The Right Steps Toward a Dance Career
What Is Dance?
Dance is a type of art form in which people use their bodies to express themselves, and usually a dance is accompanied by music. When dancing, a person often tries to express different ideas and emotions with her movements. Some types of dance can also be used for storytelling.
Since dancing is a very physically demanding art form, most dancers must work very hard to stay physically fit. This will often include a strict diet, along with a rigorous exercise routine.
What Are the Different Types Of Dance?
Ballet is one of the most common types of dance, and many other types of dance are actually based on ballet. This style of dance has been around for centuries, and it is often considered to be one of the most beautiful. Although classical music is usually used to set the scene for a ballet, other types of music can be used as well. Modern dance is similar to classic ballet, but it generally does not follow the same strict rules, guidelines, and dance moves.
Tap dancing is another popular form of dancing. Unlike most other dancers, tap dancers need special noise making shoes with metal plates that make a tapping sound when the dancer strikes her foot on the floor. Along with expressing herself through movements, a tap dancer will also usually add to the rhythm of the music – or make her own music – by tapping her shoes on the floor.
Jazz dance generally consists of very bold moves and it is often set to upbeat, energetic jazz music. Unlike some other forms of dance, the intrinsic nature of jazz dance often allows dancers to add quite a bit of personality to their performances.
Hip hop dancing and breakdancing are both very new types of dance. These types of dance are set to modern hip hop music, and dancers are often encouraged to improvise different dance moves.
Some other popular forms of dance may include folk, Latin, and country and western dancing.
What Kind of Job Can a Dancer Get?
Dancing is a very competitive profession, and unfortunately, only a small percentage of dancers can actually find steady work in this area. To land a job in this field, dancers will usually have to audition for a part along with several other dancers. In order to supplement their income, many dancers will often hold other jobs as well.
Theatrical performances and musicals are generally the most common and sought after types of jobs for dancers. These shows are often produced by large theaters or dance troupes. Musicals may also be performed on television shows or musicals.
Music videos will also often feature dancers. The type of skills necessary for these videos will usually depend on what type of music the dance will be set to. Experienced country and western dancers may be hired to dance in country music videos, for example, while experienced hip hop dancers may be hired to dance in hip hop or rap music videos.
Instead of actually dancing, some professional dancers may also choose to teach dance classes or create new dances. A person who develop new dances or dance moves are referred to as choreographers.
What Is a Professional Dancer’s Salary Like?
Salaries of those talented and lucky enough to make dancing a profession can often vary widely, depending on a number of factors. Obviously, more talented dancers can make more money, as can more experienced dancers. Also, dancing in large productions or shows will also bring in more money than small productions.
Dancers typically get paid either per show or per week. Some dancers might make as little as $50 to $100 per show, while others may have contracts that guarantee them up to $1,500 per week.
Dancers in music videos and other filmed productions are generally paid by the hour or by the day. While some dancers can make hundreds of dollars a day, this money is not always consistent.
Teachers and choreographers typically earn a steadier wage, and they are usually paid by the hour as well. Dance teachers can make anywhere from $10 to $30 per hour. Choreographers, on the other hand, usually make around $35 per hour.
What Type of Education Does a Person Need To Become a Dancer?
Technically, a formal education is not absolutely necessary for a dance career, but studying under an experienced dancer or in a prominent dance school is usually very helpful.
Most dancers start their careers at a very young age. Professional ballerinas, for instance, usually start dance classes before they are even enrolled in school. As they get better, they can move up to more advanced classes.
During their teenage years, dancers can also choose to attend special performing arts or dance schools. Though they will get a general high school education in these types of schools, young dancers will also take different dance classes in order to fine tune their skills. After high school, some dancers begin looking for work right away, but others may choose to attend a traditional university or a performing arts university.
Choreographers and dance teachers should always have a solid dance education. Ideally, they should be well-rounded and able to perform many different types of dance. They should also be very experienced and talented in at least one type of dance, however. Some dance teachers may also need to get their teaching certificates, especially if they will be teaching small children.
Where Can a Dancer Do With A Dance Degree?
Dancers that have studied at special dance schools are more likely to be chosen to perform in theaters and dance troupes. Production studios also sometimes hire dancers to perform in movies and music videos. Most dance or performance oriented companies also regularly hire choreographers as well.
A professional dancer can also choose to open a dance studio and become a dance instructor. Individuals who are considering opening their own studio, however, should also consider getting a degree in business as well.