The Ultimate Audition Guide
August 16th, 2020 by Elizabeth Radabaugh
Auditions—something every dancer must face. Want to know how to alleviate nerves, and ace your next audition? Check out this quick audition guide to the most effective ways to prepare for any and all future auditions you may face.
Doing The Research
Before going into your audition, it is important to research the company you are auditioning for prior to the actual day of the audition. Look up where they perform and attend their dance shows. Learning more about the company and what kind of dancing they do will help you target the kind of training you need in order to properly prepare for your audition.
Preparing Your Mind
Before and on the day of your audition, it is critical that you get your mind in the mindset to audition. Especially on the day before and the day of the audition, make sure not to put extra pressure on yourself. “Instead, think about all the preparation you’ve done. You’re ready. Now relax. You want your mind to be clear and in a positive place,” says Dr. Millie Figuerado, a psychologist for the Miami City Ballet School.
Right before your audition, to relax your nerves, try some simple breathing methods, in order to clear and center your mind. “Close your eyes or focus on a fixed point. Inhale for five or six slow counts, hold it for a second, and then count backwards from five or six as you exhale.” By focusing on your breathing, you can help alleviate stress, and help yourself forget about any last minute worries you may have.
If you feel it is hard to gather your confidence for an audition, Dr. Figuerado has a tip for you. Approach your dance classes and rehearsals as if they were an audition. You will start to learn how to display your confidence, and your passion, through your movement.
Preparing Your Body
In order to most effectively prepare your body for your next audition, make sure to pay attention to your nutrition. “Focus on eating whole foods—a variety of lean proteins, complex carbs and healthy fats,” says Alexis Appel, a registered dietitian. “Limit your intake of highly processed foods, candies and sodas,” she adds. According to Appel, the act of eating clean and healthy is essential in making sure you perform at your very best. It also helps prevent getting sickness right before your audition!
The day of your audition, try and eat a snack 30-60 minutes before you begin, and try not to eat too close to your audition time—at least 20-30 minutes before, Appel suggests. Nomming on a healthy mix of protein and fruit, such as a Greek yogurt with berries, or a banana with peanut butter, will provide you with the fuel you need for your audition.
Getting proper sleep
In addition to paying attention to what you put into your body, it is crucial to make a habit of getting the proper amount of sleep your body needs to perform well—at least eight hours a night.
Don’t push yourself
Especially one-two weeks before your big audition, make sure not to try anything too intense, or something you’re not used to doing. Doing so will help avoid any unnecessary injuries that will prevent you from auditioning and/or performing at your best level.
Warm-up, Cool Down
The day before the audition, if you have a dance class, don’t skip it. “You want to be rested, but think about how a first class back is on a Monday after a weekend or after taking a short vacation—you’re not always together,” says Oliver Wevers, director of the contemporary ballet company Whim W’him. Make sure to warm-up and cool down before and after any and all dance classes you partake in before the day of the audition.
At least half an hour before your audition, make sure to warm-up after changing and eating your healthy snack. Stretching out and preparing your body in this timeframe is key to a successful audition. “Try to carve out about six feet of room around you for your warm-up, because you’ll need the space for your dynamic stretches—things like walking battements, side lunges, or walks with front attitude swings,” suggests Heather Southwick, Boston Ballet’s director of physical therapy.
All the above will ensure you prep your body, mind and sprit to the level you need to succeed in any audition you may face. Now go forth, and conquer!
Genni Abilock is a writer for StarQuest. She loves baby carrots, SpongeBob, and playing Frank Sinatra songs on the ukulele.