Getting Recital Ready
Recital season is upon us! The moment you as a dancer have been waiting for and have worked towards the entire dance season. This is the opportunity to show off how much you’ve learned and improved on stage in front of an audience.
Here are some quick tips to get you ready for recital and make sure you put your best “dance-self” forward:
Continue to work hard in class:
The recital is where you will get the chance to demonstrate how much you have improved during the year. Take a minute and think about this…look back and be proud of how far you’ve come. Perhaps you started the year only being able to do a single pirouette, but you stuck with it, practiced your technique, applied your teacher’s corrections and now are doing “clean” doubles. This is all because of your hard work and for attending class every week. Having said this, as recital approaches in the coming weeks, make sure you continue to work just as hard. It will show on stage through the confidence in your movement. In turn, you will be able to focus on dancing and performing instead of just the steps.
Attend all rehearsals:
Do this not only for yourself, but also out of respect for your classmates and teacher. Know that all rehearsals are important, these include your in class rehearsals, technical and dress rehearsals.
In class is where you will learn the choreography for the performance and apply any changes that may come about for the final product. During class rehearsals you will have the chance to clarify any doubts you may have about the dance. Use this time to get your questions answered not only about steps but also about the performance quality of the dance, such as the emotion you are supposed to convey while dancing. Is it a choreography that calls for you to look happy and pleasant or is it a dance that requires you to look more solemn, pensive or sad; for example. It all depends on what the choreographer/teacher wants. Check out this article for more help on delivering the message or concept of a dance.
At technical rehearsal you will get to walk through the dance and block it out on stage. This rehearsal is mostly for the dancers to get acquainted with the stage and for the lighting and technical directors to set light and music cues in addition to any props, scene changes and entrances and exits of dancers. It is very important to attend tech rehearsal so that everyone working day-of-show will know exactly what to expect from each and every choreography.
Dress rehearsal is where all dances are run in order as if it were opening night. This is where the show directors get to test out and see if anything will go wrong or needs to be changed. It is the opportunity for dancers to know how quick changes will happen, how much time they have between dances (given they dance in more than one) and to see how costumes, make-up and props will work.
Go over the routine in your head:
One technique to review the choreography that works wonders is to go over the dance in your head before bed, every night. Close your eyes and envision the steps in your head. Go through everything by memory without the music. This method will show you definitely know the dance inside and out.
Listen to the music:
At home or whenever you get a chance, listen to the music and walk through the movement. This will help you learn the music, the ups, downs and pauses and help you remember cues for key points of the choreography.
Practice without the mirror:
Whether you get the chance to do this at the dance studio or at home, try practicing without the mirror. This technique will help you learn the dance really well. Also, practicing without looking at your reflection will assist in your emotional projection on stage.
Try with your costume:
It’s important to practice your dances with your costume. This way you will know if it gets in the way, if it is restricting your movement or perfectly fine. Try doing this earlier rather than later so that you have enough time to alter either the costume or movement before the show.
If you follow these tips you will be in a great shape to perform your best at the show. Remember to get a good night’s rest, warm-up properly before the performance and enjoy yourself to the fullest.
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