Haley Hilton is a fair-skinned woman with blonde hair pulled back into a bun and wearing a maroon sleeveless leotard. She faces left and poses in arabesque on pointe on her left leg, with her right leg and arm pointing backward and her left arm raised overhead.

Begin Again: Headshots and Dance Shots, Baby!

These days, headshots and dance shots are a performer’s gateway into any audition. They’re the first thing casting directors and artistic directors see of you—a first impression, if you will—making quality images a necessity. But for me, photographs documenting my dancing and my likeness go beyond being crucial audition materials. After nine years off of […]

Haley Hilton wears black leggings and tank top, and her husband Coleman Clyde wears a loose maroon short-sleeved T-shirt and dark pants. They have an arm around each other and are taking a selfie in a dance studio, with ballet barres in the background.

Begin Again: The Audition Grind

I’m ready to start auditioning, and hoping that someone will take a chance on me. This month I’m sharing a bit about my process for finding auditions, submitting self-tapes and taking advantage of networking opportunities without an agent.

man and woman dancing, man is wearing black leotard, woman is wearing black tutu and crop top

Use Your Voice: 8 Slating Tips for Auditions

With millions of things to think about before an audition, it’s easy to forget about slating, or the moment before actuall­y auditioning­ when you introduce yourself to the panel, whether­ on a self-tape or at an in-person casting call.

a line of dancers in leotards stands alongside a barre inside a dance studio, with numbers pinned to their torsos

The Ballet Job Market Needs a Market (Re)Design

The pandemic has contributed to many shifts in the dance world, as the community has outspokenly criticized longstanding practices and cultural norms. However, no one has called into question the structure (or, rather, the lack thereof) of the job market. As a now-retired ballet dancer of nearly a decade and a PhD student in economics […]

Graceful young woman dancing in sport studio

What You Need to Know Before Your First Commercial Dance Audition

At 6:30 am on a brisk day in September 2018, Christina Kotsopoulos found herself standing in an open-call audition line for Wicked on Broadway—wholly unprepared for what was about to happen. She had just spent the last four years at SUNY Purchase primarily studying concert dance. The training had taught her foolproof concert audition tips, […]

An Asian man sits on a stool at the front of a ballet studio, wearing a mask, clapping his hands together.

How to Cope With Summer Intensive Rejection

There’s something uniquely crushing about summer intensive rejection. Perhaps it’s because it’s the first time many students have ever experienced this kind of rebuff. Or perhaps it’s simply hard to not think, If I can’t even get into the summer program, how am I ever going to be good enough to make it in dance?