Audition Season for Summer Intensives
It is that time of year again…to already start thinking about your summer dance plans. Auditions are almost over and deadlines for enrolling are approaching quickly. When looking for a summer dance program, consider what you want to accomplish during your intense dance experience. Do you want to: Get stronger? Improve your technique? Get performance exposure? Study with famous dance teachers? Learn different dance styles? The sky is our limit and programs have a wide variety of opportunities.
Here are some suggestions to help you make a decision on which program to choose:
1) How intensive of a program do you want? Is two weeks enough? Should it be 6 weeks? How many hours a day do you get to dance? Summer programs vary a lot in all of these ways and make sure that you choose what is right for you. Consider if this will be your first time away from home, and how it compares to your current dance schedule. Even if you already dance 20+ hours per week, a jump to 40 hours per week is huge.
2) How diverse is the summer intensive program? Does it involve multiple styles of dance and exposure to other arts like music and theatre? This would be an opportunity to branch out to learn new things that might be outside of your comfort zone.
3) Does the program involve cross training for conditioning the dancer body to prevent injury? Many programs highlight this with adding disciplines like yoga and Pilates. How often is this offered, and is it a regular part of the curriculum, so to help you return home dancing stronger than ever?
4) What is the class size like? Many summer programs accept a lot more dancers than during the school year, which could mean class sizes of 20+. Don’t be afraid to ask about this detail before deciding. Some people like to be “big fish in little ponds”, while others like to be “little fish in big ponds.” Know what makes you strive to dance better.
5) Is performing important to you? Some programs will do extensive performances, while others do “in studio” performances, and others simply stick to classes. Figure out what you need to pursue your passion. Programs with performances may have increased intensity with additional rehearsals.
The last thought is that it seems far away, but summer intensive dance programs require training so to prevent injuries. In that “post school, pre summer intensive” time, make sure to not reduce your dance hours, but instead increase your dancing hours gradually to try to get up to what you will expect, once at the program. This is difficult when studios are offering reduced classes, so seek out opportunities in and outside of dance such as going to the gym or taking Pilates equipment or mat classes! Summer will be here before we know it!