How do I find dancing auditions?
Audition resources are plentiful in today's world of internet and cell phones. Couple that with the fact that the entertainment industry is booming and you have a recipe for an abundant amount of auditions for people trying to become involved in the dancing industry. Once you have decided that this is a path you would like to take, you will need to take it seriously. There is a lot to learn before you go to your first dancing audition. You can't be successful on talent alone, so when you go to dancing auditions, you must know what to be prepared for.
There are many resources that will offer to help you find dancing auditions in your local area. AuditionAgency.com is one of those companies that can help people find free dancing auditions as well. Many internet based companies offer resources to help beginners find dancing auditions, but the best way has always been with an agent.
Having the right agent can make or break you in the dancing industry. A good agent will have the proper connections, and pull necessary to get your feet in the door of the best casting opportunities for dancing auditions. In most cases, a good agent will not consider a dancer without professional experience so you may want to start somewhere small, with either free auditions, or a personal manager who can help guide you in the right direction until you're ready for an agent. If you feel you are prepared for an agent, you can choose to contact agencies and management companies who may be interested in your talents. If you would like the chance to get your feet wet first on some auditions and get a feel for the competition out there, along with a better understanding of the audition process, we can help with that too.
The audition process
Auditioning is the most nightmarish process imaginable for casting a project, but it's the only one we have. Unless you're already a hot commodity in the industry, you're going to have to audition to keep working. No one can claim to be the expert on auditions. Every dancer gets rejected. Every dancer goes through times when no one wants to hire them. It's part of the business. There are three main things to keep in mind when auditioning:
- They want you to do well. The casting process is as exhausting and difficult for them as it is for you. They're just waiting for the right person to walk in the room so they can all go home. Seeing them as the enemy doesn't serve you. Don't let the intimidating and often unfriendly situation keep you from doing your best work.
- Have fun. When it comes down to it, getting the job is 1% what you do, 9% what you look like, and 90% dumb luck. Do your best to control that 1% by being prepared, but don't beat yourself up over not getting the job. Sometimes the reason you don't get hired can be totally ludicrous. You have a better chance of success if you just take the opportunity to perform and have a good time.
- Have confidence in who you are and what you have to offer. Confidence sells, just like in any other industry. This in no way means "be arrogant". Arrogant people aren't confident, they're just - well schmucks. Be yourself, and you'll have more to bring to the table. Be prepared and you'll have your best work to offer.
The rest you'll learn through experience. Audition classes and workshops are available as well. Dancing is one of the most rewarding professions in the entertainment industry. Work hard and stick with it, the world needs good dancers and the stories they tell.
Preparing for auditions
If you ask a casting director what matters most when a dancer shows up to an audition, most will tell you that the dancer needs to "be prepared" Of course, being on time is usually a positive bonus as well.
It should be obvious, but it's surprising how many dancers make a bad impression with something as simple as inappropriate behavior. You have to keep in mind that casting directors already have the job, you don't. So you need to prove yourself to them, not the other way around. Some suggestions from casting directors include things like avoid unnecessary chit-chat. Don't linger in the room for too long after you sing.
A feeling of desperation is another sure way not to get a callback. Keep calm and collected, you don't want to come off as if you're begging or pleading. Consider each audition an opportunity or a chance to perform for an audience. Or walk into the audition saying, "No matter what happens, I'll do the best I can today." The casting director is not here to judge you harshly; he or she simply wants to find the perfect person for the job. Give yourself the best opportunity possible.
Sometimes dancers will seek out dancing coaches to prepare them for an audition. Don't over prepare though, you want to retain a substantial amount of flexibility. The bottom line is that you don't know exactly what the casting director is looking for unless is it very specific. The casting director will often ask you to dance differently, if you've become set in your ways about how you're dancing, it will be difficult to change. Be comfortable with what you're doing, but be prepared to change.
photos / headshots
One of the most important dancing tips is get good photos. To obtain photos or headshots in the entertainment business, appearance is practically everything. Lasting impressions come from that first glance. You must obtain the best headshot possible! Your headshot is your business card. Please remember that casting directors will only glance at your picture once, therefore you only have one chance to capture their interest. Professional photos are expensive, but you will not get very far without them. You can spend between $50 - $1000. Sometimes photographers are well-connected and may present a great chance to help you find a local agent or manager.
You may want to consider seeking quality training before you begin to audition for major casting directors. Proper training from reputable dancing schools will help reinforce the correct techniques required by top casting directors and agencies. Another important dancing tip they can help with is putting together a good resume. There are certain standards and guidelines for a dancer's resume. Your resume must be well-written and professional. List all of your past and current training, experiences, talents, skills, contacts, etc. A good dancing school can not only look nice on your resume, but they can often help you write your resume, and help put you in some dancing projects that you will be able to add to your dancing resume. While a dancing school may not be necessary for everybody, there is certainly no shame in going to a good dancing school and it can only offer more benefits than not attending.
Dancing or singing may seem easy. Often enough people fail when trying to become a singer, musician or dancer because they lack the training and experience. There are many schools and classes that specialize in different entertainment fields such as singing, dancing, playing instruments, etc. Focus your training on what you are best suited for and most interested in. Good training may cost a substantial amount of money; however, it will play an important part in reaching your goals. Be careful in your selections because there are many frauds. Always check references & credentials.
agents / talent managers
If you're looking for dancing tips, here's one, find a professional agent or manager. It is your responsibility to select an agent or manager, which is right for you. You can do so by simply sending out your picture and resume along with a demo to all the agents/managers in your area. They will call you back if they are impressed with your picture and are interested in representing you. Every major city has well-established talent agencies and management groups. Contact a few different agencies/managers and see what they require. The key to success is retaining an agent/manager that is well established and experienced! Ask for references and credentials before signing any contracts. We advise you to work under a non-exclusive 1-2 year contract in order to make certain your agent/manager performs their duties professionally.
Guidelines to follow when auditioning:
- Always know what you are auditioning for.
- Arrive thirty minutes prior to the audition time; this will allow ample time to check in and warm up, check out your competition.
- Bring at least 2 photos and resumes. Photos should reflect current physical likeness (should always be updated!)
- Do not chew gum (all directors hate it)
- When attending callbacks, always wear the same attire worn at audition. Try to do everything you did the first time because it has already worked during the first audition.
- Be confident, smile, always have a positive attitude
- Act excited about everything you asked to do
- Wear appropriate dance attire.
- Bring appropriate dance shoes.
- If the audition requires singing, bring at least 2 selections of sheet music, 1 up-tempo and 1 ballad.
- Be prepared to sing the best 16 bars.
Tools to Become Successful in the music industry
- The first thing a band or artist needs is a demo. Put your best three songs on a CD and have it ready at all times. It is too difficult for A&R reps to drive out to your show, especially if they don't know what they're expecting. First you need to send a good copy of your music. Don't mail out a home recording to a record label, this is a representation of your group, and your sound. If the recording quality is no good, they will think you don't care about what you sound like. Get a good demo together before anything.
- You can't sell your demo to anyone if they don't hear your music first. Find the local clubs and bars that cater to your groups sound, and start playing there. Don't be afraid to call, clubs need bands to make money, they want to hear from you. When you do book a show, promote for it. There is no point in playing a show if no one is there to hear it. When you are looking for local clubs to play, keep in mind the clubs that are most popular, where people will be already, bring your music to them.
- Promote any way you can. Success in the music business at any level requires dedication, persistence, energy, and passion. It simply isn't good business to wait for an audience to find you. You must reach out to your audience and find them. The best way to get your music to an A&R person is to cause them to come to you. Get out there and market yourself, dress according to your sound, have good music, a good recording of it, a good show, and a good fan base. If you want attention from A&R, you have to have the attention of the fans. It is doubtful A&R will take calls or demos from every person who wants to pitch their music to them, if they did they wouldn't have time to do any of their other work.
- Managers can help shop your group for a record deal, but only if they have the connections to get your music to the right people. It's not impossible, but friends, or family with no music industry experience usually aren't going to be able to get through locked industry doors. The right manager for this task can be hard to find, and must be carefully chosen. You don't want to get tied up in complicated legal contracts with inexperienced managers who will need to be replaced once a record deal comes along. Most managers will take between 10% and 20% of an artist's gross income; including record royalties, publishing income, and touring and merchandising income.