Get Ready For Youth Dance Ensemble Auditions

Youth Dance Ensemble student Sofia Ballance performs a solo at The Jack Guidone Theater.
Youth Dance Ensemble student Sofia Ballance performs a solo at The Jack Guidone Theater.

The Youth Dance Ensemble Program is Joy of Motion Dance Center’s elite program for the developing young dancer. Directed by Helen Hayes, this pre-collegiate program, with core classes in ballet, jazz, and modern, provides an experience that inspires excellence in dance, education, and life. In addition to core classes, the YDE program incorporates supplemental study in additional dance forms, dance history, improvisation, and composition, as well as artist residencies and numerous performance opportunities. The Ensemble has performed at the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage, and at special events such as the National Cherry Blossom Festival.

Auditions for the Youth Dance Ensemble Program will take place Sunday, April 28, 2013 at JOMDC Friendship Heights, 5207 Wisconsin Avenue NW. Auditions for dancers grades 1-7 take place 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. Dancers in grades 8-12 audition 7:00 – 8:30 p.m. Please visit the Youth Dance Ensemble Program page to register your child for auditions. Want to learn more about the program and find out how you can prepare for auditions? Read the following from YDE student Sofia Ballance and YDE Director Helen Hayes:

Thoughts from Sofia Ballance, Youth Dance Ensemble Student
My name is Sofia Nicole Ballance and I am 11 years old and this is my first year in YDE. I like YDE for many reasons. I have made many friends. I enjoy my teachers and have learned a lot about dance such as technique and dance vocabulary. Dancing makes me happier and is great exercise. It has been fun to experience different types of dance. I like to perform in the dances that my teachers choreograph. I have become more mature being in YDE. Every time I do a performance, I am more confident. When I dance, I express myself without using words. Being in YDE is very important to me!

Audition Tips from Helen Hayes, Youth Dance Ensemble Program Director

  • Present yourself in a polished, professional manner. Solid leotard, clean tights with no runs or holes, hair completely up, ballet slippers that have elastics sewn properly and wear your SMILE! You never get a second chance to make a first impression!
  • Go for everything! Don’t be tentative in your approach to the audition class, even if you are unsure and make a mistake. We are more interested in a committed, invested dancer who takes chances than always getting the steps correctly.
  • Try not to look down, but push your energy out through space and remember that your focus is a part of your dancing.
  • Think about being expressive in each exercise, even while at the ballet barre. Most importantly, show how much you LOVE dance by dancing fully and with your heart.