Auditions: keep striving
Each audition teaches you something new, writes Nae Kojima.
I BEGAN ballet at the age of five at the Amanda Bollinger Dance Academy in Queensland. Under the guidance and wonderful training from Miss Amanda, I began auditioning in 2016/2017 for a variety of schools around America and Europe via video audition. In September, 2017, I accepted a place at the Junior Company of the Kirov Academy of Ballet and moved to Washington, DC, to further my classical training.
Here, I have been preparing for company auditions, both in-person and video. Over the past couple of months, I have travelled around DC and to places such as New York and Boston to participate in on-site auditions, some of which were call-backs from the first audition process of a video. My video audition demonstrated two stage performances of contrasting classical variations and a contemporary piece.
Final auditions often had around 20-40 dancers in the audition with ages varying from 17 years and older. Open auditions, on the other hand, have had close to 100 in one studio. This, for me, has been very challenging not only in terms of dealing with the spacing with so many in one small studio, but mostly in trying to capture the director’s eye. Some auditions notify you on the spot, while others take up to several weeks or months to let you know.
Once again, I have sent my audition materials to companies around America and Europe. A lot of the companies I have yet to hear back from. Auditioning for companies this year has been quite an experience for me and I am undoubtedly learning something new from each one.
Although I am still a novice with auditions, my advice would be to research each company, the directors and their repertoire list before attending the audition or sending videos. Most importantly though, you must be confident in the class so directors can see the full-potential of your technique and artistry. Auditions can be a very long process and, whatever the result may be, remember that there are many more companies and prestigious schools all over the world. Be patient and keep striving!
This article appears in the 2018 Audition Sampler, in the June/July 2018 issue of Dance Australia, on sale now. Get all the best audition advice! Buy Dance Australia at your favourite magazine retailer or purchase an online copy via the Dance Australia app or subscribe here.
Picture: Nae Kojima. PHOTO: STEPHAN BOLLINGER