Read once today and read again in the future if it is needed.
I dedicate this article to you because I love you dearly...
#1 : LOVE YOURSELF
I know it sounds cliche, but this is the first advice I will give you. You must love yourself to get the right mindset to become the best version of yourself. Love yourself to work hard enough for your dreams. Respect yourself enough to pick the right job, to make the right decisions and to surround yourself with people who are going to lift you higher. Think about your own good, it is your career. You are not being selfish, it is your life, your body, just make sure you are happy with what you are doing. You must love yourself to follow your own path, to believe in your own success and most importantly you must love yourself to love others.
#2 : SELF DISCIPLINE
If you have just graduated, now you are in charge, no one will tell you to take your technical class regularly, it is part of your daily routine as long as you are a performer. Keep training, take a technical class at least 3 times a week, keep going to ballet, don't skip ballet, please don't! Personally I never made that mistake but I know many dancers who did. You might love commercial, hip hop etc... fine, I love that, however they can't maintain your technique. Ballet, Horton, Graham, Contemporary and Jazz will. Have a bit of both! If you are on tour or working onboard a cruise ship you can still make it happen, find a nice spot and do a good ballet barre before your shows! If you are an actor or a singer the same applies to you. Your body and your voice are precious tools, look after yourself the best you can, get enough rest, sleep and eat well. Be mentally and physically ready, always.
#3 : YOU ARE SO LUCKY!
I don't know your opinion about luck but from now on you are f****** LUCKY! You must believe in your bright future, you must believe in your good fortune as you are blessed. You are in the right place at the right moment and you always get what you want! Is it the truth? If not, well, now it is. You will attract everything you want and it will never stop. I am so lucky! What about you? Decide to be lucky today, that is the secret!
#4 : BELIEVE IN ABUNDANCE
You live in a world full of opportunities, there is plenty of work for you. You are an opportunity magnet, you are feeling great and you are very proactive thus you always get what you want. If you don't get a job it is always because it wasn't for you, better is coming soon and you must be free to receive it. Believe in it. You are abundant, your life is abundant!
Why? Because you are Lucky! Remember?!
#5 : THE POWER OF 4
Be proactive. It is nice to dream but not only. Make sure you take action, have faith, be persistent and you will always win. It might take time, you might audition many times before booking your first job, that's completely normal, keep working hard! Focus on what you want only. Keep training, auditioning, and one day, I guarantee you that you will get what you always wanted. A dream without actions is just a dream, a dream and daily inspired action becomes reality.
The Power of 4: Dream + Inspired Action + Perseverance = RESULT
#6 : DEFINE WHAT SUCCESS MEANS TO YOU
Most important point. What does success really mean to you? Not to me, not to your family or your friends but TO YOU. You must find the answer and focus on it. You must be clear about it. Why is it so important? Satisfaction. Happiness. Joy. Fulfilment. If you can't define what success means to you, you might never be satisfied! You can get the best job in the world, it means nothing if you can't appreciate it. This is why you must know. For your peace of mind but also to give a purpose to your life. When you know you can create an action plan and go through a daily routine, persistently, until the day it will hit you in the face: You made it!
#7 : AUDITION
In 7th position? Yes. If you want to win at life you must live by the tips 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 first.
Do not follow this advice: << Audition? No pressure, no worries, relax, it's like a free class, it's OK if you don't get the job, just enjoy...>>. The worst advice ever. I know it came from a place of love but it didn't help me. What happens with this mindset? You are conditioning yourself to "enjoy a free class". Not to get the job. NO, YOU ARE NOT TAKING A CLASS. Indeed have fun but remember why you are here! YOU WANT THE JOB! You want it so hard! You're there to smash it! To be the best you can! This must be clear in your mind. Your mindset will be completely different, I call it the "Beast Mode". Find yours, transform into someone incredibly talented, powerful, strong and unstoppable! Believe in yourself, everyone has something to offer, you are unique.
That being said. Now I will tell you how to go as far as possible. Stay close to the panel, remember this is an audition, you want to be seen. No one knows the choreography, make sure you can see the choreographer and ask questions if necessary, however not more than 2. You are not the "question girl/guy". There's always one dancer "The Brain", the quick learner. Stick with him/her. I didn't say to rely on anyone, just consider this dancer as your "secret support", like a 2nd mirror. If there is an incredibly talented artist in the studio "The Machine", if possible avoid being in the same group as you want to be seen for Your Talent. If you can't find "The Brain" or "The Machine" in the room, guess what? It might be you! It works both ways! It is a competition but everyone has a chance because we never know what they are looking for. I auditioned in the past with incredibly talented dancers, fantastic technique and bodies but they couldn't pass the first round! Who knows why? Give your very best as you could be The one. I remember this company audition, they needed only 1 dancer... Guess what? I got the job!
As I like to say: You must believe in yourself if you want them to believe in you. There is only one you, if they don't want you today, they will want you another day.
You can also send spontaneous application. Create your own luck, take risks, it worked so well for me, create your own opportunities. There are many paths to success, take as many as you can! You might surprise yourself too...
Audition for the right reasons. I auditioned twice for a famous musical, I got until the very end, I smashed it. I was just waiting for "the call". I didn't get the job, twice. I auditioned because people wanted me to, it suited me well apparently. Deep inside of me I only cared about money. I wasn't passionate about this job, not at all. Despite being perfect for the role, I couldn't get it. When you really want something you get it. If it's not for you, Move on!
Be realistic. Do not audition for the Royal Ballet if you are not a strong ballet dancer, do not audition for The Martha Graham Company if you never took a Graham class before, do not audition for a vocal ensemble if you can't sing, if they need tap dancers don't show up if you can't tap... Just be mindful about it. You are lucky indeed. However, don't waste your precious time and preserve your reputation. Focus on your strengths first.
Lastly, don't tell every single time about your auditions, you don't need that pressure, you can fail many times before booking a job and it is completely normal. My first auditions were in New York, the level was extremely high, despite going quite far every time, I auditioned perhaps 20 times before booking my first job (which I couldn't take at the end because of my visa!). I got tired of hearing the same question: << So? Did you get it?>>. Do not tell the world, you don't need that.
#8 : CONSIDER FREE WORK ONLY IF YOU GET SOMETHING IN RETURN
You always have a choice. If you are working for free make sure you are doing it for something, if it is not financial you must find something worth giving your time for, otherwise it becomes a sacrifice. I know sacrifice very well, it's consuming. Do it for something you truly love, perhaps to work with an inspiring choreographer, to share the stage with amazing people or for your CV. If it's a winning plan go for it!
#9 : MAKE THE RIGHT DECISIONS
Again, define what is the right decision! Love yourself enough to decide what's right for you, but what is the right decision? The one you just made! Don't ever question that and trust your intuition. Have faith in your choices. Every decision you make is the RIGHT decision for you.
#10 : AGENT
Yes if you consider working in musical theater, commercial, in TV and film. I had multiple agents in my career. Make sure to find the right agent for you and don't be ashamed of asking anything you need, do not forget that you are the client, you're more valuable than you think. The perfect agent will find great opportunities for you, the perfect agent will always ask you first before putting you forward for a job. You need someone who believes in you. Also be aware of scam, always investigate before making a decision. Finally, you can have up to 3 agents on Spotlight, however use only 1 if possible as casting directors prefer to see actors with only one agent.
#11 : IT'S A SMALL WORLD AND IT'S TRUE
Don't lie. People always find out. I auditioned many dancers in my career, trust me, people go very far, even add 20 cm onto their height. Have some self-respect, please don't follow their example. Be polite to others, don't complain publicly, be happy and smile at work. Do not talk about your rate, be discreet about it. Show up all the time and do your job the best you can. You got the job, now you must keep it. Be nice and you will be booked again. Finally, give more! Do things you weren't paid for, why not? Show them how valuable you are and how you make a difference in the show. It would be much appreciated and they will thank you for that.
#12 : A SOURCE OF POWER
What is it? Your Haters! Those are the people who don't support you, either because they don't understand you, they want you to fail or because they are jealous. Be happy about it! If they are jealous it is because you are great! And even if they hate what you are doing, secretly they envy you. Just keep going, prove them wrong, inspire them, at the end of the day they can't harm you.
Are you jealous? Are you a hater? If you find yourself in this position one day, I would love you to take a moment to think about it. Perhaps take this opportunity to grow as an artist and learn from them instead. Observe them and apply these lessons into your own career. Your energy is so precious, don't waste it, move on and create your own success. Abundance! Remember?
#13 : IT IS YOUR BUSINESS - REAP THE FRUIT OF YOUR LABOR
Our profession is unpredictable. I wish you to work as much as you want. However, do not forget to save money. Save, always. Put aside at least 10% of EVERYTHING you earn. Your mother gives you money for your birthday? Save 10%. First thing to do on payday? Save 10%. Be responsible and make it a habit. This is called "Pay yourself first". Save 5% if you can't save 10 and save 20% if you are comfortable, just find the right balance for you. You are making money, be happy and grateful about it.
And for those wondering... What about the future? Can I be a professional artist and a parent at the same time? The answer is yes you can. You read tips 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 so you should already know the answer. You can have anything you want, you are your only limit.
I wish you all the success, happiness and love in the world and if you need some guidance M-Intensive Online Dance Training is right there by your side. Always. Today you made the right decision, you read this article until the end because you are investing in yourself.
This is not a coincidence, you were at the right place at the right moment.
LUCKY YOU !