How do I become a professional dancer?

Question by Brooke: How do I become a professional dancer?
I’m 14 and starting dance classes such as hip hop, ballet, tap ect. (Ie already had dance experience And I’m planning on dancing at my dance school until I’m about 18. Then I want to move to LA and I want to be a dancer, like in music videos on tv shows and stuff (not a ballet dancer) or maybe on broadway. I live in the uk you see, I was wondering how I can get to where I want to be. Like in the uk we leave school at 16, so should I go to college? What should I study in college? How I get to LA and become a dancer? Thanks it would be a big help!!

Best answer:

Answer by Chloe
Okay, hun, can I be frank? You seem to not really know what you’re getting into. You’re starting really late on intensive training for someone who wants to be a professional dancer (I hope you’re dancing AT LEAST 35 hours per week!)

Do you know how many AMAZINGLY talented dancers there are out there? You don’t “just get a job.” You have to beat out HUNDREDS of other dancers who (sorry) probably have more experience than you.

Don’t even get me started on Broadway. You do realise that you would need a TON of other training for that? Stage combat, acrobatics, Shakespeare, ballroom, singing, acting, etc. You would need to do a ton of musical theatre training, community theatre, school plays, etc. before even thinking about Broadway.

I know I sound rude, I apologise, but any kind of art-based career is VERY difficult. I know a girl who is 11 and is on her third Broadway show. Imagine THOUSANDS of other girls with that kind of experience auditioning against you. Who do you think would have the best shot at getting a job? If you’re serious about wanting to be a dancer, performer, etc. you need to crack down. You live in the UK, the West End is in London, there are some amazing dance schools, etc. Your whole life has to be about this. I know people who’s are, they’ve had all the training, they’re AMAZINGLY talented, and yet they still cannot get jobs.

Remember, you don’t “just go to college.” You need to be accepted. You literally need to be a prodigy to be accepted to a really great school in any kind of art area (performing or fine.)

So I’ll lay it out for you. What should you study? What do YOU want to study?? Musical theatre? Dance? Acting? Music? I can’t really tell what you’re aiming for, you don’t seem to have a clear vision.

How do you get to LA? Get your hands on several thousand dollars (good luck with college tuition being where it’s at) and move there. How to become a dancer? Work your butt off. Take every opportunity. Spend 40 hours a week in the studio. In ANY free time, get the extra training I mentioned. Talk to West End performers or company dancers and ask them about what they do. They’ll all tell you the same thing: unless you are willing to give up everything for your passion, don’t do it. When I say everything, I mean it. My musical theatre teacher (Broadway star) was literally homeless and had NO MONEY OR FOOD at all for a period of time. He lived on the streets in Canada. If you think that’s uncommon, it’s not. It’s VERY common.

Go watch Every Little Step, the casting for A Chorus Line. PLEASE do. It’s on Youtube. You’ll see that there’s a girl who’s out of unemployment, a woman who has on the verge of bankruptcy (actually several), etc. It’s not an easy career because it’s competitive. There will always be someone more talented, prettier, taller, thinner, with more experience, than you. That’s just the facts of life!

Every Little Step:,d.dmg

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