Choosing a Dance Audition Piece

A Dancer's Next Steps: Auditioning and Interviews

When selecting the pieces you will perform at an audition, three things are essential to ensure that you are well prepared.

1. Check dance audition guidelines

Closely check any specific guidelines provided by the production, company or school

2. Seek the advice of your dance teacher

Whether or not you have completed your formal education, you should always have a teacher! Training is a life-long process, and a professional teacher or coach can always help give you personal guidance for content, preparation and presentation at every stage of your career.

3. Prepare extra choreography

The piece(s) you select should be well rehearsed and very familiar so you can perform them technically well, but with a relaxed and expressive quality that shows you off to best advantage.

Have a range of pieces or roles prepared and bring along any sheet music, recorded music, attire, dance shoes or simple costume/prop pieces you may need for your pieces as well as for an additional piece if requested.

Always have more material prepared than you intend to present so you can be prepared for the unexpected request!

A ballet dancer performs and poses in the studio

Photo by Melissa Dooley

And, remember…

Even in college programs or apprentice positions that may not require a formal audition, faculty and directors will continually observe how you handle yourself in rehearsals.

Consider every day an audition and you will be well on your way to developing an even artistic temperament that will help you weather the ups and downs of your chosen career.

Now that you know where you’ll audition and which audition piece you’ll perform, in the next installment of this series we’ll talk about what to do and expect before, during, and after a dance audition or interview.

Janaea Lyn Rose McAleeJanaea Rose Lyn (McAlee) is the currently full-time faculty and Dance Coordinator at Estrella Mountain Community College in Arizona. Previously she was Assistant Professor of Dance and Performing Arts Program Coordinator at Cecil College in Maryland. She is the author of Dance This Notebook with Artist Laura Higgins Palmer and is a contributing writer for Choreoclinic. Janaea was Founding Artistic Director of both Convergence Dancers & Musicians and Dance Matrix, and she remains active as a Third Generation Isadora Duncan Dancer. Information at

(Interview photo by David Davies)
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