Dance Audition Information
Students wishing to major or minor in Dance at Grand Valley State University should complete an online application for the Dance Program, where you will choose your audition date. Students are encouraged to audition early, as scholarships are limited.
Scholarships are awarded on the basis of individual talent and potential, and are renewable annually if performance and academic standards are maintained.
Audition Dates 2023-2024
Fall 2023 Auditions
We are still accepting video auditions for Fall 2023 entry. Please fill out the Application for Dance Program Admission and Scholarship, and choose "Custom Audition Date." You will then receive instructions for how to submit your videos.
2023-2024 Dance Program Auditions
Friday, October 6, 2023 (For Winter 2024 or Fall 2024 entry)
Friday, November 10, 2023 (For Winter 2024 or Fall 2024 entry)
Friday, January 26, 2024 (For Fall 2024 entry)
Friday, February 16, 2024 (For Fall 2024 entry)
Friday, March 15, 2024 (For Fall 2024 entry) (scholarship consideration concludes)
At your audition date, you will participate in movement classes, present solo work, engage in creative practice, and interview with the faculty.
Please email Bridgett at [email protected] with questions about audition scheduling or the audition process.
Although we encourage in-person auditions, we understand that this may not be a possibility for everyone and we do have a virtual option available upon request. If you are unable to attend any of our audition days, contact Bridgett at [email protected] to arrange a separate audition time or a virtual audition.
Audition Day Schedule
The schedule for audition days is as follows:
9:00 -10:25 a.m.: Movement Class (will include warm-up and movement phrases from modern, jazz, and ballet).
10:30 -11:55 a.m.: Improvisation and Solo Showings
12:00 -1:00 p.m.: Lunch
1:00 -2:50 p.m.: Individual Interviews and Observe Dance Company Rehearsal
3:00 -4:00 p.m.: Information Meeting (Q+A for students and families)
Attire: Any dance attire that allows alignment and body placement to be clearly seen (examples: leggings, tights, tank tops, leotards, etc.)
Footwear: Bare feet for warm-up and modern. Please be prepared to put on jazz shoes (preferred) or socks for the jazz portion and soft ballet shoes for ballet portion of the movement class.
Solo: You will have an opportunity to present a 1-2 minute solo piece. The solo portion of the audition is intended as a chance for you to show us where you live and shine in dance. Choose the style(s) that let you best share your strengths in movement and artistry.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are you looking for at auditions?
The dance faculty are looking for safe and purposeful activation of alignment, intelligent application of movement information, and how you bring life to movement with your dynamics, personal voice, and artistry.
How do I audition for a dance merit scholarship?
There are no additional steps to be considered for a dance merit scholarship. All students accepted as dance majors are automatically considered for scholarship. Awards are typically made in spring after most auditionees have been seen. Scholarships cover a portion of tuition (not full tuition) and range in size. Dance merit scholarships will be renewed for the student’s sophomore, junior, and senior years as a dance major if they maintain GPA and dance enrollment requirements. There are additional academic and need-based scholarship opportunities through the university. We encourage you to reach out to the GVSU Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships for more information:https://www.gvsu.edu/financialaid/.
How should I prepare for my audition?
Whether auditioning in person or via video link, have confidence in the time you have devoted to dance thus far. Treat auditions as a free class or showing – an opportunity to share how you learn and try things and fulfill movement possibilities. We are not looking for perfection. We are looking for openness, artistry, and the knowledge of how to move efficiently and effectively in your unique physical instrument.
What kind of solo should I show?
The solo portion of the audition is intended as a chance for you to show us where you live and shine in dance. Choose the style(s) that let you best share your strengths in movement and artistry.
When will I hear the results from my audition?
If you have been accepted by GVSU, you should hear audition results two weeks following your audition date. If not yet accepted by GVSU, you will not hear the results until this step is complete.
What will my audition results say?
You may be accepted as a dance major, accepted as a dance minor, or declined.
- If accepted as a dance major, the audition panel feels you are fully ready for the rigor of the program. You might also receive acceptance as a dance major if you expressed interest in a dance minor instead. This simply lets you choose either a major or minor in the program through your first year without additional steps. Only dance majors are considered for merit scholarships.
- If accepted as a dance minor, we see potential in what you bring and want to help you foster it. Some dance minors, after demonstrating a first year of strong growth, transition into dance majors. Others find that the minor is the right fit for their goals. Either way, the first year dance schedule gives dancers time to make informed choices about the place of dance in their collegiate education.
- If declined, you are welcome to audition again! Some students grow considerably over the course of their audition year and some benefit from multiple experiences auditioning and receiving feedback (available upon request). The study of dance is a process of growth, and we welcome the chance to see how your work has developed from one audition to the next. A decline is not a judgement of your dancing or passion; rather, it is the pedagogical perception that the program may not be the best fit for you at this time.
What do dance majors and minors study in college?
Dance study involves practice and theory in and beyond the studio. A variety of technique courses, choreography courses, dance history courses, performance opportunities, and specialized courses like pedagogy and costuming complement each other to develop a wholistic perspective on the growing possibilities of our field. Dance majors have more extensive requirements than minors, but both benefit from how studio and classroom studies intersect to deepen each other.
Can I double major or minor in another discipline?
A large number of our students choose to double major or to minor in other fields; others devote themselves to a single major in dance. Our program offerings, scheduling, and performance opportunities have been crafted to be both challenging and flexible to honor a variety of paths. Dance is growing in many interdisciplinary directions, Talk to the dance faculty and faculty within your other department(s) of interest to find out more about how to create the best pathway to your personal educational goals.
What performance opportunities exist?
Freshman Dance Company (first year majors and minors) and Dance Company (continuing dance majors) typically perform in two fully produced proscenium stage shows a year. These showcase faculty and guest artist choreography in a variety of dance styles and include a full tech week, lighting, and costuming. Many additional opportunities exist including (but not limited to) senior capstone shows, Oakland Dance Festival, American College Dance Association conferences, touring school/community performances, faculty choreographic research projects, ArtPrize/Project X, student choreographic projects, halftime showcases with the Laker Marching Band, student dance organization performances, and more.
Why should I choose GVSU Dance?
Our program is intentionally small giving faculty the chance to get to know you, your goals, and how to best help you move toward them during your time with us and after graduation! Particular strengths of our program include the number and generosity of our guest artists, the personal attention in class that comes with a program of our size, the ability to focus intently on dance or to expand study into double majors/minors in other fields, and the atmosphere of the program. Our students and faculty find that they gain the most from approaching challenges in a supportive community where they see their peers as inspirations and future colleagues rather than competitors.
How does the Dance Program prepare me for a career in dance?
The field of dance today has expanded far beyond performance. Technology, business, advertising and public relations, teaching, exercise science, and more all intersect with what it means to be a dancer today. Our program provides opportunities to learn about dance for the camera, personal website and portfolio creation, making promotional materials, dance pedagogy, physical practices like conditioning and somatics that help dancers maintain their practice, and more. When combined with strong technique classes and performance opportunities, our students are prepared for entering today’s expanded field of dance.
What do GV dance alumni do?
Our alumni use their dance studies in varied and individualized ways. Some perform with companies like Giordano Dance Chicago, Missouri Contemporary Ballet, Cerqua Rivera Dance Theatre, Chicago Repertory Ballet, Thodos Dance Chicago, Minnesota Ballet, Columbia City Ballet, and The Big Muddy Dance Company; some freelance with numerous choreographers and dance styles in cities like New York City, Los Angeles, or Chicago; some go on to study physical therapy or become personal trainers; some become part-time or full-time dance teachers or studio owners; some pursue commercial dance and entertainment work with companies like Disney; and some pursue graduate degrees or careers as lawyers, biologists, or non-profit administrators. Wherever students end up, during their time at GVSU we work to build their network of dance connections around the country through high-impact experiences with visiting guest artists. These artists share a wealth of perspectives, dance styles, and creative processes that reflect their own unique professional experiences in locations across the country, and that help our students expand their understanding of the ways dance can form and inform their lives.