Audition Tips - Younger dancers (5 year old)
I am typing this for my 5 yr old ballerina Rosemary who is dreaming of one day being able to dance professionally. After completing pre ballet classes and now her first year of primary she is thrilled to have been invited to audition for The Nutcracker. The audition is only 2 weeks away. Like many little girls, dancing in the Nutcracker has been a dream of hers since she was very very young.She often sleeps with her nutcracker doll at night and watches the professional productions on DVD while dancing along.My daughter is very excited to audition and wants to give it her very best even though she is also aware that not everyone who auditions will get a part and is comforted to know that she can try again next year if it doesn't work out.
Unfortunately, I do not come from a a dance background and am not familiar with the process or expectations for dancers in this age group. Her dance school has mentioned that the most important quality they will be looking for is gracefulness but that is all the information I have.
Do you have any specific advice for little dancers? What would you recommend for her to focus on?
She is getting very good feedback from her teachers and is very confidant and poised on stage. She is attentive in class and does not wiggle or goof around as much as many of the other little girls. She takes ballet seriously. Because her hamstrings tend to be a little tight we are working on stretching as often as possible.
Did anyone give you good advice at that age which helped you to get to where you are today? Are there any things you think I could be doing as a mother to encourage her goals without applying any additional pressure?
Any tips or advice you can give would be well recieved and read over and over again by her.
Thank you so much,
Rosemary and her mom.
Reply by Odette
To: - Audition Tips - Younger dancers (5 year old)
Hello to you both!
Thank you so much for contacting me, I am delighted to help you. I am always full of advice, so please do keep in touch and let me know your thoughts!
Firstly, there is a page I have just recently put up about the best advice to give to a dancer at five years old. The question is very similar to yours, so take a look and even join in the discussion using the comment box -
Best Advice for a Five Year Old
Apart from what I've said on that page, I would say to keep up the good work because it all sounds very positive. Remember, you can't always control the casting and auditions, so even the most talented dancers can easily get missed out. When I was younger, around 12 years old, I didn't get selected to perform in the Nutcracker at my school because I was too tall at the time. Yet in no ways did this hold me back, apart from feeling a little disheartened, I still went on to become a professional!
It doesn't at all mean you are good enough or did something wrong if you don't always get chosen, because especially with a production like Nutcracker the main priority will often be judged on heights and looks as well as dancing ability.
For you, as a mother and supporting mentor, I would say to keep encouraging her and build a positive energy towards her dancing. It is much to do with how you handle this profession mentality as it is physically. You have to build a thick skin and have a strong focus, which stimulates from the dancer themselves but also from the people who are supporting you.
If you can, just start building a strong and positive attitude for her now so as she gets older she is tough enough to not let anything hold her back from her goals!
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