Kate's Note: Drive and Determination

January 10, 2011

Last November, in NYC, Andrea Parson was honored, along with a handful of emerging young artists, with a coveted Princess Grace Award. And yet, in 2007, when she first auditioned for her dream company, the Northwest Dance Project (where she’s now a member), she didn’t get in.

What she did leave the audition with that day, however, was perhaps better than a job. She walked out of there with the knowledge that what she wanted more than anything else was to eventually dance with that company and in that specific style. From that moment on, she gained the power and speed of a freight train that’s impossible to stop.


This February issue features Dance Spirit’s annual auditions guide. And along with Andrea’s inspirational story of determination and perseverance, we’ve got lots of tips and tools for you to take advantage of when you set out to conquer your dance dreams.


In “I Hope I Get It” (p. 50), Sheryl Murakami shares her top 10 dos and six don’ts for the audition room. (For the record, Uggs are out!) Then: Think your audition photos don’t really matter? Think again! See what yours should look like in “Picture Perfect” (p. 52). Finally, turn to “Eye-Catching Audition Wear” (p. 32) if you’ve got an audition approaching and still don’t know what to wear! In this four-page feature, DS fashion editors Michael Anne Bailey and Khara Hanlon show you a few real-life looks for your ballet, modern, musical theater and commercial tryouts.


Oh, and, totally off topic, don’t miss “I Do!” (p. 46). In it, you’ll get the inside scoop on five dreamy dancer-to-dancer love stories.


Happy Valentine’s Day and happy auditioning!

Kate Lydon

No-Brainer Audition Tips that Often Fall by the Wayside

Know your number:
When the choreographer or teacher calls for numbers 1–10 to come forward and dance, please, don’t miss your chance!


Ditch the warm-ups:
If you’re going to hide under bulky legwarmers and shorts, you might as well stay home.


Show them your essence:
Whether you’re 13 and auditioning for a summer program or 26 and lining up for your 10th Broadway gig, bring your artistry. It’ll get you farther than you know.



Photo of Andrea Parson by Nathan Sayers.