from the rest.

5. Be Prepared for Anything

Preparation can be the best balm to calm your audition nerves.

Research as much as you can about the project or choreographer. When a dancer is prepared, they tend to be more focused, more relaxed and able to show themselves at their best.

If the choreographer happens to be teaching at a local studio beforehand, enroll for it or at least visit to see his style and technique. Pay special attention to the dancewear his students wear to get an idea of the look he prefers and incorporate elements of that into your audition outfit.

Preparation for Dance Auditions

Even though you may have to wait for some time, it's critical to keep your body warm. Stretch regularly, as you could be called to audition at a moment's notice.

Carry dance warm-up clothing like booties or knit leggings or even leg warmers to keep yourself comfortable and avoid any injuries.

If you find yourself with a lot of time to wait out, why not put the time to best use by having a go with compact exercise equipment like a resistance band?

Audition Dancewear Recommendations by Professional Dancers And Models

  • A halter zip Front top in a bright color paired with high waist leggings or harem pants is a high on comfort yet catch ensemble. The top gives just the right amount of color without being flashy while the high waist leggings make the figure look greatAudition Dancewear Recommendations by Professional Dancers And Models
  • Leotards that come in deeper hues like wine, burgundy and forest green or even those in jeweled tones paired with classical pink tights and a neat hairstyle is a winning combination. It is different from the usual black, and the unusual pairing with the light pink tights makes a beautiful, eye-catching outfit.
  • Classic black leotards can be made very interesting and flattering to the figure by creating slimming silhouettes with deep cutbacks, lace detailing and even three fourth sleeves.

Bonus Tips

So you have your audition outfit sorted, what about matching shoes, accessories and a bag?

All of this goes into completing the look. Make the preparation foolproof by trying on the whole outfit the night before.

Then, pack it all in.

Carry extra supplies such as hair bands, bobby pins, band-aids, other dance shoes, knee pads, or anything else you think you might need to last a whole day.

  • Audition Essentials - Take water, snacks and a book with you. You could be waiting to audition for hours so be sure to stay hydrated and energized. Take a bottle of water or sports drink, granola bars, fruit, peanut butter sandwiches, pretzels; anything that is simple to carry and eat. Do not rely on vending machines which may or may not be available and do not expect regular breaks where you can dash out for a quick bite.
  • The Audition Accessories – A beautiful outfit can be marred by over the top accessories. On the other hand, having one or two different types of pieces can allow you to transform your look if you are asked to try for alternate roles.
  • The Audition Makeup - An excellent rule to stick by is to wear the make-up you would usually wear to class, plus a little extra touch like lipstick or some eyelashes. Wear the level of make-up you're used to and can handle. And avoid lip gloss if your hair is down. You do not want the flyaway hair to be plastered all over your face, and since you're trying to be professional, you can't move it off your face until you've stopped dancing.
  • The Audition Hairstyle- Hairstyle is also an essential component of the perfect audition look, and like your outfit, it should be appropriate to the role. You also need to consider your comfort zone. If you always dance with your hair up, don't suddenly wear it down as it will change your center of balance. Those triple pirouettes you ace in class might be off-center because of it. But if you like to dance with your hair out and free, then you should be true to yourself. Be educated about what is expected in the industry; for example, an audition with the Australian ballet will require only a bunhead.
  • The Audition Dance Bag – Don't tote unnecessary stuff, be aware that there will be scores of other dancers and you don't want to create a nuisance toting an extra large bag. You also would not want to have any valuables missing while doing a lengthy audition where you bag is out of sight. A scruffy dance bag can make you look unprofessional at the very least while a well packed (with contents safely contained inside) neat looking bag speaks volumes about your preparedness and experience.

Audition Dance BagsA dance audition is many things to many people. Some use it as a valuable learning experience, others as an opportunity to network with people from the same industry.

Whatever it is to you, it is invaluable and of course, more auditions mean more opportunities for landing a part. So no matter what the result of an audition is, take advantage of each opportunity and turn it into a positive experience.


Look out for my next blog post on a natural, fun and smart look that is likely to be perfect for your next audition!

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