Audition #11: Company XIV Revisited – and “testing well”

This is my first post about a “double” audition.  That’s right, I auditioned for Company XIV AGAIN.  They were holding another open call so I couldn’t resist.  I really loved the choreography I learned and the people, so I decided to be persistent and go back for seconds.  It still counts! 🙂

As I came up to their studio in Brooklyn and stood in like waiting to register, I couldn’t help but wonder if I might get the same number I had last time….

Nope.  Four numbers shy of 61!

I wasn’t the only one who was coming back for more.  I recognized a handful of dancers from the last one – maybe 3 or 4.  I watched the company members closely to see if we would be doing the same combination, and soon realized that we in fact were doing a brand new combination.

The first round this time was more difficult.  Last time we just had a gesture series, but this one included turns and a big fall to the floor, along with some of their signature movements.  Thankfully the combination was in the same style as before.

There were a little over 100 dancers I believe.  I tried to find the highest number.  This is less than the first time.  We went through groups twice before they made cuts.  I did ok but I was uncertain.

I made the first cut!  This time I counted – I was with 33 dancers who stayed.  One in three so far.  There were significantly more females than last time.

As before, we went on with the combination a little further.  Much of the same, including the large battement fouette.

Time for the second cut.  Who’s staying?  Everyone apparently.  They made no cuts and we moved on further with the combination.  Ok, I *think* that means I made the second cut?  We are gonna go with yes.  Yes I made the second cut, even if everyone else did. 🙂

We learn more combination and do it again.  I’m pretty comfortable with the work right now.  I’m trying to add as many nuances as I can and listen to their notes.  We quickly go twice through all the groups again.

As they prepare to make the third cut, all I can think to myself is “I want in with this company so I’m not giving up after this audition!”

I don’t make the third cut.

I thank the auditors and linger for awhile while they work with the remaining dancers so that I can hear a few of their notes for future reference.  I overhear some useful tidbits of information.

I’m going to follow this company and definitely attend their workshops and see if they need interns.  I don’t feel too bad about making it one cut further 🙂  In my mind at least I did.

Which brings me to an idea I had for this blog.  I realized that one of the best things I can do for you guys – my loyal readers – through this process is to help you learn how to audition well.

It’s the difference between doing your homework and taking a test.  Some of us do really well in class, but we just don’t test well.  Testing is a skill, we learn in regular school.  Likewise, I believe that it’s true that really great dancers can do well in class and performance, but they just don’t audition well.

So my goal is to collect as much information as I can on how to “test well” at auditions.  Of course, this is going to be general.  Every show/company is looking for something specific and different, so much so that even the best ballerinas in the world may not be right for a company if their main repertoire includes broadway or street jazz (just an example).

In many cases, you have to read minds in order to know how to audition well for a certain gig, and I dont’ know how to teach you to read minds.  But even if you don’t know the company’s work, I believe that there are general principles that will make a dancer stand out.  I’m going to try and use this as research to figure out what those are and share them with you.

Company XIV, I’ll be back.  In the meantime…



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